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Meet MAEC Staff – Carol Gant

At MAEC, collaboration and shared learning are key as we work towards education equity. It is our privilege to nurture a team of innovative, dynamic leaders and rising leaders in this field. In this blog series featuring members of MAEC staff, meet Associate Director of Early Childhood Programs, Carol Gant!

Who is an advocate or activist that you admire, and why?
I admire James Baldwin, a groundbreaking writer and activist, for his graceful approach to advocacy work. He navigated the complexities of racism and sexuality with empathy and used his writing to promote self-acceptance and understanding. Baldwin’s advocacy work extended beyond his own experiences, as he sought to understand the perspectives of others, making his legacy a reminder that advocacy work can take many forms, but empathy is a crucial component of social change.

What does education equity mean to you?
Education equity is a complex and meaningful concept that requires a deep understanding of individual perspectives and biases when advocating for change. It involves recognizing that access to high-quality education and opportunities may mean different things for each student and requires addressing systemic barriers that hinder progress. It is important to consider the unique learning needs of each student and understand that equity work can be met with resistance due to misunderstandings. This ongoing process requires a commitment to examining ourselves in creating meaningful change for all students.

Tell us about a book in your office you think everyone should read.
Diagnosing and Changing Organizational Culture by Kim S. Cameron and Robert E. Quinn offers insights from various social science disciplines, including management, economics, and psychology, to help us understand how we structure organizations. In my experience working with a state department of education, I have found that a deep understanding of communication, motivation, organizational culture, and theory is crucial when it comes to implementing effective change. By understanding human behavior, we can develop strategies that improve the overall effectiveness of a system.

Tell us about a book on your bedside table you think everyone should read.
When I’m at my bedside I want to relax – but I’m reading all the time! As I’m pursing my PhD, I’m reading articles focused mostly on African American women in leadership and their journeys.

What is one thing that brings you joy?
My garden…and my son of course! I have a lot of seedlings in my house that will be ready to plant soon.

MAEC's blog is designed to engage hearts and minds of school and district leaders across the country to engage in issues that you have identified as being essential in education. Opinions do not necessarily reflect the views of the organization.

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