On Tuesday, March 16, 2021, there was a tragic event in Acworth, Georgia. This mirrors a troubling parallel across the United States regarding the COVID-19 pandemic, with misinformed individuals targeting individuals of Asian descent.
The WPRSD condemns any and all forms of violence. We stand by Asian communities in the United States and around the world who are currently experiencing varying forms of emotional and physical persecution.We believe that equity should exist across all spectrums, and that education, understanding and compassion are critical to moving the narrative forward.
THE WPRSD EQUITY AND DIVERSITY TASK FORCE:
The WPRSD convened an Equity and Diversity Task Force consisting of interested Board of Education members, alumni, faculty, staff, students, parents and WPRSD friends. All are welcome!
This Task Force supports our 2021 BOARD OF EDUCATION GOAL:
Engage students, families and our community to foster relationships, garner resources, and utilize expertise to support belonging, diversity and inclusion.
THE WPRSD MISSION STATEMENT:
Woodstown Pilesgrove Regional Schools embody a collaborative partnership that provides a secure, supportive environment with high quality resources based upon New Jersey's Student Learning Standards, committed to challenging and empowering each individual to see and pursue his/her potential and to develop a passion for life-long learning in our diverse and changing world.
Woodstown-Pilesgrove Regional Public Schools is working on increasing racial literacy and cultural responsiveness among both our staff and our students. Racial literacy can be defined in terms of understanding the experiences and perspectives of those whose cultures and colors might be different than our own. Racial literacy can be defined in terms of our awareness of our own biases. And racial literacy can be defined in terms of our willingness and ability to honestly acknowledge racial issues as they arise and work to address them. As a district, we are striving to do all of those things.
ADVANCING SOCIAL JUSTICE AND CULTURAL RESPONSIVENESS:
There are four overarching concepts--identity, diversity, justice, and action—that have been articulated by the early childhood educator and theorist Louise Derman-Sparks in the 1990s. They have been promulgated in teaching standards for grades kindergarten through 12th grade via the Teaching Tolerance program of the Southern Poverty Law Center.
TASK FORCE GOALS:
- to further develop the District’s Strategic Plan for equity and diversity;
- to review policy regarding being inclusive in our practices and being equitable in what we do;
- to explore suggestions regarding, and continue to offer in-depth and ongoing professional development opportunities for teachers, administrators, students and equity task force members;
- to conduct periodic community forums with parents and other stakeholders to receive input, keep the community informed and address any other equity-related concerns.
- and to support WPRSD equity and diversity goals
Among the WPRSD Equity Goals 2021 are:
- Defining Equity for the Woodstown-Pilesgrove Regional Public Schools
- Create an Equity Access Fund (district line item, perhaps additional grant funding)
- Advertise Equity Programs in the District