The last few months have been difficult on all of us with shutdowns, homeschooling, and social distancing. However, whether we were already aware of it or not, we have now, horrifyingly witnessed, together as a nation, how difficult everyday life is all the time for people of color, especially Black people in this country. We are saddened and outraged. Discovery Programs stands in solidarity with the Black community and is against racism and violence.
Discovery Programs has always put at the forefront of its programming the importance of community and connection to students and their families. We work to individually address each student’s interests and needs, and create an environment where each child is respected and encouraged not only from their teachers, but also among each other. Now, as an organization, we must look inward, come together, and commit to actions that will promote anti-racism in our classrooms and community.
Despite the fact that we have included books and materials about differences and acceptance in our early childhood classrooms and worked to promote an environment of respect and openness among staff, students, and families, we have not explicitly included diversity and inclusion in our mission statement. We acknowledge that we must not just say these things in the back of our minds, but we must truly commit to these ideas in every action we take. Therefore, statements of diversity, inclusion, and anti-racism will be added to Our Beliefs in our Mission Statement.
As a program, we will continue to re-examine what more we can do to promote anti-racism. We will add more books to our library that have Black characters and that talk about racism and activism, we will educate our staff about anti-racism through training and reading materials, and we will take advantage of important teachable moments in our classrooms.
Many of our former and current staff, including myself, are doing what we can to make a change in this systemic problem and share our outrage through speaking out, protesting, emailing lawmakers, sharing information, starting conversations, and using our art forms to raise awareness. I am proud to work with this group of actionable people whom I know will continue to do the work, but also hold each other and our organization accountable. Black Lives Matter.
With love and solidarity,
Front Desk, 212-749-8717 | firstname.lastname@example.org | discoveryprograms.com
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