NOTE: Our intent was to share this with families prior to the Counselors’ Weekly Wellness newsletter. We are sorry that did not happen, as it unintentionally seemed out of touch with what is happening in our world, and does not reflect the counselors’ commitment and involvement in this important work of social justice.
Dear San Domenico Families,
At San Domenico, our mission includes a commitment to recognize what it means to be human in a global community and respond with integrity to the needs and challenges of our time. Today, we ask you to take a moment to reflect and consider that our friends, colleagues, families, and students of color are carrying an extra layer of heaviness, heaviness from racism and violence.
Over this past weekend, members of the Class of 2020 went directly from their Zoom graduation ceremony to protest the murder of George Floyd; leaving the shelter of their own homes to raise fists and voices against hundreds of years of racism and systemic bias, risking their own lives because they are angry, sad, and scared by what is happening all around them. And this, after being on lockdown for over two months, entering a world of political turmoil, environmental destruction, and economic distress. There are many different topics that we could be writing to you about as we wrap up this school year. Right now, however, the news is flooded with protests and more and more videos of this latest brutality, taking the place of the flood of videos of Ahmaud Arbery, and Breonna Taylor, and Michael Brown, and Philando Castille, and, and...
It’s inescapable and unforgivable.
While we hope that the videos continue to bring justice for situations that otherwise would have passed unnoticed, we must also ask ourselves, why, or rather, when did it become "ok" to watch a video of a black person getting killed? And so, we ask you to consider this:
We all have racial biases. That is a hard sentence to write. We are all racists. That is an even harder sentence to write and to sit with. For those of us raised in the United States, racism is embedded in our DNA. It has been likened to an invisible fog that we breathe all the time. And yet, if we want to be part of a solution, we must do better.
We must listen. We must educate ourselves. We must speak up. We must acknowledge. Acknowledge and understand that our biases affect all of our choices, interactions, and policies that ultimately stack the odds against people of color and specifically against Black/African Americans. Education systems, media, and more have fostered and shaped these biases - the fog.
San Domenico is dedicated to do the work to deepen our students’ education and understanding of bias and the history of systemic racism in the United States.
We ALL need to do better to support making a change and shifting the tenets of a systemically racist society. Please join us and dig into the resources listed below to further explore what you can do to be a part of the healing.
Cecily Stock '77, M.A., J.D.
Head of School
Director of Residential Life
Director of Diversity, Equity, and Inclusion
How can you make a difference to curtail racism and injustice?
1. Talk to your children with compassion about the pent-up frustration of the protesters so they know and understand the actions they are witnessing are a direct result of historical injustices.
2. Read books and articles together as a family to support conversations on race, racism, and resistance.
3. Speak up when you are witness to an injustice or some form of racism. Silence only serves to support and promote deplorable acts.
4. Volunteering in diverse settings can help build a cultural competency and build a more inclusive society. Consider local opportunities that can build relationships and support people in need.
5. Educate yourself through the eyes of those most impacted: