In partnership with Bexley City Schools.
Many parents and caregivers struggle to talk about complicated topics like sex and gender identity with the young people in their life. When do you start talking to kids about sexuality and gender? What does it mean for children to express a gender? What's the difference between playing dress-up and something more? What if your child identifies as LGBTQ+?
Join us for a workshop designed to empower parents & caregivers of all backgrounds to recognize opportunities to engage in conversations with their children about gender and sexuality. Leisan Smith, Director of Student and Community Engagement for Bexley City School District and a member of the board of directors of Kaleidoscope Youth Center, will lead the conversation, which is open to all members of the public, not only parents & caregivers. Smith will lay the groundwork by first talking about some of the basics of LGBTQ+ identity and the importance of language before moving into a discussion about helping young kids - and the adults in their lives - come to terms with gender and sexuality.
Leisan C. Smith was born and raised in Columbus Ohio. She earned a B.A. in Communication and a Masters in Educational Foundations with a graduate certificate in Women’s Studies from the University of Cincinnati. Leisan has served in management positions in the Cincinnati area at a charter high school, a pre-college program and at the university level. Most recently she was the inaugural Director of the University of Cincinnati’s LGBTQ Center. In the fall of 2015, she moved back to Columbus and joined Bexley City Schools as the Director of Student & Community Engagement. Her goals focus on helping students overcome non-academic barriers to success. As a member of the department of staff and student learning, she oversees school climate initiatives and work that includes social/emotional development, mental health, and equity/inclusion/diversity. She currently sits on the Board of Directors for Kaleidoscope Youth Center (KYC). KYC works in partnership with young people to create and implement positive youth development activities and services that enhance the lives of LGBTQIA+ youth and allies.