UPDATE: After scores of parents protested, last night the Palm Beach County School Board voted 4-3 to remove the “white advantage” line in the Equity Statement that says “dismantling structures rooted in white advantage.”
School board members approved the statement on May 5 with the goal of helping all students have equal access to learning resources, regardless of their backgrounds.
Palm Beach County School board members may revise and amend a controversial Equity Statement Wednesday.
The statement was recently unanimously approved and outlines the district’s goal of “dismantling structures rooted in white advantage,” wording that has upset the community.
Many concerned parents are argue the terminology is “racist and counterproductive.”
As a result, the school board will hold a workshop today to potentially revise and amend the “white advantage” phrasing in the Equity Statement.
There are only two ways that parents can interact with the school board today: by going to the meeting in person, or by leaving a voicemail that will be played during the school board meeting.
Otherwise, the only other thing parents can do is log into the website and watch the meeting. The meeting is not interactive online. You can only login and watch, but not participate.
School board members approved a new Equity Statement on May 5 that outlines the district’s goal of “dismantling structures rooted in white advantage” and “elevating under-represented voices, sharing power, recognizing and eliminating bias, and redistributing resources to provide equitable outcomes.”
Officials said the new statement was created, in part, because of “glaring disparities” in student performance, suspension rates, attendance, and more.
That is, every Palm Beach County student should have equal access to learning resources, regardless of their backgrounds.
The School District of Palm Beach County’s full Equity Statement and Definition reads as follows:
“The School District of Palm Beach County is committed to dismantling racism and other systems of oppression and inequity. We will create equitable and inclusive schools that ensure students have what they need to be successful in school and life.
Achieving racial equity requires proactive and continuous investment in historically marginalized groups who have endured centuries of systemic oppression. The School District of Palm Beach County is committed to dismantling structures rooted in white advantage and transforming our system by hearing and elevating under-represented voices, sharing power, recognizing and eliminating bias, and redistributing resources to provide equitable outcomes.
The School District of Palm Beach County will take ownership for students’ academic mastery, emotional intelligence, and social-emotional needs by creating environments where students, families, staff, and communities will develop agency and voice.
The School District of Palm Beach County acknowledges the existence of—and will eliminate—systems, processes, and mindsets that perpetuate race, ethnicity, poverty, disability, language status, undocumented status, religious affiliation, gender identity, and sexual orientation as predictors of achievement.
The School District of Palm Beach County will embrace, celebrate, and honor our students, families, staff, and community members and their unique cultural histories, while ensuring each student achieves personal and academic success.”
“We need to discuss this and take out the words that are incendiary,” said School Board Chairman Frank Barbieri, adding that the statement has unintentionally become a “Black and White issue.”