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Quakertown Board Approves District-Wide Diversity Training
Written by Jennifer Butler, Correspondent
2017-11-01

            In response to an incident occurring earlier this month, The Quakertown Community School District Board of Directors voted unanimously Thursday to take action against racism and intolerance in the district.

            The board approved a plan to spend $32,212 on a comprehensive diversity and inclusion program administered by the Pearl S Buck Foundation.

            District administrators began developing a strategy to counter racism after Quakertown students shouted racial slurs at Cheltenham students during an October 5 football game. Two Strayer Middle School students were identified as culprits in the incident.

            Superintendent William Harner consulted with the foundation, named after author and activist Pearl Buck, as well as The Peace Center in Langhorne to develop a plan of action.

            "It's got to be thoughtful and it's got to be long-term."

            The foundation's program, "The Welcome Workplace," begins with an online assessment of intercultural knowledge and awareness. Over 400 district employees will be assessed, including board members.

            "It's an examination from the adults on down," Board President Paul Stepanoff said. "We are looking forward to administering it.

            Once the assessments are complete, professional trainers will work with administrators to customize a plan to build intercultural development and individual competencies. According to the program description on the foundation's website, psbi.org, a steering committee, formed of district champions will be selected to help develop the plan.    

            Assessments are set to begin before the end of 2017. Funding for the endeavor will be spread over the 2017-2018 and the 2018-2019 budget years. A post-assessment will hen be conducted to gauge progress.


 

 

 

 

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