Soft skills and Diversity, Equity, and Inclusion

Diversity, Equity, and Inclusion on wooden blocks
Soft skills competency, is essential in creating a more diverse, equitable, and inclusive workplace, as efforts to close achievement gaps based on socio-economic status have remained stagnant over the years.

Soft skills also play a crucial role in creating a more diverse, equitable, and inclusive workplace. This blog post should explore how soft skills such as empathy, communication, and cultural competency can help organizations create a more inclusive environment.

After decades of attempts to close achievement gaps, we have failed. In fact, according to the Nation’s Report Card, our grade 12 reading gap has increased from 24 points in 1992 to 32 points in 2019 and math gaps have remained stagnant at 31 points. Achievement gaps based on socio-economic status have also remained stagnant since 1968. In fact, here are some startling statistics about achievement gaps in the United States:

  • By age three, children of professionals have vocabularies that are nearly 50 percent greater than those of working-class children, and twice as large as those of children whose families are on welfare.    
  • By the end of fourth grade, African American, Latino, and poor students of all races are two years behind their wealthier, predominantly white peers in reading and math. By eighth grade, they have slipped three years behind, and by twelfth grade, four years behind.
  • Only one in 50 Hispanic and black 17-year-olds can read and gain information from specialized text (such as the science section of a newspaper) compared to about one in 12 white students
  • By the end of high school, black and Hispanic students’ reading and mathematics skills are roughly the same as those of white students in the eighth grade
  • Among 18- to 24-year olds, about 90 percent of whites have either completed high school or earned a GED.  Among blacks, the rate is 81 percent; among Hispanics, 63 percent. However, a much larger share of blacks earn GEDs than whites, and only about 50 percent of  black students earn regular diplomas, compared with about 75 percent of whites.

What we are doing isn’t working, because we are not addressing the foundational skills that lead to success in school, work and life. We talk about these essential, durable or soft skills a lot, but we do not strategic initiatives that help us build them and measure our impact. If we are truly striving to provide equitable education for all students, we need to address the foundational skills that allow achievement gaps to persist.

JAKAPA can help. We measure, train and track 32 skills in five areas: self-management, innovation, emotional resilience, social engagement and cooperation. Researchers have shown our skills impact life satisfaction, academic outcomes, friendship quality, peer acceptance and a myriad of other positive outcomes. We provide daily practice for students and can close your achievement gaps, because students will master the underlying skills such as time management, anger management, abstract thinking, expressive language and others, that impact their ability to succeed in school.

Call JAKAPA to schedule a demo and learn more about the skills we measure and how we train and track them. You can create a more inclusive, equitable school and close achievement gaps in your school by using JAKAPA.

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