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Letter from School Board Chairman and Superintendent

June 4, 2020


Dear FCPS Families, Staff, and Community Members,

We join our students, staff, families, and community members who are horrified by the death of Mr. George Floyd and the national outcry that has ensued since his murder. We denounce hatred, racism, and violence of any kind and commit to addressing the inequities that continue to exist in our schools and community. 

Fauquier County is a strong community. The greatest lesson we have learned through COVID-19 is the magnitude of our combined strength. Our combined power, understanding, learning, and work will bring about a much-needed change.  Together, we must be the solution.

At FCPS, our highest priority is to provide a safe and caring environment where all students are treated with respect and dignity. The learning we do together as a school community is an important factor in the development of children’s values, attitudes, and opportunities. We understand the incredible power education has to inspire positive change, even paving a path toward breaking the cycle of racism. 

As Nelson Mandela so astutely shared, “No one is born hating another person because of the color of his skin, or his background, or his religion. People must learn to hate, and if they can learn to hate, they can be taught to love, for love comes more naturally to the human heart than its opposite.”

Our children are our future, and therefore, our commitment to our equity work is unwavering.  We want to ensure that every child, no matter their disability, race, gender, or socioeconomic condition, receives what they need to be successful. We consistently address disparities, such as inequities in discipline data and educational opportunities, while providing a welcoming environment for all students in our school division. The heart of our equity work equips teachers with the tools to tackle difficult conversations and ensure inclusive environments for all students.  Moving forward, we will continue to promote equity and opportunity and break down barriers for all students. 

We have more work to do. We must continue to lean in and do what is right for our students and our nation.  Sometimes that involves engaging in challenging discussions regarding issues of race and equity. We encourage families to help their children navigate these topics and have included a resource to assist at the end of this letter.

Please stay safe, be well, and join us in making sure every child in Fauquier County feels safe, included, and valued.

 

Kind regards,

 

David Jeck, Division Superintendent

Duke Bland, School Board Chairman

 

Resource for Families:
Talking About Race