Rochester schools are observing Feb 17th as Black Lives Matter in School day

A letter was sent to teachers in the district on Thursday

ROCHESTER, N.Y. (WROC-TV) - On Thursday, the Rochester City School District sent a letter to teachers that the District will observe Black Lives Matter at School: A Day of Understanding and Affirmation.

Resolutions were passed by the Rochester Board of Education, Rochester Teachers Association and Association of Supervisors and Administrators of Rochester stating that schools, “should be places for the practice of equity, for the building of understanding, and for the active engagement of all in creating pathways to freedom and justice for all people.”

According to the District, the effort to create Black Lives Matter at School was a grassroots operation between parents, staff, and the community. They say Black Lives Matter at School is not an official part of the Black Lives Matter movement. 

57% of the students in the District are black.

The letter explains the purpose of the day by saying "t is especially important to highlight the value of black lives in a society whose history involves centuries of slavery and denial of civil rights to black citizens, the impacts of which continue to this day."

In the letter, the District explains that teachers have a choice of whether or not to participate "in a way that makes sense for students." They detail different ways that teachers can participate, including designing lesson plants and facilitating conversations among students and colleagues about race. Another way the District proposes teachers become involved is by inviting local activists and experts in as guest speakers. The District is also collaborating to provide an instructional resource toolkit for teachers. 

The District says they plan to reach out to District families soon. 

A website for the Black Lives Matter in School: A Day of Understanding and Affirmation. 


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