Culture of Belonging
Keller ISD believes that creating a culture where all students and staff feel that they belong is a vital part of being intentionally exceptional.
In the beginning of 2019, as a collaborative effort of the Student Services, Counseling, and Social-Emotional Learning Departments, the Creating a Culture of Belonging Initiative was born. This work is driven by a committee that meets every first Monday of the month to have intentional conversations on race, culture and equity. This committee, open to the community and representing a diverse group of teachers, administrators, counselors and parents, helped us secure a grant to bring in Quantum Possibilities, a professional coaching team to train and develop cultural competence throughout the District. In 2020, the training is now making its way to teachers and we started to have campus-level conversations. Additionally, the committee assisted in the production of a Cultural Celebration in June 2019 as a part of our ROCK Summit Conference, where the theme was Creating a Culture of Belonging and our key note, Meena Srinivasan, spoke on education through a culturally relevant lens. Keller ISD also hosted our first HBCU (Historically Black Colleges and Universities) event for high school students this past fall.
In order to make sure this work reaches the students, the committee has also been working with the Social Studies Department to put "Culture Circles" in history classes at the secondary level, which will support students to have brave and safe conversations around social identity. At the elementary level, students are beginning to explore these conversations in their morning meetings. The District is also excited to announce that our World History teachers were trained in February by the Dallas Holocaust and Human Rights Museum on teaching lessons alongside their curriculum.
Keller ISD acknowledges that developing cultural competency as a District is a journey, and while the work this past year has been a great start, we recognize that there is more work to be done. We are thankful to parents and community members who are also passionate about this conversation. If you are interested in learning more or being part of the conversation, please email CreatingCOB@kellerisd.net and a member of our educational staff will respond as soon as possible.