“Our mission is the academic achievement of every student learning in a system dedicated to social justice and multiculturalism.” -ARPS.Org
We are a district that has stated that we are committed to equitable access to education, dedication to social justice and multiculturalism. It is important to bear in mind that this is a goal to be reached and we still have quite a ways to go. We can’t get complacent and fall into the belief that, since we have stated these goals, we have accomplished the objective. It could (and should) be reasonably argued that equity does not exist when some students are learning in a more aesthetically pleasing or even a physically healthier environment than others. We need to work towards constantly improving and maintaining our buildings so that all of our students can enjoy their educational experience in an environment conducive to the educational journey.
We have to continue to implement restorative practices instead of more punitive approaches. The lessons we teach our children in the most difficult moments can either give them tools to do better throughout their life or completely destroy their love of education. The restorative approach affords the opportunity for a student to learn from their mistakes rather than to be admonished for their behavior. It’s also important to note that disparate disciplinary outcomes are greatly decreased for BIPOC students under restorative models like the one we have implemented at ARHS. We need to incorporate more of these programs and practices throughout our districts.