LAS VEGAS (KTNV) — One of the biggest talking points during Thursday's Clark County School District Board of Trustees meeting was the anti-racism policy.
Many people were left wondering why it has taken so long to put together.
“The same people that you see coming to these school board meetings crying about masks and vaccines,” said Akiko Cooks, the co-founder of a group known as 1865: No Racism in Schools. “I wish that was my only problem. I wish all I had to worry about was a mask or a vaccine.”
Cooks called the district’s anti-racism task force ineffectual, citing disruptive behavior at Arbor View and Shadow Ridge high schools.
“Students were allowed to wear Confederate flags, Make America Great Again hats—our students are traumatized,” said Cooks. “They are being targeted and intimidated by other students.”
One student present at the board meeting said the problem goes beyond some unchecked classmates.
“I have to tell teachers why their comments about my name and laughing about why it’s so funny, why their comments about poverty and saying that I deserve to be in the hood, is not OK,” said Naika Belizaire, who attends classes at Advanced Technologies Academy.
The point of the policy is to establish a more balanced learning environment that would help any student, regardless of their race or ethnicity, succeed.
“We are humans, too,” she said. “We are students, too. And I deserve to have the same education as my other peers.”
An update on the anti-racism policy was given during the meeting, further defining the completion date. It was also announced that critical race theory will not be included.
“So, the district, superintendent Jara—this is on you,” said Cooks. “You had two and half years. Why is it taking two and a half years to write an anti-racism policy?”
A first draft of the anti-racism policy is expected in October, with it being put into action sometime in January 2022.
Watch the CCSD Board of Trustees meeting for Aug. 26, 2021 here.