SUSD leadership to begin diversity, equity training

Students at an elementary school in Santa Clarita walk to their classrooms on the first day of school in Aug. 2017. Katharine Lotze/The Signal

Saugus Union School District leadership team members, which includes the governing board and other district officials, are set to begin diversity and equity training during a special board meeting Saturday. 

In an effort to incorporate an understanding of cultural diversity and equity within the school district, the SUSD leadership team will begin training to learn more about cultural diversity, racism, discrimination, privilege and other topics. 

“This is another step in what we’ve been working to incorporate in the district,” said Superintendent Colleen Hawkins. “We’re a multicultural district and have a diverse community here in Santa Clarita. It’s essential that we understand one another and allow all students to maintain an understanding of all the different cultures.” 

The district has been taking other actions to raise awareness about cultural diversity in the schools, such as integrating several books in school site libraries that focus on multicultural and diverse topics. 

Last year, the district approved to observe the cultural days and months marked to honor underrepresented communities, such as Black History Month, Women’s History Month, Holocaust Remembrance Day and many others. 

“It’s important that we allow all of the students to see the contribution of people who look like them have given to the world,” Hawkins said. “It’s not about recognizing one group over another; it’s about creating an environment that is inclusive and collaborative.” 

The training the board is starting Saturday is the first of several training sessions, Hawkins said, adding that groups have been formed named “Peace Groups,” which are comprised of “parents and educators to ensure every member of the Saugus Union community has a voice that is heard.” 

“It’s a positive thing when all of our students see themselves represented in the school they attend,” Hawkins said. “It makes a positive learning environment for the kids.” 

Related To This Story

Latest NEWS