A Message from our Executive Director on Racism & Equity
The leadership and staff of the VT-HEC add our voices to the resounding chorus that has risen to express outrage, sadness, anger and dismay at the latest examples of the long-standing and systematic violence inflicted upon people of color. Black Lives Do Matter. Those of us who have benefited from white privilege may struggle to understand what living with this fear and injustice every day entails and we are humbled by our inability to fully relate to the impact of the systematic deprivation of human rights. What we do clearly recognize is our collective responsibility to confront racism wherever it exists and to join together to attack it at its foundation. We recognize that:
- We Are All Responsible as educators to eliminate racism in our schools and to demand and actively strive toward an equitable and inclusive system of education for all.
- We Are All Responsible as parents to raise our children with the knowledge of the injustices that exist in the world and the need for all of us to take action against them.
- We Are All Responsible as friends and family members to demonstrate empathy in accepting human differences and show kindness and understanding to those different than ourselves.
- We Are All Responsible as citizens to choose representatives at every level of government that share these values and demonstrate the courage to act accordingly.
- We Are All Responsible as individuals to stand against racism in all its forms and to take action to advance social and economic justice.
Over the past few years, the VT-HEC has acted on its responsibility to address inequity in education by dedicating its Mission Investment Fund to offer education opportunities to all those who work to benefit children and youth including:
- designing workshops focused on reducing inequity related to race, immigration, poverty, gender, disability, sexual identification, and sexual preference.
- providing a growing library of free webinars on the Equity Literacy Framework.
- offering workshop series and courses at nominal cost focused on attacking inequity in race, poverty, immigration, and gender.
In the coming years VT-HEC commits continued focus on its responsibility by offering additional learning opportunities and providing resources targeted to:
- creating gender-affirming environments,
- building restorative justice,
- addressing implicit bias and
- reducing the inequities related to poverty, disability, and race.
We embrace our responsibility and work to ensure that all students receive an equitable education that includes learning about and reducing social injustice, and systemic racism and bias. It is our hope that we can all be responsible for future generations that are more accepting of differences and demonstrate kindness to all.