From Principal Leith: October 29, 2018

From Principal Leith: October 29, 2018
Posted on 10/29/2018
Dear Morse School Parents and Families, 

Like many of you, I woke up yesterday morning to news of the unspeakable attack on worshipers in a Pittsburgh synagogue. This tragic event is one of many recent reminders that there is much work to be done in our society before fairness and respect have fully eclipsed bigotry, prejudice and hate. Given the rich diversity of backgrounds represented among students and families at the Morse School, we have an opportunity to foster a community in which adults and children are comfortable acknowledging, understanding and celebrating differences - be they in skin color, family background, immigration experience, native language, learning style, gender identity or faith. However, if we want our children feel empowered - rather than overwhelmed - when faced with hateful acts and persistent inequities, we also have a responsibility to provide them with age-appropriate learning experiences that teach them to recognize and challenge injustice. 

Recently, the Cambridge Public Schools has embarked on a review of the social studies curriculum to ensure that students have an opportunity to look at historical events and movements through a social justice lens. This work is ongoing, and over the coming months I look forward to collaborating with and supporting Morse School teachers who are exploring ways of intentionally examining historical examples of people who have stood together to address injustice and create change. Of course you, as parents and role models, are your children's most important teachers. You can have a profound impact on the way your child understands confusing issues like racism and intolerance. If you are looking for ideas on getting such conversations started, the organization Teaching Tolerance has a helpful Parents Guide to Preventing and Responding to Prejudice

I welcome suggestions about ways that teachers and parents can collaborate over the coming months to help develop our children’s awareness of these important issues. 

Chad Leith
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