Posted by Melvin Edwards on 3/25/2021

One week ago, eight people – six of them Asian American – were brutally slaughtered in a killing spree in Atlanta.

The incomprehensible loss of these eight lives occurred amid a rising number of acts of hate directed toward members of the Asian American community across the United States.

It is our responsibility not only to decry racism, bias, discrimination, and hatred wherever and whenever we see it, but to foster in any way we can an atmosphere of kindness, acceptance, and inclusion for every student and every family in our county. We denounce in the strongest possible terms not just the recent actions of hatred directed toward Asian Americans but acts of racism, bias and discrimination everywhere.

That is the aim of the Project Unity lessons imparted to students across our school system not just on the four designated dates on the calendar, but throughout the year. Based on the four standards of the Learning for Justice organization, we unequivocally seek to empower students through increased awareness of opportunities to discover individual and group identities and diversity as well as to better understand outlets for justice and action. That’s also the aim of AACPS Unites: to provide opportunities to our communities to explore diversity through literature with the goal of creating spaces for all students that promote diversity and inclusion to ensure more just, equitable and safe schools.

The work to create hearts of acceptance and inclusion is all of ours to do. It is incumbent upon every member of our school system, from the youngest to the oldest, as well as every member of our school communities not just to acknowledge the impact of hateful acts like those perpetrated in Atlanta last week, but to commit to better ourselves and each other so that we can collectively end hate and racism.

We stand as one in solidarity with and support of the Asian American members of our AACPS family.

All Means All.