Dear Members of the Key Community,
As Key School leaders, we came together this morning to discuss and process the most recent acts of unspeakable racial violence that we have all watched occur over the course of the past several weeks.
We are saddened, we are outraged, and we are finished making excuses about, and accepting apologies for, inhumane action. The racial violence black people experience far too often in our country isn't new, but now the unvarnished truth, being broadcast to the world, is undeniable and requires decisive, thoughtful and ongoing action. In just three weeks, we were introduced to Ahmaud Arbery, Breonna Taylor and George Floyd through their untimely murders. In the midst of responding to a global pandemic, we are now faced with naming and addressing another virus in our country‒racism.
Key denounces not only these most recent killings, but also racism, hatred and bigotry in every form. We believe existing systems that enable racism and oppression is our collective problem. Like you, we want justice to be served for all, equally.
To the black students, families, faculty, staff, alumni, board members, and partners, we are committed to offering more than apologies. We See You, We Value You. We understand, and we take seriously, our responsibility to be a part of the collective solution. We know that this starts on our campus and inside of our classrooms, with educated and committed faculty and staff. It continues in our homes and communities with conversation and action. Our students deserve institutions in which justice is the foundation of the educational program.
To the members of our community who belong to groups who have been historically marginalized, we understand and appreciate that our efforts must also focus on making sure that our work to combat oppression is informed by your voices, experiences and needs.
To the members of our white community, now is the time to use your voices to denounce systemic racism and demand justice. Now is the time for action. We may not be able to find the right words, but we know the difference between justice and injustice. Justice means that we can speak up and show solidarity during these times. Dr. Martin Luther King so wisely said, "In the end, we will remember not the words of our enemies, but the silence of our friends." Our Diversity, Equity and Inclusion webpage has several anti-racism resources that can help you.
At this particular moment in time, we implore you to consider the following recommendations from The Conscious Kid Website:
- Take action by knowing our history, in particular the history of racism and systemic oppression;
- Call in family, friends and community members for dialogue about racism;
- Expose yourself to resources from black people, books, podcasts and authors
While Key School has been a place in which we have seen the beauty of diversity within our classrooms, at our family gatherings, and at our athletic events, we also know that educational institutions can perpetuate societal racism and oppression. Our School leadership team is grappling with the tough question "Where does Racism Show up at Key?" This question is necessary for us to ask and process; first as School leaders and then as a full faculty and staff.
The work ahead will be difficult, painful, rewarding and, most importantly, ongoing. This is not a race but a marathon, and we are preparing for the long distance; for the creation of actionable steps that will position Key's faculty, staff, students, and families to be part of the solution. We are presently working through a framework of questions and assessments, created by regional Diversity Practitioners which include Key's Director of Diversity, Equity and Inclusion. This framework was also shared by AIMS with consortium schools today. We will update you on our efforts as we forge ahead.
We are planning to bring the Key parent community together to have conversations that can support our efforts. To that end, we have come up with a short list of topics as a starting point, and hope you will join us in a dialogue and also offer additional topics that you would like to discuss through this online form.
As Key's Leadership team we believe in our community and we are not absent of hope. We believe the ongoing improvement of our School and of our program will counteract the racism, and ignorance of the world. Our students are future change makers, and we will give them the tools to combat and overcome bigotry and hatred.
In solidarity and hope,
The Key School Senior Administrative Team
June 1, 2020 - Timely Resources from Dr. Rodney Glasgow
May 28, 2020 - From Matthew Nespole