Style Guide for Inclusive Communications

Submitted by: Capital Region BOCES

Read the Style Guide for Inclusive Communications

(Note: this link will open as a read-only Google Doc)

About this resource

This document was developed by the Capital Region BOCES Engagement & Development Division to facilitate inclusive communication for K-12 school districts. The document is maintained by the Engagement & Development Division’s School Communications Portfolio team in collaboration with the division’s Diversity, Equity and Inclusion committee. The primary audience is school communications professionals. Secondary audiences include classroom teachers, administrators, office staff, coaches and other district employees who communicate directly with students and families.


  • Disclaimer at the beginning of the document helps to provide context for the contents.
  • Good use of visual differentiators (headers, bolding, italics, etc.) to guide readers through the text.
  • Covers a wide range of communications topics (including imagery, which is often overlooked).
  • Uses examples and links to resources relevant to a school community.

Opportunities for Growth

  • Reduce use of elevated language when possible (such as ascribe and pejorative).
  • Provide more direction on how to implement the use of the guide.
  • Provide more visual examples (at least within the imagery section).
  • Include in the document a specific person or department at BOCES that folks can reach out to for additional support (or make more obvious – there’s a link in the footer but it’s not clear if that is who/where to go for help).
  • Adding details about accountability measures users can take to ensure an inclusive eye on content development (e.g. employing use of a communications review committee, recommended regular “audits” on communications to identify areas of improvement, etc.).

Capital Region BOCES

900 Watervliet-Shaker Road, Albany, NY 12205

  • Component districts: 24
  • Employees: 800+
  • Locale: Urban/suburban