Parents » Diversity and Inclusion

Diversity and Inclusion

Diversity, Inclusion and Equity

In the United States, there are over 300 million individuals with unique cultures, identities, and backgrounds, and the population is only becoming more diverse over time.  Research from the U.S. Census Bureau determined that the “post-Millennial generation”—those born from 1997 to 2012—is “the most racially and ethnically diverse generation” in the country’s history.  As this and other types of diversity have continued to increase in society today, the need for equity among people of different backgrounds is critical. We are fortunate that Diamond Point has a diverse school community that enriches learning for all.  We embrace this diversity and not only recognize the differences in race, gender, class, ethnicity, sexual orientation, religion, socio-economic status, special needs, learning styles, and other social identities among our students, but also adjust our approach to teaching all students. Staff teach by meeting students where they are, including how those identities and experiences shape how they learn.  By teaching students about the contributions that all cultures bring to our society, we encourage them to spread this respect for diversity beyond school.

 

Teaching for diversity refers to acknowledging a range of differences in the classroom. Teaching for inclusion signifies embracing difference. Teaching for equity allows the differences to transform the way we think, teach, learn and act such that all experiences and ways of being are handled with fairness and justice.   These methods of teaching enhance educational opportunities for all students.  Students in a diverse classroom learn to consider points of view and opinions that are different from theirs.  This promotes students' critical thinking, creativity, innovation, decision-making and problem-solving skills.  The ability to interact with people of all different backgrounds is needed for students to succeed in college and careers since exposure to more ideas and experiences broadens students' knowledge and skills.   Diamond Point is committed to educating our students to succeed in a diverse and inclusive global community in which every member of our school community is included.    In order for all students to thrive, we need to give them the space that they need to be their authentic selves starting at a young age.    

Teaching Children to Value Diversity

The following suggestions are designed to help you teach children to not only value diversity but also to resist prejudice and discrimination.

  • Teach children to be critical thinkers, specifically about prejudice and discrimination. Critical thinking is when we strive to understand issues through examining and questioning. Young children can begin to develop these skills, to know when a word or an image is unfair or hurtful.
  • Respond to children's questions and comments about differences even if you're not sure what to say. Children often interpret a lack of response to mean that it's not acceptable to talk about differences. If you're unsure about what to say, try: "I need to think about your question and talk to you later." Or, you can always go back to a child and say: "Yesterday you asked me a question about… Let's talk about it." 
  • Listen carefully to what children are saying. Ask a few questions before answering to get a clearer idea of what they really want to know and the ideas they already have on the subject.
  • Shape your response to the child's age and personality. Generally, children want to know why people are different, what this means, and how those differences relate to them. Remember that children's questions and comments are a way for them to gather information about aspects of their identity and usually do not stem from bias or prejudice.
  • If children are nonverbal, observe and respond to their curiosity. For example, if a child is staring at or patting the head of a child whose hair is very different from hers, you can say, "He has straight hair, and you have curly hair."
  • Model the behaviors and attitudes you want children to develop. Pay particular attention to situations that can either promote prejudice or inhibit a child's openness to diversity. Expose children to diversity in books, magazines, dolls, puzzles, paintings, and music.
  • Don't let racist and prejudicial remarks go by without intervening. It's important to let children know from a very early age that name-calling of any kind, whether it's about someone's religion, race, ethnic background, or sexual orientation, is hurtful and wrong.
  • Try to create opportunities for children to interact and make friends with people who are different from them. Children learn best from concrete experiences.
  • Try to expose children to role models from their own culture as well as to those from other cultures. Remember: seeing adults developing positive relationships with people who are different offers an important model and teaches children to value such relationships.
From: Teaching Diversity: A place to Begin by Janet Gonzalez-Mena and Dora Pulido-Tobiassen 
Link to the video:  Our Family: A Film About Family Diversity
In "Our Family: A Film About Family Diversity," children share stories about all kinds of families. Today's children come from families living in one home or two, some are being raised by one mom or one dad, or they might have two parents/caregivers or live with grandparents or other family members. Others have parents/caregivers of different ethnic backgrounds, or who are lesbian, gay, bisexual or transgender. And some children are adopted or live in blended families.
Link to the video: No Human Being Was Born Ilegal
Each year, Facing History teacher Jane Wooster asks the students in her classes to take on a "social action" project of their own choosing. This year, several of the Students at Wooster conducted a lunch-time demonstration to draw attention to the use of the word "illegal" to describe undocumented immigrants, and start a school-wide conversation about the way immigrants are perceived in their community.
Link to the video: What I Need to Succeed at School
Children of LGBTQ parents as well as trans and non binary youth discuss how they can best be supported in education.
PROCLAMATION BY THE BOARD OF EDUCATION
OF THE POMONA UNIFIED SCHOOL DISTRICT
IN RECOGNITION OF LESBIAN, GAY, BISEXUAL, TRANSGENDER,
AND QUEER/QUESTIONING (LGBTQ) PRIDE MONTH – JUNE 2021

WHEREAS, the Pomona Unified School District (“District”) models, advocates, actively
supports, and promotes the inclusive and respectful treatment of all students, staff,
family members, and community members; and
WHEREAS, the District believes that all students should be able to attend school in a safe
and inclusive environment, free from discrimination; and
WHEREAS, the District is firmly committed to providing a safe, nurturing, and tolerant
environment in our schools; and
WHEREAS, pursuant to Education Code Section 220, it is the policy of California to afford
all persons in public schools, regardless of their disability, gender, gender identity,
gender expression, nationality, race or ethnicity, religion, sexual orientation, or any
other protected characteristic, equal rights and opportunities in the educational
institutions of California; and
WHEREAS, the District is firmly committed to school safety for all students, staff, and family
members, including the Lesbian, Gay, Bisexual, Transgender, Queer/Questioning
(LGBTQ) community, or those that may be perceived as such; and
WHEREAS, the District is committed to creating a positive school climate by maintaining a
safe environment and developing a sense of belonging for all students and staff; and
WHEREAS, the month of June and other times throughout the instructional year are
opportunities to celebrate and value the identities and contributions of the LGBTQ
community;
NOW, THEREFORE, BE IT RESOLVED, that the Board of Education hereby designates
June 2021 as Pride Month and directs the Superintendent and all District staff to
support policies, practices, and curricula that respect and support LGBTQ students
and their families throughout the school year.
PASSED AND ADOPTED by the Pomona Board of Education of Pomona Unified School
district on this 23rd day of June 2021.
POMONA UNIFIED SCHOOL DISTRICT
PRESIDENT, BOARD OF EDUCATION AND SUPERINTENDENT
________________________________ ________________________________
Andrew S. Wong, President                        Richard Martinez, Superintendent
and Secretary, Board of Education