Principal Newsletter 6.4.206/15/2020
Sellwood Principal’s Newsletter – June 4, 2020
Dear Sellwood Community,
With a heavy heart, I write this week’s newsletter. Our country is reeling in pain after witnessing the senseless and horrific death of another unarmed Black man, George Floyd, at the hands of the police. This outrage came on the heels of the fatal shooting and murder of Ahmaud Arbery, an unarmed Black jogger in Georgia, at the hands of three white men. Just today, I learned that before Ahmaud was shot, the men had hit him with their truck! Yet these two brutal killings are just the most recent expressions of a system rooted in racial oppression and injustice.
As a White, anti-racist in a position of leadership, I am compelled to speak out against racial injustice and White supremacy. I believe we all have a responsibility to play an active role in dismantling systemic racism and change our collective future. When driven by parents and schools working side-by-side, education can be the key to that change.
Earlier in the school year, Sellwood students indicated in a survey that working to end racial injustice was one of their strongest areas of interest, along with climate justice. That knowledge fills me with hope. I am also aware that many Sellwood students and families participated in local protests in the wake of the George Floyd killing. Before the abrupt school closure, Sellwood had started doing some school-wide work with students addressing hate speech, and had signed up to participate in the 2020 Middle School Conference on Race. Unfortunately, we did not make as much progress as we had hoped. However, I want you all to know that I am committed more than ever to do the work.
Below are links to resources families can use to engage children in conversations that can open minds and inspire action.
Racial Equity & Justice Parent Resources
NPR Interview with Professor Harvey: 'Raising White Kids' Author On How White Parents Can Talk About Race
Parent Toolkit: How to talk to kids about race and racism
CNN Article: How to talk to you children about protests and racism
Raising Equity: Resources for parents engaging kids in conversations about racial equity
List of movies from Common Sense Media that “Inspire Kids to Change the World”
Education must be centered on human dignity and prepare our students to disrupt systems of oppression. Schools and families must partner to raise and educate our white children be to anti-racists. We must teach our youth to stand up and speak out for justice and decency. There is no other way forward.
- If you are neutral in situations of injustice you have chosen the side of the oppressor - Desmond Tutu
Thank you, Sellwood Community: students, families, and staff. I look forward to working with you to shape a future changed for the better.
Important Dates to Remember
June 8: 6th-grade Item Collection (see schedule below)
June 9th: 7th grade Item Collection (see schedule below)
June 9: 8th-grade Promotion Video Virtual Party, 7PM
June 10: 8th-grade Teacher Car Parade, 1PM
June 10: Last Day of School
June 17: Sellwood Middle School Foundation Meeting
Yearbooks will be available for pick-up at the school on June 8th and 9th. If you did not order a yearbook and would like to purchase one, they are $17. Please note that we are unable to provide change.
Final Medication Pick-up
Our school nurse will be at Sellwood on Tuesday, June 9th, from 8-12 and will be available for a final medication pick-up. Medication that is unclaimed after the end of the school year will be destroyed as per medication guidelines.
SUMMER MEALS FOR PPS STUDENTS
The Nutrition Services department will be extending current meal services into the summer, June 11th through August 21st at all locations except Rigler and Harrison Park due to extensive construction projects. Breakfast and lunch will be provided to any PPS student and any children in the community ages 1-18, Monday through Thursday. Meals for Friday, Saturday and Sunday are provided on Thursdays. Children do not need to be present to pickup the meals.
Meals will be available for pickup outside the school from 11:30 a.m. - 1 p.m. at the locations below.
Boise-Eliot/Humboldt Elementary - 620 N Fremont Ave
César Chávez Elementary - 5103 N Willis Blvd
Dr. Martin Luther King Jr. Elementary - 4906 NE 6th Ave
Franklin High School - 5405 SE Woodward St
George Middle School - 10000 N Burr Ave
Grout Elementary - 3119 SE Holgate Blvd
Lent School - 5105 SE 97th Ave
Madison at Marshall - 3905 SE 91st Ave
Markham Elementary - 10531 SW Capitol Hwy
Rosa Parks Elementary - 8960 N Woolsey Ave
Scott Elementary - 6700 NE Prescott St
Sitton Elementary - 9930 N Smith St
Woodmere Elementary - 7900 SE Duke St
As in years past, the Nutrition Services department will partner with Portland Parks and Recreation to provide meals at 13 additional parks throughout the city starting June 22. More information will be provided later about services times.
The park locations are listed below:
N Delaware Avenue and N Kilpatrick Street
700 N Rosa Parks Way
St Johns Park
8427 N Central Street
N Woolsey Avenue and N Winchell Street
NE 19th Avenue and NE Jarrett Street
5810 NE 72nd Avenue
875 NE Fremont Street
5200 NE Alberta Street
NE 82nd Avenue and Glisan Street
SE 76th Avenue and Center Street
SE 84th Avenue and Harrison Street
SE 92nd Avenue and SE Steele Street
Mt Scott Park
SE 72nd Avenue and SE Ramona Street