YCSC Students, Staff, and YouthBuild Partners,
On January 6th, 2021, while a joint session of Congress was gathered to certify Joe Biden as the next President of the United States, a violent insurrection interrupted that process. This insurrection against our democratic government was led by Trump supporters, extremists, conspiracy groups, and several other fringe groups who wanted to overturn the 2020 election results.
Since YouthBuild Charter School’s vision is that “all young people, regardless of their circumstances, have access to an education that will prepare them to counter social inequities and realize their full potential,” we do not support the violence, hate and actions of the above individuals that took place in Washington D.C.
As a school, we know that our ultimate goal is to prepare our students to take their rightful place as leaders in their communities and in the world. This requires all of us as educators to convert moments like yesterday into teachable moments from which to prepare valuable leadership lessons for our students.
While we know that it is difficult to remain hopeful and optimistic when we see such shocking and senseless acts, we know that our young people can be inspired by those who have successfully persisted against similar challenges. Therefore, during these difficult times, we should give light to the amazing accomplishments that were made and led by Stacey Abrams, Founder of Fair Fight Action and Fair Count in the state of Georgia. Stacey Abrams along with determined organizers, volunteers, and canvassers spearheaded election reform in their state. This is a major accomplishment despite all of the chaos that has been happening over the past few months. While it may be difficult, it is important to find the good, the light, and the positivity in what may feel like a sea of negativity and hopelessness.
In the end, not only do we want young people to learn from the work of Stacy Abrams but from the work of so many individuals and organizations, including Black Lives Matter, that have called for the eradication of white supremacy forever.
YCSC is committed to being a safe place for students and staff and as always we are here to support students and staff with any mental health needs related to this or any other personal struggles.
In addition, the following resource is available to anyone:
The UCLA Center for Mental Health Projects in Schools (http://smhp.psych.ucla.edu) has begun to gather best practices for educators on how to address these events with students: http://smhp.psych.ucla.edu/pdfdocs/1-7-21.pdf. You can join the listserv for MHP or share your own resources with them by e-mailing Ltaylor@ucla.edu.