Lake Oswego School Board: We're committed to culture of belonging
As we wrap up the school year during a week of ongoing unrest in the wake of George Floyd's homicide, all of us serving on the LOSD School Board wish to express our grave sorrow about what these ongoing tragedies convey about our humanity and the impacts of fear, hatred and systematic racism in our institutions. We know we are not alone in our outrage, and we wish to express our renewed commitment to our community to affect change.
As school officials who are elected to amplify our community's voices when making policy, resource and leadership decisions for our schools, we hear you. We are committed to understanding, and to amplifying your voice toward justice and decency. Every decision we make bears responsibility for cultivating our culture of belonging and for the value of each and every individual.
It's notable that our growing unrest has erupted during the unrelenting pandemic, which has exacerbated the social, economic and cultural divide in our community, state and nation. Public schools are the foundation of communities, providing critical support to some of our most vulnerable citizens. Lake Oswego schools have long been the soul of our town. It is a solemn responsibility that we must bridge the widening gaps of access and achievement in our schools and education system.
We in LOSD have an equity policy that drives our decision making. It explicitly requires us to be an anti-racist organization. We are committed to delivering on supports needed and honoring measures of accountability. Only when eradicating racism and inequities in our community will we truly provide meaningful educational experiences for all.
Lake Oswego is becoming more diverse, and we value our growing diversity. As we celebrate it we must also champion a desire and responsibility for equity, inclusion and access. We acknowledge the current and persistent crisis is a painful reminder of how much work needs to be done. It is important for us to be honest about our history in the United States, in Oregon, and in Lake Oswego; that we have had systems of economic and racial exclusion, and that we must do better. To be clear, we in LOSD stand in solidarity that Black Lives Matter, and we stand alongside our Black community as allies.
As we close out this school year for students, our hope is for a summer of non-violent resolution, restoration and reflection. In deeply reflecting on our current reality, and looking toward next school year, we embrace the opportunity to recommit our resolve to cultivating a culture of belonging.
Lake Oswego School Board
Rob Wagner, Chair
Liz Hartman, Vice Chair
Kirsten Aird, Director
Sara Pocklington, Director
John Wallin, Director
Dr. Lora de la Cruz, Superintendent
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