On Friday, November 18, the Toronto District School Board contacted student households to assure them of the Board’s commitment to equity and to caring and safe schools. The following letter was shared which highlights the Board’s Integrated Equity Framework to ensure that fairness, equity and inclusion are reflected in all aspects of TDSB school programs.
November 18, 2016
Over the past few days, a number of disturbing incidents of racism and hate have occurred across our city and in our communities. These acts of hate have no place in our city and will not be tolerated by the Toronto District School Board.
At the TDSB, we work every day to ensure that our schools are safe and caring spaces for everyone who walks through our doors. In light of these recent incidents, we have provided direction to all school administrators on what to do should they see or hear of any acts of hate in their school communities. In all cases, the Toronto Police Service must be notified immediately so that the incidents can be investigated.
The TDSB has a longstanding commitment to equity. Racism, bigotry and hate are issues that concern us all – staff, parents, students and members of the community. We share a responsibility to promote acceptance and respect, and to identify and report acts of hate. As a school system, we also have the opportunity to engage young people in a broader conversation about the importance of building a more inclusive society.
We know that hearing about these acts of hate can be discouraging and we share in your frustration. However, in times like this, it is important that we remain focused on our commitment to fairness, equity and inclusion in our schools and communities. For our part, the TDSB’s Integrated Equity Framework ensures that fairness, equity and inclusion are reflected in everything that we do. We are empowering our students, staff and parents to challenge bias, and promote and celebrate diversity.
As these recent incidents demonstrate, we cannot afford to remain silent on issues of equity. We must come together and continue working to bring about real change in our classrooms, schools and communities.
Director of Education
On October 27, the TDSB announced its renewed approach to equity to improve support for all students. According to the plan, the new approach focuses on classrooms, schools, and local communities.
What is equity? For the TDSB, it’s providing each and every student with the conditions that support achievement and well-being. It is about supporting not only the students who are falling behind, but raising the bar for all students.
The TDSB serves more than 240,000 students who bring a variety of experiences and perspectives, and the Board states that it is essential that students see themselves reflected in their schools and their learning. According to the Board, the equity action plan “provides focus and ensures that the work we are doing at the system level has a direct impact in classrooms.”
The TDSB invites you to learn more and share feedback about its important equity work by visiting the website.
Photo Credit: Woodley Wonder Works. CC 2.0 shared on Flickr