Meeting 13: Thursday, September 10, 2020 – 6 p.m. (meeting cancelled)
Meeting 12: Thursday, July 23, 2020
On July 23, 2020, the District Diversity Council (DDC) conducted a virtual meeting.
- The agenda for the 12th meeting focused on:
- Reviewing CISD Cultural Competence Action Plan (DRAFT)
- Equity Policy consideration
- Reviewing sample job descriptions for Director of Diversity and Inclusion and Campus Culture Coaches
- SARC Demand Letter
Meeting 11: May 26, 2020 – Virtual Meeting Canceled
As there were no significant changes proposed to the draft CCAP following the April 30, 2020 meeting, the May 26, 2020 DDC meeting was canceled.
Meeting 10: Thursday, April 30, 2020
Due to the Coronavirus pandemic, Carroll ISD held the tenth meeting of the District Diversity Council (DDC) virtually on Thursday, April 30, 2020. DDC CISD Staff members Dr. Janet McDade, Assistant Superintendent for Student Services and Tyisha Nelson, Executive Director of Special Programs welcomed the council members and briefly reviewed our norms.
The agenda for the 10th meeting focused on:
- Reviewing CISD Cultural Competence Action Plan (DRAFT)
- Focusing on pages 6-16 goals/strategies/action steps
The draft Cultural Competence Action Plan (“CCAP”) was detailed by Julie Thannum with the opportunity for DDC members to ask questions and comment by using the virtual chat feature.
Due to the length and breadth of the CCAP, the DDC was unable to have a detailed discussion of each provision. Accordingly, the DDC was asked to review the document and provide feedback to Dr. Janet McDade, Assistant Superintendent for Student Services before the next May 26, 2020 DDC Meeting.
Meeting 9: Thursday, February 27, 2020 (Meeting Agenda)
Carroll ISD held the ninth meeting of the District Diversity Council (DDC) on Thursday, February 27, 2020 in the Lonesome Dove meeting room of the CISD Administration Center. DDC CISD Staff members Dr. Janet McDade, Assistant Superintendent for Student Services and Tyisha Nelson, Executive Director of Special Programs, welcomed the council members. Superintendent Dr. David Faltys and Assistant Superintendent of Community and Board Relations Julie Thannum were active participants.
The agenda for the 9th meeting focused on:
- Campus Council Parent Liaison Meeting Update
- Subcommittee Presentations
- Culture Survey Results
- Highlights from the Cultural Competence Action Plan (Draft)
The meeting began with Pam Francis, DDC Co-Chair, providing an overview of the first Campus Council Parent Liaison meeting held on February 18, 2020. Eight campus representatives were in attendance and shared events and highlights from each campus. The campus council parent liaisons will meet quarterly.
Dr. McDade shared upcoming district events and council members were encouraged to wear DDC t-shirts to signify their support and commitment to the work of the DDC and our campus councils.
Next, we transitioned into subcommittee presentations. The three remaining subcommittees presented their collaborative final products to the council. After completion of subcommittee presentations, Julie Thannum transitioned the council into a Four Corners trivia activity before reviewing a more in-depth look at the results of the #WeAreDragons Culture Survey. She also shared how the public can access results on our district website. Council members were given the opportunity to review all open-ended question responses from students, parents and staff. Julie concluded her portion of the presentation with a review of an open-ended analysis provided by K12 Insight.
We ended the meeting with a brief overview of the Cultural Competence Action Plan (Draft) that will be reviewed, discussed and finalized at our next meeting on Thursday, March 26, 2020.
Meeting 8: Thursday, January 23 (Meeting Agenda)
Carroll ISD held the eighth meeting of the District Diversity Council (DDC) on Thursday, January 23, 2020 in the Lonesome Dove meeting room of the CISD Administration Center. Superintendent Dr. David Faltys, along with DDC CISD Staff members Dr. Janet McDade, Assistant Superintendent for Student Services, and Tyisha Nelson, Executive Director of Special Programs, welcomed the council members. Members of the DDC were given t-shirts that were designed and voted on during first semester meetings. The DDC were encouraged to wear these t-shirts at district and community events to signify their involvement in and commitment to the work of the DDC.
The agenda for the 8th meeting focused on:
- Announcements of District Wide Diversity Council/Campus Council Events
- #WeAreDragons Culture Survey Participation Numbers
- Continue Subcommittee Work Session
The meeting began with Janet sharing all of the events that will be taking place across the district and inviting the DDC to participate and promote each event. Janet handed the meeting over to Julie Thannum, Assistant Superintendent for Board and Community Relations, to discuss the participation results for the #WeAreDragons Culture Survey. K12 Insight will be sharing the results with the Board of Trustees and public at the next School Board Meeting on February 3, 2020 at 5:30 p.m. The DDC was invited to be present at the Board Meeting to hear the results. Members were encouraged to wear their t-shirts. The DDC will be given an opportunity to look more in-depth at the results of the #WeAreDragons Culture Survey at the next meeting.
Next, we transitioned into a subcommittee work session time. Three subcommittees are working to finalize their plans. The other subcommittees were asked to combine with those still working to provide feedback and ideas to ensure a final product was developed. Tyisha explained to the council that the goal is those subcommittees that have yet to present will do so at the next meeting.
The next meeting of the DDC will be held on Wednesday, February 26, 2020.
Meeting 7: Thursday, November 21, 2019 (Meeting Agenda)
Carroll ISD held the seventh meeting of the District Diversity Council (DDC) on Thursday, November 21, 2019 in the Lonesome Dove meeting room of the CISD Administration Center. DDC CISD Staff members Janet McDade, Assistant Superintendent for Student Services and Tyisha Nelson, Executive Director of Special Programs welcomed the council members.
The agenda for the 7th meeting focused on:
- #WeAreDragons Culture Survey Review and Feedback
- Continue Subcommittee Presentations
- Reflections and Reminders- Co-Chair, Pam Francis
- Campus Diversity Council Update
The meeting began with DDC members sharing “Good Things” that are happening. Tyisha shared that she and Dr. McDade had just been to a training this week and had been encouraged to begin meetings with having members share good things and asking everyone to share in the good news being shared by clapping for others. Tyisha handed the meeting over to Julie Thannum, Assistant Superintendent for Board and Community Relations to discuss the marketing and communications plan for the #WeAreDragons Culture Survey along with the logo and design work to complement the work of the DDC. Julie provided the date for the survey results to be shared by K12 Insight with the Board of Trustees, January 13, 2020, and invited the DDC to be present to hear the results. Julie shared since the last meeting the Culture Survey had been shared, reviewed, and edited by the Superintendent’s Cabinet, and the District Leadership Team. The version shared at the meeting tonight included edits from the Superintendent’s Cabinet but did not include suggestions from the District Leadership Team due to the short turn-around time between meetings. The DDC was asked to once again review the updated version of the survey, this time working with a partner, and to provide feedback on the document for DDC leaders to review.
Next, we transitioned into subcommittee presentations with the Professional Development subcommittee presenting their plan. They have a 3 step plan: 1) Teacher Cultural Competency Survey & Questionnaire, 2) Establish a basic level of Cultural Competency with CISD Teachers, and 3) Enrich and Expand the Initial Experience with Additional Opportunities.
DDC Co-Chair, Pam Francis, shared reflections and reminders for the DDC. Pam began by thanking the DDC for their hard work so far. She shared a list of what has been accomplished so far:
- Reviewed District STAAR demographic data;
- Helped shape the CISD survey to be distributed to all CISD families and staff;
- Learned about the legal implications of the Code of Conduct
- Made recommendations and crafted language that strengthened our Code of Conduct in
- dealing with bias-related incidents
- Broadened language to specifically prohibit misconduct related to gender and sexual orientation in addition to race, color, religion, sex, national origin, disability or age
- Ensured uniformity of consequences in extra-curricular involvement and gave specific disciplinary options for bullying, inappropriate language, and off-campus conduct that affects the learning environment
- Formed subcommittees to form SMART goals
Pam also shared what we are working on:
- Subcommittees forming goals to create Cultural Competence Action Plan
- Celebration of Culture, Bias Reduction and Awareness
- Teacher/Staff Recruitment
- Curriculum and Instruction
- Student Led Education/Policy
- Professional Development
- Communication with Mayor’s Council for Unity and Culture and School Level Diversity
Pam reminded the DDC of their role moving forward which is to facilitate communication and understanding among different constituencies and serve as a community resource, and to engage students, staff, and faculty to collect feedback on cultural competence in CISD. Pam encouraged the DDC to spread the word of the work the DDC is doing and use your role with the DDC to collect feedback for our Council.
Tyisha provided a brief update on the Campus Diversity Councils. A reminder was given that campus administrators are submitting campus council parent representatives by December 9, 2019 to participate in the first campus council cohort scheduled for January 2020.
The next meeting of the DDC will be held on Thursday, January 23, 2020.
Meeting 6: Thursday, October 24, 2019 (Meeting Agenda)
Carroll ISD held the sixth meeting of the District Diversity Council (DDC) on Thursday, October 24, 2019 in the Lonesome Dove meeting room of the CISD Administration Center. DDC CISD Staff members Janet McDade, Assistant Superintendent for Student Services and Tyisha Nelson, Executive Director of Special Programs welcomed the council members.
The agenda for the 6th meeting focused on:
- K12 Insight Overview and Draft Survey
- Continue Subcommittee Exercise and Goal Presentations
- Mayor’s Alliance Update
The meeting was promptly handed over to Julie Thannum, Assistant Superintendent for Board and Community Relations. Julie reminded the DDC about the work we have done so far on the Culture Survey. Julie also provided background on K12 Insight and the work they have previously done in Carroll ISD. K12 Insight Head of Research, Dr. Dave Blaiklock, was present to discuss why CISD and the DDC would choose to conduct a survey: Listen- create two-way conversation with every member of our community; Learn- ask the right questions, collect valuable insight and make smarter decisions; and, Lead- turn data into action and draft a clear plan to achieve our vision. Dr. Blaiklock shared an overview of the project: 1) Project Planning & Survey Promotion, 2) Survey Administration, 3) Reporting the Results, and 4) Post-Survey Communications & Advisory Services.
Julie then led the DDC through a review of the Culture Survey. The DDC was asked to read the survey and provide feedback on the document so that we could use the responses to suggest changes to the final version of the survey. After working as individuals on this task, the DDC members were asked to work as a table to discuss and complete a sheet answering the following questions:
1. Questions we should KEEP:
- Questions we should ELIMINATE:
- Questions we want CISD to REVISE: (be specific with edits/revisions)
- NEW questions we want CISD to CONSIDER:
DDC leaders collected the individual survey documents along with the table 4 question sheets. All of the collected feedback will be used by the DDC leaders to revise and create the final version of the Culture Survey to be brought back to the DDC for final approval on November 21, 2019.
Next, the Teacher/Staff Recruitment Subcommittee presented their plan to the DDC. Their main focus is an increase in the diversity of teachers and staff with particular focus on attracting Asian and Hispanic teachers. Additionally, they focused on wanting clarification in school demographics for “multi-racial” students, and providing workshops for teachers with a focus on Cultural Sensitivity Training. The Curriculum and Instruction subcommittee submitted their goal but they did not get to present and will continue working to refine their goal. Adrienne Dickens, from the Mayor’s Alliance for Unity and Culture, shared their council purpose which is to act in an advisory capacity to the City Council and city staff in planning and implementation of programs and activities involving diversity, inclusion, and equity. Additionally, we were shown the artwork that will be commissioned at the round-a-bout at Highland and White Chapel which represents the artwork of the Mayor’s Alliance for Unity and Culture.
Information was shared about our CISD District Diversity Council group for the Peace Together Community Walk on November 2, 2019. Members were encouraged to join and participate. Input and feedback was solicited for DDC t-shirts along with a hashtag for the DDC. Tyisha shared that we would begin to coordinate campus and district communications for our councils. Campus administrators will submit campus council parent representative names by December 9, 2019. The first campus council cohort will be tentatively scheduled to meet in January 2020 and be led by DDC Co-Chairs, Pam Francis and Eric Ransom.
The next meeting of the DDC will be held on November 21, 2019.
Meeting 5: Wednesday, September 18 (Meeting Agenda)
Carroll ISD held the fifth meeting of the District Diversity Council (DDC) on Wednesday, September 18, 2019 in the Lonesome Dove meeting room of the CISD Administration Center. DDC CISD Staff members Janet McDade, Assistant Superintendent for Student Services and Tyisha Nelson, Executive Director of Special Programs welcomed the council members and began the meeting with reminders of the meeting norms.
The agenda for the 5th meeting focused on:
- Reconnection Activity
- Reflection of Work
- ThoughtExchange Results
- Subcommittee Exercise and Presentations
Tyisha began the evening with sharing a story her grandfather used to tell her. The story encouraged the council to not avoid the boulder in the road but rather move the boulder out of the way for others as that act of kindness will pay off in “gold”. Tyisha gave everyone a “gold” coin to help remember the story and remember our work is important.
Leadership and Culture Coach, Eric McDade, led the council through a reconnection activity to bring the members back together as a group since we had not met over the summer months. Eric reminded the council that it is important to get to know those around you by more than what you see on the outside.
Dr. McDade talked to the council about the Reflection of Work document:
- Create District and Campus Diversity Councils to serve in an advisory role to the School Board & Administration.
- Strengthen wording and consequences in the Student Code of Conduct for hate speech, racial slurs or acts against individuals or groups of individuals based on race, religion, ethnicity, gender, sex, sexual orientation or disability.
- Provide district-wide diversity training session for professional employees.
- Conduct face-to-face meeting between CISD Administrators, School Board Trustees and students in grades 9-12 to talk about racial tension and diversity ideas.
- SMART Goals for Each Subcommittee (DDC)*** work in progress
Dr. McDade also shared the DDC’s involvement in the Islamic Community Summer Picnic on August 31, 2019 at the Islamic Center of Southlake. Pictures and details of this event were shared. There was also a picture shared of Dawson Middle Schools CDC, Dawson Dragons Unity, as they participated in the Anti-Defamation League Walk Against Hate on September 15, 2019. The DDC was given details about the upcoming Peace Together Walk on November 2, 2019. Howard Rosenthal, DDC member, is our contact for more details. We will have a DDC team walk together on November 2, 2019.
Subcommittees were again given time to work on their definition of the subcommittee, review the ThoughtExchange results within their subcommittee and then review, discuss, and finalize their subcommittee goal. A template was provided to each subcommittee. Each subcommittee is expected to present their final product.
The Celebrations of Culture, Bias Reduction and Awareness subcommittee presented to the DDC at the September 18, 2019 meeting. This subcommittee has a goal for each level of campuses to have community events. The subcommittee will turn in their completed template to finalize measurable objective, tactics/tools, budget/owner, and timeline/evaluation specifics.
The next meeting of the DDC will be held on October 24, 2019 in the Meadowmere Training Room at 6 p.m.
Meeting 4: Thursday, May 2, 2019 (Meeting Agenda)
Carroll ISD held the fourth meeting of the District Diversity Council (DDC) on Thursday, May, 2, 2019 in the Meadowmere meeting room of the CISD Administration Center. DDC CISD Staff members Janet McDade, Assistant Superintendent for Student Services and Tyisha Nelson, Executive Director of Special Programs welcomed the council members and began the meeting with reminders of the meeting norms while focusing on the main norms that would be challenged throughout the meeting for the evening: Experience discomfort, and Expect and accept non-closure.
The agenda for the 4th meeting focused on:
- Interactive Code of Conduct Activity
- Update on Campus Councils
- Introduction of Leadership and Culture Coach
- Subcommittee Expectations
- Fall 2019
- Subcommittee Follow-up
The opening agenda item, Interactive Code of Conduct Activity, was prefaced by Julie Thannum, Assistant Superintendent for Board and Community Relations, on the “WHY” and the importance of the activity. Mrs. Thannum explained the council would be working with words that are derogatory and offensive to individuals and groups of people. She went on to explain that the council would assist the administration in assigning levels of offense to the words as it relates to the Student Code of Conduct discipline consequences. The council worked together to discuss and explain their thoughts on the words and the levels of discipline consequences they chose to assign to these words. At the conclusion of the activity, although not in complete agreement, the overall consensus was a deeper understanding for the difficulty that administration experiences when dealing with and assigning discipline consequences to students.
The council returned to the meeting room and were led by Tyisha Nelson through an activity to assess their level of agreement with the work the council has done so far on the Student Code of Conduct. The council members were asked to select the corner of the room that best represented their level of agreement with the suggested changes; Agree, Strongly Agree, Disagree, and Strongly Disagree. The majority of the council divided between Agree and Strongly Agree with only one council member moving to Disagree. The groups debriefed as a whole and provided feedback within their group for the leaders of the DDC to be able to continue refining the changes to the Student Code of Conduct.
Next the council was introduced to the Leadership and Culture Coach, Eric McDade. Eric shared some of what he has been doing with students and staff around the district so far this school year. Then, Janet provided the group with an update on what has been taking place at each campus on their Campus Diversity Councils. Tyisha led the discussion on expectations for the subcommittees and facilitated the group work of each subcommittee as they began to work on goals.
The final task for the May meeting was to seek feedback from the council through the use of ThoughtExchange. Each member was asked to use their personal device to participate in providing thoughts on our work so far and what more we needed to be doing as the DDC. Our next meeting is scheduled for September 18, 2019 at 6:00 in Lonesome Dove training room.
Meeting 3: Wednesday, April 3, 2019 (Meeting Agenda)
Meeting Summary: Carroll ISD held the third meeting of the District Diversity Council (DDC) at a new time, 6 p.m., on Thursday, April 3, in the Lonesome Dove meeting rooms of the CISD Administration Center. DDC Citizen Co-Chairs Eric Ransom and Pam Francis opened the meeting with a welcome and icebreaker activity designed to break down existing stereotypes and implicit biases. CISD Staff members Janet McDade, Acting Superintendent/Assistant Superintendent for Student Services, and Tyisha Nelson, Executive Director of Special Programs, led the rest of the meeting.DDC members heard an informative presentation on state law, school discipline consequences and the Board-adopted Student Code of Conduct, hereafter identified as SCOC. The PowerPoint presentation is available on the DDC website.
Presenter for the evening was School Attorney Sandi Tarski of Walsh Gallegos, Trevino, Russo & Kyle PC out of Irving. Sandi Tarski has been a longtime advocate for public schools. Her representation of school districts includes administrative hearings, governance, employment law, and student discipline. She also provides training to school district employees and Board members on legal issues including personnel and student matters. She has been practicing law since 1986. The Attorney walked DDC members through the district’s statement of non-discrimination which is on the website, outlined in Legal Policy FFH and Local Policy, as well as the opening statement in the local SCOC. The SCOC, she said, is adopted annually by the School Board and has the force of policy. Any amendments must go back to the School Board for approval. Ms. Tarski went through the five levels of discipline in the SCOC and explained various restrictions under the law with regard to suspensions, expulsions and placement in Carroll ISD’s Discipline Alternative Education Program (DAEP). The DAEP for Carroll students is located at Carroll Sr. High School and involves a separate schedule and location outside of the CSHS normal school operations. She outlined various offenses that require mandatory DAEP placement and how students who violate the law can also be sent to Juvenile Justice Alternative Education Placement or JJAEP.
The attorney outlined special rules for younger children and special education students, length of placement for persistent misconduct and persistent offenses. Carroll ISD has a more stringent DAEP timeline than many area school districts. Placement is for a minimum of 45 days and a maximum of 90 days. A student that withdraws and goes to another public school must finish their DAEP placement at that new district and/or complete the DAEP placement upon return to CISD. Ms. Tarski went through the Family Educational Rights and Privacy Act (FERPA) and talked about how school officials must strictly adhere to federal confidentiality requirements. Janet McDade then answered questions from DDC members and explained that each campus has a Behavior Coordinator who is the lead disciplinarian on the campus by law. These individuals on each campus also confer with Student Services and the Superintendent’s Cabinet when deciding disciplinary consequences to help ensure alignment and consistency across the district. Ms. Tarski explained that students assigned to DAEP in younger grades may be isolated and with an adult on that campus and not placed with the secondary students at CSHS. She said DAEP has flex hours and students are contained under adult supervision while working on their assignments and classwork. There is no extracurricular participation or attendance at school events allowed for students assigned to DAEP. They return to the regular classroom after completing their DAEP term.
There are no appeals of disciplinary decision consequences, but parents can file a grievance about the process under Board Policy FNG. All district policies are available online. Following the question and answer session, the Council members were asked to fill out notecards describing or sharing offensive words, phrases or comments that are hurtful and/or target minority groups or individuals in a derogatory way. This information will be used by Carroll ISD for future discussion on discipline consequences and changes to the SCOC. They were also asked to do homework for the next meeting. Each DDC member was given proposed wording changes to the SCOC for feedback and input prior to Board adoption for the 2019-2020 school year. CISD Administrators hope to toughen the language on any racial slur, hate speech, verbal or physical targeting of individuals or groups of individuals based on race, religion, ethnicity, disability, sex, gender or sexual orientation. At the May meeting, DDC members will also participate in discussion of a fall Dragon census (survey) to better identify diversity and ensure inclusion for all students. The group will also begin goal setting for the six identified subcommittees to include:
- Celebration of Culture, Bias Reduction & Awareness
- Communications & Outreach
- Teacher/Staff Recruitment
- Curriculum & Instruction
- Student-Led Education & Policy
- Professional Development
The next meeting of the DDC is scheduled for 6 p.m. Thursday, May 2. Subcommittee work will happen over the summer and early fall. After May, the DDC will likely next meet in September.
Meeting 2: Thursday, February 28, 2019 (Meeting Agenda)
Meeting Summary: Carroll ISD held the second meeting of the District Diversity Council (DDC) at 7 p.m. on Thursday, February 28 in the Lonesome Dove meeting rooms of the CISD Administration Center. Janet McDade, Acting Superintendent/Assistant Superintendent for Student Services, and Tyisha Nelson, Executive Director of Special Programs, led the meeting. Of the 63 members of the DDC, 52 attended the second meeting. Others in the audience observing included Julie Thannum, CISD Staff. Meetings are open to the public, but only DDC members actually participate in the discussion and activities.
The second DDC meeting began with activities to foster strong council relationships. Members were reminded of the meeting norms:
- Be respectful.
- Listen to understand.
- Set aside judgement.
- Experience discomfort.
- Speak your truth.
- Expect and accept non-closure.
DDC members were told that the agenda for the second meeting had to be revised due to a family emergency for the school attorney. Work on the Student Code of Conduct will be done at the third meeting instead. The framework for the DDC calls for the Superintendent and School Board President to appoint two individuals who are citizens and not CISD staff to help co-chair the Council. It was announced that Eric Ransom and Pam Francis have been appointed to serve as citizen co-chairs of the DDC. Going forward, these individuals will work with Janet McDade and Tyisha Nelson to plan meetings. They will also give public presentations and School Board meeting updates on behalf of the DDC.
The Council was led in a Mandala process by Tyisha Nelson. Each member was asked to use words, pictures and symbols to represent the following:
- Three interesting facts about yourself.
- Event(s) in your life that made you who you are.
- Strengths that you feel you bring to the council.
- Dreams or goals for our community.
The information was discussed at their table groups in an effort to strengthen understanding and relationships among DDC members. The table groups then reviewed a poem An End to Racism by Julie Landsman. The discussion occurred at individual tables and then in front of the larger group as thoughts and reflections were shared. A 3-2-1 summary process was used to breakdown details and application of the poem thoughts and ideas.
DDC members participated in a process to provide initial feedback on a proposed “census” document. The goal of a census would be for the district to gather information about Dragon families to better understand student populations and the school community, to identify and eliminate barriers to student success, inclusion and well-being and to establish effective programs and reallocate resources where they are needed most. The discussion was led by Julie Thannum, Assistant Superintendent for Board & Community Relations. The document was a sample census questionnaire shared from the Peel School District Board in Canada. CISD does not plan to give an identical questionnaire, but hopes, instead, to have the Diversity Council provide input into the questions, purpose and use of the questionnaire and data. Members were asked to use different colors of highlighters to share which questions they would like to see included in a potential CISD census. The questionnaires are broken down into age-appropriate survey instruments. The DDC will visit this topic again in future meetings, with the goal of conducting a confidential, but not anonymous census of students and Dragon families in the Fall of 2019.
Members of the DDC were asked to sign up to participate in one of six subcommittees that were identified by the members at the first orientation meeting. The subcommittees include:
- Celebration of Culture, Bias Reduction & Awareness
- Communications & Outreach
- Teacher/Staff Recruitment
- Curriculum & Instruction
- Student-Led Education & Policy
- Professional Development
Members were asked to sign their name in red marker if they were willing to serve as a subcommittee co-chair. Students were encouraged to sign up as subcommittee co-chairs with an adult. All members of the DDC will be divided up among the six subcommittees. Representatives from the CISD staff shared experiences and lessons learned from the February 18, 2019 professional development put on by a team from the Region XI Education Service Center. Joey Calvillo, Assistant Principal at Carroll Middle School; Lisa Moan, 2nd grade teacher from Walnut Grove Elementary School; and Tim Johnston, social studies teacher at Carroll Sr. High School, all shared what they learned from the presentation: Culturally Competent Pedagogy. Before adjourning for the evening, DDC members were asked to share tweets about the meeting in 140 characters or less, including the use of hashtags (#).
In a survey of DDC members, both Wednesday and Thursday nights were the best evenings for meetings. The group also prefers 6-8 p.m. for time slots. As a result, CISD will change the start time of future meetings and will rotate between Wednesday and Thursday nights. The next meeting of the DDC is scheduled for 6 p.m. on Wednesday, April 3. At that time the DDC will hear from the school district attorney on legal requirements and restrictions regarding student discipline. They will also discuss proposed wording and/or changes to the CISD Student Code of Conduct. School officials have pledged to strengthen the SCOC as it relates to racism, racial slurs, hate speech, or any actions (verbal or physical) that target another individual or group for their ethnicity, race, gender, sexual orientation, religion or disability.
Meeting 1: Wednesday, January 20, 2019 (Meeting Agenda)
Meeting Summary: Carroll ISD held an orientation meeting of the District Diversity Council (DDC) at 7 p.m. on Wednesday, January 30 in the Lonesome Dove meeting rooms of the CISD Administration Center. Janet McDade, Acting Superintendent/Assistant Superintendent for Student Services, and Tyisha Nelson, Executive Director of Special Programs, led the meeting. Of the 63 members of the DDC, 54 attended the first meeting. Others in the audience observing included Trustee Dave Almand; Julie Thannum, CISD Staff; and Bob Moore, citizen/parent. Meetings are open to the public, but only DDC members actually participate in the discussion and activities.
The DDC orientation meeting began with several ice-breaker activities to begin relationship-building and establishing trust among members. McDade and Nelson introduced themselves, told their personal stories/background, and led members in activities to broaden understanding and acceptance of each other. They reviewed the charge of the Council and reminded members that the work and recommendations of the DDC will be shared with the CISD School Board and Administration to enact positive change in the district. The group reviewed the ethnicity breakdown of Carroll ISD’s student populations from 2008 and 2018, and were shown the 37 languages spoken in Carroll ISD’s English as a Second Language program (ESL), including Mandarin Chinese #1 and Spanish #2. Copies of academic performance for various student populations were reviewed and discussed in an effort to identify any achievement gaps in the district.
DDC members were led in a personal reflection activity involving colored beads representing various races. The activity was titled, “How Diverse Is My Universe?” and sought to identify the diversity that exists in each member’s family, social and work circles. Members were also led through an activity to identify myths or stereotypes often assigned to groups based on race, ethnicity or religion. This led to sharing and discussing the definition of culture and cultural competency followed by a video activity designed to break down stereotypes and implicit biases.
Members of the DDC were then divided into groups to participate in an affinity diagram activity as they studied the charge of the DDC and what subcommittees might be needed for the DDC work going forward. Each group appointed a spokesperson to share out their personal and collective ideas about the work/focus of the DDC. Some recurring topics included: curriculum and instruction; student culture; student-led education and policy; classroom culture; staff development; communications/community outreach; and teacher/staff recruitment.
Before adjourning for the evening, DDC members were asked to share one word that summarized how they were feeling about the first meeting and then they were encouraged to find one individual member who they hadn’t met before and introduce themselves. Many individual words were shared during the closing activity including hopeful, optimistic, change, growth, determined, difficult, open-minded, and acceptance.
Members were also invited to use an ipad or their smartphones to fill out a profile to help CISD communicate with members and determine the best night/time for future meetings. The profile asked who might be interested in serving as co-chairs of the DDC going forward. The framework adopted by the School Board calls for two citizen co-chairs selected to lead with McDade/Nelson. They must not be staff members and must represent two different minority populations. Co-chairs will be selected by the Superintendent and Board President, and announced in a future meeting.
The second meeting of the DDC is scheduled for 7 p.m. Thursday, February 28. At that time the DDC will hear from the school district attorney on legal requirements and restrictions regarding student discipline. They will also discuss proposed wording and/or changes to the CISD Student Code of Conduct. School officials have pledged to strengthen the SCOC as it relates to racism, racial slurs, hate speech, or any actions (verbal or physical) that target another individual or group for their ethnicity, race, gender, sexual orientation, religion or disability. The group will also review the existing CISD Strategic Plan and continue their discussion of subcommittee focus areas.