[BHS Etree] ADMIN: Reflections on Last Friday
bhs at lists.lmi.net
Wed Oct 25 17:38:48 PDT 2017
Good evening families,
When I last wrote on Friday afternoon, I promised to send an update as soon as it was available and appropriate to do so. I'm sharing below the text of an email that was just sent to all students and staff. The message may be directed toward students, but my words are for families as well. Thank you for reading, and have a good evening.
Good afternoon students,
I spoke briefly on the morning announcements on Monday, but I want to communicate more to you than I was able to in that brief comment, especially since I know that many of you are still dealing with a lot of feelings and emotion around your experience on Friday. A lot happened in a short period of time, and I want to address that with you and let you know what I'm thinking.
First, I need to say that I am thankful to the many, many students who had fun and were safe on Red and Gold Day - I appreciate you. There were also students who chose to drink and use drugs, throw things on the courtyard, and then go out into the community in disruptive and destructive ways after school. This is deeply concerning, of course, and the admin team, John V., and student leadership will continue to have conversations about that and how it affects plans for next year.
What I really need to address in this letter, however, are the events on Allston Way which began with a fight and led to large police presence and many troubling encounters between students and police. As with any situation like that, rumors are flying - too many for me to address in a letter like this. Here are a few things I can say that are true: three students were arrested, as was Mr. Boltz, our Dean of Attendance. All of them were released within a few hours after the event. Many things were happening at once, and the level of police response went suddenly from a few officers that we knew to multiple police cars and officers. Police officers and students engaged with each other in ways that were hard to witness, and left many students feeling upset and traumatized. Given the earlier events of this month at Berkeley High in which race and racism have been a huge source of pain for many students, I know this has added to already tense and raw feelings.
There are many conversations to be had going forward. Our admin team has talked at length about how we could have handled this situation better or differently. We have also talked with our School Resource Officer who was present on the scene. We have initiated conversations with district-level staff and the Berkeley Police Department as well, in order to further assess and evaluate our relationship, and how we interact with each other in emergency situations like Friday.
Any student who wants to is free to speak with any administrator about what they witnessed or experienced on Friday. Counselors in the health center, OCI, and our academic counselors are also all aware of what happened and available to talk. In addition, the Police Department has a process for complaints from citizens. Parents and families can contact the Internal Affairs Bureau, located in the Public Safety Building, 2100 Martin Luther King Jr. Way<http://track.spe.schoolmessenger.com/f/a/Gvrfpv3xOHAyKagkSPnHlg~~/AAAAAQA~/RgRb0lebP0EIAGz3thE7FhtXB3NjaG9vbG1YBAAAAABCCgABGyTxWefzj_tSGnN1c2FuY290b21ja2VubmFAZ21haWwuY29tCVEEAAAAAERPaHR0cHM6Ly9tYXBzLmdvb2dsZS5jb20vP3E9MjEwMCtNYXJ0aW4rTHV0aGVyK0tpbmcrSnIuK1dheSZlbnRyeT1nbWFpbCZzb3VyY2U9Z0ereyJzaGFyZGlkIjoiNCIsImpvYmlkIjoiMjUzMzAiLCJzZW50VGltZU1zIjoiMTUwODk3NTYyNTAxNSIsInBlcnNvbmlkIjoiNjQ0NTYiLCJzZXF1ZW5jZSI6IjAiLCJlbWFpbFNvdXJjZSI6IkNVU1RPTUVSX0pPQiIsImVudiI6InByb2QiLCJjdXN0b21lcmlkIjoiMzMyMyIsInVzZXJpZCI6IjI2NiJ9>, (510) 981-5706<tel:(510)%20981-5706>. Here is a direct link that explains the process for making complaints and bringing up concerns https://www.cityofberkeley.info/ContentDisplay.aspx?id=7042.<http://track.spe.schoolmessenger.com/f/a/gnKw7yxdRkqr9WQzmtEehA~~/AAAAAQA~/RgRb0lebP0EIAGz3thE7FhtXB3NjaG9vbG1YBAAAAABCCgABGyTxWefzj_tSGnN1c2FuY290b21ja2VubmFAZ21haWwuY29tCVEEAAAAAEQ7aHR0cHM6Ly93d3cuY2l0eW9mYmVya2VsZXkuaW5mby9Db250ZW50RGlzcGxheS5hc3B4P2lkPTcwNDJHq3sidXNlcmlkIjoiMjY2Iiwiam9iaWQiOiIyNTMzMCIsInBlcnNvbmlkIjoiNjQ0NTYiLCJlbnYiOiJwcm9kIiwic2VxdWVuY2UiOiIwIiwic2hhcmRpZCI6IjQiLCJlbWFpbFNvdXJjZSI6IkNVU1RPTUVSX0pPQiIsInNlbnRUaW1lTXMiOiIxNTA4OTc1NjI1MDE1IiwiY3VzdG9tZXJpZCI6IjMzMjMifQ~~>
Thank you for your time and attention to this message. As I often say, we have a lot of work ahead of us, and please know that my hope and goal is always to keep you safe and learning here at school.
Ms. Schweng on behalf of the admin team
Marguerite Fa-Kaji, Jenny Fosket 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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