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LCPS Presents Framework for Culturally Responsive Instruction

Validation. Appreciation. Understanding. Empathy. Welcome. Affirmation. Safety. These are among the qualities that Loudoun County Public Schools is working to create for all students in the LCPS learning environment by developing a framework for culturally responsive instruction  that fosters a student-centered learning environment.  


Achieving this objective is especially important for students who traditionally have been marginalized by inequitable systems. The proposed LCPS Culturally Responsive Framework was presented last night to the School Board’s Equity Committee for additional review and feedback. The framework was presented to the School Board Curriculum and Instruction Committee in June. A team of more than 30 contributors has been drafting, reviewing and refining the framework since December 2019.


As the introduction to the document says, “A culturally responsive framework is necessary given the historical implications of inequitably designed educational systems, highlighting the disparity in educational experiences for certain subgroups of students. Let’s celebrate the diversity that helps define us as a school division and demonstrate that each individual is valued in Loudoun County Public Schools.”


The framework is available for public review on the LCPS School Board webpage. Feedback from the community can be provided by completing this form - Feedback LCPS Culturally Responsive Framework (Spanish/Arabic)

The Culturally Responsive Framework will inform decision making related to instructional environments, communicate a shared understanding of the work, guide professional learning, and inform systems of accountability related to instructional environments. Ultimately the goal of the framework is to prepare each student to be an independent learner.


The framework has three primary components. Each of the three components includes organizing principles and guidelines. Each component also outlines indicators for implementation by teachers, school-based leaders and instructional support staff members, the three categories of LCPS staff members who interact most with students.


The three components of the LCPS Culturally Responsive Framework are:


Welcoming, Inclusive and Affirming Environment: A welcoming, inclusive and affirming environment feels safe. It is a space where people can find themselves represented and reflected, and where they understand that all people are treated with respect and dignity. The environment ensures the multiple identities and cultures of students, staff and families are affirmed, valued, celebrated and used as assets for teaching and learning.


Inclusive Curriculum and Assessment: Inclusive curriculum and assessment affirms diverse identities and engages students in deeper learning in the content area by building knowledge and skills in cultural literacy. It creates opportunities for students to examine authentic challenging problems including issues of justice and equity.  Inclusive curriculum and assessment provides culturally affirming opportunities for students to make meaningful contributions to the community and the world.


Engagement and Challenge through Deeper Learning: Through continual reflection and introspection of its policies and processes, Loudoun County Public Schools (LCPS) teachers, administrators, and staff design and implement instructional practices that are responsive to the needs of all learners by promoting a learning environment that values the perspectives of its students, staff, families, and the greater Loudoun community.  Taking a broad view of culture, LCPS strives to reflect the diversity of the human experience, recognizing the strength and value of varied perspectives and approaches on the transmission and acquisition of knowledge.


Loudoun County Public Schools is committed to providing an inclusive, safe, caring, and challenging learning environment, which serves as the foundation for student growth in achieving our mission of empowering all students to make meaningful contributions to the world. A welcoming, student-centered learning environment is an integral part of LCPS’ efforts to achieving that goal.


Published August 7, 2020