Instruction on Race and Identity
Students in Highline Public Schools learn about race and identity as part of their K-12 learning
Instruction on Race and Identity is part of School Board Policy 0010: Equity, Race and Identity, adopted by the School Board in November 2019. From grades K through12, students learn key ideas from a variety of perspectives to understand why and how race and identity play a role in shaping our society. While this is not new in Highline, we have recently aligned this instruction with the Social Justice Standards developed by Learning for Justice (formally known as Teaching Tolerance).
This instruction is intended to prepare students to live and work with others in a diverse world. It acknowledges the fact and impact of racism in our nation. It does not advance any particular ideology or political perspective.
Every student in Highline will participate in conversations, activities and lessons that address some or all of the following topics: relationship-building, uncovering injustices, identity and diversity, and taking action. This instruction is designed to involve families, who hold a wide range of cultural backgrounds and perspectives.
The race and identity instruction is developed in collaboration with families and communities through a community advisory council made up of students, families, and community members who join the IRI Desing Team to provide feedback on all components of the work. Full implementation is projected for fall 2023.
Instruction on Race and Identity helps cultivate positive identity formation, encourages students to confront racial and ethnic injustice, and prepares them to live and work together in a diverse world. To help do this, the Instruction on Race & Identity Task Force created a heritage month calendar for teachers and families to use.
Heritage month acknowledgements provide teachers and families with a framework to elevate the many contributions made by Black, Indigenous, Pacific Islander, Latinx, Asian, Middle Easterners, LGBTQ, and other groups of people seldomly highlighted in traditional education curriculum. These are times not only to celebrate, but also to educate students on various groups' histories, contributions to U.S. History, and current contributions.