RSN Statement on Racial Equity, Justice, and Antiracist Action
Massachusetts Regional STEM Networks Commitment to Racial Equity and Statement of Solidarity
The Massachusetts Regional STEM Network Managers stand in solidarity with Black communities. We support Black Lives Matter. We are outraged about the murders of more Black persons by police officers across the country and the use of violence and force by police against protestors. We have long known that structural racism exists in the USA. What we are witnessing now are the predictable consequences of a system built on that structure. We have done far too little to combat it.
Institutional racism is present in the education system as well. As STEM representatives, we have promoted “See Yourself in STEM” acknowledging that there are pervasive equity gaps at every level of our education system; gaps that are particularly wide in STEM. We acknowledge that STEM is not accessible to all and that there are many systemic barriers. We commit to naming the systemic racism that exists in STEM, exploring our role as allies in the current system, and engaging our networks to transform STEM education into a more inclusive, anti-racist, and asset-based community. We work in a system where our Black students can often name more Black people murdered by police: Eric Garner, Michael Brown, Tamir Rice, Sandra Bland, Philando Castile, Breonna Taylor, George Floyd (to name a few), than they can name teachers and staff that look like them in their schools. We have a lot of work to do to remove systemic barriers and achieve better educational outcomes for our Black students. We commit to listening to our Black communities, educators, and partners and to making long overdue changes towards more just and equitable outcomes.
“In a racist society it is not enough to be non-racist,
we must be anti-racist .” - Angela Y. Davis
We all have a responsibility to advocate for a just society. We believe in community and how inaction passively upholds a system of oppression. We must rethink our role as STEM Network leaders and join together for collective impact to dismantle institutional racism across the Commonwealth. We commit to reaching out to listen and learn from our communities about the ways we can make this change happen.
The Massachusetts Regional STEM Networks
The East Bay Educational Collaborative (www.ebecri.org), a nonprofit educational company located in Rhode Island, announces two Office of Naval Research grant opportunities for high school science, math and engineering teachers. Both grants provide materials and resources for teachers to use during in person, hybrid or distance learning. Applicants from communities that are connected with the military, Department of Defense or socio-economically disadvantaged communities are prioritized.