Center for Educational Transformation (CET)
University of California Riverside
Founding Director, Louie F. Rodriguez, Interim Dean of the GSOE
The Center for Educational Transformation (CET) is committed to equity-driven, visionary, and social justice-oriented work that aims to explore, highlight, and learn from region-wide examples of policy, practice, and pedagogy for the purposes of serving as a national model for community-engaged research.
The theory of action driving the Center’s work is straightforward: Engage in equity-driven, visionary, and social justice-oriented work and build the structures around the work that support the principles and commitments of our work.
There are a handful of community-based initiatives already underway, and we hope that students, GSOE faculty, and community partners will consider the Center as a platform to collaborate, build, and leverage their collective energy, expertise, and funding opportunities to do the work that matters.
CET’s Key Areas of Emphasis:
The Center may embrace many objectives including:
- Collaborative and Participatory Research in school- and community-based settings including work with non-profit organizations
- Professional Development and Consulting with the district and other partners who may leverage the Center’s expertise for research, assessment, and institutional troubleshooting
- Community Development such as working with youth engagement and Ethnic Studies development work
- Local/National Voice through various methods including research reports, blogs, policy briefs, op-eds, and engaging some of the voices from the region
- Leadership Development by providing support to GSOE faculty, graduate students, and undergraduates through research fellowships and similar opportunities
Challenges in the Inland Empire:
The challenges facing our communities in the Inland Empire are quite expansive and include:
- Inequitable access to quality early childhood educational opportunities and the subsequent challenges with Kindergarten preparedness
- Reading and mathematics proficiency in the early elementary years
- Understanding the ramifications of testing, class size, and disciplinary policies from elementary through high school
- Quality middle school education
- A-G access, issues, culturally and community relevant teachers, and school dropout pushout
- Long-term English Learners across the Inland Empire even among U.S. born and/or students who have attended K-12 in the U.S.
- Intentionally building curricular/pedagogical relevance through Ethnic Studies and other proven policy solutions
- Lack of representation in most policymaking bodies particularly among Communities of Color
- Collaborating across the PK-12, community college, 4-year institutions, and non-education sectors such as health, housing, economic development, business, and the clergy
Promises in the Inland Empire:
- A relatively young and vibrant community committed to educational success
- A historic presence whose ancestors helped establish and build many institutions in the region yet few know about these contributions
- A community resilience that has weathered systematic racism and discrimination through many institutions including education, voting, housing, and others
- A presence of parents and immigrant parents specifically who have unwaveringly advocated for equitable educational opportunities for their children
- A committed cross-section of education and non-education leaders who are ready to build equitable opportunities and access for Inland Empire students and communities