Middle School Monday: What We Say—and Don’t Say—Matters
Our students are listening to us. Being neutral—or quiet—is also being registered by our students. They are noticing what we say. What we do. They also notice the silence.
Every one of us is on a different spot on our journey of cultural competency.* I was thinking this weekend about what is going on in our country and I’m just going to say it: unless you are resisting human rights violations and hateful rhetoric that is coming from the current administration, you are not moving forward on your cultural competence journey. To move forward is to RESIST. Not just resisting in our heads, but with our words and actions.
*This month’s YALS journal from YALSA is centered on issues of Cultural Competency. Full disclosure: I wrote one of the articles, centered on building relationships. In addition to talking about issues like reflective literature, pushing back against the notion of color-blindness, and building a diverse PLN, I put out a call—a question: Are we on the right side of contemporary civil rights issues? Are we? Are our libraries? Are you?
It’s not about politics. It’s about human rights. It’s about caring for our students—in a meaningful way.
I came in this morning and made this display.
Is it going to change the world? No, of course not. I didn’t do it to change the world. Will it matter? I don’t know. I just know this: it’s true. It’s real. [And we have to be intentional every day making sure it’s true and real. We have to constantly improve.] And, it’s a sentiment and a reality that is necessary to make our libraries and schools safe spaces.
Otherwise, why are we here?
I’m Julie Stivers at @BespokeLib and I believe that the best school libraries = safe spaces.
Filed under: Middle School Monday
About Robin Willis
After working in middle school libraries for over 20 years, Robin Willis now works in a public library system in Maryland.
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