GTMS Life > Blog November 16, 2022

DEIB-log – An Intro to DEIB at GT

Now that we are well into the start of our school year I wanted to briefly introduce myself and give an overview of what DEIB means to GTMS and what it looks like within our classrooms! My name is Allison Wiedman (they/them) and some of you may already know me as Ms. Allison. I’ve been […]

Now that we are well into the start of our school year I wanted to briefly introduce myself and give an overview of what DEIB means to GTMS and what it looks like within our classrooms! My name is Allison Wiedman (they/them) and some of you may already know me as Ms. Allison. I’ve been a part of the Greene Towne community for 8 years now and I am so excited for the opportunity to serve Greene Towne even further in my new role as DEIB Coordinator. I come from a background of both formal and informal education having worked in local museums and schools around Philadelphia for the past 14 years and look forward to implementing the experience I have creating and facilitating DEI curriculum into our day-to-day life here at GTMS.

What is DEIB? 

DEIB is an acronym for Diversity, Equity, Inclusion, and Belonging. 

D – Diversity is expressed through many different forms including race, ethnicity, gender, sexuality, language, culture, socioeconomic status, nationality, religious affiliation, age, and abilities. Greene Towne is comprised of a beautiful and diverse community and we want to do all that we can to support and celebrate that!

E – We make a conscious decision to focus on equity vs. equality. Equality can assume that we were all given the same start or privileges in life. Everyone’s needs are not always equal or the same. Equity helps us to acknowledge the struggles of historically marginalized groups and how to proceed forward in accordance to that history. At Greene Towne we want to ensure that each student and their family feels they are given equitable and fair treatment. 

I – Inclusion sets forth a deliberate intention to incorporate all these principles into our daily practices. To ensure that everyone in our school community no matter where they come from feels included and has an opportunity to express and celebrate themselves and others.

B – Belonging is one of the big goals of DEI work. Through honoring and representing diversity and integrating equity and inclusion into our day-to-day we can create a space where each individual feels they belong. We want to build confidence in our students and maintain a community where everyone can see themselves represented and feel they have the ability to express themselves openly.

What does this look like in the classroom?

One of the ways we’ve begun to incorporate DEIB work into the classrooms on a regular basis is by having monthly projects and themed punching works and coloring sheets that relate to specific holidays and/or cultural highlights that are occurring during a given month. This allows the students to either learn about something new that they may not have been exposed to before or a chance to see themselves represented and celebrated by the school community at large. It fits in with our goals of raising global citizens who have care, curiosity, and empathy for all the human beings in our world and to see the beauty in differences instead of fearing the unknown or experiencing confusion. If there’s ever a holiday or culturally significant event you’d like to see represented please feel free to email me at awiedman@gtms.org, I’d love to hear back from our families and know what you all would like to see featured at GTMS! We also have a diversity library that we are steadily growing and there is a curated highlights collection put out each month so that teachers can easily pull books that are current to the topics at hand.

If you ever have any questions, concerns, or feedback please feel free to contact me at any time!

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