Condemning Racism and Social Injustice

Condemning Racism and Social Injustice
Posted on 06/03/2020
June 3, 2020

We launched this school year with the theme of “Growing Together” to celebrate the power of interdependence and moving together toward a common vision and direction. Who knew that only a few months later we would be faced with obstacles that threaten the very core of “growing together”: a pandemic health crisis restricting physical contact, a virtual learning model minimizing relational interactions, the most extreme acts of racism and social injustice, an economic crisis resulting in increased unemployment and a significant burden on our families, and political unrest that has amplified divisiveness and polarization.

In spite of these horrific challenges, we want our Douglas County School District (DCSD) community to know that we stand unified in condemning recent acts of racism. The cases of xenophobia directed at our Asian community as the COVID-19 pandemic began and the senseless death of George Floyd has reignited outrage across our country. We share the anger, frustration, and sadness about the ongoing racial injustices happening in our great country. For the sake of each and every one of our students, the oppression of people of color simply must stop. Each and every member of our society deserves to live free from racial profiling, fear, and injustice.

Our young people are looking to us for leadership and answers during these traumatic times that will leave a social and emotional impact on every aspect of their childhood and healthy development. It is for this reason, we send this message of unity, commitment, and reassurance that our actions will go beyond words and well-intended plans. The prevalence of instruction that promotes equity, social justice, and inclusionary practices will become a significant focus as we prepare for the return of our students in the Fall.

Our schools and classrooms must be places where our students experience acceptance and a sense of belonging regardless of race, color, national origin, ancestry, creed, religion, sex, sexual orientation, gender expression/identity, or disability. We all must work together to support all our students, regardless of their current journey, during this moment in history.

We are asking you to join us as we recommit ourselves to this focus of inclusionary practices and condemning acts of hate. Here are some resources you may find helpful in talking to children about racial injustice and the unrest in our country:
We must treat one another with dignity and respect. We all deserve to feel safe and loved. This is the message we launched long before the current turmoil in our world - “growing together” reminds us that we are all a work in process. This growth can only be accomplished when we provide the grace and safety to be vulnerable and allow each other the space for this to occur.

Together, we are stronger. Together, we can make a difference. We stand unified in dedicating ourselves to this urgent call to action and seek your support in joining us as we continue to Grow Together.

DOUGLAS COUNTY SCHOOL DISTRICT

Thomas S. Tucker, Ph.D., DCSD Superintendent
David Ray, DCSD Board President
Krista Holtzmann, DCSD Board Vice President
Elizabeth Hanson, DCSD Board Secretary
Kevin Leung, DCSD Board Treasurer
Christina Ciancio-Schor, DCSD Board Director
Anthony Graziano, DCSD Board Director
Susan Meek, DCSD Board Director
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In compliance with Titles VI & VII of the Civil Rights Act of 1964, Title IX of the Education Amendments of 1972, Section 504 of the Rehabilitation Act of 1973, the Age Discrimination in Employment Act of 1967, the Americans with Disabilities Act, the Genetic Information Nondiscrimination Act of 2008, and Colorado law, the Douglas County School District RE-1 does not unlawfully discriminate against otherwise qualified students, employees, applicants for employment, or members of the public on the basis of disability, race, creed, color, sex, sexual orientation, marital status, national origin, religion, ancestry, or need for special education services. Discrimination against employees and applicants for employment based on age, genetic information, and conditions related to pregnancy or childbirth is also prohibited in accordance with state and/or federal law. Complaint procedures have been established for students, parents, employees, and members of the public. The School District’s Compliance Officer and Title IX Coordinator to address complaints alleging sexual harassment under Title IX is Ted Knight, Assistant Superintendent, 620 Wilcox Street, Castle Rock, Colorado, complianceofficer@dcsdk12.org, 303-387-0067. Complaints regarding violations of Title VI, (race, national origin), Title IX (sex, gender), Section 504/ADA (handicap or disability), may be filed directly with the Office for Civil Rights, U.S. Department of Education, 1244 North Speer Blvd., Suite 310, Denver, CO 80204. Complaints regarding violations of Title VII (employment) and the ADEA (prohibiting age discrimination in employment) may be filed directly with the Federal Office of Equal Employment Opportunity Commission, 303 E. 17th Ave., Suite 510, Denver, CO 80202, or the Colorado Civil Rights Commission, 1560 Broadway, Suite 1050, Denver, CO 80202.