A message to all Osseo Area Schools students, staff and families
The loss of eight lives, six of them Asian American women, in Atlanta earlier this week is another stark reminder of the deep-seated and abhorrent racism in our country.
I want all students, staff and families—and especially members of our Asian, Asian American and Asian Pacific Islander communities—to know that our school district recognizes that the racism, hate language and violence they are experiencing are real and exacerbated by the pandemic. Please know that we see and hear you, we respect you, we stand in unity with you, and we will continue our work to disrupt racism in all forms.
It is essential that students and staff feel safe, welcomed and respected in their school and work places. School board policy explicitly prohibits any form of bullying, discrimination, harassment or violence. We strongly urge students and staff to report any such incidents to their principal or the SafeSchools Tipline, 763-391-8660 (students) or to the district’s executive director of human resources (staff). We take all reports seriously and will investigate them and take appropriate action based on our investigation.
School staff are ready to support students who are experiencing hate language, discrimination or violence. I encourage students to reach out to their school counselors, social workers or other trusted staff who can connect them to support resources.
I urge community members who are experiencing discrimination to report it to the MN Dept of Human Rights Discrimination Helpline: 1-833-454-0148 or http://mn.gov/mdhr/intake/. Interpreters and translators are available. Here are two additional community resources that might be helpful:
- Coalition of Asian American Leaders
- Unheard Stories: Asian Americans Experiencing Hate, Wednesday, March 24, 5-6:30 p.m.
As a district, we condemn xenophobia, racism, violence and hate language against Asians, Asian Americans, Asian Pacific Islander communities, and all other communities of color and indigenous peoples. In our district’s core values, we affirm that everyone has equal intrinsic value, and everyone benefits when cultural differences are acknowledged and understood and individuals are treated respectfully and equitably. We value and honor our district’s racial and cultural diversity, and we will continue to take an unwavering stand against any actions that seek to harm the children, employees, and families we serve.