[My experience as a student in the Brookline Public Schools] was not one where my potentiality was part of the pedagogical focus. I never felt smart. I always felt that I wasn't able to do as well as these other kids in school with me. I think this was in part due to how the educational process treated me as a learner. So during my eldest son and my younger son's passage through this same school system.... I started to get more and more active with exactly what are the subtle messages that are given to our learners.
In Driscoll [Elementary School], we've started a Diversity Committee, which, for the past four years, has been working on finding out how to bridge the differences that affect how our children learn and understand themselves as learners. We also explore how we, as adults - parents, teachers and administrators - learn to try to make contact across the differences and talk about little points of friction and tension between us, so that we can do a better job of conveying these skills to our children....
It gets to this very affective level, a communication piece that gets very hard to put on the table, because it's who we sit next to and who do we invite to our children's play dates and who is invited to the birthday parties and how do we actually do inclusion, and how do you do it in the classroom and in the materials and in the curriculum. All of those pieces have become central to our Diversity Committee.