Superintendent's School Climate and Culture Committee

  • Invitation to Join School Climate and Culture Committee

    Santa Clara Unified School District (SCUSD) recognizes that an inclusive, safe, and welcoming environment is central to the success and well-being of students, staff, and families.  

    At a recent board meeting, the superintendent indicated that school climate and culture is a priority for SCUSD and that, subsequently, a Superintendent’s School Climate and Culture Committee (SCCC) would form to address these issues.  

    Purpose of Committee

    In alignment with the district's mission and vision, the purpose of this committee is to examine data regarding school climate, provide recommendations for actions and key messages, and to promote SCUSD’s work to assess current culture and climate as it affects learning in order to create and sustain an inclusive, safe, and welcoming school environment for all

    The committee will support and work with the superintendent to engage in regular two-way communication with the SCUSD community to provide progress updates.  

    Goals include, but are not limited to, the following: 

    • Identify, prioritize, and develop recommendations to address physical, mental/emotional, and social barriers affecting positive and inclusive SCUSD school climate and culture, and collaborate together to address identified barriers.
    • Promote equity and access by ensuring that SCUSD’s school climate and culture policies and process are clear, culturally responsive, guided by research, data, and best practices, and available to all students and families. 
    • Collect and review data to understand strengths and areas of improvement within SCUSD’s school climate and culture, inform decision making, and improve school climate, including creating more caring, inclusive social norms; and ensure equity and access for all students.
    • Develop recommendations to the superintendent on identified issues related to school culture and climate, including student dress and LGBTQ+ student supports, among other issues.
    • Serve as a resource to the SCUSD community on matters related to school climate and culture.
    • Identify, reinforce, and celebrate existing positive elements of SCUSD climate and culture and determine ways to foster and expand existing positive practices across the district.

    Call for Volunteers and Membership Expectations

    This invitation to volunteer to join the SCCC is open to SCUSD students, staff, and families. Please read the following important details regarding membership in this committee.

    We are looking for members from a wide cross-section of SCUSD, representing our diverse district community (teachers, classified staff, students, administrators, families, etc.).  While we focus on recruiting people of different backgrounds, skills, and experiences, we expect that all will share: 

    • A belief in the ability of every one of SCUSD’s students to succeed 
    • A willingness to learn and engage in self-reflection 
    • A commitment to diversity, equity, and inclusion in our schools

    The SCCC will be capped at 20 individuals. Founding committee members will serve either a one-year or two-year term.  One-year term founding members will serve from January 2022 until June 2023.  Two-year term founding members will serve from January 2022 until June 2024.  Following the founding committee, committee member terms will be two years. No committee member can serve more than two consecutive terms. 

    Several opportunities will be provided for the SCUSD community to give input into this process beyond participation in the SCCC. Work groups or subcommittees may be formed on an as-needed basis.  

    Meeting Schedule

    For our first semester of meetings (Spring 2022), we will meet once a month.  Subsequently, we will meet bi-monthly (every other month). Meeting dates will be the first Tuesday, from 5:30 p.m.-7:30 p.m., unless otherwise indicated.

    For one-year term founding committee members

    • February 1, 2022
    • March 29, 2022 (to avoid Ramadan)
    • May 4, 2022 (to avoid Eid al-Fitr)
    • June 7, 2022
    • September 6, 2022
    • November 8, 2022
    • January 10, 2023
    • March 6, 2023 (to avoid Purim)
    • May 2, 2023
    • June 6, 2023

    For two-year term founding committee members

    • February 1, 2022
    • March 29, 2022 (to avoid Ramadan)
    • May 4, 2022 (to avoid Eid al-Fitr)
    • June 7, 2022
    • September 6, 2022
    • November 8, 2022
    • January 10, 2023
    • March 6, 2023 (to avoid Purim)
    • May 2, 2023
    • June 6, 2023
    • September 5, 2023
    • November 7, 2023
    • January 9, 2024
    • March 5, 2024
    • May 7, 2024
    • June 4, 2024

    Membership Responsibilities

    Those chosen to serve on the SCCC are expected to:

    • Attend all two-hour meetings and participate in subcommittee meetings and/or work groups, as needed. Members with repeated absences may be asked to step down from the committee. 
    • Participate in meeting discussions by sharing ideas, expertise, and experiences.
    • Commit to continuous learning, reflection, and leadership development.
    • Serve as ambassadors with respective constituencies and the broader community.
    • Review reports, documents, and other materials to help ensure alignment with SCUSD’s mission, vision, and equity priorities.
    • Collaborate with staff liaisons to inform them of the committee’s work. 
    • Follow established SCUSD board policies. 

    Timeline

    Applications must be completed and submitted using the Application to Join SCUSD’s School Climate and Culture Committee no later than January 17, 2022.

    Selection Process

    All applications will be reviewed by a selection committee, whose members will reflect SCUSD’s diverse community: school levels, demographics, and roles (e.g., students, parents, classified staff, teachers, site administrators, etc.). United Teachers of Santa Clara, Classified School Employees Association Chapter 350, and Santa Clara Unified Management Association will each appoint one member to the committee. 

    Contact Information for Further Information

    For questions about this application, please email our Title IX / UCP Coordinator, Lise K. Ström, at LStrom@scusd.net.