As the search for a new PUSD Superintendent progresses, the Piedmont Appreciating Diversity Committee would like to highlight qualities we hold as essential in an educational leader. We believe that the District can best be led by an innovative leader who continues to focus on supporting a high quality educational environment and furthers issues of diversity and inclusion in our school community.
A successful learning environment requires attention to diversity because the demands of work and life in the 21st century require cultural sensitivity and an appreciation of differences. A truly educated society embraces and seeks to understand a broad spectrum of perspectives – which are increasingly important in this globally interconnected society and economy.
To ensure that diversity and inclusion are part of the learning environment in our schools, we would like a Superintendent who has the following skills and characteristics:
- Understanding of and experience with a broad definition of diversity, which includes but is not limited to gender, learning styles, race and ethnicity, religion, family configurations, sexual orientation, and socio-economic levels. Piedmont families are represented across the spectrum in all of these categories.
- Ability to integrate diversity and inclusion into the academic curriculum from kindergarten through high school. PUSD currently does not have a unified, K-12 focus on these issues.
- Ability to integrate diversity and inclusion into school culture, and ensure that the experiences of all students are positive and safe.
- Strong communication skills that include collecting and integrating feedback from diverse stakeholder groups when developing new strategies or responding to challenges in the school community.
- Ability to engage all parents and families, whether or not they live in Piedmont, and whether they are two-parent, one-parent, or families with one or both parents working outside the home.
We recognize that a Superintendent cannot lead the way on these issues without the encouragement and cooperation of the School Board, which currently does not have an articulated strategy around diversity and inclusion. We hope the Board takes advantage of this search for a new Superintendent to model inclusiveness in the search process and to consider the characteristics listed above as critical to the future of our school district.
We applaud efforts to gather community input through an open forum, online survey, and numerous interviews including school and district staff, Board members, students, and various school support organizations. We also believe it is important to share our views publicly and urge others to do so as well. This is the most transparent way to hold each other, the search consultant, and the School Board accountable for conducting a truly engaged search process.
The PADC Executive Board
Margaret Huang • Yuriko Tada • Angela Hom • Alison Feldman • Jina Saikia
Kobi Eshun • Miles Perkins • Michael Rufo • Pauline Homsi Vinson • Jason Kelley • Tonda Case