Criteria for Decolonizing our Educational Practices

Decolonizing the Curriculum

Decolonization, in the context of education, involves rethinking, challenging, and revising curriculum and instruction that has served the narratives and values of the dominant culture. In the face of growing diversity in our nation, decolonizing curriculum means exposing and de-centering White settler narratives and centering the histories, experiences, and perspectives of the communities and cultures of people that have been historically marginalized. Decolonizing instruction involves focusing on the voices of those pushed to the margins so that all learners feel valued in who they are and what they can become.



1. Creates “spaces” (i.e., psychological and emotional) for historically marginalized students to feel valued in who they are and what they can become.
2. Sets up classroom spaces (i.e., physical) where students feel welcomed, validated, and empowered to explore the learning tools and resources in their school environment.
3. Facilitates group discussion and dialogue that centers classroom learning on the histories, cultures, identities, and narratives of historically marginalized students.
4. Connects students to the broader classroom learning community by building upon student background knowledge and experiences as well as intentionally including the histories, cultures, identities, and narratives of all students.
5. Supplements and expands curricular resources in order to ensure that the histories, cultures, identities, and experiences of historically marginalized students are represented equitably and substantially.
6. Conveys intentionality about what is taught and creates opportunities and resources for students’ self-actualization.
7. Promotes student voice, agency, and civic action.