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By Balroop Dhanoa, teacher, Langley

Our goal as educators is to facilitate open and safe dialogue that brings a reckoning of Canada’s past with an ongoing commitment to strengthen antiracist education for our students and staff. Starting out in this collective journey, teachers at R.E. Mountain Secondary School have begun grassroots initiatives such as a staff book club, an antiracism learning community, a student union for social justice, videos sharing our students’ personal stories, and a shared virtual collection of antiracism stories and resources for staff.

We want to encourage and empower our students to pursue a future of unity in the face of racism and bigotry. Black Shirt Day (January 15) is an incredible initiative from the Anti-Racism Coalition (ARC) of Vancouver. It is an “important step in raising greater awareness of the civil rights struggle and helping foster solidarity against all forms of racism and hate.” Participating in an event such as this sparked valuable conversations and increased our overall understanding of historical and current issues in our classrooms and beyond. 

Throughout Black History Month, we worked to educate our school community and honour the contributions of Black Canadians. By sharing and celebrating these stories, we are highlighting the accomplishments of Black Canadians and incorporating more Black Canadian history in an otherwise homogeneous curriculum. For too long, certain narratives and voices in Canadian history have been oppressed or ignored. We are committed to rectifying past mistakes—R.E. Mountain appreciates that Black history is Canadian history.

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Category/Topic: News & Updates