Teaching Racial Justice

Teaching
  • A year ago, as a nation, we watched the murder of George Floyd coupled with numerous lives lost at the hands of police officers across the nation. A year later, our nation is in a continuous state of emotional distress and unrest as we continue to experience similar acts of extreme violence and more death. With the verdict in the Derek Chauvin trial, it is imperative to take the time to process emotions, educate ourselves and open the lines of communication with our children. Racial justice can only be achieved through acknowledgment, understanding, and willingness to challenge injustices. Alexandria City Public Schools is committed to valuing the diversity and identity of all of our students and we encourage our staff and families to use the resources listed on our Teaching Racial Justice and Talking to Your Children About Racial Justice websites, as well as the additional resources listed below to support our students.

    We are a school community dedicated to supporting our students, staff, and families to make sense of our unfortunate reality. If your child wants to speak with someone, please reach out to our student support team made up of the school counselor, school nurse, school psychologist, and school social worker at your school. If you have questions, please do not hesitate to contact the Department of Student Services and Equity at 703-619-8034 or student_services@acps.k12.va.us.

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    Sadly, we are faced with the realities of racism in our nation. The media reports a 150% increase in hate crimes against the Asian-American Community and the recent tragic events in Atlanta, Georgia continues to remind us of the work we must do to acknowledge, educate and support conversations of bias, anti-hate, and anti-racism. Once again, we are enduring the senseless deaths of Americans motivated by race. Racism against the Asian-American community is deeply ingrained in the fabric of our country and continues to validate the anti-racist journey of ACPS. Therefore, we want to remind you of the resources already provided on this web page for Teaching Racial Justice and provide additional resources that can help to support talking to students about race, racism, and the anti-Asian hate currently plaguing our community.

    As always, thank you for helping our students, staff, and community make sense of our unfortunate reality. If you have questions, please do not hesitate to contact the Department of Student Services and Equity.

    • Cheryl Robinson, Cultural Competence Coordinator
    • Kennetra Wood, Executive Director of Equity and Alternative Programs
    • Dr. Julie Crawford, Chief of Student Services and Equity
  • CONTACT INFORMATION

    Cheryl Robinson
    Cultural Competency Coordinator
    Alexandria City Public Schools
    1340 Braddock Place
    Alexandria, VA 22314
    703-619-8031
    cheryl.robinson@acps.k12.va.us

    Kennetra Wood 
    Executive Director of Equity and Alternative Programs
    Alexandria City Public Schools
    1340 Braddock Place
    Alexandria, VA 22314
    703-619-8034
    kennetra.wood@acps.k12.va.us

    Dr. Julie Crawford
    Chief Student Services Officer
    Alexandria City Public Schools
    1340 Braddock Place
    Alexandria, VA 22314
    703-619-8034
    julie.crawford@acps.k12.va.us



  • Resources

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    In light of the reactions to the most recent publicized murders of Black Americans to include Breonna Taylor, Ahmaud Arbery, and George Floyd, we believe it is imperative to talk about and provide guidance relative to addressing students’ questions about current events, race, and racism. Our students have questions that we can artfully address; and, this is our opportunity to model life-long learning as we continue to develop our own abilities to have and hold conversations with students, colleagues, and community members to improve educational outcomes for every student group.

    We, as a nation, are once again experiencing the results of our failure to have and sustain conversations across racial lines about the policies and practices that result in different lived experiences for many members of our society. Educational equity addresses disparities based on race, economics, and other dimensions of difference. When ACPS achieves educational equity school outcomes will be proportionally distributed across all demographic and identity groups and achievement gaps will be eliminated for all groups. Equity can be achieved by promoting relationships and nurturing the capability of students, families, and staff. The goal of educational equity is helping students to thrive. Equity is aspirational and something that none of us has ever experienced: however, it can be achieved when we each do our part.

    These resources are provided in three parts:

    • Part 1 - Strategies for Facilitating Conversations with Students
    • Part 2 - Online Resources for Framing Conversations
    • Part 3 - Resources for Your Personal and Professional Growth and Development

    Using the strategies and resources below can create meaningful, authentic communication between staff and students. This in turn can help schools, classrooms and communities to learn, recognize and model more equitable practices.

    Thank you for helping our students, staff and community make sense of our unfortunate reality. If you have questions, please do not hesitate to contact the Department of Student Services and Equity.

  • Part 1: Strategies for Facilitating Conversations with Students

  • Part 2: Online Resources for Framing Conversations

  • Part 3: Resources for Your Personal and Professional Growth and Development