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We request inclusive curricula at East Marshall

We, as East Marshall Alumni, current students, parents, and faculty respectfully write to ask East Marshall CSD to take action.

We request that East Marshall CSD craft a comprehensive elementary, middle and high school curricula inclusive of Black history and, specifically, a curriculum that addresses systemic racism and white privilege; require diversity and inclusion training for all faculty; and review and amend current hiring practices to foster a welcoming and inclusive environment for faculty, staff and students of color; and encourage its peer schools in the Marshall County area to do the same.

The East Marshall CSD must make a plan to incorporate lessons on systemic racism, privilege, and American history from the Black American and indigenous peoples’ perspectives into its curricula.

Black and indigenous peoples’ experiences and successes can and should be taught in every classroom and every subject. The East Marshall CSD must also ensure that these conversations are not optional, which could lead to students of color once again bearing the burden of having these difficult discussions while white students opt-out.

Two of the values of East Marshall CSD are:

• The educational programs are multicultural and non-sexist in nature and provide a global approach to learning.

• The students of our district are citizens of the world and will be provided a global education.

The student experience at East Marshall CSD, as it currently stands, is not reflective of these values. We do not doubt that parents choose not to send their students of color to East Marshall. They know their children will not have the opportunity to learn from a Black teacher throughout their whole K-12 education at East Marshall. This is an issue that absolutely must be addressed.

Further, diversity and inclusion education must be provided for all faculty and staff each year. Educators must begin to understand the implicit biases we all hold, work to challenge those biases to create a more inclusive learning environment for the students they serve, and to lead students by example in understanding and building relationships across cultural differences.

We ourselves have not always been perfect. East Marshall CSD has not always been perfect, but this is an opportunity for all of us to do better.

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