About Equity by Design

A Brooklyn LAB initiative

The video above describes the Brooklyn LAB Back to School Facilities Tool Kit

In responding to the COVID-19 pandemic, Brooklyn LAB again applies this approach to a wide range of challenges that are necessary to address in order to ensure school communities are safe, healthy, and thriving.  Throughout the course of the next eighteen months we invite you to join our community's journey, follow along with your own, and embrace principles of user-centered agile design as we build back better.


Our Founding Design Principles ​

Equity by Design was built upon the following design principles:

We must build relationships and communities where students feel recognized and cared for, and where they can broaden their horizons. Relationships must connect students to the school’s academic life and provide relevant learning opportunities. 

The locus of control must shift to allow students to manage their own learning, helping them generate and apply knowledge, research, write, code, produce, remix, and defend their views with evidence. 


We must do rigorous intellectual work. Our design must focus on educating urban students to the highest standards, especially students with special needs and students at risk of academic failure.


Brooklyn LAB has a rich history of using design thinking to anchor its core approach to teaching and learning.  LAB pioneered an approach of using user-centered, agile school design to ensure that our approach and preparation reflect adolescent and family voice, benefits from youth experience and concerns, and creates a learning experience that meets youth needs.