Safer Schools Tool Launched On Pink Shirt Day

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Near North District School Board (NNDSB) is enthusiastically celebrating Pink Shirt Day today with several activities and initiatives. Across the district, students and staff are wearing pink in support of anti-bullying initiatives.

Elementary students at Woodland, Parry Sound and Vincent Massey Public Schools will be hearing from Travis Price, one of the founders of Pink Shirt Day, which started in 2007 after Travis and his friend David led their school in wearing pink after hearing about a Grade 9 student who had been bullied for the same thing. Price will be speaking to students across Canada in the Pink Shirt Day National Broadcast. His message will celebrate kindness and discuss how kids can reduce bullying and increase inclusion and positive relationships in their schools and communities.

This year’s Pink Shirt Day theme, Lift Each Other Up, reminds us all of the power behind making positive choices that support diversity and inclusion. When we lift each other up, we all feel safe, welcomed and valued. To further celebrate Pink Shirt Day, NNDSB is launching a new look for our SAFER SCHOOLS! Reporting Tool. The tool will ensure our schools are as safe, welcoming and inclusive as possible, as it can be used to report incidents related to bullying and/or discrimination.

“Bullying in the form of physical, verbal, social or cyber, is often found to be related to discrimination,” says NNDSB’s Principal of Safe Schools, Emily Samuel. “When someone treats another person badly or denies them a privilege based on a Human Rights Code such as race, ethnicity, religion, gender, sexual orientation, or disability, it’s discrimination. In recognizing the relationship between acts of bullying and mentalities of discrimination, NNDSB schools are combating this issue using anti-racism education, culturally responsive and relevant teaching approaches, and whole-school anti-bullying initiatives to create spaces that value diversity.”

NNDSB is committed to the safety and well-being of students, staff, and all members of the school community and will ensure that programs are in place to educate the school community about discrimination and bullying and to respond to these incidents appropriately.

When schools become aware of these incidents, steps can be taken to assist all individuals involved to repair the harm and restore the relationship. When we support the rights of all, schools become safer places.

Learn more about the tool today by visiting the Safe and Accepting Schools page of our website.

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