The Rashi School offers an academically challenging K-8 education in an environment infused with Jewish values. Encouraging questions and open conversations, Rashi's joyfully Jewish approach to learning helps children engage with the world and grow into the people they can become.
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“Empowering our students to find what is broken in the world and fix it.” Are Black people broken?
Why is there a photo of Black children above this caption with White Rashi children? Is it related to a story about Justice? Or simply an advantageous photo opportunity? If the latter, I would have preferred to see the photo above the caption titled COMMUNITY, a kinder message. If the photo is unrelated to any on the JUSTICE link, it is simply distasteful and culturally insensitive. Let me know if I’ve simply missed the story.
Hi Jennifer, thank you for checking our newsletter on this. To directly address your question, “Are Black people broken?” we offer a definitive and enthusiastic no. Rather, the fact that racism is an issue – especially in schools – is what’s broken in the world, which is what the image you are referencing to alludes to, and we encourage our middle schoolers to join in this conversation.
The image you mention in our email launching our blog is of members of the Class of 2019 at last year’s ADL Youth Congress. There, they met and worked with keynote speakers Mya and Deanna Cook, who are also pictured in the image. The sisters were asked to speak at the Congress, themed “Courageous Conversations,” about their experience of racism at their own school. The girls were suspended from school and barred from participating in extracurricular activities and events on account of their braided hair, which the school deemed broke their dress code. However, the girls argued, the rule against “unnatural hair styles and colors” was both biased and being unfairly enforced against children of color. Their pushback on the policy ignited the passion of Massachusetts kids and adults alike to ensure equity in our schools which led to changes in the school’s policy, reinstating the girls’ rights to participate in extracurricular activities, and requiring charter schools in Massachusetts to revisit their dress code policies for the future.
You can read the full story here: https://blog.rashi.org/2018/05/13/adl-inspires-kids-to-have-courageous-conversations/
We notice that this story was bumped to the second page of content on the JUSTICE section of our site. Please accept our apologies for any confusion this has caused. Is there anything we can do to further clarify or correct this?