First, I want to extend a welcome to several new members who have joined after an engaging conversation on the local schools Facebook page. The conversation there was about the failure to address diversity issues with the middle school boundary proposal moving forward. Please spread the word if you see others who are on board with working on this issue!
I read a very useful article called “Six Things White People Can Do To Reach Friends and Family Members to End Racism” by Kimberly Dark on Medium from August 2017. The article was written right after Charlottesville, but that context doesn’t change its very practical suggestions and it has some clarifying insights that I found helpful.
You might find the webinar from Embrace Race about helping children develop cross-racial friendships a helpful read. The takeaway is that kids model what their parents do — food for thought.
Since we’re focusing currently on school-related issues, here are some school district updates for which input is needed: School Naming Criteria, Middle School Boundary Changes — a public hearing is scheduled for the next School Board meeting.
If you’re nervous about awkward conversations with friends and family over the holidays, SURJ emailed some resources and suggestions. And if you’re feeling really motivated, you might want to check out their podcast at The Word is Resistance about how complicated this holiday is (Episode 35).
I attended a county-wide PTA meeting recently and it was very clear that if we want our schools to be fully funded, we must advocate beyond the School Board and the Superintendent. We must bring our concerns to the County Board and advocate for the schools. Has anyone in the group done this before or is anyone familiar with the process for providing feedback/input to the county?
I have reached out to several POC-led racial/social justice organizations in our community to find out whether there are any meetings/events that I could attend with the goal of listening to and following their priorities locally. I’ll keep you posted about what develops. And again, if anyone has suggestions of organizations or connections, please let me know.
Please think about your goals in your work for racial justice in our area, especially as the new year approaches. I welcome your ideas and input as we move towards an action plan and set up more small and large discussion groups. Thank you for your participation in this group!