Thank you to Mante Molepo for her participation as a presenter at People for Education’s annual conference. As a panelist in a thought-provoking discussion that explored issues of race and equity and their impact on public education and society, Mante shared both her expertise and her family’s lived experience in the school system. Mante is a passionate and powerful speaker, and the feedback from participants was overwhelmingly positive. We truly appreciate her contribution to the discussion.
ANNIE KIDDER / EXECUTIVE DIRECTOR, PEOPLE FOR EDUCATION
"When you leave a P4D workshop, you leave equipped with the tools and resources necessary to address incidents of anti-Black racism within the school system. P4D is passionate about the work they do. They sincerely want to help parents who need help with advocating for and protecting their children. All participants in a child's educational journey should attend their workshops."
"I liked practical examples of how to apply workshop knowledge to real-life incidents and practices."
"I liked finding out I’m not alone learning how to be a better advocate for my kids."
"I just felt “happy” to know that I’m not alone."
"I liked how welcoming the space was. I felt comfortable to share my stories. I felt close with my peers in the workshop. I loved the genuine care and passion the team had when presenting the content."
"I LOVED EVERYTHING! WOW! I feel so empowered leaving this workshop. Thank you!"
“I liked how well comments and questions were handled. As a white mother of white kids I liked hearing about actions to help be proactive in anti-black racism.”
“Last summer I decided to attend a workshop put on by Parents for Diversity ... This small but mighty group of parents are dedicated to advocating for our kids with an unimaginable balance of empathy and strength in everything that they do. The work that they do to empower parents and other caregivers of our children to make society a safer and more inclusive space is inspirational. Thank you for all that you do and for helping me to continue to be as effective an advocate as I can be. I am so thankful that I decided to attend your workshop and have had the opportunity to continue to build relationships with you over the last year.”
"I truly believe anyone raising a black child in our school system needs assistance and P4D is a fantastic resource. I was able to walk out of the workshop both better educated and prepared for any challenges that may lay ahead for my daughters."
I am personally passionate about diversity and equality. As a new Superintendent with responsibilities for equality, diversity, indigenous and religious studies with the Ottawa Catholic School Board, this passion aligns nicely with my role. To support my passion and responsibilities, I attended an excellent workshop hosted by Parents for Diversity. What I appreciated most about the workshop and the reflections was that it was real, it was honest and it was personal. The presenters approaching the topic from such an honest place, allowed me to have an even deeper understanding of race and the biases that still exist, despite our very best efforts to reduce barriers in our schools. I walked away feeling motivated to work even harder to remove all barriers for all students.
I look forward to attending future events/workshops hosted by Parents for Diversity.
SHELLEY MONTGOMERY / SUPERINTENDENT, OCSB
I’ve had the pleasure to hear on two separate occasions the presentation by Parents for Diversity. Once was at the University of Ottawa where they were presenting to student teacher candidates and once to my staff at Hillcrest HS. The information and the format in which they presented has been very impactful not only for me as a principal but in my own personal learning about single stories consciously and unconsciously. The Parents for Diversity presentation is personal and very impactful. The presenters share personal anecdotes of the impacts of racism and bias in schools and on student learning, challenging us to rethink many of our interactions, stereotypes and past understandings. The presenters guide us through their experiences as parents watching their children navigate our school system. Each of the presenters presents the personal context of the barriers they and their children can and have faced daily. Hearing firsthand the challenges in their lived experiences, the approaches to becoming more aware of institutional bias their children face helps to create supportive conversations of awareness and support on how to work together. The group helps us to listen first, not judge and creates an open safe space to working and learning from each other. I would highly recommend the Parents for Diversity workshop to all in the education field.
GEORDIE WALKER / PRINCIPAL
I was overwhelming happy when I was invited to the workshop organized by Parents for Diversity. I am aware that most members of the black community do not have the resources (time, money, education, etc.) to advocate for themselves when their rights have been trampled on. I was particularly pleased to see that this group was organised by professionals who are personally affected by the issues that they were presenting. Rarely do we have the unique blend of objectivity and empathy that this group brings to the table as a result of their vested interest (their children) and their professional training and ethics.
As an educator (and in particular, a black educator), I am aware of the vulnerability of minority groups in the system. Parents for Diversity seeks to ensure that the rights of these groups are properly advocated for; consequently, I support their efforts wholeheartedly.
CLAUDE PIKE / PRINCIPAL
Parents for Diversity, as I see it, acts as a bridge. In recent years, seemingly, there has been growth in the acknowledgement and understanding that providing a more complete and effective education for youth requires conversation and collaboration between formal education institutions (schools), community organizations, political actors, parents, and many other stakeholders in the relationship between education and the broader society. Through its workshops, presentations, etc., Parents for Diversity helps to highlight many of the issues and obstacles that need to be tackled in order to provide youth with the education they need and deserve. Parents for Diversity becomes a bridge for connection and communication between schools and the parents of the students who populate those classrooms. More specifically, Parents for Diversity makes parents aware of the rules, regulations, and laws surrounding their children's rights within their education, and provides those parents with the knowledge and tools for taking up discriminatory occurrences within schools and working for positive changes.
Perhaps most importantly, Parents for Diversity does work that aims to downplay any sense of parents VS schools and focuses on providing parents with information so that there is an increased opportunity for a relationship of parents WITH schools.
MARK CURRIE / RSEKN
Thank you for bringing a parents’ lens. Appreciate the honesty and personal experiences because shows that this conversation is needed, and happening in schools.
TEACHER / OCDSB
"Very well done: well researched and knowledgeable presenters."
"Thank you for the amazing workshop. I now see why separate workshops for parents is required. I will take up the challenge to make a change in my school!"
"Great workshop! Very necessary and much needed for educators."
"Well done. Excellent that you are offering this."
"Great job! I thoroughly enjoyed this workshop. It was well done!"
EDUCATORS AND SERVICE PROVIDERS