Ep. 132: Social Justice: A Framework for Equity in Education with Charles A. Barrett, PhD, NCSP

May 9, 2023 | 0 comments

Social justice is a topic of discussion on several episodes of this podcast and today’s guest joins the conversation on this important part of education. Because, social justice is truly a framework for equity in education.

Today’s guest is Dr. Charles Barrett, an experienced school psychologist, speaker, and author of Social Justice in Schools. Dr. Barrett knows that significant contextual factors, events happening around students, can affect their social, emotional, and behavioral functioning. He joins me today to discuss actionable steps that parents, educators, and practitioners can take to promote positive outcomes for all students and communities.


Show Notes:

[1:58] – Dr. Barrett has an extensive background, and he shares how he got into this particular area.

[3:46] – There are a lot of variables that can impact how well a child does in school. We need to be mindful of these realities.

[4:42] – Not everyone has the access to the things they need to reach their potential.

[6:12] – Where do we even begin in understanding social justice? When can we move from knowledge to action?

[7:40] – There are systems in place that cause inequitable outcomes. One major one is education funding.

[8:57] – It is a reality that children do not receive the same level of education based on their demographic.

[9:37] – Racism is another factor in inequitable outcomes.

[11:03] – Distance learning during COVID-19 placed a spotlight on the disparity in education.

[12:40] – Are we misinterpreting student performance as a disability?

[14:24] – When returning to school after the COVID-19 pandemic, students experienced difficulty in socializing.

[16:10] – Be present. Be proactive. Be persistent.

[18:58] – Dr. Barrett and Dr. Wilson discuss what it looks like to be persistent.

[20:26] – Access to information is key to advocating. An informed parent is the best partner.

[21:44] – The partnership between the parent, the school, and the teacher is so important.

[23:11] – There are more things that can be provided that parents don’t always know about that are outside of the IEP.

[24:12] – Dr. Barrett explains the benefits of Cognitive Behavioral Therapy.

[26:59] – Understanding and access to information is not just important for parents. Students need to understand how they learn as well.

[29:33] – If you are an educator, Dr. Barrett recommends first being critical of your own work.

[31:08] – For parents, a great place to start is asking questions.


About Our Guest:

Charles A. Barrett, PhD, NCSP, a district-level administrator in Virginia, practiced as a school psychologist for 13 years at the elementary and secondary levels. He serves as an adjunct lecturer at several universities, where he is actively involved in the training and development of future school psychologists. Dr. Barrett was named School Psychologist of the Year by the Virginia Academy of School Psychologists and received the Rookie of the Year Award from the National Association of School Psychologists (NASP). His past leadership positions within NASP include co-chair of the Social Justice Task Force and African American Subcommittee, chair of the Multicultural Affairs and Social Justice Committees, and Virginia Delegate to the NASP Leadership Assembly. Dr. Barrett serves on the editorial boards of School Psychology Review and School Psychology. He is a frequent speaker and workshop presenter for educators, families, and community organizations. 


Connect with Charles Barrett:

Links and Related Resources:


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The Diverse Thinking Different Learning podcast is intended for informational purposes only and is not a substitute for medical or legal advice, diagnosis, or treatment. Additionally, the views and opinions expressed by the host and guests are not considered treatment and do not necessarily reflect those of ChildNEXUS, Inc or the host, Dr. Karen Wilson.