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Inclusion and Belonging



2023-24 School Year Updates

Our school district goals can be viewed here

  • We continue to meet with students via the monthly Superintendent's Student Leadership Council. 
  • The SMS Group of students conducted the 2nd Annual Cultural Awareness Festival in the fall at SMS.  Students from many cultures showcased their heritage via booths, displays, activities and food tasting.  It was well attended by the community at large.
  • We hosted a Community Inclusion and Belonging Forum in October where we heard from PHS students who have moved here from other countries who shared how they have become part of the fabric of Parkland High School.
  • In March 2024, we will host the 2nd Annual Community Resource Fair that involves 100+ social service agencies, community groups, recreational opportunities, cultural organizations, nonprofits and more.  
  • We will host our 2nd Annual New Parent Social in March to help new families make connections with others.
  • Our schools continued to conduct climate/culture surveys, host class chats, and incorporate new student activities and peer mentoring to help newcomers feel welcomed and as though they belong.
  • Our Inclusion and Belonging Staff Committee continues to ensure that staff teach social skills, emotional skills, and behavior skills through the Character Counts/ Mind Up/ School-wide Positive Behavior Programs and Bully Prevention Programs.
  • Our Multicultural Awareness Committee met in February to review an update on World Language Week, Black History Month, an update to our 2024-25 calendar which will now incorporate Eid al Fitr (end of Ramadan) as a student holiday, and to engage in dialogue with our faith and culture leaders in our community.
  • Check out the 2024 World Language Week Door Poster Contest works of art here.


Archive of Updates
*In the fall of 2021,  Dr. Madson created the Superintendent Student Leadership Council to glean feedback directly from students.  Students work on projects that are aimed to better the school climate.  At SMS, students have been empowered to update the New Student Orientation event.  At OMS and PHS, students are working on planning events that promote school spirit and inclusivity.
*Developed a District Equity Statement with input from the staff, student and community groups.
*Annually started hosting "Lunch and Learn" sessions with students groups to help inspire a career in education with a "grow your own" mindset to develop a diverse pool of future educators.

Parkland started this work in 2009 when it formed a Cultural Awareness Committee aimed at breaking down stereotypes by educating Parkland staff on the many cultural backgrounds that exist in Parkland. The goal of that Committee has been to increase awareness and understanding of the many traditions that our students and staff participate in and how Parkland staff may demonstrate compassion and awareness to ALL PEOPLE so that all students and staff feel welcome and able to share concerns.  The Cultural Awareness Committee has included guest speakers from faith-based and cultural institutions as well as provided workshops for all levels of Parkland staff. Since 2019, Parkland school leaders participated in Lehigh University’s Greater Lehigh Valley Consortium for Excellence and Equity via their School Study Council where national consultants and District leaders came together monthly to discuss systemic racism and how it has contributed to culture and influenced the framework for our nation’s current public education system.  A launch in partnership with World Savvy is expected in May 2024 under the leadership of Lehigh's Consortium.