Independent School District 308

School Board Policy 603.1

 

 

603.1   INCLUSIVE EDUCATION PROGRAMS (IED)

 

            Minnesota Rule 3500.0500, Inclusive Education Program, requires school districts to adopt a written plan to assure that the curriculum developed for use in district schools establishes and maintains an inclusive education program.  An inclusive educational program is one that employs a curriculum that is developed and delivered so that students and staff gain an understanding and appreciation of multiculturalism, gender fairness and disability awareness.

 

I.          PURPOSE

 

The purpose of this policy is to inform students, teachers and parents of the District’s commitment to provide equal educational opportunities to all students attending Nevis Public Schools regardless of their cultural or socioeconomic background, gender or disability.  Additionally, Nevis Public Schools affirms the importance of multicultural, gender fair, disability sensitive curriculum and instruction.

 

II.        GENERAL STATEMENT OF POLICY

 

Nevis Public Schools acknowledges that all students must learn to live and work in a multicultural, gender fair environment.  Furthermore, it recognizes the need for an educational program designed to help students acquire a realistic basis for understanding the culture and life styles of people of different racial and ethnic, and socioeconomic backgrounds.  Our goal is to provide an atmosphere for learning that is void of sexist, racist, and ethnic prejudices, discrimination and separatism.  No student shall be denied enrollment in a class on the basis of gender, race, religion, color, national origin, marital status, age, sexual orientation or disability.

 

The Nevis School District has adopted this written policy to assure that curriculum developed for use with students establishes and maintains an inclusive educational program.  An inclusive educational program is one that assures that curriculum content and instructional materials utilized reflect the cultural and racial diversity present in the United States and the variety of career roles and life styles open to all regardless of gender, race, religion, color, national origin, marital status, age, sexual orientation or disability.

 

III.       PURPOSE OF INCLUSIVE EDUCATION PLAN

 

            The purpose of the plan is to ensure students and staff will gain an understanding and appreciation for:

 

A.        The cultural diversity of the United States and the wide range of contributions by American Indians/Alaskan Natives,  Asian Americans/Pacific Islanders, Black Americans, and Hispanic Americans.

 

B.        The historical and contemporary contributions to society by both women and men.

 

C.        The historical and contemporary contributions to society by persons with disabilities.

 

IV.       STRATEGIES TO SUPPORT THE INCLUSIVE EDUCATION PLAN

 

The District’s Inclusive Education Plan incorporates the following strategies:

 

A.        Student Academic Achievement

            Nevis Public Schools will set high academic standards and expectations for all students and will provide the supports necessary for all students to realize their full potential.

 

B.        Intercultural Student Activities and Partnerships

            Nevis Public Schools will promote activities and partnerships that provide opportunities for intercultural contact and learning between students.

 

C.        Intercultural Staff Development

            Nevis Public Schools will provide professional development opportunities for all staff that facilitate the development of intercultural understanding, competence, and practice.

 

D.        Safe, Respectful, and Inclusive Learning Environments

            Nevis Public Schools will work to create safe, respectful and inclusive learning environments through district wide initiatives.

 

E.         Recruitment and Retention of Diverse Staff

            Nevis Public Schools will work to recruit and retain highly qualified staff who reflect the diversity of the student body and the community and who have intercultural knowledge, skills and abilities to work effectively with students from diverse backgrounds.

 

F.         Inclusive and Responsive Curriculum and Instruction

            Nevis Public Schools will implement strategies through the Curriculum Review and Development process to ensure that culturally responsive and inclusive curricula, instructional materials and methods are used at all grade levels and subject area.

 

G.        Communication with Staff, Families, and the Community

            Nevis Public Schools will implement strategies as part of the district’s communication plan to ensure staff, students, families and community members have a clear understanding of the district’s diversity goals and initiatives.

 

 

 

V.        GOALS OF THE INCLUSIVE EDUCATION PLAN

 

A.        Curriculum Goals:  As a result of the curriculum delivered, students will:

 

              1.       Develop an understanding of different cultures

              2.       Be inclusive and not draw boundaries between “us” and “them”

              3.       Accept diversity as a positive and desirable characteristic for the nation

              4.       Respond to individual achievements rather than by using stereotypes

              5.       Respect the dignity of each individual

              6.       Explore the similarities among all peoples

              7.       Listen to other’s opinions and beliefs and respond appropriately

              8.       Get accurate information that discourages stereotyping and prejudices

  9.       Act in a fair and just manner by supporting the inclusion of all students regardless of race, gender, religion, or disability

            10.       Show respect for individuals and cultures

            11.       Develop positive, accurate images of other cultural and racial groups

            12.       Develop positive, accurate images of women and people with disabilities

            13.       Understand, respect, and embrace differences among peoples

 

B.        Teacher Goals:  Teachers will set a positive tone for interactions by encouraging tolerance and facilitating its development by:

 

              1.       Promoting positive attitudes about human diversity

  2.       Fostering classroom communities sensitive to the full range of diversity within groups

  3.       Providing group learning experiences that accommodate varied learning styles and abilities

  4.       Manifesting unconditional positive regard/acceptance of the student as a person

  5.       Helping students convert positive commitments into actions

  6.       Modeling comfortable and effective interactions with individuals from other cultures

  7.       Helping students learn to think critically and reflectively regarding cultural or other groups

 

C.        Student Goals:  Students will explore their own experiences with social boundaries, as well as dividing lines that exist in society at large, and recognize these boundaries can have detrimental effects on people.  Students will:

 

              1.       Learn how to stand up to biased language and bullying

              2.       Listen to or read and respond to literature from a variety of cultures

  3.       Experience through instruction the commonalities and differences of cultures

  4.       Learn the importance of speaking up and knowing what to say in a discriminating or bullying situation

  5.       Accept personal responsibility for stopping discrimination

 

 

VI.       CONTINUING EDUCATION IMPROVEMENT COMMITTEE AND DISTRICT STAFF DEVELOPMENT COMMITTEE

 

            The Continuing Education Improvement Committee (CEIC) and the District Staff Development Committee are involved in and responsible for the implementation of this plan.  These committees will review and recommend curriculum adoption that will provide students and staff an understanding and appreciation of multiculturalism, gender fairness and disability awareness.  The committees will recommend appropriate training in education that is multi-cultural and gender fair.  These committees will be comprised of the diverse population that makes up our community.  The committees will seek input from a variety of resources representing the diverse populations in the community.  These resources will include board members, parents, community members, and staff.

 

This policy/plan reflects many goals and objectives already in place.  The Nevis Public School District believes that learning about diversity is a life-long process and will continually work towards evaluating and revising this plan as needed.