August 29, 2019

DIVERSITY, EQUITY & INCLUSION COMMITTEE HOLDS 6TH MEETING

See full article for meeting notes.

The intro activity was a 6 minute sound bite regarding what it means to be antiracist

(This was centered around Ibram Kendiś book Ḧow to be an Antiracist)

Participated in a paired listening activity with partners

Committee members shared their thoughts as to how this concept plays out in society

Whole group share out 

Reviewed and approved the minutes from last June (our last meeting)

An action step that did take place since the last meeting was the following:

SAS Administration took the feedback from the DEI Committee regarding a DEI statement. Administration then used this feedback in tandem with district wide administrative feedback to finalize a DEI statement that has since been published in student handbooks throughout the District. This statement is listed at the bottom of this meeting’s notes.

Participated in Spectrum Line (Considering the Structure of Future Meetings)

QUESTION: Where do you fall in the line based on this question?

I feel like I need to work on my own DEI identify and beliefs before we do any action work for this Committee? OR I feel like we need to start working on action steps for this DEI Committee?

Results demonstrated that many Committee members felt like they fell somewhere in the middle. A number of Committee members spoke about the need to be action oriented. However, we still need to do some internal work (educating ourselves) to make sure we are truly representing (and empathizing with) ALL students in the District. 

It was agreed that information / resources will be provided ahead of previous meetings. Participants will be expected to read over and consider their personal beliefs around this information. Then, they will come prepared to these future meetings to consider action steps. Consensus was reached.

Contextualizing our DEI Committee

A Committee member provided some background information on an incident that occurred in a classroom in SAS. In the fall of 2018, students were put into groups in a classroom.. A black student was trying to get connected in a small group setting with a specific white student. That white student told other students (and the black student) that he/she did not want to be associated with a N-word. This situation prompted the discussion about the need to form a DEI Committee in Saline that could look at better ways to support ALL of our students.

We discussed using the EJATT (Education Justice Assessment and Transformation Tool) Handbook as a framework to guide our work.

 

EJATT focuses on 6 categories:

Knowledge & Beliefs (this is the self-work)

Relationships & Culture

Behavior & Discipline

Policies & Procedures

Images & Celebrations

Teaching & Learning

 

Consensus was reached that we should use this EJATT Framework (with permission from Dr. Shayla Griffin). People want to take this framework, develop a plan and move forward with concrete action steps.


 

Agenda for next meeting. We will use the newer, updated EJATT version. People will study it before the next meeting. We will then get back together next time in small groups to determine which quadrant (s) we should start with……..Amy will put out a Google survey to get the groupś opinion as to which quadrants we should start with……

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SAS Student Handbook Statement

Diversity, Equity and Inclusion

Saline Area Schools supports students in becoming ethical and responsible citizens. Students demonstrate this attribute when they see beyond themselves to the needs of others, contribute to their community, promote social justice, take responsibility for the environment, and demonstrate respect, empathy and compassion.

SAS embraces diversity and inclusion as it strives to provide a variety of perspectives for students to consider. All students in SAS should be able to see themselves in the curriculum we offer. Further, all students should be able to reflect and consider alternative viewpoints that exist within our society. In order to provide this, the District encourages the use of resources from different backgrounds and topics.

If a student (or family) is sensitive to any particular topic that might arise throughout the school year, they are encouraged to discuss this matter with the teacher. An alternate activity will be provided.