[BHS Etree] ADMIN: BSU Plan of Action for 11-13-2015 & Principal Update
bhs at lists.lmi.net
Thu Nov 12 19:13:19 PST 2015
PLEASE do not reply to this email, contact Sam Pasarow sampasarow at berkeley.net<mailto:sampasarow at berkeley.net>
Dear Students via Student Email Accounts:
Dear Parents / Guardians via the BHS ETREE:
Dear Staff via Berkeley Conference:
Please find two messages in this email:
1. An update from the BHS Black Student Union (BSU) about action planned for tomorrow, November 13th.
2. A principal update on the November 4th incident.
Update from the BSU Co-Presidents Alecia Harger and Nebeyat Zekaryas:
In recent days Black students across the nation have faced threats of violence and dealt with acts of terror that compromised their ability to learn safely in their schools.
Last Thursday we as a school reacted to terroristic threats that were made against Black people at Berkeley High with fervor and strength that echoed across our state and our nation, just as students at University of Missouri and Yale have been doing in the past days.
We are asking that everyone continue to show solidarity with Black students both at Berkeley High and across the nation by wearing all black tomorrow (November 13th). This blackout will allow us to visually understand just how many people are ready to stand with Berkeley High's Black community and Black students throughout our country as we continue to fight for our right to education and safety in our schools.
I wanted to provide another update to our teachers, students, parents and guardians regarding last Wednesday's hate crime. We have taken the investigation of this incident very seriously. Please see the chronology of our investigative efforts and our actions to ensure campus safety for African American students and our school community:
*with support from district officials, safety team members and technology specialists, we identified the student responsible for the hate crime within a 24-hour period
*we interviewed additional students to ensure that the individual student acted alone
*we ensured that the Berkeley Police Department had contact with the student and their guardian; BPD has determined that the student who made the threats is incapable of--and does not intend to--act on the threats left on the library computer
*we are conferring with district officials and legal counsel as determinations are being made around consequences and next steps for the student who made the threats
While I can't speak to the specific consequences the student will face, I can say that the consequences are serious given the gravity of the incident and the harm it caused our African American students and our community.
I wanted to reiterate how amazing our students were during the demonstration on Thursday. I speak for the staff, the Berkeley Police Department and the community when I say that we are in awe of our students' leadership and advocacy. As the new principal here at BHS, I am blown away by our students' capability to move forward positive change in our school community.
I acknowledge that the medium can restrict the message, as in the case of mass email. In that spirit, I encourage our teachers, parents, guardians and students to have honest conversations about institutional racism and last Wednesday's incident, and the effect it had on our African American students.
In closing, the administration supports action that we take as a community and it is my hope that this action is sustained, transformative and student-centered and student-driven. Thanks for your attention and I hope that we show solidarity tomorrow by wearing black per the BSU's plan of action.
Berkeley High School
Marguerite Fa-Kaji, Catherine Ference and Dylan Kaufman are the parent-volunteer facilitators of the Etree; please direct any questions about the Etree to them at bhs-owner at lmi.net<mailto:bhs-owner at lmi.net>.
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