Integrated Schools 2021 Mid Year UpdatesBy Anna | June 23, 2021
Summer is here and we want to share some of the work we have been doing internally and organizationally!
First, in the spring the Integrated Schools Parent Board embarked on a project to succinctly define our work. We worked tirelessly to answer three basic questions:
- Why does Integrated Schools exist?
- What does Integrated Schools do?
- How does Integrated Schools do our work?
We generated three belief statements to encapsulate the evolution of our work to this point. They will continue to evolve, but as we stand in July 2021:
WHY? Integrated Schools exists so that children can learn together and create a true multiracial democracy.
WHAT? We are building a movement of parents/caregivers working to redress the imbalance of racial and economic power in our systems of education.
HOW? Our grassroots movement engages in relationship building, education, self-reflection and behavior change.
These statements have been a powerful guide as we continue to grow while staying true to the why of our organization and our work.
Second, as many of you know, after the tragic passing of our dear friend and founder of Integrated Schools Courtney Everts Mykytyn in December 2019, five parents from the Integrated Schools Parent Board as well as Stephan Blanford, the chair of the advisory board, stepped in to try and fill her massive shoes. Bridget Gernander, Andrew Lefkowits, Anna Lodder, Ali Takata and Molly Wheeler led the organization as the Transition Team from January 2020 until now. With lots of support from the Parent Board, Chapter Leaders, and other volunteers, Integrated Schools forged on. During the past 18 months, we have grown to 30 local chapters and seen exponential growth in podcast listeners and on social media.
Today we’d like to announce a shift from the Transition Team to the Integrated Schools Leadership Team. On July 1, 2021 Ali, Andrew and Anna will transition to the Leadership Team for one year and Bridget and Molly will step down from leadership. Bridget will continue her Integrated Schools work as Parent Advisory Board member, chapter support co-leader and Minneapolis chapter co-leader. Molly will step down to start nursing school full time, but will continue as a Parent Advisory Board member, Facebook moderator and New Haven, CT chapter co-leader.
Long-time Parent Advisory Board members Courtney Epton and Susan Schwartz will step into a two-year term on the Leadership Team. They’ll also continue as chapter co-leaders in their respective cities, Brooklyn and Pasadena.
We’re incredibly grateful for the work done by Bridget and Molly, and are excited about the contributions Courtney and Susan will make. We are always looking for additional people to help grow our movement. If you’re interested, please reach out to us at [email protected] We have many volunteer opportunities available, including website updates, social media and graphics, and podcast transcripts, and are always open to new ideas about how to best advance this movement.
Finally, now that school is out many of us recognize a need to slow down a little. Our kids are out of school and need a different kind of attention. While Integrated Schools continues to move forward, this transition to a new Leadership Team is a good time for us to take a breath. Our podcast is on break, and we may be a bit slower than usual to reply to emails, as we rest and rejuvenate. Thank you for our ongoing support of our work, and for being part of this movement.
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Integrated Schools is growing a grassroots movement of, by and for parents who are intentionally, joyfully and humbly enrolling their children in integrating schools. Learn more >