Focus: Ethical Responsibility
June 1, 2020
Arms
We Have an Ethical Responsibility

With the death of George Floyd and the racially charged events throughout last week along with protests over the weekend, our nation is in pain. This comes on top of the COVID-19 pandemic and stay-at-home order, which has placed a brighter spotlight on the inequities and social injustice of our underserved students and families.

We have an ethical responsibility to advocate for all students, support students and the school community, and collaborate with appropriate school officials to remove barriers.
Lezya Weglarz, school counselor from Woodland Park Middle School in the San Marcos Unified School District, created Resources for Educators: Addressing Racism. There are links to articles, videos, websites, and webinars to provide school counselors with tools to open up these discussions not just with students, but with parents, colleagues, family, and friends.

This is an opportunity to educate ourselves and others and create allyship, defined as the continuous process in which someone with privilege and power seeks to first learn about the experiences of a marginalized group of people, and then ultimately empathize with their challenges and build relationships with that group of people. We must take a stand and we must not stay silent.
Position Statements from ASCA and CASC

Loretta Whitson, Executive Director/CEO

Late last week, state school counselor associations received word of a forthcoming statement from our national affiliate, the American School Counselor Association, pertaining to the murder of George Floyd. That notice was released yesterday evening. Here is the link: ASCA Antiracism Statement . In expanding on ASCA's statement: The California Association of School Counselors (CASC) strongly condemns yet another incident of lethal police force against African Americans. We recognize that the killing of George Floyd last week was not an isolated incident and can point to countless others over the past few months including the killings of Georgia resident Ahmaud Arbery in February and the tragic death of Breonna Taylor on March 13 by police during a no-knock search warrant. While words do not suffice, these murders hurt deep to the core and has our nation's people going to the streets and calling for change. We join in calling for long-overdue institutional changes and in particular, changes to our education system.

CASC has been leading the way in California with our work with the American Civil Liberties Union over the past two years. We have been working diligently to draw attention to the overuse of cops in schools and the lack of school counselors whose work is evidence-based and effective in reducing racism and bias. We also have worked to draw attention to the disproportionate number of students of color suspended/expelled. Article: Cops and No Counselors .

While this is one element of the work we are doing, we know more is to be done. CASC is here to support school counselors and to let our state leaders know that California school counselors are fed-up with the countless acts of racism and institutional bias that exist today. We will continue to do our part to educate our members, stakeholders and the community related to inequalities and injustices, and how the work of school counselors is based on the value of equability and justice for ALL. Together throughout this state school counselors contribute to changing mindsets and broken systems and long held biases and injustices. We applaud you for the work you do daily... your advocacy and the heart you have for our children .
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How School Counselors Can Support After Social Racial Events

 The death of George Floyd is triggering for many students. Schools counselors play a critical role in supporting students during this difficult time. Take a moment to watch this webinar by Derek Francis, manager of Counseling Services for Minneapolis Public Schools.

SDCOE Resources on Equity

It’s important for parents, guardians, and educators to be able to create safe spaces to discuss race, inequities, and recent events with children. The SDCOE Equity department has compiled resources for educators from Teaching Tolerance, National Public Radio, the Center for Racial Justice in Education, and other organizations and news outlets.


For additional resources and updates, please refer to the SDCOE Equity Resources webpage.
Newsletter Archive and Resources
The weekly newsletter and resources created by the SDCOE have been posted on the SDCOE COVID-19 website on the "Resources for School Counselor and School Social Workers" tab under "District Resources." They are also published each week in this newsletter.


The following communication tools and resource guides have been created for districts and school sites to distribute and use:


Important websites for school counselors:

Stay Connected
If you have any questions or comments on the San Diego County School Counselor Network newsletter, please contact Tanya Bulette, counseling coordinator, at tanya.bulette@sdcoe.net .
Get up-to-the-minute information about what's happening at SDCOE and in our districts across the county.