Salem-Keizer Public Schools is committed to being a safe and welcoming district for all of our students, staff, families and community members. In Salem-Keizer schools, 46 percent of students and 14 percent of staff identify as Hispanic and/or Latino/a/x.
National Hispanic Heritage Month is celebrated annually from Sept. 15 to Oct. 15 celebrating the contributions of Americans whose ancestors came from Spain, Mexico, the Caribbean, Central America, and South America.
History of Hispanic heritage recognition
The Hispanic heritage observance began in 1968 as Hispanic Heritage Week under President Lyndon Johnson and was expanded by President Ronald Reagan in 1988 to cover a 30-day period. It was enacted into law on August 17, 1988.
Welcoming Week, which is celebrated this year from September 9-18, provides the opportunity for us to reaffirm that our communities are stronger when we feel like we belong and the contributions of all are welcomed.
Salem-Keizer School Board proclamation
During the Sept. 13 meeting of the Salem-Keizer Board of Education, directors voted to approve the proclamation recognizing Sept. 15 through Oct. 15, 2022 to be Hispanic Heritage Month and Sept. 9-18, 2022 to be Welcoming Week and encourages all members of our community to join in celebrating our Hispanic, Latino/a/x and immigrant students and families.
In part, the proclamation states that:
“Our schools honor and preserve the linguistic and cultural assets of students through bilingual and dual language programs, and our Heritage Spanish and Advanced Placement Spanish courses. These contribute to producing students who
are prepared for the Oregon Biliteracy Certificate, a highly sought-after job quality, as well as honoring and enriching the diverse backgrounds of our students from Spanish-speaking households. These programs also provide the same opportunities to non-Spanish speaking students from diverse backgrounds, which contributes further to a positive, integrated multicultural multilingual school community.
Inclusion is a core value of our district, and the school board has a responsibility to oppose the historical systemic racism toward Hispanic, Latino/a/x and immigrant people in Oregon, which perpetuates high rates of educational inequities, poverty and income inequality, and disproportionate health outcomes, all of which exacerbate social and economic crises.”
Please join us throughout the month in honoring and celebrating Hispanic Heritage Month.
Click on the PDF above to see the proclamation in English and Spanish. It will be available in more languages when translations are completed.