DICE (Diversity/Inclusion/Community/Equity)

Posted by Monica Crowley on 2/25/2019 7:00:00 AM

Dear Lawrence Families,

In this blog, I share information provided by parent, Nira Pollock, and many other families and staff wo have been instrumental in starting the DICE group last spring.  Their important work has continued this year, and I am proud to support them as well.  PLease read all about the upcoming events that focus on the group's goals of diversity, inclusion, community and equity.




We had a wonderful DICE community dialogue on Feb 6th on the topic of implicit bias, guided by two facilitators from the Anti-Defamation League (Danika Manso-Brown, ADL New England Associate Education Director, and Kimm Topping, ADL Training Consultant). We discussed key terms and concepts and considered how implicit bias impacts us at school, work, and home. We had a nice turnout and it was very powerful to have our administrators, parents and teachers sitting together and talking about these complicated and important things.   The slides Danika and Kimm presented are attached, and Danika also sent a link to the ADL glossary of terms:  see here.

 Pending DICE activities and updates:

Weds, Feb 27th, 2:45: “decision-making pilot” session (led by leader of the UMass School of Medicine Center for Mindfulness) to teach us about use of Mindfulness-Based Stress Reduction (MBSR) in schools and allow us to make some decisions about whether we might be able to pilot a program at Lawrence (for parents/teachers/kids) via UMass. Leaders from Lawrence admin, PTO, DICE, School Council, METCO, and SEPAC have been invited to attend.


Weds, March 13th, 7:30-8:30 AM (note: AM!): Next DICE meeting, LEDP room. Schedule permitting, we hope that Maggie Russell will join us to tell us about the literacy pilot program she started to provide extra reading/writing outside of school for METCO kids (parallels Calculus Project).

April 26th:  International Night!  Looking for performance ideas/volunteers!

This year Family Fun Night and International Night are combined into Family Fun @International Night! 

Marcia Ramos Sosa is heading this event and is seeking cultural entertainment and activities, large and small.  

May 8th, Lawrence library:   Panel on Mindfulness-based Stress Reduction, organized by Brookline Adult and Community Education (BA&CE) and the DICE Mental Well-being Subgroup. 

May 14th, 5:30-7 pm:  Lawrence Reads, organized by the DICE Literacy Subgroup
Lawrence Reads 2019, a book club for parents, caregivers, and students in grades 3-5, returns this spring with how Tía Lola Came To Stay by Julia Alvarez. Set in Vermont, New York, and the Dominican Republic, this beautiful story shows how families thrive even through the toughest times. Stay tuned for additional details and volunteer signup! We will need 2 adult (parent/caregiver/staff) facilitators per classroom. Faculty and staff participation is welcome. If interested in participating, contact Jessica Ullian, Julie Upadhyay, or Kathy Moriarty 

Community K-2 Quilt Project:  Danna Perry and Maritza Velez have made excellent progress and have nailed down some funding, and are considering moving the event to the fall (rather than the crowded spring) and thinking through how to make it an annual event. To be discussed with PTO and at the next DICE meeting. If interested in this topic, please contact Danna or Maritza

Performing arts/DICE:  Vanessa Trien and Mary Gaughan lead the Lawrence Performing Arts Committee and are hoping to collaborate with DICE to bolster and enrich the performing arts offerings at Lawrence and to bring in cultural groups that celebrate the diversity of the Lawrence community.