After hearing our brave students speaking out at several Board of Education meetings regarding their individual experiences with racism and inequality throughout their school careers, the Wayne Education Association took to action to help their students.
In its effort to address this concern, the Wayne Education Association has established a new committee of educators focusing on social justice in our schools. This committee is being developed in an effort to raise awareness of individual and group prejudices and deal with them in a real, substantive way.
The WEA Social Justice Committee is dedicated to fostering change within our schools and local communities and addressing the structural inequities that marginalize and oppress people along lines of gender, race, class, ethnicity, religion, sexual orientation, and other forms of identity.
WEA Social Justice Chairpersons, John Terry and Sara Schillaci have established several goals for this year:
- Deepen faculty knowledge of anti-racist and social justice concepts and principles
- Advocate for changes in curriculum and instruction that reflect anti-racist and social justice principles
- Provide support and protection for teachers who teach against racism and for social justice
- Ensure teachers of color are supported and, when possible, hired
- Review and/or develop reporting processes for acts of racism, bias, and discrimination that affect staff, students, and other members of the community
- Raise awareness within the district and community around issues related to structural racism and social justice
- Advocate for broader social justice within and beyond our community
Change often comes slowly. However, our absolute acceptance of all people, no matter their race, gender orientation, religion or so many other characteristics that make up who they are, must be achieved. The committee has no illusions about the hard work to be done. The road to acceptance has never been smooth. The Wayne Education Association’s Social Justice Committee is dedicated to do their part in contributing to the much needed but difficult conversations about who we are and what we need to be as a community. Their goal is to steer the district towards being the best community it can be – one that values the worth and value of all Wayne residents and students.