Trustees Discuss Sensitivity Plan, Strategic Planning
RISD Board members met October 23 for a work session, discussing several topics. Highlights included:
Response to Offensive Images
After students from Pearce and Richardson high schools faced discipline last month for posting a variety of offensive images online, including racially and religiously intolerant images, Dr. Stone and campus administrators have spent the last four weeks meeting with a wide variety of students, parents, employees, community members and alumni to hear their concerns and discuss next steps.
Some common elements that emerged from the meetings, discussions and feedback include equity, racism, insensitivity, inclusiveness, training and policy. While the inclusive and collaborative approach will continue, Dr. Stone shared actions the district will immediately begin work on:
- Prepare and implement an RISD Equity, Diversity and Inclusion Plan.
- Establish an RISD Equity Council, and work to establish school equity councils at all four RISD high schools.
- Establish a new position within RISD - the Director of Equity, Diversity and Inclusion, who will provide leadership and serve as an educator, trainer and spokesperson across the district and community regarding issues of equity, diversity, access, opportunity and inclusion.
Once established, these steps will contribute toward efforts to expose all RISD students to a better understanding that diversity and differences among people in our community are a strength and not a reason for division.
Dr. Stone indicated the Board will be updated on progress at future meetings.
Strategic Planning Update
Trustees were briefed on progress related to RISD's strategic planning efforts that began in the summer (see background
). Action teams surrounding the six strategic goals are being formed, each with approximately 35-50 members, and a blend of parents, community members and staff members. The action teams will work through the Fall and Winter to develop the specific steps that RISD can take to achieve the six strategic goals. Stakeholders can continue to sign up to serve on an action team through Friday, October 27.