Letter to the editor: Those who fear the word equity don’t understand what it is | SummitDaily.com

Letter to the editor: Those who fear the word equity don’t understand what it is

Stu Dearnley

Recent letters to the editor are slamming the equity policy as liberal, woke and anti-white. I feel there’s a lot of misunderstanding about what equity means and what the school board is trying to do. For example, equity is not Marxist or in support of “equal outcomes for dispossessed groups regardless of merit or rule of law,” and the school board has never discussed The 1619 Project.

Equity is a principle that guides management and policymaking. While equality is putting assignments online, equity is ensuring all families have internet access at home whereby they can view those assignments. While equality is holding sports tryouts, equity is ensuring students who ride the bus can get home after staying late to attend tryouts. Other commonsense measures (such as closed-captions for meetings and events for non-English speakers) are outlined in the policy. It’s a short read, and the takeaway should be that helping disenfranchised students is not inherently at the expense of enfranchised students.

Pursuing equity is not witch hunting for racists. It’s training teachers and administrators in new best practices that I can’t even speak to fully because I’ve not undergone said training. While the board is split on some issues, it seems unanimous in supporting equity work. Anyone against a “just and equitable education” likely doesn’t understand what it entails, which is all the more reason it’s needed.

It’s great that people want to get involved. The appropriate way to do so is sitting in on board meetings and making public comments on the record that speak to source texts and not social commentary on those texts. Recordings of the meetings are available to the public, so study up. The school board has a lot of work to do, and none of the real work is being addressed by Kim McGahey.

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