DEARBORN – American Federation of Teachers local unions who are active in the Dearborn community released the following statement prior to the Dearborn Board of Education meeting on Thursday, October 13, at Stout Middle School.
Dearborn educators are committed to providing a quality education to every single student and ensuring our classrooms are safe, inclusive environments for all, including our LGBTQ students and their families. No matter what we look like or where we come from, we believe all children should have the freedom to learn, be themselves and pursue their dreams.
We are concerned because the love that parents have for their children is being exploited with false narratives to divide our community for political reasons, while spreading intolerance toward the LGBTQ community and pitting parents against educators. As we have before, we need to stand together as a united community to care for one another.
We enthusiastically encourage parents to be active participants in their child’s reading journey. Read with your child. Know what they’re reading. Encourage them to read as much as possible and explore different perspectives and stories.
We believe the Dearborn Board of Education has done a good job of updating and clearly outlining processes for parents who are concerned about specific books, including both an inclusive review process and the ability for parents to opt their child out from accessing certain books.
We stand united with the Dearborn LGBTQ community and all students, parents, educators and staff over political division. We will never stop working hard for our students to ensure they have the best education possible and safe, supportive schools and classrooms.
The statement was signed by:
• David Hecker, president, AFT Michigan
• Jane Mazza, president, Dearborn Federation of Teachers (AFT Local 681)
• Al Lerini, president, Dearborn Federation of School Employees (AFT Local 4750)
• Eric Rader, president, Henry Ford Community College Federation of Teachers (AFT Local 1650)
• Kirsten Herold, president & Margaret Mikula, Dearborn chair, Lecturers’ Employee Organization (AFT Local 6244)