NYU Metro Center is pleased to introduce Reed Swier as the new Co-Director of Innovations in Equity and Systemic Change. He will serve alongside the founding director, Dr. María G. Hernández.
Reed is an equity-centered educator and administrator who has spent his career looking to foster culturally responsive learning spaces while challenging systems of power and privilege in his own life and within structures of schooling. His career began as a K-5 teacher in New York and California. “Mr. Reed,” as he was affectionately referred to by his students, would go on to become an essential member of the school leadership team at a Harlem-based academic institution. It was from this perch that Reed worked to connect students, staff, and families in a daily effort to truly foster a community-based school grounded in restorative practices.
All of these foundational experiences inside and outside of the classroom, along with his deep-seated commitment to restorative approaches and further interrogating white normative culture in schools, propelled Reed to become a Fulbright Scholar in Edinburgh, Scotland. During this time, he worked with local educators and University of Edinburgh students and faculty around issues of racial identity, whiteness, and restorative practices. Reed partnered with the Centre for Education for Racial Equality in Scotland (CERES) where he continues to be an associate.
In Reed’s more than four years at NYU Metro Center, he has served as a vital member of the IESC team, first as a Project Associate, later as a Senior Equity Associate, and then most recently as the Associate Director for Training and Development for the Innovations in Equity and Systemic Change (IESC).
The IESC sub-unit at NYU Metro Center provides professional development, technical assistance, and consultancy to education institutions in general and special education. Its mission is to disrupt, dismantle, and eliminate disproportionality by building the capacity of educators to implement Culturally Responsive Sustainable Equity-Based Systems that meet the needs of all students and families.
As the new Co-Director of IESC, Reed will support partners in building the capacity of youth, families, community members, educators, administrators, schools, and school districts. The goal is to create robust and equitable environments that foster welcoming and affirming learning environments and student success. Reed Swier is an ideal candidate to lead the implementation of direct services to districts and schools, inclusive of both professional development and technical assistance. Reed’s dedication to combating historically oppressive institutional practices, his staunch insistence to center the voices and experiences of BIPOC communities, along with his previous stellar work with IESC, are evidence of the acumen necessary for this new role.
We are excited to have Reed Swier transition to this leadership position with NYU Metro Center. Founding IESC Director, María Hernández, extols Mr. Swier’s commitment “...Reed embodies what it truly means to be a gifted, visionary, strategic, collaborative, convicted, brave, unwavering leader. I am so proud to co-direct [Innovations in Equity and Systemic Change at NYU Metro with him].” Mr. Swier’s continued efforts and ability to leverage the knowledge of local communities and educators’ skills alongside Culturally Responsive-Sustaining Education (CR-SE), improvement science, and school reform will make a consequential difference in the lives of our children. It is through this vision that NYU Metro Center works to bring equity-based solutions to districts and schools, transforming classrooms so that they address the needs and improve the outcomes of all students, including multilingual students, special education students, students with disabilities, and students of color.