Jefferson City Public Schools hopes diversity training sparks change

2 months 1 week 13 hours ago Friday, November 10 2017 Nov 10, 2017 Friday, November 10, 2017 7:37:00 PM CST November 10, 2017 in News
By: Claire Kopsky, KOMU 8 Reporter
loading

JEFFERSON CITY - Jefferson City Public School District hosted another meeting Friday morning to discuss diversity, this time among their central office with more than 50 administrators, human resources staff and support staff.

Over the past month, JCPS hosted three community forums to facilitate conversations about diversity. 

Superintendent Larry Linthacum facilitated the meetings and said the district planned them after one of their students posted a racist photo of four students earlier this fall.

“We had a situation that happened outside our community, outside our school, but it affected the learning environment at school,” said Linthacum. 

On September 21, the school district sent a letter home to parents and staff members stating it would host three meetings. 

The letter said in part, “We are assessing where we are, and developing plans moving forward in three important areas: demonstrating acceptance and understanding for all, fidelity of implementation of diversity training for all staff, parent and community engagement in the areas of race and diversity.”

About 150 members of the community attended the meetings.

Linthacum said the school purposefully did not host the meetings at any of the schools because it is a conversation that needs to happen in the community and with the parents, not just the school. 

“This isn’t something to take light of," he said. "The racism exists and when those differences, and those are real, those are things that have been around a long time. And you’re not going to fix it over night, there’s not a silver bullet, and so we’re just trying to have discussions and when those things happen. 

He stressed the need the school has to teach differences in the classroom and among staff. He also wants to change their hiring and training practices.

"You know, our staffing, does it reflect our student population? There’s an area we know we can improve. Our diversity training for our existing staff. What does that look like? How do we teach about acceptance and understanding when there are differences? How we work through those is important." 

One parent of three biracial JCPS students said there is a noticeable difference of consequences depending on whether a white student or a black student. “If it’s a white student, it’s ’well, they’re just kids.’ But if it’s a black student, there are more serious consequences.” 

This woman said she hopes these meetings will start conversations that need to be had. “This is supposed to be a school district that is all about 'no child left behind' and right now, I’m not seeing that.”

In the coming weeks, JCPS will continue to collect community members’ thoughts.

“We’re still going to continue, we’re going to meet with our district-wide staff, we have 1,478 employees full and part-time and we’re going to meet with our staff and ask them what they see as the school’s role.” 

Later this fall, JCPS will meet with all of its middle and high school students, and ask them what they see as the school’s role with regards to being stronger together and in regards to diversity. 

Linthacum also encourages anyone who was unable to attend one of the meetings to call his office to set up a meeting.

More News

Grid
List
JEFFERSON CITY - Officials with Jefferson City Public Schools announced the groundbreaking ceremony for the city's second high school, which... More >>
17 hours ago Wednesday, January 17 2018 Jan 17, 2018 Wednesday, January 17, 2018 12:59:00 PM CST January 17, 2018 in News
JEFFERSON CITY (AP) — Missouri House lawmakers have approved a ban on most lobbyist gifts to themselves and other... More >>
17 hours ago Wednesday, January 17 2018 Jan 17, 2018 Wednesday, January 17, 2018 12:20:14 PM CST January 17, 2018 in News
SPRINGFIELD (AP) — A Missouri lawmaker is pushing a bill that would require college students to pass a citizenship test... More >>
18 hours ago Wednesday, January 17 2018 Jan 17, 2018 Wednesday, January 17, 2018 11:18:00 AM CST January 17, 2018 in News
SPRINGFIELD (AP) — A southwest Missouri teacher has been charged with having sexual contact with a student. The Springfield... More >>
19 hours ago Wednesday, January 17 2018 Jan 17, 2018 Wednesday, January 17, 2018 10:34:26 AM CST January 17, 2018 in News
ST. LOUIS (AP) — One man is in custody and three police vehicles are damaged after a pursuit ended... More >>
20 hours ago Wednesday, January 17 2018 Jan 17, 2018 Wednesday, January 17, 2018 9:57:17 AM CST January 17, 2018 in Continuous News
SPRINGFIELD (AP) — Authorities say a 6-year-old has accidentally shot and wounded his 7-year-old sister while playing with a gun... More >>
20 hours ago Wednesday, January 17 2018 Jan 17, 2018 Wednesday, January 17, 2018 9:35:49 AM CST January 17, 2018 in News
GRANDVIEW (AP) — A suburban Kansas City man has been charged in the death of a 27-year-old woman whose... More >>
20 hours ago Wednesday, January 17 2018 Jan 17, 2018 Wednesday, January 17, 2018 9:29:10 AM CST January 17, 2018 in News
COLUMBIA – There may be a new way to get to MU's campus, without driving. The Columbia City Council... More >>
22 hours ago Wednesday, January 17 2018 Jan 17, 2018 Wednesday, January 17, 2018 7:28:00 AM CST January 17, 2018 in News
JEFFERSON CITY - The Missouri State Highway Patrol says steps are in place to ensure people here don't get the... More >>
1 day ago Tuesday, January 16 2018 Jan 16, 2018 Tuesday, January 16, 2018 11:00:00 PM CST January 16, 2018 in News
HOLTS SUMMIT - A city administrator says he doesn't want Holts Summit to be a "trashy" town. Rick Hess... More >>
1 day ago Tuesday, January 16 2018 Jan 16, 2018 Tuesday, January 16, 2018 7:43:00 PM CST January 16, 2018 in News
OSAGE BEACH - Mid-Missouri hospitals are facing shortages of IV bags as doctors scramble against a particularly difficult flu season.... More >>
1 day ago Tuesday, January 16 2018 Jan 16, 2018 Tuesday, January 16, 2018 6:22:00 PM CST January 16, 2018 in News
COLUMBIA – People from the city of Columbia gathered at Tuesday night’s City Council meeting to discuss a community-oriented policing... More >>
1 day ago Tuesday, January 16 2018 Jan 16, 2018 Tuesday, January 16, 2018 6:09:00 PM CST January 16, 2018 in News
COLUMBIA - Some homeless shelters in Columbia are at capacity and have waiting lists as temperatures plunge to near zero... More >>
1 day ago Tuesday, January 16 2018 Jan 16, 2018 Tuesday, January 16, 2018 5:22:00 PM CST January 16, 2018 in News
JEFFERSON CITY - Missouri State Auditor Nicole Galloway announced her office has begun an audit of the village of Centertown.... More >>
1 day ago Tuesday, January 16 2018 Jan 16, 2018 Tuesday, January 16, 2018 3:47:00 PM CST January 16, 2018 in News
JEFFERSON CITY - Several Republican lawmakers are calling for Gov. Eric Greitens, resignation after having an affair with an unnamed... More >>
1 day ago Tuesday, January 16 2018 Jan 16, 2018 Tuesday, January 16, 2018 2:54:00 PM CST January 16, 2018 in News
JEFFERSON CITY - Officials and the community are on high alert after two attempted child abductions, a little over a... More >>
1 day ago Tuesday, January 16 2018 Jan 16, 2018 Tuesday, January 16, 2018 2:52:00 PM CST January 16, 2018 in Top Stories
COLUMBIA - The city of Columbia cancelled residential garbage collections Tuesday due to extreme cold temperatures, but that doesn't mean... More >>
1 day ago Tuesday, January 16 2018 Jan 16, 2018 Tuesday, January 16, 2018 2:07:00 PM CST January 16, 2018 in News
PULASKI COUNTY - Firefighters are investigating a fire that left one person dead Monday night. Virginia Saemp, a neighbor,... More >>
1 day ago Tuesday, January 16 2018 Jan 16, 2018 Tuesday, January 16, 2018 11:09:00 AM CST January 16, 2018 in News
Columbia, MO
Broken Clouds 15°
7am 16°
8am 20°
9am 24°
10am 28°

Select a station to view its upcoming schedule:

Coming Up Next

6:00a
KOMU 8 News Today
7:00a
Today
9:00a
Megyn Kelly TODAY
6:00a
Page Six TV
6:30a
Cops
7:00a
Maury

Tonight's Schedule

7:00p
Superstore
7:30p
The Good Place
8:00p
Will & Grace
8:31p
Great News
9:00p
Chicago Fire
7:00p
Supernatural
8:00p
Arrow
9:00p
KOMU 8 News @ Nine on The CW
9:30p
Seinfeld