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For more than a year, the administrative team, board members and staff teams have been working to create a climate of belonging and culture of dignity in our schools. Under the guidance and professional learning provided by Dignity Consulting, teams at each school set out to develop and grow their climate and culture. The teams reported on activities of the past year to build a strong foundation among staff.

Each school conducted a staff survey to identify areas for improvement in a ‘Dignity Framework’ of listening, empathy, patience, and openness. The results showed a common relative weakness among the schools: the need to build community and partnerships.

Guided by a committee at each school, professional development days and staff activities were created to break down boundaries of the status quo and form interconnected relationships. For example, one school adopted another school’s program of creating multi-age packs where students from each grade meet in small groups periodically to build community across grades. Another school focused on instructional strategies and resources to support inclusivity and celebrate diversity. Another school created a ‘Sunshine Squad’ to help staff connect and focus on personal health and happiness. At the junior high during a beginning-of-the-school-year institute day, teachers used posters that contained photos of every student in the school and added dots to students that they knew. The goal was to make sure all students were known by at least one staff member.

The work will continue next year focusing on students and sharing successful strategies across buildings.

View the full presentation.

Read about Staff Hiring, Buildings and Grounds, New Literacy Curriculum for the Junior High in the May 2024 Board Briefs.