Professional Development Opportunities


MSM Virtual Spring Speaker Series
Creating Inclusive Environments for All

Join MSM for the Virtual Spring Speaker Series!


Thursday, February 16, 2023
Thursday, February 23, 2023
Thursday, March 9, 2023

Can't make these dates? This series will be recorded and shared with registrants the day after the live event.


This is an online event.


$65 members, $75 nonmembers


Christina Gasbarro
Montessori Schools of Massachusetts

This three-session series will focus on creating a welcoming and inclusive school environment, with particular attention to adoptive and LGBTQ parent families. Session 1 will address in particular the role of administrators in this mission—such as via outreach to families, policies and forms; creation of affinity groups; and fostering community relationships. It will also address the role of teachers with regard to creating inclusive curricula, classroom materials, and language, as well as key challenges teachers might face. Research on the effects of inclusive school environments on LGBTQ and adoptive parent families will be presented.

Session 2 will focus on LGBTQ parent families, with attention to the diversity within LGBTQ parent families, common myths and assumptions teachers may have about LGBTQ parents and their children. Case studies and scenarios will be presented, and will also be solicited from attendees.

Session 3 will focus on adoptive families, with attention to basic types of adoption, the changing nature of adoption, and common myths and assumptions teachers may have about adoption and adopted students. Case studies and scenarios will be presented, and will also be solicited from attendees.

Meet Abbie E. Goldberg

Abbie E. Goldberg is a Professor in the Department of Psychology at Clark University in Worcester, Massachusetts, where she also currently serves as the Director of Women’s & Gender Studies, and is the current holder of the Jan and Larry Landry Endowed Chair (2020-2023). She graduated summa cum laude from Wesleyan University with a BA in psychology, and received an MA in psychology and a Ph.D. in clinical psychology from the University of Massachusetts Amherst. Dr. Goldberg is an internationally recognized scholar, speaker, and consultant, who is regularly interviewed by media outlets including the New York Times, The Atlantic, the Boston Globe, and New York Magazine. Her research examines diverse families, including LGBTQ-parent families and adoptive-parent families, as well as the experiences of marginalized groups such as trans youth. A central theme of her research is the decentering of any “normal” or “typical” family, sexuality, or gender, to allow room for diverse families, sexualities, and genders.

Dr. Goldberg is the author of over 140 peer-reviewed articles, over 25 book chapters, and four books. Her research has been cited in numerous amicus briefs filed in cases related to marriage equality, gay adoption, trans civil rights, and other topics. She currently serves as a Deputy Editor of the Journal of Marriage and Family, and serves as an editorial board member on seven journals. She has received research funding from the American Psychological Association, the Alfred P. Sloan Foundation, the Williams Institute, the Society for the Psychological Study of Social Issues, the National Institutes of Health, and the Spencer Foundation, among other sources. She teaches courses on diversity in contemporary families, research methods with diverse families, human sexuality, the psychology of sexual orientation, gender and crime, and ethics in clinical psychology.