Black Lives Matter at School
The Ithaca City School District will observe the week of February 4-8, 2019 as Black Lives Matter at School: A Week of Understanding, Affirmation, and Social Action.
Black Lives Matter at School is an independent movement that began in 2016 as a day of social action in Seattle and has since been embraced by other school districts across the country. In February 2018, the movement expanded to a national week of action, with thousands of educators from more than 20 cities organizing for racial justice in education.
This year, educators in the ICSD will join the Black Lives Matter at School movement to further align instructional practices with our commitment to culturally responsive and inclusive education, and to deepen the care and understanding of the lives of our Black students. Schools should be places where students and staff engage in honest conversations about race, class, and power, develop relationships across differences, examine bias, and advocate for justice.
Throughout the week, all ICSD schools will engage in learning activities that affirm Black lives. Teachers have been invited to pilot new Anti-Marginalization case studies, facilitate discussions among students and colleagues about race, invite local leaders and experts to their classrooms as guest speakers, and teach lessons that focus on Black studies and cultural affirmation. Teachers and administrators will highlight their students’ learning throughout the week on Twitter, using the hashtags #BlackLivesMatterAtSchool and #ICSDEquity.
February 4-8 will be a week of affirmation, support, respectful conversation, and awareness raising. It is well-placed as part of Black History Month and as part of our school district’s year-long efforts to increase professional development opportunities for culturally responsive teaching strategies; to develop Anti-Marginalization curriculum; and to enhance inclusive practices. We understand that race-based inequities exist and are working to affirm the lives of all people of color.
To learn more about the Black Lives Matter at School movement and the week of action, visit