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As we move into spring, I continue to reflect with pride on the powerful events and activities that took place in MPS and Milwaukee during Black History Month and our first district-wide Black Lives Matter at School Week of Action. From an equity lens, it is important to highlight the many contributions of African American people and also examine contemporary issues that impact their lives today.
During the BLM at School Week of Action, I had the opportunity to attend a community panel discussion that explored the four National Demands related to improving outcomes for Black students. Through open dialogues, I heard the community’s concerns about providing alternative discipline options and implementing more restorative approaches to keep students in school. I also heard a clear message about providing more opportunities for students to see themselves in the curriculum and having their teachers be racially reflective of them. These are all concerns that this administration is working to address.
While at times, having tough conversations can be uncomfortable, these discussions are necessary to improve outcomes for our students. As the district leader, I am committed to hearing the voices of all students, families and communities, particularly those who have not always been heard. Not only will I hear—I will make sure that we work toward solutions to the challenges we face.