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Schools chief affirms commitment to inclusion

Elizabeth Homan, 2022

This message was published on the Arlington Public Schools website in the category of "Superintendent's Updates to Families, then submitted  to YourArlington by its author, Dr. Elizabeth Homan, Superintendent of APS, in recognition of June 2023 as Pride Month. 

In APS, we are working on ways to proactively affirm the diverse identities of our students, families, and staff.  With Pride Month starting today, and open discrimination taking place across our country against people who identify as lesbian, bi-sexual, gay, transgender, queer, intersex, asexual, and other identities (LGBTQIA+), we are taking this opportunity to reaffirm the district’s commitment to our students, staff, and families who are members of the LGBTQIA+ community. 

Our 5-year strategic plan provides evidence of this commitment; this plan outlines specific initiatives for how district staff will create a learning environment that fosters belonging and joy for all students. By identifying LGBTQIA+ students as one of the five focal groups for evaluating progress, the plan directs the school district to consider all students when designing instruction, curriculum, and support for students.

Other efforts by the district include the creation of the Rainbow Commission Task Force, which consolidates the efforts of the district and the Arlington Rainbow Commission to promote and support continued awareness, empathy, access, safety, inclusion, and belonging for LGBTQIA+ community members. The Task Force has successfully created a speaker series, sponsored the first annual district-wide Pride Celebration, and supported the creation of Rainbow / Gender & Sexuality Alliances at all APS schools.

Moving forward, Arlington Public Schools will routinely state its commitment to valuing and respecting our students' and community members' unique and diverse identities. Today, we invite you to join us in supporting our LGBTQIA+ community members, in June and throughout the year.

Dr. Homan has been in her position since July 1, 2021, and earlier this year got a five-year contract extension, a raise and a bonus by vote of the Arlington School Committee..

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