Faculty professional development includes GSA presentation

As part of Trinity College School’s ongoing commitment to creating a welcoming and inclusive environment for all, the faculty professional development day on Wednesday, May 12th included an engaging session created by the Senior School’s Gender & Sexuality Alliance.

A dedicated group of students contributed to the information session under the guidance of GSA faculty advisors Ms. Kerri Dunn and Mr. Andrew Woodward, with Mr. Woodward presenting to colleagues. The goal was to inform faculty about different aspects of sexuality and gender, as well as to provide practical ways to promote respect and acceptance within the School.

Faculty learned that gender and sexuality are both spectrums on which people identify themselves. For example, while a traditional understanding of gender may be limited to the male/female binary, today we know that many people identify as non-binary, which could include genderfluid, bigender or many more ways to identify oneself. As well, how a person identities may shift over time for a variety of reasons, and some people may be questioning their identity, which is a perfectly natural experience.

A key part of the presentation was to stress the use of proper terminology and pronouns. The GSA has worked this year to educate the school community and promote the use of proper pronouns as a sign of respect. In addition to proper pronoun use, faculty learned simple ways to avoid gendered language, to help all students feel comfortable and included. Important thoughts on how to respond and support someone who comes out were provided, as were ways to address queerphobia.

Thank you to the members of the GSA for their efforts to help us all to be better allies, to support our students and colleagues, and to contribute to the sense of inclusivity and belonging in our school community.