In a meeting of the Ottawa-Carleton District School Board (OCDSB) on May 10, it was announced that the district would be represented in the Ottawa Pride parade in August 2011.
Donna Blackburn, the school board trustee for the Barrhaven/Knoxdale-Merivale area, proposed the idea after she was sworn in in 2010.
“I am ecstatic. I really look forward to having a big contingent of teachers, principals, superintendents, parents, kids – I just want whole families to show up and have a good time,” Blackburn says.
Blackburn commends Jennifer McKenzie, chair of the OCDSB and Barrie Hammond, director of education for the board, for their support.
“I thank them very much for their outstanding leadership and their commitment to ensuring that all members of the OCDSB community feel safe and valued,” she writes in an email.
OCDSB has had a presence in other queer-related events in the past. It has been instrumental in organizing the Rainbow Youth Forum with the GLBTTQ Youth Service Providers Network.
The forum is an annual conference to help OCDSB staff and students enhance their knowledge and awareness of gender identity, sexual orientation and gender expression.