• A History of Our Work

    The summer of 2017 our district embarked on our journey to attain greater cultural competence - having an awareness of one's own cultural identity and views about differences, and the ability to learn and develop ways to productively discuss differences with each other. This understanding expands teaching practices and our ability to successfully teach students who come from cultures other than our own. Partnering with Dr. Caprice Hollins from Cultures Connecting in Seattle, we launched a professional development plan to include four workshops over the school year for our administrators and teacher-leaders. Dr. Hollins was also the keynote speaker at our back-to-school all staff professional development opportunity, Tumwater U. Throughout the year, she will be leading workshops on a wide range of topics. The goal for each is to focus on self-awareness, increase understanding, and honor diversity by exploring our socialization around differences.

    The district has also partnered with Dr. Karen Johnson as our Lead Consultant to the School Board as we implement a more robust equity, diversity, and inclusion plan and incorporate it into our strategic planning goals. Dr. Johnson has been a long-time partner of the Tumwater School District, has served in executive-level leadership roles of large organizations and non-profits, and has experienced great results in assisting organizations and groups in developing cultural competence.  

    Some of the work underway (updated May 23, 2018):

    Policy Level Planning

    • Board Policy Review: October through January, Comprehensive Program Review
    • School Board Meetings and Workshops:
      • 1/11/18  Board Meeting - Update from Dr. Johnson
      • 1/25/18  Board Meeting - Update from Chris Woods and Laurie Wiedenmeyer
      • 2/7/18    Board Workshop - Equity and Diversity Training and Discussion
      • 2/8/18    Board Meeting - Update from Dr. Johnson, Chris Woods and Todd Caffey
      • 2/20/18  Board Meeting - Update from Chris Woods
      • 3/6/18    Board Workshop - Equity and Diversity Training and Discussion
      • 3/8/18    Board Meeting - Update from John Bash and Dr. Johnson
      • 3/22/18  Board Meeting - Update from John Bash
      • 4/10/18  Board Workshop - Review of policies from other districts 
      • 4/12/18  Board Meeting - Update from Dr. Johnson
      • 5/10/18  Board Meeting - Update from Dr. Johnson and Chris Woods
    • Strategic Plan Implications
    • Needs Assessment: what is currently in place? what are we missing? Met with Administrative Council in January 2018
    • School Board members engaged with listening to individuals and groups (ongoing)
    • Draft Policy Developed
    • Community Engagement Plan and next steps, (What We Are Doing)

    Teaching & Learning 

    • Dr. Hollins - Cultural Competence training (keynote and training series for school and district leaders)
    • US History Teachers met with Black Alliance Representatives (Civil War): December 8th
    • 2018-19 Trainer of Trainers Model - launch in August of 2018 - all staff
    • District ACT Fridays - planning for use of some ACT days to conduct additional professional development 
      • culturally responsive practices
      • restorative justice
      • student voice/forums
      • curriculum/materials review
      • data review to inform ongoing professional development
      • other
    • Ongoing School Improvement Planning (SIP) includes achievement gap analysis and tiered intervention planning
    • Student Forums, "Conversation Cafes" - researching OHS strategy; THS Diversity Club Model - student voice
    • Cultural Awareness Clubs at each of our high schools
    • Long-Range: a review of system policies, structures, and processes to ensure culturally responsive teaching/learning decisions and programs

    Community Engagement

    • Parent Forums planned - BMS and District (dates, times and format to be determined)
    • Unspoken Truths American History Traveling Museum - February 6th 
    • Individual & Group Consultation (to date)
      • TOGETHER!; Black Alliance of Thurston County; Cielo; YWCA of Olympia; CRESD #113; Cultures Connecting (Seattle); Unspoken Truths (Seattle)
      • Dr. Karen Johnson; Merrit Long; Karen Johnson, North Thurston Public Schools; Don Davis, Yakima School Director; Thurston County School Leaders
    • Community Summit 2018: Equity/Poverty Focus May 2018
    • Equity Forums for Stakeholder Input Regarding Draft Equity Policy
      • May 14, 2018 @ THS
      • May 21, 2018 @ BHHS
    • Long-Range: Superintendent's Advisory; School/District Outreach Events TBD
    • Phase 2: Parent forums, information, resources - immigration issues/concerns

    Diverse Work Force

    • Research new/different recruiting strategies, locations, and network
    • Actively recruit diverse candidates for open positions
    • Expand recruitment efforts with Joint Base Lewis McChord
    • Activate local partner network to recruit candidates for available vacancies

    Tumwater High Cultural Club Reps