Recently, the Advancement Project California and Movement StrategyCenter released their Welcoming and Safe Schools for All model resolution. The model was created to inspire school districts and other local agencies to have all students in mind while acknowledging the diversity of this state when creating their resolutions and policies under the current political climate.
With California being one of the most diverse states in the nation, and a home to many different people, it is crucial that educators and youth advocates keep updating and considering the way that the students are dealing with real-life issues such as citizenship status, transphobia, and countless other issues that students unfortunately face.
Back in May 2017, many youth organizations came together to create a model resolution for the safety and protection of all students. Youth Organize! California Network, Genders and Sexualities Alliance Network, Californians for Justice, RYSE Center, Khmer Girls in Action, Del Norte and tribal Lands Building Healthy Communities, Resilience Orange County and many other youth organizations made this model a reality.
The resolution model focuses on protecting the rights of all students regardless of race, ethnicity, religious and spiritual belief/practices, citizenship status, sexual orientation, etc. Their three main focuses are safety and protection, supports and services for all students, and affirming and celebrating diversity.
“Having the… model resolution means that youth leaders are being heard, that adult leaders are responding to our needs, and that we can successfully work together to address the issues that threaten safe and welcoming schools,” says Citlali Ruiz, a youth organizer with Resilience Orange County in Santa Ana.
Resilience Orange County was created in 2016; merging together RAIZ and Santa Ana Boys and Men of Color, two organizations that fought against deportation and the issues that men and boys of color face in Santa Ana. The Resilience Orange County aims to engage the youth of their community in fighting for social and systematic justice.
According to Jeremy Lahoud, Senior Fellow Certified Professional Coach with the Movement Strategy Center in Oakland, YO! Cali Network will be creating a toolkit for educators across California to use the model resolution within the next month or so.