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Letter to the Editor: Diversity of Thought

The views stated here are those of the author and do not necessarily reflect those of the editors of this newspaper. We welcome supporting or opposing views on any published item. Received October 24, 2021.

During the recent “Meet the RSD17 BOE Candidates” event on October 21, 2021 we each expressed our support of “Diversity of Thought” in RSD17.  It has come to our attention that there is ambiguity regarding the definition of “Diversity of Thought,” and we are writing to clearly state the definition we use.
As members of the RSD17 Board of Education, and Chair (Kathy) and member (Eileen) of the RSD17 Curriculum Subcommittee for the last 4 years, we have been highly supportive of our district’s work to promote equity and social justice, spearheaded by the RSD17 Diversity Committee.  This work involves enhancement of the school district’s efforts to intentionally address topics of multiculturalism, black history (including US history of racism and systemic racism), diverse perspectives, empathy and acceptance.  Additional information about the Diversity Committee can be found at the rsd17.org > district > promoting equity & social justice.
When we talk about “Diversity of Thought,” our intention is to expand this diversity narrative even further to include all differing perspectives and ideas.   As a scientist (Kathy) and educator (Eileen), we have seen the value of fostering an environment of acceptance and respect.  We believe that RSD17 should be a safe place for all students to voice diverse ideas and perspectives.
Kathy Zandi and Eileen Blewett
2021 Candidates for RSD17 Board of Education, Killingworth

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