Letter to the Editor: Summit School District should include other opinions in its policies | SummitDaily.com

Letter to the Editor: Summit School District should include other opinions in its policies

Aaron Grasley

The word inclusion was often used at the Jan. 31 school board meeting when referring to the Just and Equitable Education policy passed in May 2021. A read of the policy will find the word inclusion missing and lacking the message that everyone should be included.

Interestingly, there is no policy within Summit School District that promotes inclusion of all students, parents, and community members. The elephant in the room then is, how can we fulfill the motto “We Belong” and improve the educational outcomes of all our students when there is no priority to achieve the goal.

It was made clear by officials: they will respectfully listen but have no intention to compromise with those that disagree with them. It begs the question, how does that attitude lead to inclusion? To include everyone, all parties involved must forfeit their current my-way-or-the-highway attitude and be willing to include some of the other sides’ priorities, values and good ideas in any policy, proclamation or curriculum.

The common ground is everyone desires to be represented and included. We want to see ourselves in policy and curriculum. All sides agree that respecting others as unique individuals will lead to a safer and improved educational experience with more positive outcomes. This is in line with the definition of equity in education, and it is something everyone in our community can rally around.

Our students are watching! The school board manufacturing controversy and creating division for political gain is not showing them examples of inclusion. Let us focus on living out kindness by finding the common ground and compromise. If we learn to respect perspectives of others that are different and intentionally include the other side in our policies, proclamations, and implementation, then everyone wins. That is inclusion!

My perspective is: inclusion is the solution!

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