06 Aug Cottonwood School Board’s Black Lives Matter Statement
The board of the Cottonwood School of Civics and Science stands with the Black Lives Matter Movement. We recognize we can and must do better.
Anti-racist efforts, to be successful and sustainable, must happen on the following levels: personal, professional, organizational, and systemic. Any efforts that do not include all four components will not create meaningful and lasting change.
Our board members are committing to anti-racist work not only within the school community, but in our neighborhoods and personal lives.
We pledge to support the work of Cottonwood’s Diversity, Equity, and Inclusion Committee. Once it’s fully developed, we will incorporate the inclusion lens that comes out of those meetings in our decision-making processes moving forward.
We plan to work with an equity consultant to address the lack of representation on our board, to identify how we can allocate resources to further this work, and to identify all the other places we fall short.
We pledge to work deliberately and with clear intention on the foundations of inclusion, instead of rushing through this process. We intend to create an impact, not just a performative response.
We vow to support our teachers, staff, students, and volunteers as we all work to do better in ending systemic racism, especially within the education system, and to provide a strong educational foundation that supports black and brown students in our community.
We will listen to our school community as part of figuring out what better could look like.
We recognize that good intentions are not anywhere near enough. Without tying those intentions to specific actions and goals, we would be shoring up white supremacy instead of dismantling it.
We are committed to taking the next steps. Part of that work is committing to the time and effort of doing the personal work as well as the professional and school board work. Part of that work is admitting we haven’t done the work we should have been doing all along.
At our July 16, 2020 meeting, we agreed to fund diversity, equity, and inclusion consulting for the board and to allocate additional funding to the school Diversity, Equity, and Inclusion Committee.
Our board members serve two-year terms. We hope the current board’s work to end injustice and systemic racism will allow our school to be part of the necessary change throughout the educational system and that we will create a legacy for future board members to build on, not just in supporting our school, but in our individual, authentic efforts.
A board-led public town hall conversation on these issues is being planned for the fall. Comments, questions, and ideas can be sent to board [at] thecottonwoodschool.org.