Employee diversity sought

By NANCY WHYTE

The subject of diversity – specifically the lack of it among the employees of the Avonworth School District – was a topic discussed at the June 5 meeting of the school board.

During the visitors' comments portion of the meeting, an man who said he had lived in the district for 39 years and was a 1989 graduate of Avonworth High School, said he was concerned that the members of the board, administration and most of the teaching staff all looked the same. He also expressed his view that the curriculum needed to be changed to reflect more diversity.

“It's more than black and white,” he said. There are no “Hispanics, or special needs or Indians,” for example, employed in the district. For some of the students, “there are no authority figures who look like they do,” he added.

His wife suggested that the district provide diversity training for all of the staff. “It's important to learn how to deal with people who look different,” she said. The students should also receive diversity training, she suggested. “Everybody benefits from it.”

Superintendent Tom Ralston confirmed, “We hear you. Now is the time for action.”