Regarding George Floyd, racial injustice, and systemic change
6/12/2020 3:29:59 PM
[ST. PAUL, MN] -- The Professional Educator Licensing and Standards Board wants to add our voice to the outrage over George Floyd’s murder, yet another example of the pervasive and systemic racism within our state. As Minneapolis, Minnesota, and the nation turn toward policing reforms, we seek to transform our piece of the larger institutionalized problems that lead to repeated racial injustice and that disproportionately impact the lives of Black people in this country.
We acknowledge that true change cannot be achieved without addressing the systems of oppression at work across all sectors of society. Education is one of those sectors.
PELSB’s goal is to ensure the voices guiding our decisions take into consideration all of Minnesota. Educators of color led PELSB efforts in the development of a robust cultural competency training for renewing teachers. PELSB is also currently working within administrative rule to ensure standards for new teachers include working on implicit bias and understanding systemic racism within education.
While we have taken steps in the right direction, we know these steps are not enough. We can do more and we will do better. PELSB wants to reassure you that we are committed to standing up and stepping even deeper into this work.
Through national quantitative research and individual testimony at our board table, drastically increasing the number of Black, Indigenous, and other teachers of color in Minnesota is imperative. Additionally, we must ensure our white teachers fully understand their implicit biases and the devastating impacts of not addressing these biases directly.
We stand with the people of Minnesota and the nation calling, once again, for extensive systemic change and a refocusing of resources to continue the work of educational equity. We want to continue working with communities of color and indigenous communities in addressing our role, both in policy and implementation of policy. While these conversations are not new and this need is not unique to this time or place, PELSB is committed to responding to this justified outrage by working toward meaningful, systemic, and long-lasting change.