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Diversity is defined as a broad concept that includes gender, race, ethnicity, socioeconomic back ground, linguistic differences, exceptional abilities, sexual orientation, gender identity and expressions, variations of talents and abilities, as well as special needs.
Understanding the Dimensions of Diversity
The diverse world in which we live is a composite of many cultures, values and ways of interacting with one another. The dimensions of diversity include gender, religious beliefs, race, marital status, ethnicity, parental status, age, education, physical and mental ability, income, sexual orientation, occupation, language, geographic location, and many more components.
The “Diversity Wheel” shows the complexity of the diversity filters through which all of us process stimuli and information. That in turn leads to the assumptions that we make (usually about the behaviors of other people), which ultimately drive our own behaviors, which in turn have an impact on others.
Resources and Links
African American History Task Force: The State of Florida’s African American History Task Force is an advocate for Florida’s school districts, teacher education training centers, and the community at large, in implementing the teaching of the history of African peoples and the contributions of African Americans to society. The Task Force works to ensure awareness of the requirements, identify and recommend needed state education leadership action, assist in adoption of instructional materials by the state, and build supporting partnerships.
- Goal 1: Promoting awareness, understanding, and the infusing of the required instruction legislation that addresses the African and African American experience into the curriculum of Florida’s schools.
- Goal 2: Development of instructional guidelines, standardized framework, and supplemental materials /resources that include the African and African American experience.
- Goal 3: Provide pre- and in-service training for implementation of the required instruction using various technologies and materials.
- Goal 4: Make recommendations to the Commissioner of Education and the appropriate Florida Department of Education leaders that support the full implementation of the required instruction mandate.
Center for Holocaust and Human Rights Education: The Center for Holocaust and Human Rights Education (CHHRE) at Florida Atlantic University presents cutting-edge training and resources to teachers involved in Holocaust and genocide education. The Center offers workshops, advanced seminars, and summer institutes for K-12 teachers working in the fields of history, arts, languages, religion, science, technology, politics, and social studies.
- Request a Holocaust Survivors Speaker from the Speakers’ Bureau
- CHHRE Summer Retreat (For Secondary Teachers) Application Form – Summer Retreat 2016: Hate Groups in the US: Facilitating Contemporary Classroom Conversations about Discrimination based on Religion, Race, Gender, and Sexual Orientation,Teachers will engage in critical conversations about addressing prejudice and racism in schools and society through education. Date: June 15-16, 2016 Location: Duncan Conference Center; 15820 S Military Trail, Delray Beach, FL 33484
Teacher Vision: Teach students to respect differences among people in their community and around the world by using the resources from Teacher Vision for elementary, intermediate, or high school students. You’ll find printable that promote tolerance and understanding, and lessons about immigrant families. Art, reading, and writing activities will help familiarize students with the history and traditions of different religions and ethnic groups.
The Inclusive Schools Network: Offers a forum for educators, students, family, and community members to share experiences and ideas with each other. It is important for the Inclusive Schools Network to model an inclusive approach in welcoming and valuing all perspectives and opinions regarding the practice of inclusive education.
Teaching Tolerance: Offers a place for educators to find thought-provoking news, conversation and support for those who care about diversity, equal opportunity and respect for differences in schools. Also make sure to view its Responding to Hate at School Guide.
The Anti-Defamation League (ADL): A leader in the development of materials, programs and services, builds bridges of communication, understanding and respect among diverse groups. Access ADL Resources.
Religion in the Public Schools: The issue of the proper role of religion in the public schools continues to be the subject of great controversy. School officials, parents and students — as well as lawyers and judges — wrestle with these questions every day. However, clear standards and guidance are elusive. This handbook will help provide a roadmap through this terrain.
Policy“Bring harmony to this world, one at a time, one at a time it will work–with a teacher, a parent…it will work. I know that it will. It has to.” -LGBT identified South Florida high school student Ensuring the safety of all students is our professional, legal and ethical expectation. Federal, state, local legislatures and our School Board members have given us the guidelines, tools and resources to ensure that all students soar academically and are provided a safe, respectful, connected place to do so. Broward County School District ensures that all district staff adhere to these policies and guidelines to establish the safety of all students, including youth from varying backgrounds, cultures and identities. Below please find some relevant policies and laws that relate to diversity: Policy 1.5 Diversity “The School Board of Broward County prohibits any policy or procedure, which results in discrimination on the basis of age, color, disability, gender, national origin, marital status, race, religion or sexual orientation. The School Board is committed to providing schools that promote acceptance, cultural diversity, equity, fair play, respect, and tolerance, and reinforce the positive tenets of a democratic society. The School Board recognizes that diversity is important in providing competent services in an inclusive setting. Students and staff with diverse backgrounds shall be provided the opportunity to develop greater skills and increased sensitivity in working with others and learning to function more effectively as members of a pluralistic society.
The School Board of Broward County shall not discriminate against students, parents or guardians of students, employees, applicants, contractors, or individuals participating in School Board sponsored activities. The School Board is committed to the provision of equal access. This policy is established to provide an environment free from discrimination and harassment based upon age, race, color, disability, gender identity, gender expression, marital status, national origin, religion, sex or sexual orientation.
The educator values the worth and dignity of every person and essential to the achievement of these standards are the freedom to learn and to teach and the guarantee of equal opportunity for all.
The Fourteenth Amendment The Fourteenth Amendment of the U.S. Constitution (Equal Protection) The United States Constitution guarantees all people equal protection under the law. This means public school officials and employees may not single out a student for negative treatment based on prejudices against a certain culture or identity. The Constitution’s equality also means that public school officials may not turn a blind eye to anti-LGBTQ harassment or treat it less seriously than other forms of harassment.
Title IX Title IX of the Education Amendment Acts of 1972 Title IX prohibits discrimination based on sex in education programs and activities that received federal financial assistance. Although Title IX does not expressly apply to discrimination based on sexual orientation, it does prohibit gender-based harassment, such as harassment on the basis of student’s failure to conform to stereotyped notions of masculinity and femininity.
The Diversity Committee was established on August 6, 1996, to assist the Superintendent and the School Board in meeting their commitment to promoting diversity. The Committee currently consists of 31 members, 27 of whom are appointed by the School Board. The Student Advisor to the School Board, or his/her designee, serves on the Committee, representing his/her geographic area, and appoints three student committee members representing the other three geographic areas.
The committee members have diverse backgrounds and represent the various geographic areas of Broward County. The primary responsibility of the Diversity Committee is to make recommendations to promote diversity through the Superintendent, to the School Board, while maintaining a unitary school system. Please view the Diversity Committee page for more information.
Human Relation Councils. Human Relation Councils Approved by the School Board of Broward County in August 1999, the Human Relation Councils were established in October 1999 to in the Secondary Schools and centers. Broward is one of the most diverse counties in the nation. The HRC’s have become key mechanisms for the training of students and staff in diversity sensitivity, cultural competence and affording students an opportunity to foster greater intercultural relations and understanding.
Gay-Straight Alliance (GSA) Clubs are student clubs that allow students with a common interest to get together and have events or discussions about that interest. GSA clubs are made up of students of any sexual orientation; in fact many GSA members are straight-identifying youth. In these clubs, students can talk and learn about issues that surround sexual orientation and gender identity. For Additional information go to the National GSA Network Resources website.