WAGNER STANDS IN SOLIDARITY
June 3, 2020
Dear Wagner Families,
On May 25, the world saw the horrific murder of Mr. George Floyd at the hands of police. With this horrific event have come myriad reactions within our families, our classrooms, our neighborhoods, our city and our country. With this event, we've seen several days of peaceful protest and examples of violence in every state of the nation. With this in mind:
THE WAGNER COMMUNITY STANDS with GEORGE FLOYD & ALL VICTIMS of SENSELESS BRUTALITY & MURDER in the BATTLE AGAINST RACISM, WHITE SUPREMACY, XENOPHOBIA, & LONG-STANDING SYSTEMIC INJUSTICES.
THE WAGNER COMMUNITY STANDS in SOLIDARITY with PEACEFUL PROTESTORS & ACTIVISTS in THEIR MARCH for REAL CHANGE in OUR SOCIETY.
THE WAGNER COMMUNITY is COMMITTED to USING OUR LEARNING SPACES for OPEN, RESTORATIVE DIALOGUE and WORKING FOR SOLUTIONS TO DEEP SYSTEMIC INJUSTICES IN OUR CITY, NATION & WORLD.
With these commitments, we will be opening up safe spaces to students for processing, discussion, for counseling, and for additional learning. There is a great deal of fear, anger, sadness, and uncertainty for all members of the Wagner community and our hope is that these spaces will provide everyone with a chance to be together, in a collective effort to find ways to be a stronger part of the solution to this global injustice.
As these protests and violence continue to engulf our nation's communities, we urge you to be safe if you choose to exercise your right of assembly/protest and hope you will engage in these safe-space discussions, and work with us as a community to address these problems openly and safely.
Additionally, our Guidance Counselors Luis, Samina, & Jordan, are all available for Wagner students who need time and space with them during this time to process, ask more questions, and/or engage in more specific counseling. Please email them directly should you wish to set up an appointment with them.
As the current leader of the Wagner Community, I believe the Wagner Community must acknowledge the grave nature of these injustices, their deep roots in societal ignorance and privilege that have allowed their sustenance in our society, and their connection to a too-long list of black and brown victims of police violence and acts of white supremacy. We must acknowledge their impact on our young people who deserve to grow up in a world free of violence and discrimination, and filled with the promise of opportunity for all. It is our duty to ensure space for Wagner students, families, and faculty to address these issues openly, get involved by exercising their rights to protest and assembly safely, and acknowledge that our times demand stronger, sweeping action by our elected leaders. Please know that the capturing of Wagner students’ potential, ensuring their current well-being, and building a true, equitable platform for their future success are my chief concerns and drive my actions daily.
Wagner families, over the past 10 weeks we have seen unprecedented times. As we continue to live through a global health crisis, and the social/political unrest related to the police-related murder of George Floyd, it is important that our community remains open to the discussion, engaged in the necessary learning, and committed to finding solutions to deep systemic problems of racial injustice.
I will be in touch very soon with a schedule for our safe space discussions and hope that all Wagner families are staying safe and remaining healthy.
With Peace, Love, & Solidarity,
Dave Riesenfeld, Acting Principal
RF WAGNER JR SSAT