Greenwood’s overall goal for our 2021-2022 diversity, equity and inclusion work was to create a strong foundation from which to build in the future. We need to know ourselves and our identities before entering into deep diversity and community work. With that in mind, our focus in 2021-2022 was equipping students and staff with the introspective tools and practices they needed to better understand themselves. “You can’t do anything until you understand what you bring to the table,” says Rachael Brownell-Swain, Director, Diversity, Equity, Inclusion and Outreach.Professional Development Plan
Rachael developed a five-phase professional development plan for all staff for the 2021-2022 school year (see below for an overview and some sample presentations). Year 1 of the plan focused on building a solid understanding of anti-racism and anti-oppression education; in the years to come, all staff will build upon that foundation to create positive and inclusive communities at the school.
(developing classroom and community cultures, developing allyship behaviours, avoiding performative allyship, authenticity in all spaces) Presentation: Allyship in Action
Disrupting and Dismantling (positive intervention, redirecting, creating programming and policies)
Critical Allyship and Planning for Change (What does critical allyship look like in your interactions? Your workspaces? Your classroom? How do we plan for change in the coming year?)
Greenwood has adopted the Reimagining Integration: Diversity and Equity in Schools (RIDES) model from Harvard University, a research-backed framework that gives schools the tools to support and measure deep work in diversity, equity, inclusion and belonging. We piloted this framework over the 2020-2021 school year with success (read the 2020-2021 RIDES evaluation report
In 2021-2022, our aim was to put the next steps identified in 2020-2021 into action while also looking closely at programs, practices and curriculum. Along the way, we are continuing to measure our progress in fostering diversity, equity, inclusion and belonging using the benchmarks we have created. Additionally, we wanted to explore additional lenses on school life and spheres of influence in order to identify additional opportunities for growth and change.
Read the 2021-2022 RIDES evaluation report now.Community Themes
We created themes for each term of the 2021-2022 school year that tied together the DEI work for that term. For example, Term 1 was “Identities”, with the first three months of the year focusing on Indigenous identities, 2SLGBTQ+ identities and the legacy of identity, respectively. Each term began with community-building activities related to empathy, encouraging students to truly consider others’ perspectives and reflect on how they can be effective allies.DEI Staff Advisory Committee
The new DEI Advisory Committee was created with the goal of encouraging staff members to explore their own areas of influence within the context of creating an equitable school grounded in anti-oppression and anti-racist thinking. Committee members examine existing systems and structures at Greenwood that may present barriers to equity and inclusion and present recommendations to school leadership based on their findings.Panorama Survey
In the spring of 2022, we undertook a whole-school Equity and Inclusion Survey through Panorama, a company that delivers high-quality surveying tools for many communities and organizations. The results of the survey established valuable benchmark data that will inform policy, programming and systemic growth at Greenwood moving forward; we will track progress on these benchmarks through repeating the survey in the future.
We engaged deeply with issues concerning the development of equity, inclusion and diversity within our community in 2021-2022, and we are excited to continue and build upon this work for 2022-2023. Areas of focus for this year include:
We look forward to sharing our progress on this important work with you.