George Floyd’s Life Mattered
“Our children cannot dream unless they live, they cannot live unless they are nourished, and who else will feed them the real food without which their dreams will be no different from ours? 'If you want us to change the world someday, we at least have to live long enough to grow up!' shouts the child." - Audre Lorde, Sister Outsider
The news of yesterday’s verdict in the trial of Derek Chauvin for the murder of George Floyd reaches members of our school communities who have been waiting far too long for a sign that their lives matter from a system that has consistently protected police officers who target Black and Brown communities with unjust surveillance, abuse, and murder.
Accountability in this verdict is possible because it was driven by the tireless efforts of community organizers, activists, legal team members, legislators, voters, and truth tellers. They remind us of the courageous work of many of our students, whose schools empower them to leverage their learning for civic action and social justice.
Though this is a long overdue step toward accountability, Daunte Wright’s mother calls us to keep true justice in sight. In a just world, George Floyd, Daunte Wright, Adam Toledo, Ma’Khia Bryant, and countless others would still be alive. Our students and educators of color would not fear for their lives at the hands of a racist system. Every day that these injustices persist is a call for our continued push for an antiracist education, one with the potential to be an engine for equity and justice. Because we believe in the opportunity for every student to fully embody their unique genius at school and beyond, we must work to create the physically, socially, and emotionally safe learning environments where they will thrive.
There is a great deal of work yet to be done, and it is our honor to join with you to enact our shared vision of an equitable and antiracist future. Here are some resources that you may find helpful:
- Responding to the Chauvin Verdict | Learning for Justice
- In Every City There is a George Floyd (New York Times)
- George Floyd, Racism, and Law Enforcement (ADL)
- Bryan Stevenson’s essay for The 1619 Project
- Reflecting on George Floyd’s Death and Police Violence (Facing History).
- Resources from Education Minnesota