Strengthening Equitable Practices in the Lowell Public Schools
Dear Lowell Public Schools Students, Staff, Families and Community Members,
Last year, our district took a significant step in our strategic planning process by defining our fundamental commitments to equity as being central to every aspect of our work. However, we all know that words without actions are meaningless. We also know that as public school leaders we must be accountable for examining not only the individual instances and implications of racism, but also the embedded institutional racism that has directly or indirectly perpetuated racism and privilege across some district policies and practices.
In accordance with our pledge to hold ourselves accountable for addressing inactions that have historically marginalized our diverse learning communities, we have designed a new protocol for reporting bias-based misconduct (i.e. discrimination, harassment, and racism). This is just one method toward combating inequitable practices in our district.
Over the next few weeks, we will work to build awareness around the new reporting protocol for staff, students and families which includes a series of Anti-Racism training sessions in which staff and administrators will engage. These anti-racism training sessions will commence in November for all staff district-wide. School leaders and central office administrators will continue monthly training throughout the 2020-21 school year while a district team plans toward a multi-year anti-racism plan for implementation across the entire district beginning the following year.
We recognize that there is much work to be done to ensure that every student in Lowell, regardless of race, ethnicity, or socioeconomic status, has equitable access to a quality education that will help them achieve their greatest potential. We embrace our responsibility and obligation to our students and to the broader LPS community to create and sustain an environment where students feel safe, respected and inspired. To this end, we remain committed to intentional and sustainable efforts toward strengthening our policies and practices on non-discrimination, anti-harassment and anti-racism in efforts to create safe and welcoming learning environments.
For more information on our new protocol, please visit our LPS website and click the Discrimination, Harassment, and Racism tab under Our District or contact the Office of Equity and Empowerment at (978) 674-4326. Additionally, please take a moment to view this brief video message addressing our new protocol and our commitment to equity.
Dr. Joel D. Boyd
Superintendent of Schools