NCSD2015: Workshop A7

Building an Integrated, Anti-racist School Community
Note: This workshop was primarily intended for #NCSD2015’s youth attendees

For decades, Park Slope Collegiate served predominately Black and Latino working class students though we are located in a predominately white, middle-class neighborhood in Brooklyn, NY. Three years ago, the 6th grade at our 6-12th grade school began to attract families from the neighborhood. Our school community already had a history and reputation for speaking publicly about issues of racism. Continuing that commitment as our school community’s demographics are changing is crucial to our vision of integration. Join leaders of our student government, our student government sponsor, and our principal in a discussion about the challenges and impact of PSC’s efforts to build an integrated, anti-racist school community. The last half hour of this session will provide a space for youth attendees to share information about their own integration and racial justice efforts.

  • Theola CarbonStudent, Park Slope Collegiate
  • Feyisola OduyeboStudent, Park Slope Collegiate
  • Lateefun NaharStudent, Park Slope Collegiate
  • Rahsan WilliamsEnglish Teacher and Student Government Sponsor, Park Slope Collegiate

Moderated by Jill BloombergPrincipal, Park Slope Collegiate



Our workshop began with a brief summary of our efforts in trying to produce a school where integration is encouraged and racism is not allowed. Specific events like demonstrations, school assemblies, and circles were just a few strategies discussed in our panel. We also talked about the transition of the John Jay Building into five different schools, including the impact of housing a selective school on the campus. Next we discussed ways our principal tries to keep the school integrated. Parts of the audience were curious as to why people in the Park Slope community, a predominately middle class white neighborhood, weren’t sending their kids to John Jay, a predominately black and Hispanic school. They also wondered why white parents were suddenly interested in sending their students to Park Slope Collegiate. Our panel ended on a positive note, explaining why we try to have an integrated school. So, you may ask, why? Because not only will we begin to learn about everyone’s cultures, but it’s fundamental and necessary in order to end racism.




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