MSD of Washington Township hires director of equity and inclusion

Erica Buchanan-Rivera.jpg
Posted at 6:24 PM, Sep 10, 2020
and last updated 2020-09-10 18:24:44-04

INDIANAPOLIS — The Metropolitan School District of Washington Township has hired its first director of equity and inclusion.

In a statement, the district announced the hiring of Dr. Erica Buchanan-Rivera to the post.

Buchanan-Rivera is tasked with providing expertise, leadership, and collaboration in all areas of the school district and will be key to the district's commitment to recruiting, retaining, and supporting a diverse staff, educating a diverse student body, and creating a safe and welcoming environment for students, parents, faculty, staff and community partners, the district said.

"On behalf of the MSD Washington Township School Board we are excited about adding this new position of director of equity and inclusion to the superintendent's cabinet," Bill Turner, president of the school board, said. "We as a district pride ourselves in working to make education equitable for all of our students. This has been demonstrated through programs such as the Cultural Responsivity work that has been taking place in the district the past few years as well as in our new strategic plan. We have made the commitment to not just talk about how we can improve, but to start doing more to improve.

"This position is another big step in helping to close the achievement gap as it focuses on equity around the district from curriculum to hiring to community involvement. This is a first for Washington Township and we are excited that this day is here. We look forward to continuing on the path of improvement in the areas of equity and inclusion."

Buchanan-Rivera most recently served as the first chief equity and inclusion officer for Hamilton Southeastern schools since 2018. At the district, she worked to collaboratively develop a district equity team, building equity coaches, and multiple diversity student organizations that all work to support the district's students.

"All students deserve identity affirming environments, spaces rooted in care, authentic relationships, and equitable practices that help all children thrive," Buchanan-Rivera said. "I am thrilled to join the Washington Township team and continue this important work."