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"Shifting Self and System is a must-read for those who are serious in doing equity work. More importantly it provides the courage needed so that you stay focused because this type of leadership is on-going and can be contagious when done correctly."
"I have never experienced a book with so many tangible suggestions for improvement of practice, such effective reflection prompts, so many real examples of the theory in practice, and such insightful analysis of the actions taken in each case study. If you are a leader committed to transforming education into a liberating, revolutionary, and humanizing institution - why haven’t you bought this book yet?"
"[Ababio-Fernandez and Winkfield] shared insight into decades-old limitations of equity work--the inertia that forces the system to remain in homeostasis--and they explain how and why this happens in uniquely insightful and sound ways. I recommend this text to anyone who has been wondering why we have not yet made the systemic changes students and families so deserve."
"Working toward equity is a journey not a destination. The authors of Shifting Self and System paint a picture of just what that journey entails. Through personal story and deep analysis, the authors illustrate what it can look like to uproot educational injustice through a shift in the system and ourselves. The authors acknowledge historical truths, bring an honest assessment of the pitfalls related to leading for equity and provide a path forward rooted in possibility, humanity, sustainability, and justice.
"Shifting Self and Systems is a must-read book that offers actionable tools for transformative leadership that center racial equity, healing, and the power of the collective so that our nation's students, especially the most marginalized, receive a quality education that honors their full, authentic selves."
“The journey of school and district leadership requires a multitude of skills and capacities. Ababio-Fernandez and Winkfield take us into a depth of skills and capacities that are reminiscent of abolitionist education. The focus of abolitionists was to end the practice of physical slavery as a means of impacting cognitive slavery that presumed superiority or inferiority based on race and ethnicity. Ababio-Fernandez and Winkfield highlight the five pillars of leadership that require an abolitionist orientation necessary for an equity leader to build a free person's education.
“The authors mention that there are many examples and guideposts in the history and evolution of this country’s search for its soul. I count this book amongst them. Shifting Self and System: How Educational Leaders Propel Excellence for Achieving Equity offers clarity, truth, and will equip school leaders with the necessary tools to move beyond the performative to developing and sustaining the will and skill to persist in this work courageously, even, and especially in the face of resistance.
“There are a lot of books out there that purport to give you answers, but this one really does. Not the answers that make the hard stuff seem easy, but the kind of answers that make you face hard truths, look at yourself in the mirror, and commit to persevere. This is the book we need, at the exact time we need it, by the people we need to hear from, for the people who need it most. It is a must read for any educator or education leader who is dissatisfied with the status quo.”
"If you genuinely care about equity this book is for you. Infused with real-life stories, research, and solutions, "Shifting Self and System: How educational leaders propel excellence to achieve equity" will challenge you to reflect on how one shows up in our own lives and the lives we've been charged to impact. It is refreshingly honest and unapologetic. Ultimately, there will never be equality without equity- Dr. Ruby Ababio-Fernandez and Courtney Winkfield get it!"
“The authors offer windows into a collective human experience that unites our histories and futures. A refreshing perspective at the intersection of identity, spirituality and the developing leader. Bold, poignant and nuanced in its call for self-mastery as a pathway to transformative leadership in contemporary times.
"Shifting Self and System: How educational leaders propel excellence to achieve equity will shorten the educator's required journey on becoming an adaptive leader to serve the students with whom they are entrusted. Dr. Ruby and Courtney have the origin stories and experience to prepare our educators through adapted leadership to ensure that all students thrive in a 21st-century where AI, robotics, and automation requires that they are seen and supported as STEM-capable, regardless of their origin stories."
"This book, Shifting Self and System: How educational leaders propel excellence to achieve equity, reminds us that everyone needs healing and all of us can lead system change initiatives from the inside out. The authors guide us into thinking deeply about the personal mirror work that each of us must do to drive systems changes in our education systems. Dr. Ruby and Courtney’s vulnerability and empathy shine through their courageous storytelling and reflections.