Anti-Racism, Inclusivity and Diversity

Thank you to our students, parents and staff for a successful opening this past week. I was able to join the students and staff of St. Anthony, St. Theresa and St. Charles during their recess/lunch breaks to experience firsthand the collective joy of being re-united with friends and colleagues along with meeting new friends and new colleagues.

The outbreaks of COVID in our community this past week were a stark reminder of the necessity for all of us to adhere to the health and safety practices we know work: physical distancing (bubbling), masking and hand hygiene.

During our initial Professional Development Days earlier this month, staff took part in learning that addressed Anti-Racism, Inclusivity and Diversity. Individually and collectively we need to respond to key questions:
  • What can we do to educate ourselves about racism?
  • What can we do to take action to become anti-racist?
  • As a Board what must we do to address systemic racism (racism that is embedded in our normal practice)?
Our Board’s Anti-Racism, Inclusivity and Diversity Committee under the leadership of Superintendent Furlong has identified a series of actions to eliminate hatred, racism and discrimination in our schools and community  

The following professional learning video, shared with staff during our PD Day, provides a critical review of the history of black and indigenous people in Canada. “We must look back to get complete with our past if we want to move forward.” Author Unknown. We need to educate ourselves about: Birchtown and the Black Loyalists, Chloe Cooley, The Indian Act, the Truth and Reconciliation Commission’s Calls to Action and more.

“History is not just facts and events. History is also a pain in the heart and we repeat history until we are able to make another’s pain in the heart our own.”
Dr. Julius Lester

“In any democracy, there is always a tug-of-war between policies to achieve equality and policies to promote excellence. I am certain that Canada can achieve both equality and excellence.”
The Right Honourable John Turner

“Real change, enduring change, happens one step at a time.”
Justice Ruth Bader Ginsburg

“I would like to be remembered as someone who used whatever talent she had to do her work to the very best of her ability.”
Justice Ruth Bader Ginsburg