• Community
  • Diversity, Equity, and Inclusion
  • UPrep
Social Justice Day Highlights

The Diversity and Community staff shares some highlights of Social Justice Day.

Asha Dean, Associate Director of Upper School Admission and Community Engagement

In advance of UPrep’s Social Justice Day (SJD), and the parent education workshop on Monday evening led by Sharon Chang, who will also be the closing speaker at SJD, I took the opportunity to sit down with Director of Diversity and Community E-chieh Lin and Associate Director of Diversity and Community Jill Leahy.

What are you most excited about for Social Justice Day (SJD)?

EL: The in-depth learning about each topic students will be able to engage in during the day. And our keynote speaker, Sharon Chang, whom I had the opportunity to meet with, and the message she will deliver to our community.

JL: The mixed grade tracks, which afford the opportunity for more students to get to know one another cross-divisionally.

Who beyond UPrep faculty and staff are contributing to tracks?

EL: In addition to our in-house resources we are relying upon parents, faculty from The Evergreen School, Villa Academy, Meridian School, University of Washington, and the six UPrep students who attended the Student Diversity Leadership Conference in Nashville in December. These students have programmed the welcome as their contribution for their “Bring It Back.”  We also have multiple community partners coming in to participate in the many tracks like City Year Seattle King County, Aki Kurose Middle School’s Community In Schools, Asian Counseling Referral Service, Ventures, 21 Progress, The Holocaust Center for Humanity, as well as other community members from the greater Seattle area including District 4 City Council candidate Shaun Scott. We also have some students who are helping to plan and facilitate sessions with faculty members.

Can you tell us more about “Bring it Back”?

EL: Part of the commitment our students have by going to a national conference is bringing some of their experiences back to our community and sharing them with us. Each year the students choose how to present their Bring It Back and this year, it was organizing and presenting the opening for Social Justice Day.

How did the new Parent Ed opportunity on the night before SJD come about this year?

EL: In conversation with our Parent Ed Committee we determined a need for parents to see more of what students are doing in the classroom. Our parents are always really interested, and this gives families a chance to engage in conversation around the topic of social justice here at school and then continue that at home with their students.

What are your desired outcomes from SJD?

EL: Each student leaves willing to listen to someone more than they have in the past. I hope that this day will be a day of learning and experiencing about one’s own identity and someone else’s identity.

JL: I'm hoping that self-reflection will take place in tandem with the learning that will happen on SJD.



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