On Friday and Saturday, the International School if Prague (ISP) will host the first-ever CEESA-wide Pride conference.

We talked to the president and faculty advisor of “Spectrum” (ISP’s LGBTQ+ service group), Oz Erco and Jennifer Michalsky, to discover more about the upcoming conference.

Related Article: AISB Starts Its First-Ever LGBTQ+ Group

A Rough Program of the Event

On Friday the 22nd, the conference will hold its opening ceremony with Monawar Shah’s film, Life In The Shadows, about the transgender community in Pakistan. Then, students will participate in a variety of workshops based on their personal interests.

These include creative activities like the “Pride Swag” and “Identity Flags” (creating pride-themed clothing and flags) as well as roundtable discussions like “Coming Out Strategies” and “Creating Safe Spaces in Schools.”

During the rest of the seminar, there will be art project meetings, “unconference” sessions, and an ally-friendly Pride Dance in the evening!

The Purpose of the Workshops

The workshops will allow students to share information, discuss concerns, and collaborate to make our schools safer for the LGBTQ+ community.

“[The event] operates on multiple levels: to connect LGBTQ+ youth at our schools, to be better teachers to LGBTQ+ youth, and to help support our community (including parents) to become advocates for LGBTQ+ youth,” Michalsky explains.

ISP Director Arnie Bieber views this as “another step to ensure that every learner in our community feels safe in their environment, has the appropriate support systems in place, and is empowered to advocate for themselves.”

What CEESA-Wide Pride Means For the Future

Mara T., Ioana D., Jennifer Stevens, Michaela Young, and Stephanie Finnell on their visit to ISP.

CEESA-wide Pride is a positive and essential first step to building connections and embracing diversity across Eastern European schools. Considering that AISB’s GSA launched only recently, we can model well-established LGBTQ+ support systems like “Spectrum” at ISP.

The conference will also play a key role in raising awareness and strengthening school support systems for LGBTQ+ youth. “And we hope it encourages others to join our GSA,” says AISB’s Pride Student Leader, Mara T.

“In the future, my hope is that this could be a regular event so that the connections between students and staff can continue,” says Michalsky.

Best wishes to our Pride members who are attending, and to all the other CEESA schools who are traveling to ISP! We look forward to hearing about it when you return!