Equity & Inclusion Newsletter

Staff Edition 3: November 2020

December Dilemma

Thinking ahead to religious holidays in December, it is imperative that our schools be places that make room for deeper understandings of inclusivity and honoring of religious and non-religious differences, and that we evaluate our practices around existing strategies and resources used in December leading up to winter break.

The lessons and teacher self-assessment tools found here are helpful in ensuring holiday inclusion and meaningful work around religious diversity. In addition to the instructional ideas within this guide, there are many high quality resources to reference linked at the end.

I also want to make sure you have this link to the Anti-Defamation League's (ADL) guide on navigating religious holidays in the public schools.

Please do not hesitate to reach out if you'd like to talk through your thoughts, instructional ideas, questions, and/or concerns around this work as we approach December holidays. I also have many more resources to share if you're interested. It is incumbent upon us as educators to really know the composition of our classroom and if we don't already know, to meaningfully partner with our students and their families and to do so with sensitivity about their past experiences, thoughts, ideas, and wants/needs. For example, I was raised in a Christian household. I can say that there is a critical balance to strike in a) deepening my own understanding of religions outside of my life experiences to be sure I honor my students' experiences, beliefs, and traditions and b) making room for all students to share their funds of knowledge in this area if they'd like to without putting students or their families in the position to "educate" me or the class.

Teaching around Thanksgiving? Center Native Perspectives

Watch our November read aloud & share with students: featuring 2 students and 2 R15 employees!

This month's read aloud features 2 middle school students, a world languages teacher, and a R15 parent and employee reading a bilingual text. I hope this video inspires reflection on how we approach our work with bilingual and multilingual students and families and our EL students & how we celebrate their true gifts in meaningful ways where they see their gifts reflected in their work at school, too. I recommend this read on a strengths-based approach to working with English learners!
November Read Aloud: ¡Me gusta como soy! / I like myself!

Have you followed on social media yet for resources and updates?

IG: @r15equity_inclusion