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Message for Parents

Sunday, May 31, 2020

Hi TLS Families,

I hope you are all safe and well. This is a message for parents tonight. https://vimeo.com/424641306

If you’re just wishing to read, this message is in text below.

Dear TLS Families,  

This weekend, we watched the nation express outrage over the racial injustices that continue to occur in our communities. We've been asked for weeks now to unite in fighting a powerful virus with our actions and care in staying home to stay healthy.  However, tragedies like the death of George Floyd remind us that the call to fight racism is equally urgent and addressed to all of us. For me, it is a moment of overwhelm. Protests illuminate pain and ask us to reflect and engage a path towards justice. Having wonders, worries, and fears is something we are probably all experiencing, and our own responses can be seen and felt by our children too. 

Whether they are aware of the week’s events or just the ambient energy, our children are affected. When we are on campus, faculty connect with each other and we try to remind ourselves of what it means to create safe spaces for feelings, confusion and inquiry. Instead, we are doing this in email and by Zoom. We imagine that some students will need to use time in class meetings tomorrow to express their feelings, questions or observations. As a school, we will make space for this if it emerges, following the lead of the children and answering questions in simple, objective, direct ways.  

Justice is a central principle of progressive education. So, this moment matters. As educators, we are called to be activated citizens who recognize our responsibility to create a more just society. We know the importance of developing culturally competent, confident and literate students. The histories we tell, the representations we reflect in our literature and social studies, the time we make for conversations about identity and race, these choices are pebbles tossed in water. Our job is to make sure their ripples are in an ocean that impacts global change. 

We hope that at school and home we can be united in helping our children feel empowered to ask questions, to take risks, and to act in ways that increase kindness and compassion in the world. But, this is a context that stretches both parents and teachers. As a community, the school is here for you. We hope you will reach out if you need support. We hope you will share with your teachers if your child needs support. Below are some thoughtful resources about how to talk about race and identity with children. We love your kids and are working to make the world in front of them a better one. 

In peace and unity, 

Julie 

 

Resources: 

Embrace Race 

Pretty Good 

Parent Toolkit