Mir Centre for Peace, Selkirk International and School District 8 present:
Perspective. Learning. Hope: Shifting our Focus Through Awareness
Anti-racism & Intercultural Awareness Day of Learning
Friday, October 23, 2020 from 8:30-3:30 p.m.
This Anti-racism and Intercultural Awareness Day of Learning will be attended by educators, health professionals & social service providers. It is also open to anyone in the community who wishes to deepen their awareness and understanding of these important issues, whether at work, at home, or in their everyday interactions with others.
8:30 - Opening Remarks - Selkirk College & SD8
9:00 - Keynote Speaker / Mir Lecturer - Desmond Cole
10:30 - Lecture Discussion & Debrief
11:00 - Break
11:15 - International Student Panel
12:15 - Lunch & Virtual Expo of Opportunities (drop-in)
1:00 - Diversity: Embrace it, Share it, Celebrate it! Facilitated by Chelsey Gooden
2:00 - Break-out Groups: Taking Action for Change
3:00 - Closing Remarks: Dr. Christopher Horsethief
FEATURED SPEAKERS AND FACILITATORS
Desmond Cole is a journalist, activist and author. He has spent the last ten years reporting and commentating on politics and social justice. Desmond is interested in the struggle for Black liberation within Canada. His work includes ten years of local and national news coverage, five years of radio broadcasting at Newstalk 1010, a disruptive opinion column in the Toronto Star and and an award-winning feature for Toronto Life magazine. In January 2020, Desmond released his first book, The Skin We're In: A Year of Black Resistance and Power, which quickly became a bestseller in Canada.
Chelsey Gooden has extensive experience working with various NGOs, private sector and the federal government, developing employment equity practices with a diversity and inclusion lens. Having had lived experience as a minority within Canada, Chelsey brings passion to her work, promoting open dialogue around the topic of social justice.
Dr. Christopher Horsethief is an educator and organizational theorist specializing in complex systems and social processes, collectively intelligent problem-solving and post-traumatic community resilience. For 25 years Christopher has been facilitating field analysis of the relationship between culture and communication, documenting both the organizational resilience that drives cultural revitalization and the dynamics that pose challenges to Indigenous leaders.
AFTERNOON SESSION - STOPPING THE SCHOOL-TO-PRISON PIPELINE: RESTORATIVE JUSTICE AS RACIAL JUSTICE
Anita Werner and Jennie Barron will briefly explain the phenomenon known as the school-to-prison pipline, how racialized students tend to be disproportionately targeted for more punitive disciplinary measures, and how the implementation of resotoritive practices can bring about more racial justice equality in schools. The majority of the time will then be spent in open discussion about disciplinary practices in schools and what a restoritive approach can look like, based in the questions, experiences, and ideas suggested by participants.
MEET OUR STUDENT PANELISTS
- Kim Pham from Ho Chi Min City, Vietnam - Graduate of Selkirk College's Post-Graduate Diploma in Business Management
- Wesley Fakrogha from Lagos, Nigeria - 2-Year Student in Selkirk College's Post-Graduate Diploma in Business Management
- Kriti Sapkota from Nepal - First year student in Selkirk College's Social Worker Program
- Akshit Saini from Punjab, India - Graduate of Selkirk College's Post-Graduate Diploma in Accounting
BREAKOUT GROUPS: TAKING ACTION FOR CHANGE
This section of the day is designed to help you continue to educate yourself, to identify your biases, name them, unpack them and seek out new, anti-racist learnings. There are two options: 1) You may either may meet in a breakout group with your co-workers and/or others in your sector, for the purposes of self-directed action planning; 2) You may attend one of the presentations below. Each presentation will be 45 minutes, followed by questions and answers.
Carla Stephenson – Exploring change, working towards equity
Carla is the Executive Director for the Tiny Lights Festival in Ymir and the leader of the Rural Arts Inclusion Lab. This session will present frameworks for change and exercises for self-reflection. Participants will examine their own implicit biases, beliefs and actions in a colonial system to work towards greater equity in the community.
George Chandler - How can our city be home to thriving people?
George will speak about community dignity and humanity. The best gauge of how we are doing is not how we regard and treat those who are thriving and healthy, but how we regard and treat those who are not. How can our city be home to thriving people?
Sandy Prentice - Interculturalization and examining our biases
Sandy is part of Intercultural Kootenays and the former District Principal for International Education in SD8. Over time, as the district program grew, she saw well-intentioned, but biased views, in how students were treated, including herself. In this session, participants will learn about the different types of bias, how to name them and then unpack them, and set new anti-racist behaviors to replace them.
Abra Brynne - The story of home: confronting the ongoing impacts of our settler history
From her childhood in Syilx Territory, to her present location amongst the waters and land of the Sinixt, Abra Brynne has been learning about the many ways that Canada impacts the first peoples of this land. During her talk, she will use various stories to personalize how Canada's foundation, settler history and ongoing practices are fundamentally unjust and intimately tied to the land. Abra's hope for her session is that participants will leave with a new lens through which to understand the experience of Indigenous people in so-called Canada and a renewed commitment to making reconciliation real.
Sarah-Kim Holma - Ethnography as a research tool to learn more about cultural behaviour
Ethnography can help us understand social frameworks and world views. It requires the anthropologist's immersion in the culture and everyday life of the people who are the subject of their study. Ethnographers aim to be theoretically neutral. Sarah-Kim will discuss a background to, and the relevance of ethnography in unveiling racial discrimination.
Gail Higginbottom – Step forward into Reconciliation
Gail Higginbottom is currently District Principal for Aboriginal Education in SD8. Her passion is for wide-open conversations on themes of equity, reconciliation, and Indigenous identity politics. In the school district, Gail is committed to building positive relationships with all staff and students to open doors, and opportunities of shared learning. This session will be an opportunity for open and non-judgmental discussion as we continue to step forward into Reconciliation.
Scott Rothermel – SOGI and becoming a more inclusive community
Scott is the manager of Safe Schools, working directly to support safety with students in all SD8 schools. Scott provides leadership in: violent risk assessments, critical incident response management, SOGI (sexual orientation and gender identity) portfolio, safety education and mediation between school staff, students and parents. Scott will be facilitating a dialogue on current SD8 SOGI initiatives, how we as a district and a community can move to be more inclusive; as well as identifying student, staff and parent needs and wants moving into 2021.
Pablo Pastor - The intercultural classroom: building a culturally inclusive post-secondary environment
Learn new ways to create a culturally-inclusive post-secondary classroom with Pablo, an intercultural communications instructor. Discover what is already working in your curriculum and learning environment and identify changes to foster deeper inter-cultural awareness, create a more inclusive classroom, and empower your students to be better allies.
VIRTUAL EXPO OF OPPORTUNITIES
ThoughtExchange: Thoughtexchange helps you quickly gauge support for your decisions and get the perspective you need. Whether you’re looking to support remote learners, navigate change and crisis in your community, or build diversity and inclusion into your decision-making process, Thoughtexchange can help you create conversations at scale and learn what’s on everyone’s mind.
Columbia Basin Alliance for Literacy (CBAL): CBAL is the Basin & Boundary’s settlement and language services provider. Join us to learn more about CBAL’s work on cultural diversity and inclusion, and discuss ideas for making our communities feel more welcoming for newcomers. Together we can make a difference!
Selkirk College Students' Union: Selkirk College Students’ Union has been providing students with campaigns, services, and events that would not exist without a strong student-run organization that is independent from the college and government. Through the Federation, we work towards our common goal: a system of universally accessible public post-secondary education.
This is a free event, but pre-registration is required. Once registered, a Zoom link will be given.
THANK YOU TO OUR SPONSORS
Trail Community Skills Centre | Trail FAIR | West Kootenay Ecosociety | Kootenay Career Development Services | Nelson Community Christian School | Ecole des Sentiers-Alpins | West Kootenay Boundary Local Government Management Association | School District 20 | Thought Exchange