The estimated reading time for this post is 2 minutes
(previously distributed as Caldwell’s Reflection, a weekly reflection from principal of Spurgeon Intermediate, Stuart Caldwell. This is part 2. Read the other part here.)
Our nation is one of immigrants. The richness of our social fabric is made stronger by this. Our families and kids know many stresses already; those stresses have been exacerbated by the political rhetoric that is so prevalent in this year’s presidential race. This was brought home to me again during yesterday’s Chicanx/Latinx event. One of our students, Amy Nieto, wrote a poem, which she read aloud. I share that poem here:
The Real Me
You call us different and inferior,
But do you know my interior,
The real me,
Have you seen,
The hardships my family had to overcome,
Both of our hearts beat at the same beat of a drum,
So why call us different,
You see me and I see you,
But what you see isn’t what I want to be,
All you see is my outside,
But that is not who I am,
The real me is the person you can count on,
The person you call a friend,
And the person that is fighting for the rights of our people,
That is the real me.
I choose to believe that by “fighting for the rights of our people” that Amy means everyone, humanity. Politics teaches us the fallacy of the old adage, “Sticks and stones can break my bones but words will never hurt me.” Our kids and families are hurting as a result of the words that have come out in the political battles of our day. We have to be aware of that!
Our response to the fear and pain our kids and families are experiencing has to be to continue to give them a safe place to be; to constantly and consistently let them know how much we care about them; and, to help them to get the education that will help them to realize their dreams.
The work that we are privileged to do carries beyond the walls of our school buildings. Thank you for all that you do on behalf of our kids and families. Democracy can be hard. As the rhetoric flies we must be steadfast in helping our kids to make sense of the democratic process and system in a way that helps them to feel the reality that they are a key part of its success.
Stuart T. Caldwell, J.D.
Principal, Spurgeon Intermediate School