In Blog, STAY Chat

Returning to Justice: Advancing Culturally Responsive-Sustaining Education in the Midst of Pandemics, Protests, and Possibilities

David E. Kirkland

Vice Dean for Equity, Belonging, and Community Action

Distinguished Professor of English and Urban Education

Executive Director, NYU Metro Center

In his keynote, Dr. David E. Kirkland will engage the Richmond, VA community in a conversation on how to build better as we continue to imagine how equitable schooling should look in a time of a global pandemic, social unrest, and economic uncertainty. In doing so, he will offer ideas for returning to educational justice while embracing the unique needs of our students. As educators continue to respond to the systematic inequities highlighted and exacerbated by this moment, the expertise, scholarship, and advocacy of Dr. Kirkland will help support crucial conversations on how a culturally responsive-sustaining education can best serve our students during COVID and how it can help us reimagine schools beyond it.




David E. Kirkland, (@davidekirkland) is a Professor of Urban Education at New York University, where he also serves as Vice Dean for The Office of Equity, Belonging, and Community Action as well as Executive Director of The Metropolitan Center for Research on Equity and The Transformation of Schools. He is an activist and educator, cultural critic and author, and a leading national scholar and advocate for educational justice. While Dr. Kirkland’s work has always centered equity and culturally responsive-sustaining education, his most recent work with the NYU Metro Center has focused on supporting instruction responsive to the social, cultural, and emotional needs of students during the unique challenge of schooling in the midst of social crises. Dr. Kirkland taught secondary school and served as a school administrator in Michigan and New York. He has also organized youth empowerment and youth mentoring programs in major U.S. cities and currently leads efforts to enhance education options for vulnerable youth throughout the U.S. Dr. Kirkland has received many awards for his research and educational advocacy work; a full list can be found here. Learn more about Dr. Kirkland by clicking on the following links:

“A Search Past Silence: The Literacy of Black Males”

“How a Dyslexic Boy Fell in Love with Words”

“Elements of Oppression”

“Transformation Needed to Integrate School”

“English Professor Directs NYU Center to Make Education More Equitable”



Supporting Together Area Youth RVA (STAY RVA) is a movement comprised of parents and neighbors who want to help Richmond’s local public schools thrive. We are a positive-minded, solution-oriented, action-based organization. We want you to be a part of STAY… STAY in the city, STAY committed, STAY open-minded. We want to build communities of support around every school and engage in honest conversations about why schools have not had the resources they need. We want to BECOME genuine community members who work to form relationships with all people.

Richmond is a dynamic city loved by many who call it home. We want to encourage people to STAY, put down roots, and get involved in their community by coming together in support of local schools. In order to be a first-class city, we must provide a first-class education for ALL students.

At the heart of who we are as a movement is a LOVE for humanity. There is a foundational belief that TOGETHER we can and should create a better way forward by supporting our local public schools.


What We Believe

  • We believe in the power of education and the limitless possibilities and potential for ALL children.
  • We know that the expertise and resources necessary to build a world-class school system exist in our community.
  • We recognize that racism plays a powerful part in the historic failure of our system to offer opportunity to children of color and that through building relationships in our communities and in our schools we can begin to dismantle the structural racism that continues to plague our community’s school system.
  • If a school is not “good enough” for my child then it is not good enough for anyone’s child and we are going to work to make sure that ALL schools are great for ALL of our kids.