In 2021, Assistant Superintendent Dr. Rod MacNeal was appointed liaison to the Rainbow Commission by the School Committee. He and Rainbow Commissioner Molly Blaauw Gillis have established the LGBTQIA+ Rainbow Task Force. The leadership group is composed of the following stakeholder groups to create alignment, collaboration, and positive momentum within the Arlington community: administrative and instructional staff; students; parents and caregivers; and community members. The mission of the Task Force is to promote and support continued awareness, empathy, access, safety, inclusion, and belonging for LGBTQIA+ students, families, caregivers, and staff. The leadership group will:
- Communicate, create connectivity, and partner with various stakeholder groups within the extended community
- Work to ensure the safety of the LGBTQIA+ students, families and staff within our community;
- Connect and convene individuals and groups within the community to identify and focus on action areas related to:
- Revisions to district policies;
- Revisions to curriculum;
- Promote and support LGBTQIA+ initiatives within the district;
- Plan meetings/caregiver forums focused on relevant topics to provide opportunities for community education;
- Provide input into creating professional development opportunities and strategies for educating staff; and
- Interface with the district’s Diversity, Equity and Inclusion leadership, including to create awareness and action around areas of intersectionality.
This spring, the Task Force will launch a series of forums co-hosted by the Rainbow Commission and Human Rights Commission focused on LGBTQIA+ topics to provide opportunities for community-wide education. An important focus of the series is including and amplifying student voices and leadership. Dates for the series will be announced soon!