Dear Escuela Community-
Recent events in our country bring to light the increasingly urgent need for the work of education and outreach. More than ever we need to bring the core values of our organization to the forefront. If you have not already, please read the school’s introduction to its Anti-Bias Anti-Racist work on Escuela’s website (the About page).
Today, I want to share with you the statement made by our accrediting organization, The American Montessori Society. Provided here are also links to some resources that you as parents might find helpful as you consider how to talk to your children about this very critical work.
Please share any resources you may have to support the work of raising children free from bias and talking to them about the heart-wrenching issues they are undoubtedly hearing about these days. It takes a whole community to do this work; we would be grateful to you if you could share any resources you’ve found helpful via email@example.com.
In peace and solidarity,
Head of School
Dear Fellow Montessorians,
The protests across the globe this week following the murder of George Floyd are an urgent reminder that we must constantly examine how racism shapes our institutions and identify ways to dismantle and disrupt racism. This includes our Montessori schools and teacher education programs.
As the first Black Muslim president of the AMS Board of Directors, I am encouraged by our organization’s strategic priority of Inclusion and Equity, which I believe to be our most important one.
AMS recognizes that institutional change is required to make an impact in the larger Montessori community. Ensuring environments where everyone feels welcomed, valued, and respected is our most important charge as a membership organization. Serving as the largest Montessori membership organization does not exclude us from the institutional racism that is pervasive in associations, schools, and training programs throughout the United States. As the saying goes, “None of us is free until all of us are free.”
Now is the time for us to be intentionally anti-racist, and to denounce and call out injustices that are occurring right before our eyes—injustices that impact the students, parents, staff members, and schools within our community, and in some cases determine whether they live or die. It’s time to stand for, and with, justice.
As we work toward creating a system that evaluates processes and programming and makes decisions based upon the principles of equity, diversity, and inclusion, we hope that you continue to engage with us as our organization strives to be anti-racist. Sometimes we take steps forward, and, sadly, sometimes we take steps backward. But in this moment, we say:
Black lives matter.
Black imagination matters.
Black creativity matters
Black potential matters.
Black educators matter.
Black children matter.
Black people matter.
Black lives matter.
Look to AMS in the coming weeks as we share more resources for teaching children about racism on our website and social media channels. In the meantime, please be well, be safe, be loud, and be anti-racist.
President, AMS Board of Directors
Some ideas from an Escuela parent:
This list feels geared toward younger kids.
This list feels most timely
This list covers activism across a range of social justice causes