DSBN Virtually Raises Pride Flag
June 1, 2020 – Our buildings are closed for the rest of the school year, but our DSBN community is active. Schoolwork is being done online, new skills are being learned at home, and students and staff are staying connected. Even though we are physically apart, we are still collaborating. And whether we’re in our schools or online at home, the DSBN believes that all students, staff, and community members should feel included, accepted, and valued for who they are.
That’s why, in collaboration with Pride Niagara, and on behalf all DSBN secondary and elementary schools, we are proudly recognizing Pride Month by raising the Pride flag at the DSBN Education Centre for all of June. A virtual Pride flag raising video featuring DSBN Chair of the Board Sue Barnett is now live on our social media; we can’t be together in person this year, but we can celebrate with Niagara from home.
“We remain fully committed to providing safe, positive spaces for students,” said DSBN Chair of the Board Sue Barnett. “Flying the Pride flag is a symbol of DSBN’s strong, unified, and continued support for LGBTQ+ students, staff, and the larger LGBTQ+ community in Niagara.”
Fostering welcoming and safe environments, inside and outside of our schools, is a top priority year-round: staff are given training on LGBTQ+ awareness; students lead positive school climate clubs, including Gay-Straight Alliance (GSA) groups, to create inviting spaces; and resources that positively represent and embrace LGBTQ+ identities are provided for students and staff annually. This year, students will receive new lessons to further engage with Pride Month. The multi-grade lesson plans are centered around instilling values of inclusion and acceptance.
“We want our students to continue learning that everyone should be treated equally, no matter who they are,” said Stacy Turner, Equity and Inclusive Education Consultant at the DSBN. “Teaching them how to be inclusive and accepting of their peers, staff, and those around them helps create healthy school spaces, and helps students feel supported to be their truest selves.”
The DSBN is rich with diversity, and we celebrate this daily through respect, engagement, and connections. Follow us on Twitter (@DSBN), Facebook (DSBNiagara), or Instagram (dsbniagara) to join our powerful community.