March 26, 2021
Dear CMS families, staff and partners,
I want to share some thoughts about something that has been on my heart and mind for some time now.
What I want for my children and every human being is one of life’s most basic philosophies – love.
For only love can conquer hate.
As we take steps forward in the battle against one deadly disease that is the pandemic, progress seems slower in the fight against another virus.
I am – and we all should be – alarmed, saddened, and angered by a rise in racist violence targeting those of Asian American and Pacific Islander descent. As I have shared regarding racist behavior, hate, and bigotry toward other members of the community, racism and hate of any kind have no place in our school system or in society.
Sadly, recent acts – some highly visible and covered by national media and many others receiving less attention – represent the continuation of a long history of anti-Asian discrimination in the U.S. We can no longer tolerate this behavior and we can no longer stand idly by while we see others bullying or attacking fellow members of our community, regardless of race or ethnic affiliation.
More than 11,000 CMS students, approximately 7.5 percent, identify as Asian American and Pacific Islander. Their contributions add to the diversity that is one of the strengths of CMS of which we should be proudest. We stand by our AAPI students, families, staff, and partners and stand together against racist comments, threats, bullying, or attacks. Such behavior won’t be condoned within CMS, and cannot be allowed in our community and society.
The principles of antiracist thought, belief, and action apply equally to all. I am pleased that CMS is taking leadership in training and development to foster antiracist mindsets that inform all that we do as district leaders and school staff. This education will continue, and accelerate as much as possible, so racism is rooted out, laid bare for all to see, and left to wither into a memory of an era we must remember so as not to allow such atrocities to ever again gain so much as a foothold.
We are committed to providing healthy learning environments and encouraging staff, families, and students to develop within and beyond the classroom. In keeping with that spirit of stewardship, the attached link provides a listing of resources for further information about this issue.