In 2016, four mothers came together to contemplate how we can encourage our children to think more critically about the world around them; and to celebrate the breadth of human experiences that defines each individual. Our children were experiencing racism and other forms of discrimination in their schools and we were disappointed by the response from the schools on how to address these incidents. We felt there was a need for a broader discussion and understanding about how racism and intolerance affect our children, and how they can hinder social progress.
Parents for Diversity approaches these discussions from the perspective of parents with lived experiences. Like many families, we are trying to raise our children in environments where they can thrive, in appreciation of their multiple identities. We want to inspire our children to learn about and embrace the unique identities of others. Sometimes schools have been supportive of us, but other times they have been a barrier. It is our experiences on the ground, in the schools, that inform our work.
We want children, parents and guardians, and the school system to understand that differences can bring us together. It is important to become aware of how our negative perceptions of others can affect our relationships and interactions with one another. Discrimination and bias experienced by children at the school age level can have lasting impacts on their social and emotional development. Racism and discrimination also limit our society to realize its full potential and to achieve equality
Parents for Diversity is committed to providing children, parents and guardians, and educators with the tools and resources to enable an open and informed discussion about diversity and inclusion in schools, as well as to address the challenges students face when they experience discrimination or bias.
Our vision is that within their learning environment, each child feels that they belong, are valued for who they are, and that they have equal access to rigorous, meaningful and joyful learning.
Parents for Diversity is a collective of parents committed to achieving inclusive and non-discriminatory learning environments that allow children to fulfill their true potential in this world. We advocate for schools and families to promote diversity and inclusion and to take meaningful steps to address and eradicate discrimination and bias.
Our Beliefs and Commitments
We believe that:
every child has the ability to acknowledge and value human differences;
every child, irrespective of their race, culture, gender identity or expression and sexual orientation, disability or special need, has a right to an education free from discrimination and that celebrates diversity in all its forms;
educators, parents and guardians, as well as students are responsible for ensuring that learning environments are inclusive and free from intolerance and discrimination.
We commit to:
raise awareness about the implications of racism, intolerance and discrimination on all members of society;
develop workshops, materials and resources for families and schools that champion diversity and inclusion;
advocate for students who experience discrimination or bias in schools.