“So You Want to Talk About Race” | Honest Conversations about Race in Advisor Meetings (Black History Month)
During Advisor meetings, our students have the chance to discuss their academic progress, address current strengths and weaknesses, check in on their wellbeing, and talk about current events in the local and global community.
Last week, Lower Colebrook House spent their meeting discussing race and racism with Isaac Eshikaty, our Technical Solutions Analyst. Isaac joined the group to discuss his experiences with racism in Canada, addressing instances of micro and macro aggressions he has faced based on the prejudiced attitudes of others.
To accompany his retelling of lived experiences, Isaac shared passages from So You Want to Talk About Race, written by Ijeoma Oluo. This book, which acts as a primer on racial injustice, provides definitions for terms such as racism, privilege, affirmative action, cultural appropriation, and microaggression. As Isaac alternated between sharing his experiences and defining the terms associated with the racism he has experienced, students were able to view racialized issues through a different lens. This conversation helped them develop the language to further discuss racial issues and critically examine the roles of the perpetrator, the victim, and the bystander.
Throughout his talk, Isaac offered suggestions for how to respond in situations where racism is prevalent and reminded students that bystanders have the most power. He illustrated the ways in which others had stood up for him, offering our students an opportunity to consider how they may act if they encountered similar situations. Our students were grateful for Isaac’s openness and willingness to share personal experiences, which allowed for a constructive and actionable discussion.
Lakefield College School is a private, coeducational boarding and day school for students in grades 9 through 12, located in Lakefield, Ontario, Canada.
We respectfully acknowledge that Lakefield College School is located on the Treaty 20 Michi Saagiig territory and in the traditional territory of the Michi Saagiig and Chippewa Nations, collectively known as the Williams Treaties First Nations, which include: Curve Lake, Hiawatha, Alderville, Scugog Island, Rama, Beausoleil, and Georgina Island First Nations. Lakefield College School respectfully acknowledges that the Williams Treaties First Nations are the stewards and caretakers of these lands and waters in perpetuity and that they continue to maintain this responsibility to ensure their health and integrity for generations to come.