School System To Host Community Conversation In Pasadena About Acceptance And Inclusion

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In an effort to continue the dialogue and work toward creating climates free of hate and bigotry, Anne Arundel County Public Schools will host a community meeting at Jacobsville Elementary School later this month.

“All Means All: Communities Cultivating Acceptance and Inclusion” will allow members of the public to join with students, parents and school system staff to discuss incidents of bias in schools and the community, the impact of those incidents, efforts to date, and potential future initiatives. It will begin at 6:30pm on January 17 in the cafeteria at the school, located at 3801 Mountain Road in Pasadena.

“Taking into account events that have transpired over the last year, I felt it was critically important that we hold the first of these community-oriented meetings in Pasadena,” said Dr. George Arlotto, superintendent of AACPS. “There is a lot of work, however, for every person in Anne Arundel County to do when it comes to eradicating bigotry and hate. We all have roles to play, and just as is the case when it comes to the education of our children, in this effort, all must mean all. It is my hope that this conversation is a turning point for all of us and a launching pad for more collaboration and teamwork that will eradicate the scourge of hate.”

Participants will consider data related to bias-motivated reports in Chesapeake cluster schools, hear about the impact of such incidents from students, and discuss AACPS’ efforts to combat these behaviors. They will then break into smaller groups to talk further about ways in which communities, organizations and schools can work together to create climates of acceptance and inclusion.

“There is no way for any single entity to tackle the monster of bigotry and hate by itself,” Arlotto said. “This will not be the last conversation we have on this issue. It is a critical step, however, and one which we need to take to build and enhance relationships and partnerships that will yield the results we all want. I am looking forward to an evening of open and honest conversation that will guide us as we move forward.”

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