Like many of you, I have been following important national events and conversations. Topics in the news have ranged from immigration policy, to professional athletes and the national anthem, to conflicts in places like Charlottesville. Many of these conversations touch on issues of race, culture, socioeconomics, and how we understand and enact our fundamental rights and responsibilities as Americans. These national events and conversations impact our community.
It is not surprising that reactions and conversations about these events find their way into our schools. Like adults, students (even our youngest) have questions and opinions on these topics. Our teachers find age-appropriate ways to support students and facilitate conversations on events that impact them and our community; our goal is to always provide a safe environment that fosters learning.
As we engage in these issues nationally and here in Frederick County, it is important that we – as a community – continue to reinforce and model core values for our young people. We value the freedom of speech and expression all members of our community possess. We value respect, compassion, and courtesy – as we engage in conversations on various topics with civility. We value each person’s right to be treated with dignity. We honor the diversity, cultures, and traditions that make up our community.
We do not and will not tolerate or abide personal attacks, expressions of racism, bigotry, violence, physical force, or intimidation of any kind.
FCPS students and staff have an opportunity to model how we, as a community, can engage in difficult and sometimes uncomfortable conversations, doing so with respect, civility, and kindness. I am proud to lead FCPS, and I am proud of the strong and vibrant community our students, staff, and families have built together.
Is it important to you that we model positive values for our children? How do you engage with your children about national issues? Share your thoughts on Twitter @FCPSMDSuper. And please feel free to share it on Facebook or Twitter.