The district board denies European Heritage Month

Committee pinpoints colonization from European-centric systems


“This is a difficult discussion,” Nestojko wrote, “but one that will extend into the next academic school year.”

The Diversity Advisory Committee in its Thursday, April 22 meeting via Zoom agreed to work on reframing/renaming the recognition of European Heritage Month.

Through recognizing that the district provided funding for the Middle Eastern Heritage events in April, conversation about inclusion and representation sparked within the committee.

Professor Jennifer Nestojko of the committee said, “A discussion was started about European Heritage month. The district board did not approve this calendar so we will not be doing it, but the idea of reframing/renaming it is something we wish to do.”

“We recognize the fact that there is a lot of pain around this topic due to issues of colonization and marginalization of groups in favor of European-centric systems,” Nestojko wrote in an email.

Sam Ho, a member of the District Executive Team said that it’s very important to focus on inclusion.

“My children live with the burden of living up to the positive and negative stereotypes placed on them everyday,” Ho said.

In the same meeting Teresa Paiz, the director of Admissions & Records, pointed out although this might not be an easy topic for most, this is an ongoing discussion that goes beyond just one meeting.

The committee agreed that having this difficult conversation is an important part of the committee’s work.

“The committee wants to celebrate all members of the community while being sensitive to the experiences of some individuals and groups,” Nestojko wrote in an email.

The committee hopes that speaking on this topic can help the campus spread these conversations to various other spaces.

“We discussed the calendar of diversity celebrations and educational events that the committee will be working on or supporting for the next year,” Nestojko wrote.

A new calendar will be sent out to the rest of the committee for approval.

The board will continue to push for more inclusion and consideration for all cultures.

“This is a difficult discussion,” Nestojko wrote, “but one that will extend into the next academic school year.”