Seeking Educational Equity & Diversity
Absent Narratives (AN) Professional Development Seminars
Cultural Diversity Resources is the fiscal agent for SEED as a community partner this year.
A Brief History of Seeking Educational Equity & Diversity (SEED) Seminars in the
In the summer of 1992, the Minnesota Inclusiveness Program (MIP) hosted the first
National SEED Project Leaders’ training in Minneapolis, and Moorhead Area Public Schools
(MAPS) sent the first of many educators to be trained in that professional development approach.
Because the SEED model of a series of nine monthly seminars (September through May) was
found to be effective and popular, a number of collaborations emerged.
Each year from 1992 through 2007 multiple SEED seminars, comprised of teachers, school support staff, parents and other interested community members, were hosted through MAPS.
In 1993 several MSUM (MN State University Moorhead) professors trained with the National SEED Project and began offering annual SEED seminars for area university staff, focused on higher education. Professors at MSUM, led by Phyllis May-Machunda, translated the SEED approach into an accredited semester-long
course that was often taught by SEED-trained educators and was offered to students through 2018.
The newly-formed F-M Cultural Diversity Project (now Cultural Diversity Resources) sent leaders to attend the National SEED training and established the Community Leaders Advocating Inclusiveness (CLAI, 1994-2008) program.
Our robust cohort of local SEED leaders worked with MIP and National SEED to develop and host a Regional SEED Leaders training in 1999 which resulted in numerous SEED seminars being offered across the Red River Valley watershed, from Fargo to Fergus Falls.
In 2015 our SEED leaders cohort partnered with the Minnesota Humanities Center’s Absent Narratives Initiative, to strengthen relationships among educators, community members and local organizations.
Following a seven year hiatus due to shifts in school district personnel, priorities and funding, local SEED seminars were re-energized when our cohort obtained grant funding in 2014 to again send educators to National SEED leaders trainings; annual SEED seminar groups have again been continuously offered (2014
Our cohort of SEED co-facilitators is composed of educators (K-12 and university) and community members trained through the National SEED Project. We have continued to evolve and fine-tune our SEED seminar offerings, often operating on a volunteer basis when funding is not available. In 2021 we shifted from MAPS as our fiscal host, to CDR.
We are committed to continuing to provide SEED seminar opportunities to our communities regardless of ability to pay, so a modest fee is requested for SEED seminar participation and participants may apply for
full or partial scholarships as needed. Schools and organizations are invited to request group rates. SEED alums are invited to donate and additional grant funding is continuously pursued.
In the spring of 2020, our SEED seminar format changed due to pandemic-related concerns, from monthly 3-hour in-person gatherings to 90-minute virtual sessions. We currently offer annual SEED 1 'Foundations' seminars. For participants who wish to continue to deepen their understanding of the myriad intersections among individual and institutionalized social advantaging and disadvantaging, we offer SEED 2 'A Focus on Race' and SEED 2 'A Focus on Disability' (SEED 2 'A Focus on Class and Caste' is in development).
At this time we continue to offer our seminars in a virtual format, however, we are considering the development of hybrid (simultaneous in person and remote) options.
As a local cohort of seminar co-facilitators, we follow the National SEED Project approach, maintain connections with the National SEED Project, and continue to recruit new educators and community members to be trained as leaders with the National SEED Project.
SEED is a professional development opportunity consisting of structured conversations on equity and diversity. Here, in the F-M area, each group meets for nine sessions to discuss a variety of topics related to systems of power, oppression, and privilege. CEUs are available. Graduate credits may be available.
In addition to SEED Seminars, we offer other community events related to diversity, equity, and inclusion.
Virtual SEED Summits (for current SEED participants)