Superintendent Message to our Families

Superintendent Message to our Families

To the Spencerport School District Learning Community,

Our nation is outraged as am I by the senseless murder of George Floyd by a police officer in Minneapolis on May 25. This violent death fills us all with many emotions, including shock, anger, and grief; yet most of all, his death leaves us with heartbreak for yet another life lost simply because of race.

The events of the last several days, and most recently here in Rochester, have left me deeply troubled and concerned for our children here in Spencerport and our region. Specifically, all children but especially our children of color may be experiencing the same feelings of injustice, sadness, confusion, and anger, and trying to make sense of the senseless. There are no easy answers, but please know you are not alone.

A compilation of helpful resources and materials are provided below for your reference. Our school counseling teams are also available – even remotely - to listen and offer support. Our Family Support Center (FSC) also provides numerous links for families as a no-fee, short-term counseling service. Information on our FSC may also be found in the resources below.

Please let us know if you or your children need to make a connection at this time. Just email your child’s principal, teacher or counselor with any requests for support or email me directly at (dmilgate@spencerportschools.org) to connect you.

We are all in this together. I want all our families of color to know we remain committed to systemic change, and our diverse students, parents, families, staff, and residents are a vital part of our community. 

In Spencerport, I am proud of our work in respect to Culturally Responsive Education (CRE), equity, and inclusion efforts in the district. Our focus for the last two years has included staff trainings, curriculum audits, student engagement, increased multi-cultural activities, and our District Equity Committee. Last week, two of our high school students and our Assistant Superintendent for Instruction Ty Zinkiewich co-presented to our Board of Education on our progress to date.

Systemic change cannot come fast enough. I hope we can all agree that these last several months have been filled with challenges on many levels: the COVID-19 pandemic, polarizing political climate, and the latest race-related death in our nation. Regardless of each of our own personal views, we must all do better for the sake of all our children.

I am proud of our Spencerport community and how we respond together in both good and challenging times. I look forward to continuing our work around CRE, as well as your ongoing support and partnership. I will certainly keep you all updated on our progress along the way.

Sincerely,

Dan Milgate

Superintendent of Schools

 

Helpful Resources:

Links:

Family Support Center, https://www.spencerportschools.org/parents___community/family_support_center

NPR What to Say to Kids When the News is Scary

Talking to Children about Tragedies and Other News Events

Attached:

Traumatic Impact of Racism on Young People and How to Talk about it

Addressing Race in the Classroom