Enforce Diversity in the Adult Public School Environment.

Enforce Diversity in the Adult Public School Environment.

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Hanna Whaley started this petition to Senator Christine M. Tartaglione and

change.org/moreinclusivepapublicschools

Hello everyone!

This petition is to make Pennsylvania public schools more inclusive of minority groups when they hire people in the adult education community. It is important that all students feel comfortable and inspired by their learning environment, but a lot of students outside of school have a difficult family life. This might mean that they don't have a good role model at home to look up to, and because of this, our students turn to their educators, coaches, and school staff to be their role models, but when our public schools have a small number of minority representation educating or holding disciplinary positions in their school's staff, these minority children believe that they are meant to hold the essential, but "lower-level" positions in our society rather than the higher up positions held by caucasians because they do not see adults who look like them doing those jobs. This may not seem like a big deal, but this is not the only area of our society where minority children are not represented in the way that caucasian children are, so they are left believing that they can only work in certain jobs.

Along with creating a more diverse adult education community for students to look up to, I feel that now is a great time to begin reforming our public school's discrimination policies as every black or minority person I know who attended my school (Wallenpaupack Area High School) has had at least one incident where they were called a slur, heard a slur, felt isolated due to their race, were wrongly accused of something, etc. while in their learning environment. Even though these students might have expressed that they felt they were mistreated whoever perpetrated the abuse was not told why or how their actions were extremely inappropriate and usually given small disciplinary response like one detention. This idea of having minority students write letters expressing the change they would like to see, and their bad or traumatic experiences at school/school events to present to Wallenpaupack's School Board formed and now here we are.

I think this petition and the letters would act as a much needed reality check for our communities, so if you would like to participate please write your bad experience(s) and explain that we want to see changes in our local education system as there are few/no black teachers, no required black descent classes while we are required to learn about a whitewashed history*, and no set punishment for racial discrimination in schools despite the fact that there are incidences every week where minority/black students are discriminated against or abused in their learning environment.

(*and then go to college where we learn this country's true history from African-American History classes and that we were lied to,)

In the following years, we want to see that more minorities are employed in not only jobs such as custodians or lunch ladies, but also as teachers, members of the school board, and disciplinarians. Since we are going through a modern-day civil rights movement, shouldn't our school board show that they're an ally to the many minority groups groups who attend our schools by giving the future generations a good role model and safer learning environment? Since the Wallenpaupack Area School District was able to find room in the curriculum for new student Seminar classes, they should have no problem with these adjustments. There have been so many incidents that result in minority children feeling like the community they live in does not respect them, so our district needs to enforce changes that will make all students feel more accommodated, protected, and accepted by their communities such as a standard racial discrimination policy for disciplinary actions, cultural learning classes as a form of discriminatory rehabilitation to ensure that all students feel comfortable in their learning environment, and simply hiring more minorities as educators and administrators to give students role models.

---------     For those of you locally that want to help more after sharing this petition: write your own letter about your experiences (or situations you witnessed that were inappropriate) in the classroom, at sporting events, or any other school sanctioned event in the hopes of increasing awareness of the hardships faced daily by minority students.          ---------------

Wallenpaupack's mail to address: 

2552 Route 6
Hawley, PA 18428-7045
United States

To begin community discussion:

There are many approaches to proper enforcement of racial discrimination statements. For example, the school could survey minority students and their families in our communities/school districts to ask what would be appropriate to see in a racial discrimination or cultural appreciation class. People both young and old could volunteer to speak at these classes to share their experiences or traditions. I'm sure there are parents or family members that would like to come in and talk about how they feel in this community, and their own experiences with racism, fear, and hatred.

Thank you, 

Hanna Whaley

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