Response to Recent Events

Response to Recent Events
Posted on 03/17/2021
Dear FMA Community,

Once again my heart is broken to learn about the tragic events that unfolded in Atlanta, GA yesterday. The horrific assault on the Asian American community that transpired is gut-wrenching, calling on all of us to decry such acts of hatred and to denounce all forms of White supremacy so prevalent within our society.

The pandemic of racism has stolen far too many lives. Anti-Asian sentiment and racially charged incidents have risen exponentially since the beginning of the pandemic. Politically driven hate speech against our Asian brothers and sisters has fueled these hate crimes, leaving physical and emotional wounds that may never heal, forever staining the fabric of the American conscience.

But this is nothing new. Mistreatment of Asian Americans has a long, ugly history. Since the Gold Rush, people of Chinese descent experienced discrimination, overt racism, and exclusion. As early as 1850, action was often taken in the form of legislation used against Chinese immigrants, such as the Foreign Miners' License Tax law. From 1942 to 1945, Japanese internment camps were established by President Franklin Roosevelt during World War II through his Executive Order 9066. The U.S. government legally and unethically isolated people of Japanese descent into internment camps in conditions reminiscent of Auschwitz. This was considered one of the most atrocious violations of human rights in the 20th century. And it happened right here in the U.S.A.

So what can we do? Stand up. Speak out. Darkness cannot hide in the light. Embrace anti-racist practices and policies unapologetically. Engage in culturally responsive pedagogy. Intentionally disrupt and dismantle oppressive, racist systems. Call out racist actions and language. Be silent no more. Love more. Give more than you receive. Seek first to understand rather than to be understood. Accept others for who they are. Celebrate differences. Love overcomes hate.

Our school community is one of the most diverse in Cambridge. We are a beautiful tapestry of many languages, cultures, creeds, backgrounds, beliefs, religions, and identities. As a school, let us use this moment to show empathy and be there for each other in this moment of collective grief and mourning. To our Asian families, please know that you are important, valued, respected, and cherished members of our school community. We grieve with you and extend our support.

As always, I want to share that our school and district have robust resources. Superintendent Salim shared Riverside Trauma Center’s “Talking to Children about Traumatic Events.” This, and many other helpful resources can be found at

You may also reach out to our school counselor, Cherie Coulson, school social worker Ndia Olivier, and family liaison Daniel Skeritt if you or your scholar(s) need additional support, a listening ear, or an ally. We are a family!

Maisha Rounds, Ed.M
Proud Principal

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