Public school board marking ‘Day of Pink’
The Rainy River District School Board is committed to providing a safe and positive learning environment for all of its students.
The board recognizes that the International Day of Pink, which this year falls on April 9–highlights an issue of critical importance.
Students and staff are encouraged to wear pink, and will be engaged in various activities on Wednesday to learn more about bullying and its effect on student learning and well-being.
A number of board initiatives, programs, and strategies are in place to create a learning environment where everyone feels welcome and respected.
Its “Character Education” curriculum, for instance, helps students to understand, to care about, and to act upon core ethical values.
Student mentorship and mediation programs build leadership and conflict management skills.
“Me to We” activities and events, meanwhile, inspire and empower students to make their schools and communities a better place by starting a positive chain reaction.
And in partnership with the OPP, schools throughout the board have implemented the commonsense.org curriculum to promote digital citizenship and help children recognize and prevent online risks.
In 2013, the Rainy River District School Board was one of two school boards in Ontario that piloted the “Respect in School” online bullying and harassment prevention training for staff, with the pilot continuing throughout the 2013-14 school year.
Diversity and inclusiveness training, such as Egale, has been received by many of the school board’s staff members and high school students to remove discrimination and stigma, as well as to provide support so all persons can achieve their full potential.
Plans also are underway for a “Celebration of Inclusive Schools”—a symposium on LGBTQ-Straight Alliance school-based programs.
According to statistics, most students in Canada have been bullied at one time in their lives.
In some cases, bullying is an ongoing issue that seriously can affect the lives of both those being bullied and the bully.
Despite best efforts, incidents of bullying do occur. To assist schools in responding to such incidents, the Rainy River District School Board’s Code of Conduct sets out clear standards of behaviour for everyone involved in the school system.
The board also has trained staff members from across the district on restorative practices, holding students accountable for their actions, while promoting understanding and restoring the relationship between the victim and the offender.