Submitted by Maureen McCauley
Haze Wolf Parent Racial Equity Committee Member
The Hazel Wolf Parent Racial Equity Committee (REC) held a Roundtable on Racism on May 15. The program was student-centered, and featured two high schoolers and eight middle schoolers who stepped up with courage and dignity to talk about their personal experiences with racism. The black, Latinx, and Asian members of the REC sat with and stood by the students as they spoke. It was a powerful evening.
The goals for the event were these: To provide insight into how race and racism manifest in our school and community by sharing the lived experiences of students of color; To empower our students of color to share their experiences; To start a community dialogue about racism in a way that students of color feel supported; and To have the community acknowledge that racism, in all forms, still happens in our school and community.
The REC especially wanted to encourage people to have conversations about race with their children, noting that even small conversations create change that we can then build on, and that it’s OK not to have the answer and to figure out the right words together. We asked the community, “If you see something, say something”, and to support the staff within the school who are acting as our students’ advocates.
The event also provided the attendees with Action Items:
- Have conversations about race with your child.
- If your child is a student of color, help the child to find trusted adults to be a support network.
- Be an accomplice, not an ally. Teach your children to be accomplices.
At the meeting, an extensive resource list was shared with the attendees, which includes links to great articles, books, and resources for learning and talking about racial issues, whether as a parent, a teacher, or a community member. The resource list is provided below. The list also defines terms such as Accomplice v Ally, Micro aggressions, White Privilege, and more. The REC hopes you take a look at the articles and links, and looks forward to presenting more workshops and actions in the next school year.
Many thanks to the PTSA and the Hazel Wolf administration and staff for their support of the work of the parent Racial Equity Committee. An especially deep bow of gratitude to the students of color who participated in the Roundtable, and to the friends, family, and advocates who support and love the students.