Worthington Schools: Release a Public Statement of Inclusion
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No matter what side of the political aisle we're on, it is a scary time for our children. Whether they are Muslim, immigrant, people of color, LGBT, or white and straight, there is a lot of anxiety about the current rhetoric regarding marginalized groups. Students are afraid for themselves and afraid for their friends. My own daughter, a white American-born 8th grader, hasn't even experienced or witnessed any violent actions or words, yet she is wracked with fear and anxiety about the possibility of it happening and she wonders if her teachers and administrators would even take it seriously. She is not sure they would be on the side of the marginalized student. She wonders how to protect her friends and if she is this anxious about it, I can't imagine how anxious children from these marginalized groups must be. I know my daughter is not alone.
I would like the Worthington school district to release an explicit statement of inclusion to reassure our children that their teachers and administrators are safe people and that their school is a safe place. A simple public resolution like the one Columbus City Schools passed would help our children to understand that their schools are still safe places. For more information on the resolution CCS passed, see this article from the Columbus Dispatch: http://www.dispatch.com/news/20170207/school-board-emphasizes-columbus-schools-are-safe-spaces
I, along with many other parents, have asked the superintendent, Trent Bowers, if there are plans to release an explicit statement of inclusion to families in the district. His response was that the district website has been updated with more resources for English Learners and immigrant families. He also stated that he reiterated to teachers to continue to be welcoming and show empathy to students. However, these actions do not address the issues and anxieties with which our children are silently suffering. They need to hear an explicit statement from the school district.
Sign the petition and show them how many of us are concerned for our students and their peers.
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