The Utah State Board of Education voted Thursday to retain its education equity rule by one vote.
A motion to repeal the rule was defeated on an 8-7 vote; however, the board voted to resume deliberations on possible amendments at its next regular meeting on Feb. 1.
School superintendents and school boards, as well as the Utah Education Association, urged the state board to retain the rule.The board’s Advisory Committee for Equity of Educational Services for Students also had urged retaining R277-328, which was unanimously approved by the state school board in 2021 after intense debate.
The rule defines educational equity as “acknowledging that all students are capable of learning and distributing resources to provide equal opportunities based upon the needs of each individual student.” The rule requires school districts to provide equity training to educators to make sure that happens.
According to the rule, educational equity means “acknowledging that all students are capable of learning and distributing resources to provide equal opportunities based upon the needs of each individual student. Equitable resources include funding, programs, policies, initiatives and supports that recognize each student’s unique background and school context to guarantee that all students have access to high-quality education.”