How can out-of-school-time (OST) professionals actively value and respect the multiple identities of the young people they serve?
Post by SEED summer staff member Dan Cohen, English teacher and department head at Oak Park and River Forest High School in Illinois.
Learning of the lack of indictments of White police officers in the killing of unarmed Black men and women, my anger and frustration erupted at the racist systems and institutions. I was ready to act. Yet I quickly stopped and reminded myself that I, as a White male, am part of those structures. I am not immune. Therefore if I want justice and I want to dismantle those systems, I need to start with myself and do my own work and interrupt the racist default patterns that live inside me. With loving accountability I invite and challenge my White brothers and sisters to join me. This is our work.
Modeling strong leadership through vulnerable transparency, SEED leader and former staff member Eric Chapman, head of the Middle School at the Calhoun School in Manhattan, wrote to his staff about Eric Garner and Michael Brown, Jr., and has allowed us to share his words here.