- Federal Way Open Doors
National Hispanic and Latinx Heritage Month
September 15 marks the start of Latinx and Hispanic Heritage Month, a time our district and schools recognize the contributions, achievements, histories, and celebrate the many diverse cultures of people of Hispanic or Latinx ancestry who come from Spain, Mexico, the Caribbean, and Central and South America.
National Hispanic and Latinx Heritage Month is observed September 15 through October 15. The observation 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. The theme for 2022 is "Unidos: Inclusivity for a Stronger Nation.
Did you know that scholars that identify as Hispanic/Latinx make up 33.4% of our total scholar demographic? According to the 2021 US Census, Hispanic and Latinx Americans represent 17.5% of our Federal Way Community.
In Federal Way Public Schools, we want our schools to be a mirror of our community – a place where every scholar has a sense of belonging and can be seen, valued, and heard. Our scholars benefit from learning about and celebrating all cultures.
Celebrate Hispanic and Latinx Heritage Month with FWPS and help us share how our schools are recognizing Hispanic and Latinx heritage with academics, art projects, school clubs and celebrations, and more. Be sure to tag @FWPS210 or email photos to email@example.com.
View additional recognitions in the FWPS Cultural & Religious Calendar here: www.fwps.org/culturalcalendar
Hispanic and Latinx Heritage Month at Brigadoon Elementary
For Hispanic and Latinx Heritage Month this school year, Brigadoon Elementary classrooms had numerous learning activities engaging scholars as part of their classes’ learning goals. For kindergarteners in Miss Boutwell's class, they could see and hear about different Hispanic/Latinx countries in their daily learning modules. In Mrs. Yi’s class, this involved reading about Mexican artist, Frida Kahlo, and then drawing a self-portrait. Scholars in Ms. McLaughlin’s classroom integrated Hispanic and Latinx Heritage month into their learning with each scholar presenting their research on an important Hispanic or Latinx individual using a slide deck presentation. And Miss Jan's class had a classroom discussion about Hispanic and Latinx cultures. You can see additional photos of these activities on Brigadoon’s website.
Brigadoon Principal Vicki Lopez showed appreciation to scholars and staff saying, “Our teachers are doing a great job combining our scholars’ everyday learning and celebrating Hispanic and Latinx cultures, and I’m really proud of their work.”
Just like Principal Lopez, FWPS is also proud of Hispanic and Latinx scholars in the FWPS school community. Each of Brigadoon’s classes were excited to highlight Hispanic and Latinx cultures in their learning plans as part of an education that sees and celebrates everyone in Federal Way Public Schools.
Thomas Jefferson High School Hispanic Assembly
In celebration of the Hispanic and Latinx Heritage Month, the Latino Student Union (LSU) at Thomas Jefferson High School celebrated the first ever Hispanic and Latinx Assembly at the school’s gym, to honor Latinx heritage, culture, and contributions from all Latin-American countries.
“We are celebrating Hispanic Heritage Month, honoring everything that came before us, recognizing our ancestors, past leaders, and activists; people who paved the way for us,” shared LSU Event Coordinator and TJHS senior Mariana Leos-Bravo. “[TJHS] gives us all the resources, space and platform, and allows us to take the opportunity to share our culture with everybody.”
Scholars played live music and performed choreographed dances from Mexico and Honduras in front of a lively and cheerful audience. LSU members and staff members also shared key cultural points about Hispanic and Latinx culture, achievements, and the significance of the Hispanic and Latinx Heritage Month.
“No matter who you are, you must be proud of yourself. I come from a Hispanic family; my parents come from Mexico so I’m proud of who I am,” shared LSU club treasurer Juan Juarez.
Frida Kahlo Wall at Evergreen Middle School
Schools across FWPS continued to celebrate National Hispanic and Latinx Heritage Month, with lessons about Hispanic/ Latinx culture and achievements, and events with families and the community.
Over at Evergreen Middle School, seventh-grade scholars in Ms. Daniel-Hurry’s class decorated a wall dedicated to Mexican painter Frida Kahlo.
Scholars learned about Kahlo’s life, her struggles, self-portraits, passion for painting, and about Latin American culture.
“I’m just happy and proud that people are learning about this Hispanic artist,” shared scholar Amanda, whose parents are from Mexico.
Sunnycrest Elementary Parent Presentations
At Sunnycrest Elementary School, scholars in Sr. McCarthy’s fifth grade class invited their parents to share interesting facts about their home country’s culture with the class and brought delicious cultural dishes! Scholars enjoyed Colombian and Venezuelan arepas, tacos, sopes, and gorditas from Mexico, and other tasty treats from Latin American countries.
Over at Sra. Dinamarca’s class, second graders started working on group projects to learn about different countries around Latin America.
“Throughout Hispanic Heritage Month we want to acknowledge and celebrate the fact that, even though we are a dual language program, Spanish encompasses many different cultures, countries, and peoples. So, by bringing families in, we are showing kids that each of them represents the diversity of the Spanish speaking world,” shared Kelley Schottle, Sunnycrest Elementary Principal.