I recently attended a caregiver listening session with the new diversity, equity and inclusion officer of the Carmel Clay Schools as a parent, a teacher educator and an educational researcher. The session was facilitated in a way that was attentive to parent concerns and laid bare many of the real issues that affect children in overt and explicit ways in our schools. The DEI officer was focused, thoughtful and clearly put the safety and well-being of children at the forefront of her work.
I am concerned by the reactionary and alarmist words that have been deployed in an attempt to silence the concerns of parents and children who represent minoritized identities and communities, putting the DEI officer position at risk. The listening session provided a forum for voices to be heard and concerns to be addressed that are often ignored and quieted because they reveal uncomfortable truths. The only way that we can move forward as a community that values and supports the learning, growth and development of all children is by hearing these truths, looking in the mirror and getting to work and fixing what’s not working in our schools and in our community.
To not take action and to claim that equity and inclusion is a “destructive ideology” is malpractice that will cause current children and future generations to suffer.
Jeremy Price, Carmel