Equity & Inclusion Newsletter

May 2022

Read Aloud Video: Asian American & Pacific Islander (AAPI) Heritage Month

Like many commemorative months, AAPI Heritage Month was first introduced in Congress, and became public law in 1978.

Please join us in watching the read aloud video below in honor of Asian American and Pacific Islander (AAPI) Heritage month! No matter your age, we hope you find the monthly read aloud video to be valuable! The intention of the monthly read aloud is to build collective, common experiences across the district amongst students, families, and staff members - one read at a time. Please consider sharing this with those around you!

When Lola Visits by Michelle Sterling, illustrated by Aaron Asis is read with permission of HarperCollins Children's Books.

Special thank you to our student guest readers in this video, PHS junior and Asian Student Union President Amanda V., and PHS senior and ASU vice president, Jude F.

When Lola Visits AAPI Heritage Month 2022

Read, Watch, Listen Section: Guest Curators - PHS Asian Student Union Members!

For this month’s curated resources, three students from our PHS Asian Student Union, Kamya K., Stephanie G., and Emma Y. have selected the following offerings to share with you! Enjoy!

Recent Work Spotlight

One of our current fourth grade students, Natalia, recently launched a student-led organization at LMES called the Upstanders Club! Their first project as a club was designing and creating posters collaboratively defining what it means to be an upstander, and including tips on how to be an upstander. These posters will be displayed throughout LMES.

Natalia was inspired to start this club which is open to all fourth grade students after studying a piece of local, Southbury history chronicled in the historical fiction text Lois's Story: A Young Girl's Inspiration to Stop Hate and Fear by Ed Edelson. This text tells the true story of ten-year-old Lois Lindsay, who acted alongside local leaders to organize the community in response to the purchase of land in Southbury and intent to build a youth training camp by the German American Bund, an antisemitic, pro-Nazi group. The example of a young person taking informed action in standing up in the face of injustice motivated Natalia to take informed action in her own local community by starting the Upstanders Club.

Natalia enlisted the support of peers to co-lead the organization with her and they spent time thoughtfully planning to pitch their idea to administrators and to the rest of their fourth grade class by visiting homerooms, as well as on the morning announcement videos. They planned and facilitated their first club meeting last week and will continue to do so throughout the end of the school year.

Local Upcoming Events!

  • Southbury Public Library: Dr. William Reszelbach — Child of the Holocaust Lecture Series, May 26: Register here

  • Institute for American Indian Studies: Bark basket workshop in Washington, CT, June 5: Baskets have long been an integral part of Native American culture as storage containers, carrying baskets, cradleboards and in burial practices. Bark from pine, ash, or birch was often used to make the baskets and sewn together with spruce root. Join Jennifer Lee, Narragansett descent, who will guide participants in making a traditional bark basket. More info & registration here
  • Middlebury Public Library: Fit 345: Yoga, Hiphop, and Tabata classes for kids, June 22-August 10, More info here.

  • Southbury Public Library: Trans 101, June 21: More info here.
  • Southbury Public Library: LGBTQ+ 101 and How to be a Supportive Ally for adults, June 23: Register here.
  • Southbury Public Library: LGBTQ+ 101 and How to be a Supportive Ally for teens grades 6-12, June 30: Register here
  • Quassy Amusement Park: Pride in the Hills Family Fun Day, June 25: A sponsored friends & family fun day for LGBTQ+ youth, their families, and friends. More info here
Big picture

About this newsletter's background image, also shown above:

Artist: Camille Collins, RMS Grade 7

Teacher: Mrs. Murphy, Art

About this painting: The inspiration is from a centuries old tradition in China of painting landscape to improve the brush work needed for the scholarly arts and to connect the landscape as a metaphor of spiritual or religious ideals.


Instagram: r15equity_inclusion

The importance of listening to your lived experiences, insights, ideas, and perspectives cannot be overstated. Please feel free to reach out! We'd love to connect.

*Note: Quotation (c) 2019 CLC Collective and Dottir Press