A multitude of discussions permeate our district, local communities, city and nation that impact our most racially, culturally and linguistically marginalized populations. Friday Forums provide an opportunity to learn and grow from hearing a range of perspectives. Forum panelists will dive into conversations and learning around race, gender, equity and social justice issues that impact the vitality and academic success of our greatest asset – our students. Forum guests will be challenged to think critically about how these topics connect to the experience of students, families and communities in our district. Join us for discussions centered around various topics.
May 15: SPPS Grads
Whether framed as College and Career Ready or preparing all graduates for college, career, and life - Saint Paul Public Schools strives at creating a learning trajectory toward student success. How have the culminating PreK- 12 learning experiences impacted graduates? What successes and challenges have they encountered after leaving SPPS? Join the Equity Department as we listen and learn from the inter-racial conversation of SPPS graduates as they discuss how their foundational educational experiences in SPPS have impacted their hopes, needs, successes, and challenges beyond high school graduation.
CANCELED: March 13: Being a Teacher
Teaching is an all encompassing role. The list of characteristics and skills used to describe a great teacher are endless. The ever changing landscape of education and the evolving role of teachers put great demands on educators. How do educators handle their various responsibilities while keeping their students at the center? Join the Equity Department as we listen to the inter-racial perspectives and experiences of SPPS teachers as they discuss their hopes, needs, and challenges as educators in SPPS.
February 21: Immigrant Communities
“Give me your tired, huddled masses yearning to breathe free.” These are the words etched on the Statue of Liberty that greeted newly arrived immigrants to Ellis Island. The rapidly shifting immigration story is marked by political, social, economical, and educational rifts. Saint Paul Public Schools (SPPS) is home to many refugee immigrants and is addressing the reality of teaching a population of students whose first language is not English. Are we accepting and holding the tired, huddled masses of immigrants yearning to breathe free? Join the Equity Department as we listen to the perspectives and experiences of students, staff, parents, and community members that are immigrants.
January 31, 2020: Living with a Disability
Ableism is a form of discrimination that is often overlooked in conversations about bias and prejudice. Individuals that have physical, intellectual, or psychiatric disabilities confront injustices and consistently navigate a world that misunderstands their disability and characterizes them as needing to be “fixed.” Join the Equity Department and the Office of Family Engagement as we listen to the perspectives and experiences of students, staff, parents, and community members who live with various forms of disabilities.
November 22, 2019: Experiencing Schooling as a Parent/Guardian
A little over two months ago, parent(s)/guardian(s) began a new school year along with their student(s) entering school for the very first time or continuing on their path toward graduation. Parent(s)/guardian(s) being the first teachers, hold a very significant role in the educational experience of students. Join the Equity Department as we listen to the inter-racial conversation of parent(s)/guardian(s) of students as they discuss their hopes, needs, and experiences in the education of their student(s).
October 11: Coming Out
Coming Out, a shortened term for “coming out of the closet” marks a significant part of the journey for members of the LGBTQ+ community. Many of us may know of October 11th as the day to celebrate coming out, however the beauty and hardships of coming out cannot be singled to one day. Join the Equity Department as we listen to the inter-racial conversation of members of the LGBTQ+ community as they discuss their hopes, needs, and experiences in the journey of being fully seen and heard.
September 20: Students at the Center
Students being at the center of public education is essential. Having ongoing opportunities to hear the voices and perspectives of students is even more critical given rapidly changing demographics in schools. The scholars of Saint Paul Public Schools (SPPS) enter buildings carrying a richness of intersectional identities that should be an asset in their educational career. Join the Equity Department as we listen to the inter-racial conversation of 5th- 12th graders as they discuss their hopes, needs, and experiences with schooling and learning in SPPS.