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Equal Opportunity

June 5th, 2020

A Message from your Superintendent

Dear District 57 Families and Staff,

I am reaching out today to express my sadness regarding the senseless death of George Floyd, the pain in our country over the past week and the persistent problem of racism. As communities are coming together to advocate for change that is desperately needed, I want to share some thoughts and information that relate to our school district.

I know that many are already reeling from the effects of COVID-19 and the economic crisis. And the events currently unfolding in the Chicago area and beyond are only adding to our collective worry and giving us a darker view of our present reality. I offer my sympathy and support to everyone who is suffering – both those experiencing tragedy first hand and those who are watching and feeling helpless from afar. 

District 57 condemns racism in all forms and believes in equal opportunity for everyone. We are committed to being a safe, secure and inclusive place for all children, families and staff. My administrative team and I have been discussing these issues. We are listening, learning and being critically reflective. We are dedicated to meeting the needs of the families in our school communities and want to hear from you if you have concerns or issues to express. Open and honest communication is always important to us, but it is especially a priority at this time.

With so much unrest taking place, many children are bound to have questions, and some might want to explore issues of racial injustices in history and in our current world. We encourage you to take advantage of this moment and engage in these difficult discussions. This is an opportunity for us to teach our children, but also to learn from them. We would like to share the following links to resources that might be helpful:

Beyond the Golden Rule -- a Parent’s Guide to Preventing and Responding to Prejudice 
Parent ToolKit: How to Talk to Kids About Race and Racism
CNN and Sesame Street Town Hall on Saturday, June 6 at 9am
Common Sense Media-Guidance for Parents on how to Start & Continue Conversations about Race and Racism with Children
NY Times Article: These Books Can Help You Explain Racism and Protest to Your Kids

I believe that this time of pain offers all of us a new chance to learn and grow. In District 57, we will continue the dialogue to enhance our commitment to diversity and inclusion and ensure our schools are welcoming and understanding places for all. We join you in working toward unity and healing and, ultimately, a better future.

Dr. Elaine Aumiller
Superintendent of Schools
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