It’s been a few years since I’ve written about the work of our Global and Cultural Perspectives Committee. But that’s not because there hasn’t been a tremendous amount of work and progress happening!
At Mariemont City Schools, we pride ourselves on being a district that supports the whole child. You see this in our diverse and rigorous curriculum, our dedication to arts, athletics and extra-curricular offerings and our award-winning Warriors BEyond program. And supporting the whole child also means building understanding and creating an environment in which global and cultural intelligence is paramount. Thus, the significance of our district’s Global and Cultural Perspectives committee.
The Global and Cultural Perspectives Committee was launched in 2016 and is now comprised of 14 staff members, administrators and Board of Education representation. The group’s vision is to build an equitable, inclusive and responsive learning community that values the dignity and uniqueness of all students, staff and members of the community. Over the past four years, the committee has researched strategies, discussed our district’s progress and challenges and planned annual staff professional development sessions to educate on these important topics. It also has recently expanded to include building-level committees at each school.
This school year, the work of the Global and Cultural Perspectives Committee moves to another level of focus and intentionality with the start of a three-year Cultural Intelligence training program. The training will focus on the areas of cultural awareness, cultural knowledge, cultural strategies and cultural action. The end goal of this training is two-fold. First, we want to increase our cultural intelligence as a district -- to ensure we have a learning environment that goes beyond tolerance and understanding and truly embraces inclusion. Second, we want to develop actionable steps to put our learning and growth into action to make the Mariemont City School District an even better place to teach and learn.
Already this school year, the Global and Cultural Perspectives Committee has collected staff cultural intelligence surveys, conducted both staff and student focus groups and invited community members to join us in our efforts. We are immensely appreciative of all who have volunteered time and contributed to open and honest conversations about this important topic.
We know that the work surrounding cultural intelligence is never really over but I am excited about the future of our schools with what we have accomplished thus far. We seek an environment where inclusion is the expectation and diversity in all its forms is valued. I am thankful to our staff for being committed to this mission and for driving our district forward.