NEW GROUP! Includes discussions from the Administrators and Professional Development groups. What will it take to move our schools into the 21st century? Please share your thoughts and leadership strategies here.

Defining Diversity

Kay Smith

My definition of diversity or being diverse is the ability to recognize, understand, accept, and adapt to the fact that people of various races, abilities, ages, national origins, race/color, sex, and religions are different, and being ok with that. Garcia (2000) “When diversity flourishes, the benefits to children and youth, to the schools they attend, and to their homes and communities are significant. When diversity is embodied in education, it provides the structures and support that are necessary to build and sustain student attitudes and self-esteem needed for a successful life.” In our schools, we have to invest in more time educating and informing school personnel (teachers, administrators, support personnel) about the everyday red flags to watch out for that may be invisible to them, but really obvious to many school personnel of color and minority students. Our schools have come a long way, but to further diversify them will require a deeper understanding of cultural and sociological aspects of all cultures (dominate and not-so- dominate) and classes of people.

Reference
Garcia, G.N. (2000, December). The Multiple Dimensions of Diversity. Advancing Research Improving Education, XII(2), . Retrieved from http://www.sedl.org/pubs/sedletter/v12n02/6.html