Part of Sacajawea’s school mission is to “compassionately educate for human greatness as an inclusive community.”  However, racism is a far-reaching problem that requires continual and active work to uproot.

During the 2015-16 school year, several racist incidents occurred among Sacajawea students. It was an upsetting reminder that the Sacajawea community was not protected from exposure to racism and negative narratives about people of color. Part of the school’s response was to create the Racial Equity Team to help the staff and community gain the expertise needed to address racism within Sacajawea.  

The Racial Equity Team was formed in hopes of creating awareness in the community about how racism affects the daily lives of students as well as their families. Its goal is to eliminate or greatly decrease incidents of racism at school as well as in the community at large.

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School / Educator Initiatives

Seattle Public Schools has a set of district-wide initiatives aimed at improving equity and closing the achievement gap in schools. These initiatives include My Brother’s Keeper, a mentorship program; RULER, a social-emotional curriculum; Everyday Matters, an attendance program; and the Equity Toolkit, a set of questions to help analyze the racial equity impact of policies and programs.  

The educator-led Equity Team has taken on the task of finding ways to provide teachers with concrete tools and actions for improving equity at Sacajawea:

  • Culturally responsive teaching

  • Leading important conversations about race

  • Teacher trainings/diversity in the curriculum

  • Consultants, workshops and webinars

  • Anti-bullying initiatives, Zero Tolerance Policy

  • Using SPS-provided materials

    • Equity Toolkit

    • Black Lives Matter lessons plans

    • RULER curriculum (includes Mood Meters)

  • Finding ways to support immigrant families at Sacajawea

  • Looking at restorative justice and flexible discipline policies

  • Equity resources

    • Book wish lists

    • Videos

    • Online tools

Parent Actions

The parent-led Equity Team has focused on bringing an equity perspective to Sacajawea events and activities, and providing opportunities for community engagement in equity issues:

  • Working with PTA to host events and provide materials with a cultural focus for Sacajawea events

  • Highlighting information about cultural experiences and resources inside and outside Sacajawea

  • Hosting and supporting student and community workshops that directly address issues of equity

  • Organizing community actions

  • Providing additional educator support

    • Equity and anti-bias books for the library and the “River of Books” travelling library

    • Consultation on guest artists and continental display for the Continental Focus

    • Family and community member classroom cultural presentations

    • Equity around enrichment opportunities, working with the grants committee to secure scholarships

Other Resources from The School District

Join Us!

The Racial Equity Team needs your help and involvement to achieve its many goals. Parent meetings are held on the first or second Wednesday of the month at 6pm in the Library.  

For more information, contact Sac parents: Charlene Shanahan charlene.shanahan@gmail.com  or Jennifer Sunami sunami@gmail.com.

Recent Equity Team Updates