Equity and Diversity
The Office of Equity and Diversity along with the Inclusivity and Justice Task Force lead the district’s work on building a culture of diversity and inclusion for all students, families, employees, and community. The district understands that without an inclusive and equitable learning environment, students will not fully realize their potential. This work is also outlined in the district’s Next X Initiative which reflects the district’s strategic goals for 2020-2030.
Ultimately, the district’s goal is to consider: how might we become a model district for students of color and diverse needs and circumstances to feel welcome, included, heard, valued, and celebrated. The district will continue to define and implement an action-oriented approach to accomplish this goal.
Below are several pillars of the district’s work: Multicultural Education, Equitable Classrooms, Community Conversations, and Definitions.
To learn more about our work, contact Samantha Chatman, Director of Equity and Diversity and Chair of the Inclusivity and Justice Task Force, or Janet Monseur-Durr or Sabine Canty, Diversity and Inclusion Coordinators.
Learn about our work and the Inclusivity and Justice Task Force
Our goal is to develop and implement a truly multicultural education across all departments in Hilliard City Schools. A multicultural education means that students will study the history, text, values, beliefs, and perspectives of people from different cultural backgrounds. A multicultural education reflects the history and experiences of people around the world, including but not limited to the cultures represented in the classroom. This type of education prepares students to interact with a global community and become global citizens in a global economy.
- The Leading Equity Center podcast focuses on providing educators with tools and resources to ensure equity in schools and tackles a myriad of issues and topics for students and staff.
- Social Justice Books features several dozen curated book lists for children, young adults, and educators on a variety of multicultural and social justice topics. We encourage parents and teachers to continue to find books with heroes and protagonists that represent our multicultural community.
Equitable classrooms provide equally accessible programming and opportunities for students and staff by being intentional in our behaviors, practices, and policies. The district will empower and create experiences for underrepresented populations to break down barriers and overcome stigmas. Equity applies to all students including but limited to: race, ethnicity, background, socioeconomic status, ability, orientation, belief system, and perspective. When students learn in an equitable classroom, all students have a better opportunity to succeed and receive a more full and well-rounded educational experience.
Program Highlight: E Pluribus Unum
E Pluribus Unum is a student group that promotes the inclusion of individual voices in order to develop more empathy for others to build a stronger community, as “Out of Many, One” is our nation’s motto. Students that represent a diverse and multicultural community at Hilliard City Schools engage in rigorous conversation and exercises to examine concepts of identity, empathy, and advocacy as well as systemic practices that nurture inclusion so that everyone has a place at the table. In addition, the program, which has served students for more than 15 years, has received national and international recognition for its work with students.
The Hilliard City Schools Board of Education passed a resolution on July 9, 2020, that outlines the District’s commitment to equity and diversity with four main goals:
- Establishing and sustaining a school culture and community that shares in the collective responsibility to address, eliminate, and prevent action, decisions, and behaviors that permit or perpetuate racism;
- Establishing and supporting the Director of Equity and Diversity, the Diversity Coordinators, and the Equity and Diversity Task Force to lead the Hilliard City School District’s commitment to eliminating inequitable practices;
- Respecting and championing the diversity and life experiences of all students and staff to support the school district’s mission, vision, values, and goals;
- Creating a three-year strategic plan, under the Director of Equity and Diversity leadership, includes policy recommendations, recruitment of a more representative workforce, curriculum review and guidance, and system support to target systemic racism in the District.
The Office of Diversity and Equity at Hilliard City Schools supports building a culture of diversity and inclusion for all students, families, employees, and community.
Samantha Chatman, Director of Diversity and Equity
Samantha was appointed Director of the Office of Diversity and Equity in 2020. She joined the district in 2018 as the Principal of Alton Darby Elementary. Samantha has a Bachelor’s Degree in Early Childhood Education from Youngstown State University and a Master’s Degree in Educational Leadership from Miami University. As Director, Samantha provides action-oriented leadership.
Janet Monseur-Durr, Diversity and Inclusion Coordinator
Janet Monseur-Durr has been with the District since 1994, teaching Spanish and English for Speakers of Other Languages, and began serving as the District Diversity/Educational Equity Coordinator in 2005. Janet works across the District, establishing and facilitating efforts that support the inclusion of all students; providing professional development on diversity and educational equity to faculty and staff; and convening and facilitating local community groups in the District’s equity work. Janet works at the state level, as both a Teacher Leader for the Ohio Department of Education and a developer and facilitator of training for school resource officers. Janet’s equity work spans internationally with a focus on the value of youth advocacy and engagement. She holds a Bachelor’s Degree in Education with a concentration in Spanish and Teaching English as Another Language and a Master’s Degree in Education.
Sabine Canty, Diversity and Inclusion Coordinator
Sabine Canty moved from Beirut, Lebanon as a young adult and walked the path of a new American immigrant where she found her passion for pursuing, implementing, and supporting culturally relevant and inclusive practices in equitable educational and social environments. Sabine began teaching French in the Hilliard City School District in 2004. When the District’s needs related to diversity and equity increased, Sabine’s role transitioned to Diversity & Inclusion Coordinator in 2015 where she helped to develop, and build efforts that support inclusion for all students and families. Sabine works extensively with families in the Hilliard community. Being trilingual (French, Arabic, English) allows her to have one foot in her home culture and another in her adoptive one, which gives her the opportunity to understand the challenges faced by immigrant families and support their immediate and long-term needs. Much of Sabine’s work focuses on creating and implementing initiatives and programs that give every student and every family from immigrant and under-represented communities a more equitable, accessible, and fulfilling school experience. Sabine holds a Bachelor of Arts in Media & Theater from Saint Joseph’s University in Beirut and a Masters of Arts in Foreign Language and a Masters of Education from The Ohio State University.
The Diversity and Equity team also works closely with the district’s Inclusivity and Justice Task Force which engages staff, students, parents, and community members. A full list of current task force members is listed below.
2020-21 Inclusivity and Justice Task Force
- Samantha Chatman – Chair
- Lisa Whiting
- Mark Abate
- Michelle Crandall
- Chief Robert Fisher
- Mike Abraham
- Nikki Henkel
- Sherise Thompson
- Hilary Sloat
- Kristen Clausen
- Cameron Foster
- Jeremy Markewicz
- Chad Smock
- Corina Pierce-Tucker
- Sara Barkley
- Lauren Hall
- Joshua Stephens
- Linna Jordan
- Marcy Baker
- Sabra Qualls
- Yasmeen Khafagy
- Gracelyn Peebles
Definitions and Terms
Diversity: refers to the various backgrounds and races that comprise a community, nation or other grouping. In many cases, the term diversity does not just acknowledge the existence of diversity of background, race, gender, religion, sexual orientation, and so on, but implies an appreciation of these differences.
Equity: offering different levels of support depending upon the need to achieve greater fairness of outcomes. For example, a teacher gives each child the number of apples he/she needs to remove hunger. One child may have had breakfast and only needs one apple, whereas another child may not have eaten since lunch the day before, and may need two or three apples to feel full.
Inclusion: means all students, staff, and community members are respected and valued members of their classroom, learning community, and the greater community. In an inclusive school, all students and staff participate in cultivating an environment in which all people feel accepted, safe, empowered, respected, valued, and have an equal voice.
Antiracism: “Anti-racism is the active process of identifying and eliminating racism by changing systems, organizational structures, policies and practices and attitudes, so that power is redistributed and shared equitably.” – NAC International Perspectives: Women and Global Solidarity