Editor’s note: The opinions expressed below are the author’s and do not necessarily reflect those of this publication.
March 7, 2017
Dear Morristown Green:
As the mother of a Hispanic student enrolled in the Unity Charter School, I feel compelled to respond to the offensive statements made in an article on NJ.com entitled: “Feds investigating N.J. charter school over discrimination complaint.”
This article claims a complaint has been filed insinuating several NJ Charter Schools (including Unity) are utilizing enrollment and recruitment practices which discriminate against Hispanic students and students learning English as a second language.
What the article fails to explain is that this so-called “complaint” was fueled by a Teacher’s Union-funded organization, which will stop at nothing to undermine the legitimacy of the “non-union” Charter School system in our state.
How can this organization call into question Unity’s commitment to diversity when our entire mission is founded upon a philosophy of respect and awareness of our environment, our world, and the people who inhabit it? Indeed, we (as a diverse family) specifically chose Unity because of its inclusive and welcoming environment.
In a world where people are often judged by their race, their religion, the language they speak, or the car that they drive, we wanted to find a school where our child could focus on her education and not the color of her skin. We found what we were looking for at Unity.
In this nurturing environment, the children gather every morning for a school assembly where the students and teachers alike acknowledge and thank each other for both personal and school-wide accomplishments.
In a room filled with children of every race and every creed, there is a palpable warmth and energy that fills the space. This energy then overflows into the classroom where children treat each other with respect and kindness, and diversity is exalted.
As a parent, there is nothing you want more for your child than to feel safe and secure, and to have a sense of belonging. Having adopted a Hispanic child into our part Jewish, part Evangelical, white family, we did not want our child to question where she “fit-in.”
As such, it was important for us to find a diverse school where people truly don’t see color. Where everyone is equal. Where everyone is welcome. Where being an individual is glorified and diversity is praised. Where (unlike the people behind the Charter School “complaints”) there are no hidden agendas.
One must question why this self-serving organization would risk the well-being of our children to serve their own personal plan of eliminating anyone who marches outside the Union line. Hiding behind fallacious arguments of discrimination, this organization ironically seeks nothing more than to eliminate our right to be diverse.
By casting conclusory allegations of discrimination with no factual basis, they are attempting to undermine our right to create a different or diverse learning environment free from union control. In the end, this serves no purpose but to disrupt our beautiful school and cause harm to our children.
I challenge anyone to step foot into Unity Charter School and try to demonstrate that our group is anything short of diverse including, but not limited to, our thriving Hispanic population.
At the end of the day, I simply cannot stand idly by as an organization purporting to care about the health and well-being of our children inaccurately cries “discrimination” in an effort to strip my Hispanic child (and others like her) from the supportive, empowering and culturally diverse home we know and love as The Unity Charter School.
When the very groundwork upon which our school was created is threatened, we must come together and openly express our outrage. For ours is a commUnity built upon supporting each other, and standing up for what is right, and best for our children.
To threaten this foundation based upon the diversity principles which make our school so wonderful is tantamount to the self-serving boy who cried wolf.
Very Truly Yours,
Gayle N. Moran