How to promote equity in your classroom

Equity is the equal treatment of all your students regardless of their race, ethnicity, gender or status. In a country like this one, we have so many native tribes, belief systems, immigrants and  obvious differences in the treatment of girls compared to boys. However, equal treatment is necessary in the classroom because;

  • Students can relate to one another freely and build relationships
  • Allows for teachers to tailor their instruction to meet the needs of all their students
  • Helps teachers identify and address disparities in student achievement
  • Promotes safe and inclusive classrooms for all students
  • Fosters a culture of collaboration and cooperation

Every teacher, no matter who you are, should strive to achieve and promote equity in their classroom, and some of the effective methods include;

1. Learn more about equity

If you aren’t sure where to start, that’s absolutely fine, because so many people start at that point. However, you have to educate yourself about equity, including what it is, how to promote it, what kind of errors you could make along the way and how to avoid them. Here are some ways you can educate yourself;

  • Do extensive research through reading books, blogs, watching documentaries and news
  • Ask the people around you about their perspective
  • Compare equitable environments with yours and see what and where to change

Education is the most important of all steps to promoting equity, because then, you know what you’re doing and how to do it.

2. Celebrate differences

Again, Uganda has more than 15 different tribes and they all speak different languages, exercise different customs and live in different parts of the country. These factors have always been the basis of the creation of stereotypes and discrimination among students.

Here’s how to celebrate differences;

  • Ask your students to be open and confident about their roots
  • Show them the beauty of a diverse classroom
  • Lecture students about the beauty of each of their different attachments, especially those that aren’t confident about theirs
  • Create events where they can interact and associate with different cultures, including reciting their folklore and exploring their history

By celebrating differences, you create an air of positivity in your classroom, and students get to tolerate one another peacefully.

3. Bridge the communication gap between students and teachers

One of the most important things you can have in your classroom is knowing what your students think and why they think that way. That can only be achieved if you promote communication between you and them. Here’s how;

  • Let them know they are free to say whatever is on their mind
  • Be available if they  have something to talk about
  • Remain approachable to your students whenever they need to have a chat with you

If you promote communication effectively in your classroom, your students get to clearly articulate their feelings no matter their background, beliefs or gender.

4. Teach your students social skills

It is essential for all your students to possess social skills. Some of them include;

  • Making new friends
  • Interacting with people
  • Public speaking
  • Settling disputes

By teaching your students these and more social skills, you equip them with the ability to overlook the inevitable differences between them and simply tolerate one another.

5. Cultivate a culture of respect in the classroom

Students are young and they lack on many things. They don’t really know much about respecting one another unless they’re told by someone.

Some of them being from socially superior families, tribes, ethnic groups or gender setting, can treat their fellows with disrespect sometimes, unless you talk them out of it.

It’s not a one-time thing, but after a while of constantly lecturing them about respecting one another, students will learn to treat one another with respect, without feeling compelled to do it.

6. Help students understand their strengths and weaknesses

Many students find a hard time discovering their strengths and weaknesses, and sometimes this holds them back from performing to their full potential and expectations. They clearly need your help through;

  • Testing them with different sets if tasks
  • Teaching them how to capitalize on their strengths
  • Pulling them up in areas where they are weak or lacking

When everyone knows their strengths and weaknesses in comparison to a classmate, they soon realize how much they need one another, therefore they get to help one another.

7. Reward students who excel academically

Rewarding students who exhibit excellence in academic disciplines is one of the best ways to promote equity. This is because students from any background and social setting can attain good grades.

This means, therefore, that you have given your students another standard of comparison, therefore eliminating the vices that emanate from discrimination and inequity.

8. Teach students to support one another

No one is more effective in terms of fighting against student vices than the students themselves. Helping students develop a support network can be highly beneficial to the students by;

  • Identifying and helping students that are being segregated against or treated unfairly
  • The students themselves getting to promote good morals among one another
  • Identifying the students that are out to get others and reporting them to higher authorities

Support networks among students always need a teacher to oversee their actions and decisions, so as to promote a more effective action protocol.


Every great leader started as a student, and the reason they might indulge in different vices is because they weren’t taught otherwise. This is why it is important to promote equity in your classroom and above all, teach your students to promote equity themselves, meaning they’ll apply your lessons in their lives when need arises.

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