CVUSD DEI Monthly Update

February 2023

The Conejo Valley Unified School District strives to be a welcoming, supportive and inclusive learning environment for all students and families. We are committed to creating equitable access and opportunity across race, class, ethnicity, language, socio-economic status, ability, gender identity and religion.

Black History Month

Congress designated February as Black History Month in February 1986 because it holds the birthdays of Frederick Douglass and President Abraham Lincoln. Both these men held to eliminate slavery. Here are three things you can do to recognize this month:

  • Visit 5 Black or African American -owned businesses (

  • Learn about 5 noteworthy Black or African American figures

  • Donate to 2 anti-racism charities (even if it’s small amounts!)


February Dates

February Dates

2/4- Rosa Parks Day- Rosa Parks Day is an American commemorative day that takes place on February 4, the day of Rosa Parks’s birthday.

2/11 – Birthday of Tammy Baldwin (LGBTQ+): first openly LGBTQ+ woman elected to both the House of Representatives and the Senate

2/12- Abraham Lincoln Birthday- During his Presidency he became known as Honest Abe and the Great Emancipator. While in office, he led the Union to victory during the American Civil War, abolished slavery, and imposed the income tax and the military draft.

2/14 – Birthday of Frederick Douglass (Black American): well-known American social reformer and abolitionist, Douglass escaped slavery and became a prominent activist during the Civil War

2/15 – Nirvana Day (Buddhist): also known as Parinirvana, this annual festival remembers the death of the Buddha after he reached Nirvana

2/15 – Birthday of Susan B. Anthony (Women): one of the most visible leaders of the women’s suffrage movement. She championed temperance, abolition, rights of labor, and equal pay for equal work

2/17- Random Acts of Kindness Day- On February 17 let yourself be inspired by Random Acts of Kindness Day to bring joy to the people you come across. The day encourages people to do good deeds, and celebrate the pay-it-forward mentality. It also reminds us that doing something kind for someone else can have a big impact not only on their day, but also on ours. Being kind to others makes us happier, and makes us realize we need to be kinder to ourselves too. An act of kindness doesn't have to be a big gesture either, sometimes the smallest act can have the biggest impact.

So, on Random Acts of Kindness Day, do kind things for others. It is easy, free, and will put a smile on everyone’s face.

2/20- Presidents Day- President's Day was established as a federal holiday in 1885 to celebrate George Washington's birthday on 22nd February. Although it was originally a day to celebrate George Washington and Abraham Lincoln, many use it now to honor all US Presidents, past and present.

On Friday, February 3rd, 2023, Cal Poly hosted the second annual United by Excellence: Paving the Road to Higher Education college-readiness event for Black/AA high school students and students involved in clubs or academic programs that support and reaffirm Black excellence, education, and culture.

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Inclusion Heros

In honor of National Inclusive Schools Week, which was recognized this year on December 5th through December 9th, 2022, the Conejo Valley Unified School District requested nominations for Inclusion Heroes to be recognized at the December 13, 2022 Board of Education meeting.

An Inclusion Hero is an individual who has a passion for ensuring all students have access and opportunity - and who turns this passion into action by modeling inclusivity in their day to day work.

The following 7 individuals were recognized as inclusion heroes due to their dedication in creating a community of inclusivity, kindness, and respect, which enhances learning for ALL students:

Samantha Birg, Kindergarten Teacher at Aspen Elementary

Eric Levy, Special Education English Teacher at Westlake High School

Sean MacDonald, Assistant Principal at Conejo Valley High School and Century Academy

Lynn Ann McVey Hajiloo, Paraprofessional (not pictured)

Jennifer Sera, Speech Language Pathologist and Augmentative and Alternative Communication (AAC) specialist (not pictured)

Kathy Tinker McKillop, Learning Essential Academic Program Teacher at Westlake High School

Andrea Yusim, Librarian

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School Spotlight

This month's school spotlight is Thousand Oaks High School. Led by Dr. Eric Bergmann, his team has created a very warm, welcoming and conducive environment for learning. As I walked through the campus students would greet me with huge smiles, polite gestures and answered many of my questions. I met with the Black Student Union and the Latino Connection Club to discuss the Black College Expo and college tour taking place at Cal State San Luis Obispo. The clubs meetings were robust and full of positive energy.

When I told Dr. Bergmann of my experiences on his campus, he refused to take any of the credit. He constantly says his team makes him look good, which reminded me of this quote by Nelson Mandela:

"It is better to lead from behind and to put others in front, especially when you celebrate victory when nice things occur. You take the front line when there is danger. Then people will appreciate your leadership."