Lee’s Summit R-7 School District’s Response to #OurStruggleLSR7 will include collaborative, responsive actions to build inclusive learning environments
June 9 Message:
At Lee’s Summit R-7 Schools, we know students can achieve their full potential only when they feel safe, secure and supported. We have read each one of the stories shared by students, staff and alumni using the #OurStruggleLSR7; their stories reinforce that we have significant work to do in order to ensure every student feels welcome, valued and included in our school buildings.
LSR7’s Equity Plan (PDF) approved in February 2019 provides a framework to enact long-term, sustainable change in the district, and we have communicated our firm commitment to that plan.
We also hear loud and clear that our plan moving forward must involve students, staff and community and incorporate immediate, responsive additions to ensure that we are prepared to provide safe and equitable environments when school begins in August; it is critical that this collaborative work to build the inclusive culture our students, staff and alumni have asked for include the newly-formed Board of Education and incoming Superintendent Dr. David Buck.
June 5 Message
From across the world to within our local community, we know the public outcry surrounding the tragic death of Mr. George Floyd is a call to action by communities regarding the societal issue of racial equity. We also know that Lee’s Summit R-7 is not insulated from issues of racism, and many in our school community have told us they are hungry for change.
We have heard from students and staff members who are hurting. Additionally, some of our students, staff and alumni have vocalized, in a variety of forums, their own experiences in our district and shared a call to action.
As district leaders, we want to clearly reiterate that LSR7 is firmly committed to the LSR7 Equity Plan and the action steps within it.
While the Equity Plan encompasses district efforts to support a broad spectrum of student needs, the district’s Educational Equity Consultants training is an essential component of educating our students and staff about issues regarding cultural competency and racial sensitivity.
The Board of Education approved that training last summer and EEC began working with our students and staff this school year. Since Sept. 2019, initial cohorts of staff members and students, as well as district administrators, principals, assistant principals and all Board of Education members, participated in equity-based learning and leadership training. EEC also hosted two evening events for members of the community this spring. The training was positively received by students and staff and feedback, as well as a video featuring participants, can be found on the district’s Equity webpage.
In March, the Board of Education approved a second year of Educational Equity Consultants, and plans are in the works to incorporate new cohorts of teachers and students during the 2020-21 year. District leaders are finalizing other plans to infuse equity-based training and learning into professional development and curriculum.
In LSR7, it is an established priority to increase student achievement through innovative practices, student well-being and equity. Lee’s Summit R-7 Schools is aware of the critical work and essential conversations that lie ahead in pursuit of that goal. We can do better. We will do better. Our equity work will continue.
Part of that commitment means being available to listen and learn, especially from the young people whom we serve. Incoming Superintendent Dr. David Buck is finalizing plans to host listening and learning lunch sessions to hear directly from current students who have solutions, thoughts and ideas to share with our new Superintendent about how LSR7 can improve in its mission of providing equitable and safe learning experiences. Please contact the Public Relations department at firstname.lastname@example.org if you are interested in connecting and sharing with district leadership in small-group sessions that would be hosted this summer after Dr. Buck begins his tenure on July 1.