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FPS Officially Launches a First-of-its-Kind Gender Equity Working Group

Framingham Public Schools

  Robert A. Tremblay, Ed.D., Superintendent of Schools

Office of Equity, Diversity, and Community Engagement
Saundra Edwards
Manager of Diversity, Inclusion, and Compliance

Farley Building, 19 Flagg Drive
Framingham, Massachusetts 01702
Telephone: 508-782-6826

For Immediate Release

Framingham Public Schools Officially Launches a First-of-its-Kind Gender Equity Working Group

April 22, 2022 (Framingham, MA) Back in November Framingham Public Schools announced a volunteer opportunity for community members to create a Gender Equity Working Group. This group was to be tasked with looking specifically at gender equality issues in athletics.

Through a diverse representation of volunteers from the Framingham community, FPS plans to  improve and expand the high school athletics experience. The group will meet quarterly during the school year.

“This work is groundbreaking as we are the first in the state to formalize a Committee of this kind,” offered Paul Spear, FHS Athletic Director.  “The investment of time and using the great resources we have in our community will pay dividends in the future for our athletic department and the advancement of women’s athletics.”

Through a variety of public outreach efforts the District received over 50 applications to join the Gender Equity Working Group whose goals are listed below. Group organizers were beyond impressed by the outpouring of interest from our community members to help improve and increase the FHS Athletic programs in a way that impacts and supports our current and future student athletes. 

Gender Equity Working Group Goals

  • To offer suggestions on the Framingham High School Booster Policy for its effectiveness and impact on athletic programs.

  • To look into the creation of new sports to achieve substantial gender proportionality.

  • To examine means of procuring funds for fields, facilities and equipment.

  • To provide regular updates by the Athletics Department to report progress and successes as well as areas in need of improvement and plans for improvement.

  • To plan a city-wide celebration of the 50th Anniversary of the enactment of Title IX of the Education Amendments of 1972 ("Title IX") prior to the end of the school year.

  • Other related topics.

“The work of this group goes beyond compliance and is a real effort by passionate community members, DEI leaders, experts in the area of interscholastic athletics and high school athletes alike who are shaping the experience of our student-athletes for today and for years to come,” Saundra Edwards, Manager of Diversity, Inclusion, and Compliance for Framingham Public Schools.

The sixteen members of the Gender Equity Working Group include:

  • Dr. Robert Baldwin, Executive Director, Massachusetts Interscholastic Athletic Association (MIAA).

  • Elizabeth Conant, Sports Management Professor, Regis College

  • Casey Diana, FHS Alum, Collegiate Athlete, Teacher/Coach at FHS

  • Michelle (Hillman) Donati, Framingham Resident, Mom of three, Communications, Marketing and Public Relations Professional

  • Siobhan Dutchka-Friar, DEI Committee Member, Cheerleader Mom

  • Kristen Fucarile, Head Coach, Girls' Varsity Basketball, FHS

  • Kathleen Hauck, President, FHS Foundation, Coordinator, "Salute to Framingham", Framingham Parks & Recreation Commissioner, Football Parent

  • Andrew Hohenstein, Sports Law and Title IX Expert

  • Kendra Howard, Marathon Runner, Running Coach, Softball Parent, Assistant Coach for Framingham Girls' Fastpitch

  • Selina Monestime, FHS Basketball Player

  • Christine Mulroney, Framingham Teachers' Association President

  • Phil Napolitano, Assistant Executive Director, Massachusetts Interscholastic Athletic Association (MIAA)

  • Ashley Paulsen, Assistant Athletic Director, Framingham High School

  • Ryen Taylor, FHS Student

  • Scott Wadland, Former School Committee Member (Chair, Buildings & Grounds Subcommittee)

  • Amber Welch, FHS Student

The Gender Equity Working Group had their first meeting last month as a means to meet each other and begin the important work that lies ahead. 

“I am excited to have the opportunity to collaborate with like-minded leaders on the important topic of gender equity,” offered member Phil Napolitano, Assistant Executive Director,  Massachusetts Interscholastic Athletic Association (MIAA).

About Framingham Public Schools
The mission of the Framingham Public Schools is to educate each student to learn and live productively as a critically-thinking, responsible citizen in a multicultural, democratic society by providing academically challenging instructional programs taught by highly-qualified staff and supported by comprehensive services in partnership with our entire community. For news, updates, and announcements, follow Framingham Public Schools (@FraminghamPS) on FacebookTwitter, and (@framinghamschools) on Instagram. You can also join the conversation using #FraminghamSchools.

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