LAS VEGAS (KLAS) — Taking action to address racism in the Clark County School District — the CCSD Board of Trustees agreed to start working on an anti-racism policy during their work session Wednesday morning.
This follows various racial incidents the last few years, including two white teens threatening to shoot Black students at Arbor View High School two years ago.
Trustees only had a conversation on Wednesday. No vote was taken because this is seen as a starting point — gathering information and views of board members about this topic.
“We have to look at this in a problem-solving mode,” said Board President Linda Cavazos. “It’s not really an elephant in the room anymore, it’s bigger than an elephant and it’s something that’s not going away.”
CCSD trustees shared ideas to possibly create an action plan and make it official soon.
“I think it’s important to do it while we reopen schools,” said Trustee Danielle Ford.
Those are efforts that Akiko Cooks and Jshauntae Marshall welcome.
The two are co-founders of “No Racism In Schools #1865” — a campaign focusing on race related matters on campuses.
“This policy should have been in place a very long time ago,” Cooks said.
The group kicked-off the hashtag #writethepolicy initiative Wednesday and plan to submit recommendations to trustees.
“It will include consequences, it will include assessments, it will include core measurement values that will allow for schools to be assessed,” Marshall said.
“We actually do have this in our anti-bullying policy,” Trustee Williams said. “In fact, it’s on the very first page.”
Trustee Williams referenced the document during the work session. It does list “race” and “color” in Section C and includes the state laws.
“We already do cover it, it’s already there and if it’s not being enforced that’s not necessarily a board issue but this is probably an individual school issue,” Trustee Williams said.
Marshall said he believes the policy does not go far enough, however.
“There is language that is in there that’s very vague and there are no specifics in terms of assessments of the schools and who are at risk for targeting and different things like that,” Marshall said.
Trustees want to get community feedback. They encourage engagement to address disparities.
Trustees Cavazos and Irene Cepeda plan to study other district’s anti-racism policies, including in Washoe County.
Trustee Ford suggested a timeline. It includes the board signing a resolution to fight racism and develop a policy, talk with equity groups and approve the policy by June.