JEDI Listening Session

1:00 PM EDT
2:30 PM EDT

Webinars Diversity Equity & Inclusion

Justice, Equity, Diversity, and Inclusion (JEDI) Listening Session

As Head Start celebrates 58 years, its commitment to the principles of justice, equity, diversity, and inclusion (JEDI) are steadfast! The National Head Start Association is partnered with the Children’s Equity Project (CEP) to conduct a series of listening sessions with leading early childhood educators and practitioners to explore how Head Start addresses JEDI principles in program goals, standards, and practice.

Please join our session moderators, Dr. Shantel Meek and Dr. Iheoma Iruka of CEP,  Tuesday, May 23 from 1:00-2:30 p.m. ET to participate in the conversation and share your insight and thoughts on how Head Start meets and may expand its JEDI mission.



Dr. Shantel Meek

Dr. Shantel Meek is a Professor of Practice and the Founding Director of the Children’s Equity Project, a multi-university initiative that aims to close opportunity gaps between children from historically marginalized communities and their peers. Dr. Meek previously served in the Obama Administration as a Senior Policy Advisor for Early Childhood Development at the U.S. Department of Health and Human Services (HHS) and as a Senior Policy Advisor for Education in the Domestic Policy Council at the White House.


Dr. Iheoma Iruka

Iheoma U. Iruka, Ph.D., is a Research Professor in the Department of Public Policy and the Founding Director of the Equity Research Action Coalition at the Frank Porter Graham Child Development Institute at UNC Chapel Hill. Dr. Iruka is leading projects and initiatives focused on ensuring that minoritized children and children from low-income households thrive through the intersection of anti-bias, anti-racist, and culturally grounded research, program, and policy. Dr. Iruka has authored over 80 books and papers and has given over 200 talks in the past two years. She serves on numerous national and local boards and committees, including the National Academies of Sciences, Engineering, and Medicine, the American Psychological Association’s Board of Educational Affairs, and the National Science Foundation. In addition to being on the National Advisory Committee for the U.S. Census Bureau and a Census Advisor for the National Urban League, Dr. Iruka is the recipient of the 2022 American Psychological Association Mid-Career Award for Outstanding Contributions to Benefit Children, Youth, and Families and the 2023
Association of University Centers on Disabilities Leadership for All award-winner.