Happy St Patrick's Day

As my family cooks corned beef & cabbage for St Patrick's Day today, I wish you all and your families much luck and good health.  

Here are two important items I wanted to be sure to share with you before I go offline:

  • Next steps for in-person student opportunities at MDUSD Schools
  • Board President Statement in Solidarity with Asian Americans

Next steps for In-Person Student Opportunities at MDUSD Schools

Last night we held a special board meeting about the ReOpening of Schools Timeline.
The majority of us chose to attend the meeting in person in the board room, which has been rearranged with COVID spacing and precautions.  The public for now needs to still access our meetings online, but eventually I'm hopeful that we'll end up with a combination of in-person and online access for all.   It was wonderful to be back in the board room again!
With fresh news of a tentative agreement between MDEA and MDUSD on a hybrid MOU that had been agreed upon at 5am Tuesday morning, our board unanimously voted in favor of the timeline as described in the MOU (pending approval):
  • Beginning March 25, preschool through 2nd grade and SDC classes will have an option to return to their school to attend In-person Learning Support sessions.
  • Beginning March 29, students in grades 3-12 will have an option to return to their school to attend In-person Learning Support sessions.
  • A 100% distance learning model will continue to be an option for all families.
MDEA members will vote this week on approval of the agreement, and we’ve set a special board meeting this Friday for the school board to then vote to ratify the agreement. (We will also ratify any agreements from other employee groups that are ready)

The agenda, with tentative agreements attached, will be posted at mdusd.org/boardmeetings at least 24 hours in advance of the special meeting.

I am so thankful to all who spent countless hours ensuring agreement on the safety and logistics of hybrid learning, and I look forward to seeing the smiling faces of students on our campuses very soon!


Board President Statement in Solidarity with Asian Americans

My heart goes out to our AAPI students, staff, administration and community in the midst of unconscionable hate and violence.  We posted this message today on the district website.

A special thank you to the over 70 caring MDUSD teachers, staff and community members who signed a letter to share this information and resources that are so important at this time.

Dear Mt. Diablo Unified School District Staff and Community,

     The dramatic increase in the violent and disturbing crimes and incidents toward the Asian American and Pacific Islander (AAPI) communities during this pandemic, and especially toward the elderly, is disheartening and deserves acknowledgement and denouncement. These events are antithetical to our organization’s beliefs and cultural aspirations, and they serve as a reminder that progress in these areas requires tremendous diligence, especially from educators, who bear a great responsibility to lift up our next generations ever higher. 

     Our MDUSD students and staff deserve to learn and work in a community and world that is free of racism, discrimination, and violence. Everybody deserves to feel safe in their neighborhoods and communities. 

     It is clear that the AAPI community has been experiencing discrimination and violence motivated by racism. The recent attacks on Vicha Ratanapakdee, Noel Quintana, Yik Oi Huang, Grandmother Duong from San Jose,  Mauricio Gesmundo, just to name a few, are both horrifying and sickening. The shootings in Atlanta just this morning, wherein six AAPIs were murdered, has stirred speculation about racist motivations. Truly, these events impact all of us in our communities, and we condemn all forms of racism and scapegoating of Asian Americans and Pacific Islanders in the Bay Area and beyond. 

     Education is inseparable from the ideals of justice, equity, and inclusion. We believe equity is a student, staff and community right, and every student is provided with what they individually require to learn and succeed to fulfill their academic and social education. We stand firm on ensuring equitable, inclusive, and anti-racist policies and practices. We are committed to holding each other responsible for respectful conduct and treatment of one another.

     We stand together with our AAPI students, staff, administration and community. We support restorative justice models that break the cycle of violence, Ethnic Studies to teach people about racial solidarity, community mediation efforts to not only hold people accountable, but to work together to resolve issues. 

     Here’s how you can help: 

  • Save the MDUSD Campus Safety Hotline contact: (925) 709-4847. This hotline is available for students and parents/guardians to leave a confidential, taped message about anything occurring at school that is causing students to feel unsafe—this includes virtual classroom environments.
  • For educators: visit this Learning for Justice response resource.
  • For families: Use this resource guide to help you discuss current events with your family. Here is another parent guide to help Prevent and also Respond to Prejudice.
  • Report incidents, read through reports, and news releases at stopaapihate.org  
  • Oakland Chinatown created this list of how to help support the AAPI communities, report hate crimes or get mental health or legal support.

     As MDUSD continues to do our part in diversity, equity and inclusion work as a community, we hold hope as people from different cultures and communities rise together to condemn hate. A community of belonging does not happen at the expense of the oppression of others. Let us continue to do this work together. 

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  • Cherise Khaund
    published this page in Blog 2021-03-17 14:37:51 -0700