Addressing Acts of Hate

Limestone Learning Foundation
Addressing Acts of Hate
Posted on 06/13/2022
Addressing Acts of Hate

The Limestone District School Board is working closely with staff and students to provide resources and other supports to confront acts of hate as part of its ongoing efforts to create safe, welcoming, and identity-affirming spaces for everyone.

There has been an increase in theft and graffiti motivated by hate and bias, including theft and/or vandalism of several Progressive Pride flags at schools across Limestone District School Board, as well as hate symbols being spray painted at Polson Park Public School and the surrounding area this past weekend.

Limestone District School Board unequivocally condemns any acts of hate and remains committed to ensuring an equitable and inclusive school environment for all students and staff, and as a school board and community we must confront acts of hate in all formats. Schools and staff members have been provided with various resources by the Limestone Equity Team to help them understand how to best discuss these events with students and families.

Our reactions to hatred can shape how children and youth experience these events and can influence their perceptions of safety at school. These events show us the importance of education and standing for human rights, inclusion, and acceptance in our schools. We will continue to address antisemitism and acts of hate and the harm it causes in all our learning environments.

The best way we can help all of those affected is to be explicit about our support for human rights, and to be empathetic and supportive for those impacted.  To help understand what some students and staff may be experiencing, and provide you with supportive ways to respond, you can:

  • Listen and create an environment that acknowledges all feelings.
  • Only use media coverage in the classroom and home if there is a specific educational reason to do so. Students should be given the opportunity to not participate.
  • Focus on critical thinking and building empathy for others
  • Identify the students who may be most affected by these events and provide support that is age appropriate and based on the level of need.
  • For older students that are in need, provide a forum for discussion with adults skilled at fostering open and productive messages that build reassurance and therapeutic insight, such as Educational Services Support Staff, and or school guidance counsellors.

Disconcerting events like these affects all of us in different ways and are particularly impactful on communities targeted by these events. If a student needs to speak with someone, please contact your school’s Principal. 

Limestone continues to commit to educating students in age-appropriate ways within a culture of caring, with critical thinking, media literacy, and empathy as our guide. Our collective goal is to create and support inclusive environments where everyone is welcomed, accepted, respected, valued, and safe.

Acts of hate are both hurtful and harmful at both a global, local, and individual level. We cannot downplay the impact these kinds of events have on students, families, and staff. Overt forms of discrimination that continue to impact racialized and marginalized communities is unacceptable and will not be tolerated in Limestone. We will continue to work together to build increasing capacity to identify and address any acts of hate.

Please contact your school directly if you have any questions or require further assistance.

The Limestone District School Board is situated on traditional territories of the Anishinaabe & Haudenosaunee.