Monroe County, Indiana – The Monroe County Community School Corporation released a letter last week acknowledging institutional racism embedded in public schools and outlining a plan to address inequalities in the local school system.

The letter comes after protests in Bloomington and throughout the country about the deaths of George Floyd, Breonna Taylor, Ahmaud Arbery and other black people.

“We reaffirm our commitment to eliminating all barriers that prevent our students from having opportunities to receive a fair, equitable, and high-quality educational experience,” superintendent Judith DeMuth said in the letter.

MCCSC is working toward this goal by partnering with several organizations: the Great Lakes Equity Center, IU, Ivy Tech Community College, the City of Bloomington Community and Family Resources Department, the Charlie and Jeanetta Nelms Leadership Academy and others.

The corporation also plans to hire an equity and inclusion coordinator and place equity leadership teams in every school. Staff will also go through implicit bias and microaggression training.

Students will learn about social justice through Teaching Tolerance, a program that provides educational resources about diversity and inclusivity.

MCCSC plans to create “The Real Talk,” a series of focus groups with a goal to encourage MCCSC students to think about how to make their education and school more equitable through details from their own experiences.