Kicking off Inclusive Schools week, Associate Director, John Taylor represented Side by Side at the Chesterfield County Council PTA Diversity and Inclusion panel with six other panelists:
- Moderator: Dr. Jamelle Wilson, Dean, U of R School of Professional & Continuing Studies
- Dr. Imad Damaj from the Islamic Center of Virginia
- Mr. Eric Lin, Asian American Society of Central Virginia
- Mr. Tavorise Marks, Chairman of the Legal Redress Committee for the Chesterfield Branch NAACP
- Ms. Kim Owens from Including Me in Virginia
- Dr. Zoe Spencer, Ph.D, Professor in the Department of Sociology & Criminal Justice at Virginia State University
- Mr. John Taylor, Associate Director of Side by Side (formerly ROSMY)
- Mr. Michel Zajur from the Virginia Hispanic Foundation and Chamber of Commerce
After welcoming remarks from School Board Chair Dr. Javaid Siddiqi, District Superintendent Dr. James Lane and Dr. John Gordon, Chief of Schools gave a report on the present-day efforts towards inclusion and equity within Chesterfield County Public Schools.
Inclusive Schools week is held annually during the first week in December to note and celebrate the progress that schools have made in providing a supportive and quality education to an increasingly diverse student population, including students who are marginalized due to disability, gender, socio-economic status, cultural heritage, language preference and other factors. The Week also provides an opportunity for educators, students and parents to discuss further measures needed to ensure that their schools continue to improve their ability to successfully educate all children.