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The Sikh Coalition News
May 13, 2019
  • How 1,200 students in one school district learned Sikhism

    May 13, 2019 (New York, NY) – The Sikh Coalition delivered Sikh awareness presentations to 1,200 students in the Monroe-Woodbury Central School District in New York.

    In total, Sikh Coalition staff and trained volunteer presenters conducted 36 presentations in every 6th and 9th-grade social studies classroom. As a result, students learned accurately about the Sikh faith, community and traditions. Click here to view pictures from the middle and high school presentations.

    “When it comes to teaching students, what I find important is someone who is an expert leading the discussion rather than me teaching from a book,” said 6th-grade teacher Justine Seeley, who teaches in the Monroe-Woodbury Central School District. “It’s better for students to learn firsthand from a primary source rather than a secondary source.”

    The Monroe-Woodbury trainings are part of the Sikh Coalition’s never-ending work to raise Sikh awareness nationwide. Since the beginning of this year, the Sikh Coalition has conducted Sikh presenter’s trainings in Piscataway, NJ and St. Louis, MO; law enforcement trainings in New Orleans, LA, New Castle, DE, and the state of Michigan; an educator training in Westport, CT; our first-ever grassroots civic engagement training in the greater Chicago area; and a Sikh awareness training for the New York City Comptroller’s Office.

    “These trainings are so important because they empower community members with the tools to succeed,” said Community Development Manager Harleen Kaur. “Our outreach with the Monroe-Woodbury school district was a meaningful opportunity to not only teach students about Sikhism, but also initiate dialogue and bridge gaps through many trained Sikh presenters from the local community.”
     
    The Monroe-Woodbury Central School District outreach was made possible through the advocacy efforts of Ishmeet Kaur, a dedicated Sikh mother with two children in the school district, who wanted to ensure that Sikhism was being taught in classrooms. We encourage Sikhs nationwide to take initiative and engage their local community spaces, whether it is the school district, law enforcement or another public forum. For more information on how you can engage your local community, email our Community Development team at community@sikhcoalition.org.

    We are grateful to Ishmeet Kaur for her tireless efforts in advocating for Sikhism to be included in the classroom; our trained volunteer presenters – Shabinder Kaur, Harjot Singh, Amandeep Kaur, Jagjeevan Kaur and Balvinder Kaur – for leading out on delivering Sikh awareness presentations to students at the middle and high school; and administrators at the Monroe-Woodbury Central School District for committing to and organizing these presentations for every student in the 6th and 9th-grade.

    As always, the Sikh Coalition urges you to practice your faith fearlessly.
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