Hard on Barriers

My friend and colleague Michael Eatman, coach and founder of Culture7, said on a panel exploring the emotions of racial inequity, “you have to be soft on people, and hard on barriers.” As we are all trying to engage with the current events and find ways to be helpful, this is an important message—we have to focus on fighting racism and inequity, while supporting people to wake up. 

These unprecedented times call for the SEL field to consider how the social and emotional skills that we hold dear can serve as a vehicle to listen, question our own biases and learned beliefs, and transform this reality with a clear sense of purpose. You can use SEL to fight racism, remove barriers for learning, and develop your own social and emotional capacity. At this time, it is also necessary to use SEL principles and practices to dismantle systemic inequities and stand up for justice. 

 Check out these resources, and do your part.

Stay alert, stay focused. 

Why Social Justice and Equity Are Essential to Social and Emotional Learning by Drs. Tia Barnes and Shannon Wanless in Confident Parents, Confident Kids

How to Be an Antiracist Educator and Why We Can’t Afford to Whitewashed SEL by Dr. Dena Simmons in ASCD

Don’t Say Nothing by Jamilah Pitts in Teaching Tolerance

Go for Broke by LaShawn Chatmon in National Equity Project

What if…..White People Took Responsibility for Our Role in this Moment? By Kathleen Osta in Medium 

Say Their Names by Chicago Public Schools

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