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Las Vegas area community leaders push for more diversity in school district administration

Posted at 5:20 PM, Jul 14, 2021
and last updated 2021-07-15 11:12:41-04

LAS VEGAS (KTNV) — Las Vegas minority community leaders are upset over the lack of representation in Clark County School District administration roles and are calling for a change in the way administrators are hired.

RELATED: CCSD releases new report about increasing teacher recruitment, retention

The Las Vegas Alliance of Black Educators says the people at the top of CCSD do not reflect the diversity of Las Vegas, and there are qualified leaders of color in the community and around the country.

"We are having conversations with our leaders, agreeing that institutionalized racism is a thing," said LVABE President Kamilah Bywaters (M.Ed, M.Div). "Yet they aren’t doing anything about it."

South Academic Center Principal Dr. Anthony Marentic says about 23% of CCSD students are white. That means students of color make up about 77% of the district.

LVABE says the representation in CCSD administrative roles is largely unbalanced with the demographics of Las Vegas.

"We are missing the mark. In our mission we say we are preparing our students for global community but then we aren’t showing any type of global unity in the structure of how we do things," said Bywaters

MORE: Demand grows for more Black voices within the Clark County School District

The LVABE is also concerned about representation in government. They have laid out a plan which includes training on how to put underrepresented communities on the political map.

"People have the right to fair representation. They have the right to be seen in those maps," explained Executive Director of Vote Nevada Dr. Sondra Cosgrove.

"They have the right to elect someone that looks like, thinks like and will advocate for them," she said. "Gerrymandering takes away your right to representation. To me, that’s just as bad as taking away your right to vote."

CCSD sent the following statement to 13 Action News:

It is the priority of the Clark County School District Board of School Trustees and Superintendent Jara to work to ensure diversity among school administrators, licensed staff and support professionals as outlined in Focus: 2024, CCSD’s five-year strategic plan.

You can find the outline of this training here.