Welcome from the principal

Welcome from the principal
Posted on 07/23/2020

Let me begin by saying that we are living through a very challenging time. The entire world is aware of this, in one way or another. Our current societal situation requires some very revolutionary approaches to bring about the much needed change, as unpopular as that may seem in this society. For those of us who have the privilege and opportunity to engage in the hearts and minds of our children, we must be prepared to “go all out”. Or to put it another way, we must understand that we are attempting to correct so many generations of bad faith and cruelty, when it’s operating not only in the classroom but in society. In pursuing this, our students, our families, and our staff will meet the most fantastic, the most brutal, and the most determined resistance. At Booker T. Washington STEM Academy, our team of dedicated educators is committed to challenging the existing institutional racism and bringing about the much needed change. We want to create in each child the ability to look at the world for themselves, and make their own decisions. We want them not to look for getting to the right answers, but to seek and learn to ask the right questions that help them achieve and find value in their own identity.

I believe everyone loves to learn. This applies to both our students and adult learners. We seek to create opportunities for our community of learners to take on new information and develop new skills driven on foundations of inquiry and interest. I believe in the value of multiple diverse perspectives. This is the key to collaborative learning, and honoring the various cultural experiences each of our students bring to our school as their strength. I also believe in challenging the status quo. Many of our institutional structures and practices have historically marginalized many of our students and families of color. We must identify and actively challenge any of our systems that privilege some and not others. I look forward to developing partnerships with each of our families, and invite any and all stakeholders to help to develop a community of practice in which we can learn from and with one another.

Inspired by “A Talk to Teachers” by James Baldwin (Delivered October 16, 1963, as “The Negro Child – His Self-Image”; originally published in The Saturday Review, December 21, 1963, reprinted in The Price of the Ticket, Collected Non-Fiction 1948-1985, Saint Martins 1985.)


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