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The Warrior Messenger

The student news site of Woodbridge Middle School

The Warrior Messenger

The student news site of Woodbridge Middle School

The Warrior Messenger

Mr. McGuire discusses the Diversity and Equity Council

Amina Lone
A picture of a bulletin board in honor of Week of Inclusion and Respect.

The following is a full transcript of the interview given by Mr. McGuire to Amina Lone about the Diversity and Equity Council. 

Amina Lone: What are your thoughts about the Diversity and Equity Council?

Mr. McGuire: This is my 2nd year on the Diversity and Equity Council and this year I’m co-chairing it with my colleague, Mr. Salinas, and it’s something that I think is really great, especially the last couple of years between workshops I’ve attended as a teacher and also the wake of things like the Black Lives Matter movement. I’ve become really passionate about using up my own privilege to help make sure there’s equity throughout all students and throughout the school community and I think it’s a great way to get students, teachers, and even parents of the community all involved together in planning these great celebrations each month.

AL: Can this council help you in any way?

MM: Yeah! It helps me in a lot of ways. Number 1, it’s just a reminder of how I can be a better teacher by interpreting students from all different ability levels and different backgrounds into my lesson to making sure there’s ways for every student to succeed. Also, a lot of the time, when we think about diversity, we think about skin color, but there’s so many other things as well. Socio economics status, religion, what our parents are like, do I have 2 parents or was I raised by my grandparents, or are my parents divorced? You know, there’s all these little things that you don’t know when you first meet someone that can affect their learning experience.   

AL: Have you cooperated with any other council or club similar to this one?

MM: My significant other actually used to work for the National Diversity Council. It’s a non-profit that does this on a nationwide level, so that was how I first got really involved in diversity and equity. As far as clubs here in this school, we have a Multicultural Club which is sort of extension of the DEI and also, I think that every club can find a way to get involved with it whether it’s band, playing a song by a composer of a certain ethnic background, or doing an art project that involves in other cultures. There’s ways to get different clubs and different subjects all involved in this.        

AL: What is the most important thing about this council and why?

MM: The most important part about this council is giving the students a voice. We have students that are involved in it like yourself, and that we encourage them to bring their own ideas, almost as if they were a teacher to help us plan these great events. We also have different ways that we reach out to the school community such as through our empanada sale, through our activities planned for Native-American Heritage Month, and through the morning announcements, so I think the most important thing is giving students a voice.

AL: Do the teachers mostly plan the events or the students?

MM: Last year, it was mostly the teachers because we didn’t have a group of students that was always able to come every month, but this year, I’m hoping that it will mostly be the students and that’s why I gave everybody a calendar at the beginning of the year, so then they could block those days out. Of course, if the students are too busy to plan things, then that responsibility falls on the teachers, but I’d like to give the students an opportunity to lead first. 

AL: What are some activities or events that will be planned?

MM: So, one activity that I’m particularly excited for is the Multicultural Night that’s going to be in February of this year and that’s going to be a collaboration between the Diversity and Equity Council and the Multicultural Club. There’s going to be a performance aspect with performances from choir, band, dance, and other things throughout the school. Possibly poetry readings, but I’m going to have to ask Mr. Malmstrom about that, so he’ll find out by this interview. Also, there’ll be a reception afterwards and we’ll talk about foods from different countries as well. It’s going to be a very great night that’s both performances and reception that I’m looking forward to. Theres’s also the districtwide showcase in May, when we do something similar to Multicultural Night, but with every school in the district, and that’ll be at the WMS community center.

AL: Thank you! Is there anything else you would like to add?

MM: Yeah, the only other thing I’d like to add is that a lot of other students don’t know that we actually have a website on Google Sites for DEI and if you go on the Woodbridge Middle School website, you’ll see a link to that, right on the first page and that has pictures of all the great stuff we do for Hispanic Heritage Month, Week of Inclusion and Respect, and in November, we’re gonna add stuff to the Native American Heritage Month. Also, there’s a form online as well, so if any student has a concern that’s related to diversity, equity, or inclusion, they can fill out that form and that’s just another way that we could put students’ voices first.

AL: Alright, thank you for your time.

MM: Thank you! Have a wonderful day!

AL: You too!

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