New “Equity Policy” for Fairfax Schools

The Fairfax County School Board began to develop an “anti-racism, anti-bias” policy in 2020.  The process seemed to take a back seat to other initiatives in 2021.  Now, however, the proposal is being revived, renamed as an “equity policy.”

The planned scope of the policy, and the process for drafting and considering it, was discussed by the Board at the work session on July 12.  A slide show was used to summarize the scope and timetable for the project; it can been seen HERE.


The main points that emerged at the July 12 meeting were:

  • The Board regards the proposal as very significant, affecting all aspects of the school system’s activities, including allocation of school funding, teaching and learning, workforce hiring and retention, relationships with the community, facilities, transportation, etc.
  • The Board recognizes that “equity” is a highly charged term.  It directed the staff to carefully define what “equity” and “equitable outcomes” mean, so as to provide assurance to the public.
  • The Board emphasized that input from the public should be sought at all stages of developing the policy.  The Board’s staff stated that it contemplates getting input via a public survey, public forums, communications by Board members to constituents, input from advisory committees, and interaction with “stakeholders.”
  • The policy will require mechanisms for measuring success and for accountability.

The policy hasn’t been drafted yet, so the discussion at the Board’s work session was very general.  The process of developing and adopting the policy will take many months.


Rigorous monitoring needs to occur as the policy is being developed.  Although Board members stated at the work session that the policy should “benefit everyone,” not just specific groups, the devil will be in the details, not in the public relations characterizations of it.

Interested individuals and groups should keep abreast of developments and should make their views known to the Board.  I will keep tabs on the process at Fairfax Schools Monitor, and will try to keep others informed.

In the near term, I plan to send a letter to the Superintendent and Board members, providing my preliminary input.  I will post that letter on this site when I send it.




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  1. Sherry Reynolds on July 14, 2022 at 1:45 am

    Equitable love and nurturing of each student in the classroom is the best formula for helping each student be the best they can be. Some will excel in the arts, others will improve our world through engineering feats and inventions. The suggestion that good teaching will produce equitable outcomes is to deny human nature in our diverse world. Facilitating each child’s learning to produce the best each unique student has to offer will reward all who recognize and value what each child brings to the learning experience.

    • Mark Spooner on July 15, 2022 at 8:28 pm

      I couldn’t agree with you more

  2. Richard H Porter on July 14, 2022 at 1:28 pm

    I have long believed that “equity “ is the most dangerous word included in Fairfax’s One Fairfax policy and in the corresponding policy adopted by FCPS . Attempts to define it always result in “ word salad” and the word/ concept then becomes the justification for whatever decision or action the “woke “ crowd wants to take.

    • Mark Spooner on July 15, 2022 at 8:27 pm

      Excellent observation.

  3. Tyrone Santos on July 20, 2022 at 6:45 am

    Thank you Mr. Spooner. Please keep up the good work.