NHAAC Call to Action
NHAAC Call to Action
Please click this link to read the full break-down of what we, the Northern Highlands Alumni Action Committee (NHAAC), are asking of the Northern Highlands Board of Education. You can also visit our website. The section below is just an excerpt:
Racial education at Highlands begins with slavery and ends with Jim Crow. Our curriculum not only fails to unearth the broader range of historical racial issues—such as redlining—but also fails to inform students of the decisive and structural role that race actively plays in the lives of many Americans today through higher rates of incarceration, health disparities, wage and wealth gaps, and police brutality. Why do we learn about these issues via podcasts instead of from an award-winning four-year high school education?
Being “stigma-free” is not enough. Northern Highlands failed to make the members of our community who are people of color (POC) feel safe and welcome. The subtle reality of microaggressions, flawed infrastructure, and unequal opportunities was barely if ever, discussed within our classrooms. A survey of over 350 students, alumni, parents, teachers, and faculty concluded that 95% of our community feels the same way: Northern Highlands needs more formal training for their students and teachers on race, implicit bias, and systemic oppression.
Northern Highlands’ own mission statement aims to “encourage students to appreciate and contribute to our culturally diverse society” and “promote pride in ourselves and our community.” To truly meet these goals, the school must do more than neutrally and invisibly stand with Black Americans. Northern Highlands must actively stand against racism by regularly bringing discussions of the role race plays in modern America into the classroom, providing extracurricular programming that directly educates students on how to address their own bias, and providing structured support to Black, Indigenous, and People of Color (BIPOC) at Northern Highlands.