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How to Have a Robust Approach to ‘Hispanic Heritage Month’

September 15th launches a month of independence day celebrations across the Americas, a Columbus/Indigenous People’s Day debate, the #HispanicHeritageMonth hashtag, and activities in schools across the nation that span the gamut of robust to reductive. Like other cultural heritage month celebrations, some argue that a special month is needed in a country where Anglo European history dominates historical discourse.

Others argue that confining these lessons to 30 days can compartmentalize and further silo non-dominant groups while accomplishing little more than checking a superficial box. Whatever your stance may be, we believe that one of the most important steps in making our classrooms inclusive places that celebrate, honor, and teach these lessons is by integrating age-appropriate content into the curriculum all year long. Thoughtful integration of meaningful content into our pedagogy is critical, and something we continue to work towards as we strive to become an anti-racist organization. In addition to this, we also acknowledge that celebrating cultural heritage months can be a positive opportunity to plug into a national discourse with students and staff in schools, offices, and at home.

And in that spirit, here are some ideas on how to spark conversions and learning with both children and adults around “Hispanic Heritage Month” in an effort to go beyond the reductive:

We are proud that many of our schools were founded on soil rich in Latinx activism, and that those roots run deep in our school culture. Cesar Chavez’s family home is just a few blocks away from our schools in East San Jose, in fact, some of his direct descendants are Rocketeers at Rocketship Fuerza Community Prep. And Rocketship Si Se Puede’s name pays homage to another great resident of East San Jose, activist Dolores Huerta.

Do you have any lessons or activities planned this month that you’d like to share with us? Tag us on our @Rocketshipschools social media platforms!

 

 


The Rocketship Diversity Equity and Inclusion (DEI)  National Leadership Team was founded in 2019 to lead DEI work across the network. Our vision is to unleash the full potential of our incredible team and communities by purposefully pursuing representation in our communities and breaking down barriers to power. At Rocketship, we work to create a safe, collaborative environment that celebrates our differences and strengthens our community. Our pursuit of diversity, equity, and inclusion recognizes the systemic inequality of opportunity in our society, and we seek to address these disparities.

 

Published on September 10, 2020

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