Welcoming Schools

What is Welcoming Schools?

Rainbow Families provides training to educators, administrators, school support staff, and other interested individuals across the DMV on how to create safe and supportive elementary school environments with resources and professional development where all children can thrive and all families are welcomed.  

Welcoming Schools is the nation's premier professional development program dedicated to creating respectful and supportive elementary schools by embracing family diversity, creating LGBTQ- and gender-inclusive schools, preventing bias-based bullying, and supporting transgender and non-binary students.

Why Welcoming Schools?

Welcoming Schools is about respect, safety, and success for all children and families. The approach is firmly grounded in research and case studies of the program’s efficacy. Welcoming Schools offers an opportunity for greater understanding with resources that can be used immediately in the classroom. The program can also help school staff work together to identify areas of change within the school and to provide strategies to make sure that all students feel included, everywhere -- from the playground to the classroom.

Learn more about Welcoming Schools

Available Welcoming Schools Training Modules

Most Welcoming Schools training modules are 75 minutes to 3 hours in length and can be presented in two parts; however, both parts must be scheduled at the same time.

Overview of the Welcoming Schools Approach

  • Learn how Welcoming Schools helps to create respectful and LGBTQ-inclusive elementary schools.
  • Discover how and why Welcoming Schools increases student success.
  • Become familiar with the diversity of high quality book recommendations and lesson plans Welcoming Schools offers.

Creating LGBTQ-Inclusive Schools

  • Look at simple ways to develop LGBTQ-inclusive classrooms and to be LGBTQ-inclusive across the curriculum.
  • Be able to better answer questions from students and families related to LGBTQ topics.
  • Become familiar with sexual orientation and gender identity terminology.

Embracing Family Diversity

  • Learn the importance of seeing family diversity represented in your school.
  • Understand family diversity as a means of teaching self-respect and respect for others.
  • Be able to answer questions from students and families about the importance of embracing all families.

Preventing Bias-Based Bullying

  • Be able to foster ally behavior among students, staff and other adults.
  • Understand bystander behavior and be able to utilize the Bully Circle.
  • Learn and practice critical intervention steps.

Creating Gender-Inclusive Schools

  • Develop a framework for creating a gender inclusive school.
  • Be able to respond to challenging questions related to gender.
  • Understand how to support gender expansive and transgender students.

Welcoming Schools Law and Policy Review

  • Become knowledgeable of federal, state and school district level laws and policies.
  • Become familiar with language to strengthen current policy and to advocate for enumerated protection for all students.

Supporting Transgender and Non-Binary Students

  • Understand the critical need to create safe and supportive schools for transgender and non-binary students.
  • Understand the complexities of transitioning and know how to support students on this journey.
  • Be familiar with policies and best practices to support transgender and non-binary students.

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5614 Connecticut Ave NW #309

Washington, DC 20015-2604

P: (202) 845-6913   

E: info@rainbowfamilies.org         

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