Disappointed in Reporting on School Task Force
As a member of the Race, Inclusivity and Community Task Force, I was once again disappointed by the inaccurate portrayal of our work in “Task Force Given Racial Equity Toolkits” in the January 15, 2021 issue of The Rye Record. I began reading the article with hope that my previous letter to the editor, dated November 6, 2020, was influential in combating the clearly one-sided inaccuracies prevalent in Mr. Jovanovich’s first article regarding the Task Force; however, I was quickly deflated.
Mr. Jovanovich once again cherry-picked language — this time from the vast toolkits provided to our Task Force —to paint an inaccurate picture of their contents. Mr. Jovanovich claims that “All adhere to this belief: Equity or equality of results, is preferable to quality of opportunity.” He goes on to support this claim with verbiage from the Chicago Public School Handbook. This is the same handbook that states as it’s guiding principle: “The Office of Equity develops, supports, implements, and reports on district efforts to eliminate the opportunity gaps in education quality, policies, and supports for students and adults,” a direct and clear disagreement with Mr. Jovanovich’s claim. He continues his review of the toolkits with the same narrow personal lens, combining opinion-based claims with hand-picked quotes.
I remain both disappointed in The Rye Record’s ability to accurately report on the important work of our Task Force, while still proud to be part of this group of independent, thoughtful, inquisitive volunteers.
I assure the public, there is no indoctrination happening on this committee. According to the District website: “The Race, Inclusivity and Community Task Force will take on the challenge of ensuring that we provide a school environment that supports all students and provides equity in opportunity.” The work is complicated and difficult, made more so by the inability to meet in person. Drawing directly from Dr. Byrne’s June community update, our Task Force is “committed to following a comprehensive process that will seek to identify areas where we fall short, opportunities for growth and in developing a plan that will ensure we achieve equity for all.” We will continue to collaboratively work towards this important goal.
- Kelsey Johnson