For decades, state boards of education have been developing policies to deliver quality education to all students and overseeing implementation of those policies. Yet students still attend schools that often are racially segregated and underresourced and receive instruction of uneven quality.

Whether they are reviewing teacher preparation programs, setting rigorous academic standards, or examining exclusionary discipline practices, much depends on the state board’s collective capacity to lead in advancing equity.

This NASBE policy update offers state boards a means to address these issues through structured discussions of equity, the achievement gap, and what state boards need to lead for equity and excellence.