New York, NY, May 26, 2010 … Recognizing their commitment to promoting safe and respectful learning environments, the Anti-Defamation League's (ADL) New York Region declared 15 New York City schools "No Place for Hate."
Students, teachers and administrators from each school – which span the five boroughs of New York – completed a series of activities and requirements to help make anti-bias and diversity education an integral part of the curriculum. ADL's No Place for Hate® initiative is designed to celebrate diversity and empower members of the school community to challenge all forms of bigotry.
During a ceremony held Monday at the Department of Education in lower Manhattan, student and teacher representatives from each school received an individualized "No Place for Hate" banner, proclaiming the school's commitment to standing up against intolerance and promoting a culture of unity and respect.
New York City Deputy Mayor Dennis M. Walcott, New York City Council Speaker Christine C. Quinn, Chairperson of the NYC Council Education Committee Robert Jackson, and Schools Chancellor Joel I. Klein were among the dignitaries that addressed the group and praised their commitment to the program.
"When you chose to participate in the No Place for Hate program, you might have thought to yourself, 'it's no big deal,' " Ron Meier, ADL New York Regional Director, told the group. "I am here to tell you that it is a really big deal. The fight against hate begins with one student, one teacher, one principal or one school, who stand together and celebrate diversity."
"ADL is truly proud to have started the No Place for Hate initiative in New York nearly five years ago," added Jeffrey M. Parker, ADL New York Regional Board Chair. "What we couldn't have predicted at that time was how enthusiastically Mayor Bloomberg, City Council Speaker Quinn, or Chancellor Klein and his outstanding team at the Department of Education would embrace and support this effort."
Now in its 5th year in New York, the 2009-2010 No Place for Hate program recognized: in the Bronx - Harry S Truman High School; in Brooklyn - Bedford Stuyvesant Preparatory High School, Brooklyn Studio Secondary School, and MS 447 - The Math & Science Exploratory School; in Manhattan - PS 290 - The Manhattan New School; in Queens - Frank Sinatra School of the Arts High School, Newtown High School, PS 175, and Richmond Hill High School; and in Staten Island - Curtis High School.
Five schools were recognized as No Place for Hate Gold Star schools for their exceptional commitment to the program. They are: Brooklyn International High School (Brooklyn), Grover Cleveland High School (Queens), Newcomers High School (Queens), Stephen A. Halsey JHS 157 (Queens) and Tottenville High School (Staten Island).
One student from Tottenville High School and one teacher from Richmond Hill High School were each awarded the ADL Alexander Bodini Prize for Diversity for demonstrating extraordinary leadership and an ongoing commitment to combating prejudice and building a culture of respect in their school community. Daniele Bodini, San Marino's Ambassador to the United Nations, presented the two with individually inscribed plaques, and each received a $2,500 cash prize to be used for a school or community anti-bias projects.
The League is a lead partner with the NYC Department of Education on "Respect for All," an initiative designed to counter bullying and harassment in public schools while promoting respect for diversity and fostering inclusive learning environments.