NNHS FORJ community meeting on January 30 generates thoughtful discussion

Despite freezing weather and an untimely snow squall, Newton North FORJ had about 20 participants at the first FORJ dinner discussion of 2019. In addition to hosting parents/guardians, FORJ was delighted to welcome Principal Henry Turner, Newton North METCO Counselor Elvin Cardona, and School Committee member and NNHS parent Bridget Ray-Canada to the International Cafe for a potluck meal and conversation.

After brief remarks from planning committee members Lisa Bibuld, Samantha Santangelo, and Pria Sarma, the group watched part of a TED Talk delivered by diversity and inclusion consultant Travis Jones. The video served as a springboard for the evening's discussion. Dr. Turner spoke about the NPS anti-bias curriculum and how North teachers facilitate conversations on race. Several parents expressed appreciation for the ways North has supported their children in talking about race and acknowledged that their children are often more skilled at talking about race than they themselves are. Attendees expressed interest in continuing the discussion at future meetings. Suggestions for future topics included the following:

  • Excerpts from the book The Hate You Give, possibly moderated by a Newton North teacher
  • Monologue Project transcripts or videos, with discussion facilitated by the student author-performers

Newton North FORJ will host another dinner discussion in the spring and welcomes all parents to join us for a thought-provoking and enjoyable evening.