Students from ADSS run across their new rainbow crosswalk, unveiled just in time for Pride Week in Canada, on Friday, June 14. SUSAN QUINN PHOTO

Port Alberni’s high school gets a rainbow crosswalk for Pride Day

Students and staff at Alberni District Secondary School celebrated the official opening of the school’s first rainbow crosswalk on Friday, June 14—Pride Day at the high school.

“Today as Pride Day it’s about recognizing everybody’s rights, and hopefully this symbol isn’t just a symbol of the people that came out today but a symbol of inclusion for everybody,” ADSS vice-principal Carl Poole told the students and staff gathered near the crosswalk, which connects the upper and lower school parking lots near the entrance to the ADSS Theatre.

Poole is the School District 70 representative for the Sexual Orientation and Gender Identity (SOGI) Island Network representative. He works directly with schools with their SOGI capacity. “That immersed me in a lot of the SOGI and LGBTQ rights. A big part of it is about supporting every student and making them feel safe in our school. Historically, the LGBTQ community hasn’t felt safe in schools.

“We’ve made a big initiative to try and get a lot of symbols, some subtle, some not as subtle, such as this sidewalk, which allows kids to walk in our school and feel they’re being recognized, and feel that they’re safe.”

This particular area was chosen for the rainbow crosswalk because it is a main access point for students and staff as they come in as well as any community event that uses the theatre.

“It’s probably one of most highly visible crosswalks on our property.”

Pam Craig and Rosemarie Buchanan, SD70 trustees, were also on hand for the official unveiling. “This is a long time coming,” Craig said.

“We are so proud to have this beautiful sidewalk. We support you.”

Anne Ostwald is the school lead for SOGI at ADSS and also teacher for the Social Justice programs. She and her students were on hand earlier in the week as crews painted the sidewalk. Ostwald, dressed in a brightly coloured tutu as part of her Pride Day outfit, was the first person to officially cross the crosswalk. She then led small groups in symbolic crossings of the rainbow.

“I think it’s really cool,” Grade 12 student Emma Audet said. “It shows so much equality in the school that isn’t shown off a lot that I think we really need. It will give people a better understanding of the LGBTQ community in our school.”

Like us on Facebook and follow us on Twitter

Get local stories you won't find anywhere else right to your inbox.
Sign up here


ADSS vice-principal Carl Poole advocated to have the rainbow crosswalk painted in the high school’s parking lot. SUSAN QUINN PHOTO

Staff members from ADSS walk across the high school’s new rainbow crosswalk, which connects two parking lots in front of the ADSS Theatre. SUSAN QUINN PHOTO

Just Posted

Toronto Maple Leaf alumni face off against Alberni team in charity hockey game

PAACL team ready to face former NHLers in Inclusion Cup

Bryan Mason Memorial Hockey Tournament kicks off in Port Alberni

Alberni Valley Bantam Bulldogs open the tournament with a loss to Comox

Port Alberni’s Kin groups celebrate service club’s centennial

Port Alberni’s Kin club has been serving the community for 84 years

Forestry strike, curtailment have far-reaching impact in Port Alberni

Island business community buoyed by mediation breakthrough

Coldest Night of the Year fundraiser in Port Alberni dedicated to Gillian Trumper

Alberni Community and Women’s Service Society hopes to raise $30,000

VIDEO: Minister reports ‘modest progress’ after blockade talks with First Nation

Wet’suwet’en hereditary chiefs say Coastal GasLink does not have authority to go through their lands

Henrique scores 2 as Ducks soar past Canucks 5-1

Vancouver tumbles out of top spot in Pacific Division

Trudeau cancels Caribbean trip amid pipeline protests across Canada

Protests against Coastal GasLink have disrupted rail service

B.C. VIEWS: Inaction on pipeline protests not a viable response

Columnist Frank Bucholtz on how the Coastal GasLink pipeline dispute got so bad

PHOTOS: Top 10 memories of the 2010 Olympics

Black Press Media’s Jenna Hauck, shares some of her most memorable images of 2010 Winter Games

#FoxForFiver: Support grows in B.C. to put Terry Fox on new $5 bill

Terry Fox’ Marathon of Hope raised money for cancer research

Nanaimo-bound ferry breaks down, but another available for service

Two sailings cancelled Sunday on Tsawwassen-Duke Point route

Registration opens soon for BC 55+ Games in Richmond

2020 55+ Games have been officially scheduled for Sept. 15 to 19

Trudeau confers with cabinet ministers as rail blockades continue

The Trudeau government has been criticized for not doing more to end the blockades

Most Read