Dear PUSD Community,
On Tuesday, March 16th, I was saddened to learn of another senseless shooting. This time targeting members of the Asian American community near the city of Atlanta, Georgia. Understandably, many of our students, work colleagues, and their family members, were frightened and concerned by an act of hate and violence directed towards Asian American individuals. Sadly, there has been an increasing level of hate speech and activity that has been directed towards this community and I am writing to ask for your help.
While events like these may fade from the headlines, it is critical that we lean in and take this opportunity to do our part. As a community, we must wrap our arms around those who feel threatened. Together, we can and should speak up in support of families who are vulnerable to this activity. Much of this work can be done by individuals and begin as personal conversations. Check in with your neighbors, friends, and work colleagues to let them know they have an ally. Act to intervene when you hear or see someone being mistreated.
And just as with flagrant acts of hate and violence, we cannot ignore the vital work involving implicit bias and larger systems and structures that need to be dismantled or reformed. As a District, we are committed to rolling up our sleeves, having conversations, and doing the difficult work associated with ensuring equity. We will advocate for the dignity and respect of each and every individual, and we are committed to developing a better understanding of our own biases as we move forward. Our team is preparing a focused effort to address issues or race and bias as a key component of our work to build a more equitable school system in Pleasanton.
This work is rooted in our District mission and solidified in our Equity and Diversity Resolution originally passed by our Board of Trustees in 2016, which states “We recognize there are historical and ongoing societal causes of inequity, and we are firmly committed to the success and well-being of all Pleasanton children.” During our March 25 regular board meeting, we will take an important step forward by establishing an important partnership that will bolster our equity work in the months and years ahead.
On a final note, I wanted to take this opportunity to express gratitude to the current and former PUSD students who have advocated for this work to be done. In so doing, you continue to embolden our district mission by actively and fearlessly working to make the world a better place. Your voices matter, and we are listening.