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Portland Public Schools To Join In Portland’s 2016 Pride Parade

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Portland Public Schools To Join In Portland’s 2016 Pride Parade
Posted on 06/13/2016
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For the second year in a row, the Portland Public Schools will be an official participant in Portland’s annual gay pride parade. District and school staff, including incoming new Portland Superintendent Xavier Botana, and students, members of the Portland Board of Public Education and other supporters are expected to participate in the 2016 Pride Parade down Congress Street this Saturday, June 18. They’ll ride in one of the district’s signature yellow school buses or march alongside it.

Although some staff members and students have individually participated in the parade since the late 1990s, this year’s event marks the second time the school district has had a formal presence in the parade.

“As Maine’s largest and most diverse school district, the Portland Public Schools welcomes the opportunity to be part of an annual event that celebrates inclusivity, diversity and unity,” said Portland Interim Superintendent Jeanne Crocker. “The parade this year will take place less than one week after an act of terror and hate targeted members of the LGBT community in Florida. Our participation in Portland’s parade this year will help send an important message to our students, staff, families and the public that our district works to foster harmony and understanding and that we welcome and value everyone in the Portland Public Schools.”

The annual Pride Parade is organized by Pride Portland! The 2016 parade begins at noon in Monument Square and wends its way along Congress and High Streets to Park Avenue and ends at Deering Oaks Park. The Portland Public Schools will be lining up on Preble Street before the parade starts. Those marching with the PPS entry should arrive there by 11:30 a.m. – and don’t forget to wear a royal blue or similarly colored shirt!

In 2015, which was the first time the district was an official participant in the parade, about 50 Portland Public Schools’ staff, students, school board members and other supporters joined in the parade, along with a yellow school bus. A larger group is expected to participate this year and the public is urged to come and cheer the PPS contingent on!