Sunday, March 24, 2019

March 24 Update

Dear Parents and Guardians,

I hope this message finds you well.  Like many of you, the recent graffiti incidents have occupied my mind during these past few weeks.  Yes, it is discouraging to know that there is a student (or students) who continues to engage in hateful behaviors even after the school intervened during the past two weeks.  However, there some positive things that are happening as the result of the actions the school has taken.  Recently, I saw a student who on his own accord was putting up random notes of kindness on our walls.  He was not looking for extra credit or any recognition.  He simply wanted to spread kindness throughout McCall.  I also have Muslim students wanting to meet with me because they want to educate their peers about their religion for no other reason than to promote diversity and inclusion.  I have encountered students stopping me in the hallway to ask me whether I thought something they had just said to another student would be considered microaggression.  I am glad to see students are reflecting on their own actions and working hard to think beyond their own feelings.  Lastly, we have a group of staff members volunteering their own time to start up the Acceptance and Inclusion Committee.  I am hoping all these things indicate we are making progress toward creating a more inclusive school community. 

With that being said, this most recent graffiti incident also reminded me that our work does not stop after one assembly or one lesson.  The conversation about kindness and acceptance needs to be part of our everyday discourse.  I hope I can count on all parents and guardians to continue to help us integrate the idea of acceptance and respect for diversity into our daily interactions with our students and with each other.  The graffiti incidents we have experienced recently are not unique to McCall.  When they do happen, please know that we will always respond to ensure everyone in community know that these behaviors will not be tolerated.  The graffiti incidents also underscore the need for all of us to continue to address these matters with our students.

Thank you for your continued support,

James Lin
McCall Middle School

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