‘Be Kind,’ LCSD1 Superintendent Pleads After KKK Picture Turmoil
Laramie County School District 1 Superintendent Dr. Margaret Crespo says the district is working to bring everyone together for a discussion to engage in understanding, recognition, and respect following last week's turmoil surrounding a Ku Klux Klan picture.
Crespo says the picture, which depicts a KKK parade from the early 1900s, was removed from a Central High School teacher's classroom on Friday, Oct. 14, after a student took a picture of it and their mom called the principal, Dr. Karen Delbridge.
"On Monday at 9 a.m., we actually all met with the parent just to connect and let them know that the picture had been taken down," said Crespo.
On Wednesday afternoon, Delbridge sent a letter out to the CHS community saying, "This picture had not been used in instruction yet this year and upon reflection will not be used going forward."
"Here's what I think is really important at this time," said Crespo. "We don't want anyone to feel like we would not be comfortable sharing the reality of what has happened in history ... but the balance to that is making sure that it's not an item just hanging out there."
"There's got to be some contextual understanding because otherwise, you're offending those you're not intending to offend," she added.
Crespo says the district, which last spring applied for and received a $140,000 grant through the health department to implement a program called Sources of Strength, "has been focused on really training people and just really getting people on board" with the program and they "would love to have more community support."
"My hope would be that it would be a community-wide opportunity and so, so amazing because the program provides that common conversation -- How do we seek to understand? How are we kind? -- through a strengths base, so instead of diminishing you for your differences, we're coming together because they're strengths," she said.
"I just want to be a good human and I just want our kids to feel like we're all coming together on this," she added. "Our kids are watching. We are better. We can communicate and be kind and caring to one another and frankly that's like Wyoming right?"
For more information about Sources of Strength and/or to sign up for training, Crespo says you can visit the district's website, laramie1.org, or email Drew Hall at firstname.lastname@example.org.
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