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Jun 08
Celebrating respect, acceptance, equity & inclusion during Pride Month

Pride Posters.jpg

With 2021 marking more than 40 years of Pride in B.C., Surrey Schools students and staff are celebrating Pride Month with activities, art and displays in schools across the district.

Due to the pandemic, schools have had to rethink how to recognize Pride, but have come up with some creative ideas.

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"It's pretty limited in terms of events this year but there are lots of hallway displays, lots of conversations, just a lot of movement with people wanting to be involved and celebrating," said Nicole Curtis, the Inclusive Practices Helping Teacher for SOGI and Anti-Racism.

Some of this year's Pride displays include a student-made crocheted Pride flag on the column outside Kwantlen Park Secondary's front entrance (pictured at right) and a rainbow crosswalk made with chalk at Fraser Heights Secondary.

Curtis said younger generations have gravitated toward social justice issues such as gay rights, and  she credits a shift in school cultures, paired with raised awareness on social media, with inspiring youth and teens to show their support for marginalized groups.

"Teachers are more comfortable bringing these conversations into the classroom – there's more role modelling around it and space being made, and it's built into our curriculum," she said. "At the same time, social media has had a profound effect and allowed communities to come together in a way they couldn't before.

"They're so skilled at navigating that world and finding different groups."

The district also recently wrapped up its Pride Poster contest, receiving more than 500 student submissions. The winners are as follows:

  • Niharika & Julia, A.H.P. Matthew Elementary – Our World
  • Januki, Berkshire Park Elementary – We All Are Human
  • Aneesha & Sarah, Coyote Creek Elementary – Everyone is Welcome
  • Celine, Enver Creek Secondary – Proud of Our Love
  • Zoe, Enver Creek Secondary – Pride
  • Emily, Holly Elementary – Be Yourself
  • Thea, Lena Shaw Elementary – Don't be Afraid to Show Your True Colours
  • Violet, Martha Currie Elementary – Treat People with Kindness and Love
  • Alisa, Pacific Heights Elementary – You're Amazing No Matter Who You Are
  • Ella, Semiahmoo Secondary – Celebrate All Love
  • Janice, Semiahmoo Secondary – Beauty Begins the Moment You Decide to be Yourself
  • Isla, Woodward Hill Elementary – Don't be Scared to Show Your Pride

 

In addition to in-class initiatives and celebrations, Surrey Schools is participating in Surrey Pride and this year's "decentralized" Vancouver Pride Parade, which encourages British Columbians to celebrate safely with their family or friends at home or in public, with additional virtual components. The district is submitting a 20-second video of photos, showcasing various school projects and displays.

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