Now in its 19th year, School’s Out Washington’s annual Bridge Conference brings together school-age care providers, youth development professionals, leaders, community organizers, funders, and policy makers from across the country.

Attendees hear from thought-provoking presenters and learn new strategies to build strong programs and equitable systems for young people, in and out of school. Reflected in all aspects of the Bridge Conference are the values of equity, belonging, leadership, nourishment, change, innovation, and community. Our attendees and presenters represent the diverse communities we work with across the state. In 2021, for our second virtual conference, we will come together to celebrate, influence, and learn in community with the expanded learning field.

We gather to:
  • Engage with a diverse range of knowledge, people, and perspectives
  • Identify the ways that racial inequities impact youth, expanded learning opportunities, and educational outcomes
  • Experience a sense of belonging to nourish social connection and professional networking
  • Learn how to implement tangible practices that promote an equitable expanded learning opportunity ecosystem
  • Strive to recognize power dynamics throughout programs and systems and begin to strategize how to co-create stronger partnerships across sectors

2021 Bridge: From Seedlings to Stardust
Across time and cultures, humans have found comfort, guidance, and knowledge amongst the stars. Before we had the technology to tell us what was out there, we were grounded and deeply connected to this unknown we reached for it. The stars can be said to be our first home, the first dreamscape of humankind. We have only just begun our rupture – the shattering and deconstruction of—individual and collective realities. This change has brought exhaustion—with no clear path in sight. Yet, we cannot stifle ourselves in normalcy. 2021 Bridge: From Seedlings to Stardust dares us to dream and to pour into the tenaciousness of transformation. The seeds have been sown—now, how do we shape this change?

Systems Leader Cohort
For 2021, the Systems Leader Cohort will include a Pre-Conference on October 26 and a series of recommended workshops for funders, policymakers, and community leaders. This cohort will focus on advancing equity through a well-supported expanded learning system in this profound moment of change.

Bridge Conference Registrants: Once you register, participants will receive an email from Sched inviting you to create and/or log into your Sched account so you can create your personalized schedule and prepare to attend the event. Check out our Attendee Guidance Checklist for more info on "how" to show up to this virtual event or contact our Customer Service team at bridge@schoolsoutwashington.org if you have any challenges navigating the platform. 
Back To Schedule
Thursday, October 28 • 1:30pm - 3:00pm
Gender Diversity: Understanding Transgender and Gender Diverse Children & Teens

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As societal awareness increases, most K-12 teachers, admins, and staff can feel at a loss for how to address the needs of transgender students and their families. Session will address questions such as: 
  • How can a child be transgender? Aren’t they too young to know? Shouldn't they wait until puberty?  What if this is a phase?  
  • How do I talk to young children in ways that are age-appropriate?  
  • How do I differentiate between children’s inquisitiveness and more aggressive teasing?   
  • What about bathrooms, locker rooms, overnight trips, sports, etc? 
  • How do I respectfully engage the parent community if they have concerns/objections? 
  • What are my legal obligations? 
This session will help the attendee build confidence and inspire relief and excitement as they better understand the ways to be gender-inclusive by gaining few new tools and recognizing the applicability of their existing tool set.

STARS Credit offered for live attendance or watching the recording of this session.

Session Survey​​​

avatar for Aidan Key

Aidan Key

Gender Diversity Educator (K-12 Trans/Nonbinary Educator), Gender Diversity
Speaker, author, and educator, Aidan Key’s work centers on gender diverse children.  Key, founder of Gender Diversity, works nationally with hundreds of K-12 schools and youth-based agencies providing professional development, strategic planning, policy development, athletics guidance... Read More →

Thursday October 28, 2021 1:30pm - 3:00pm PDT
Zoom- Webinar