Seattle educators send a powerful message: Black Lives Matter in our streets and schools

All photos courtesy Sharon H. Chang

By Marcha I. Chaudry

Take Action ›

Start the conversation with these resources on racial justice. Click here ›

In an unprecedented show of solidarity, over 2,000 Seattle educators wore Black Lives Matter shirts to school on Wednesday to call for equity in education and to assure their students that “Black lives matter in Seattle public schools.” Educators also wanted to show their support for John Muir Elementary School, which received racist threats last month over the staff’s plans to wear Black Lives Matter (BLM) shirts for another planned event.

blm3“It’s hard to even put into words the power of this day,” said Garfield High School teacher and community activist Jesse Hagopian. “Never before in the country has an entire district of educators risen up to declare that Black Lives Matter.”

The message was more than words on a shirt, said members of Social Equality Educators, a group within the Seattle Education Association, who helped organize the event. Many educators around the city held teach-ins, presented age-appropriate racial justice curriculum, supported student activism and leadership, and organized with community members.

The event quickly became a community affair, with families distributing homemade buttons and parents setting up information booths in front of their schools with resources for teaching about institutional racism.

Janett Du Bois
Janett Du Bois

Midway through the rally, special education teacher Janett Du Bois revealed to the crowd that her son had been shot by police several years ago. Tears streaming, Dubois said that it was seeing everyone wearing the Black Lives Matter shirts that gave her the strength to tell her story.

“There is so much work left to be done to make Black Lives truly matter at school,” declared Hagopian. “It’s going to take concerted effort by parents, students, and educators working together to challenge the system. But today, something happened that let everyone know that change is on the way.”

Reader Comments

  1. No matter what color or race is the child what it matters is their education and the future of this country .Which any race can filled the careers in any responsible respected job.Life Matters .All children life Matters.Black Lives Deserves respect.Every race and color deserves respect.All are part of the future of this Nation

  2. Black Lives Matter, Occupy Wall Street, and the group at Cal that wouldn’t let whites pass across a bridge on ampus, are all part of the extreme left and George Sorrow backed socialists and communists who are destroying our country. They havery brainwashed many young college students into believing that socialism and communism are the best form of government. Research how many millions more Stalin killed of his own people. Check out how many Cinese Mao Tse Tung murdered. By the way, look at the way Democrat ran cities like Cicago, Baltimore, Ferguson, and others are run. Democrats want to take your freedoms, take your guns, ,take you religion and then govern you how they wish. They will tell you what you should be paid, what work you shall do, and will take away all American freedoms we have now. Wake up America -it’s nearly too late now!

Leave a Reply

Your email address will not be published. Required fields are marked *