NCACTE Statement of Solidarity
The Executive Board of NCACTE grieves with the nation and joins in solidarity with our black brothers and sisters during this tragic period in our nation’s history. Systemic racism stole the lives of George Floyd, Rayshard Brooks, Ahmaud Arbery, Breonna Taylor, Eric Garner, Trayvon Martin, Michael Brown, and many more that are not named here. As teacher educators, we believe Black Lives Matter and we see the impact of racism in both our K-12 schools, colleges and universities. As a body, we agree students in our schools need and deserve antiracist teachers as well as teachers who are mirrors for themselves. This statement is our initial commitment to action, which will begin months and years of work ahead. We are also committed to finding the right people to lead this work for and with us.
Each moment defines us, and this moment calls us to stand up and call for justice. As Dr. Pamela Senegal, President of Piedmont Community College states, “The fact of the matter is this in the United States—race still matters far too much in nearly every aspect of living. Housing. Credit. Education. Prison. Jail. Health.”
These conversations are not easy and challenge us to dig deep in order to change generations of systemic racism. While we do not have all the answers, staying silent is not an option. Rhetoric is not enough; we are called to action! We know that as an organization we can find positive solutions and common ground. NCACTE is committed to action, as stated in our motto, “Move Forward, Work Together, Make a Difference.”
We recognize that a non-diverse teacher education force is antithetical to efforts to encourage children of color to consider and pursue a teaching career. To that end NCACTE affirms its mission through the following:
NCACTE commits to exploring those barriers which may prevent black and brown students from entering teacher preparation programs and working to remove these barriers.
- Through internal education and training the executive board will explore these issues in order to understand and grow in how to constructively “create our collective voice” as leaders in North Carolina for Teacher Educators. Training and resources will be provided by various organizations.
- The NCACTE board will participate with the NC State Legislature, NC State Board of Education, NCDPI and the PEPSC Commission to examine policy and practices which are equitable and free from any systemic barriers and racism. These will be provided in the “Advocacy Updates” provided by NCACTE and are found on our webpage.
Together, NCACTE will promote collaboration among all EPPs across North Carolina to establish honest, open and productive dialogue surrounding systemic racism within our society.
- In our effort to improve our diversity outreach, NCACTE will partner with organizations who lead this work in the P12 arena within North Carolina and across the nation by modeling and extending their work, i.e., CREED (Center for Racial Equity in Education) and AACTE (American Association of Colleges for Teacher Education). Through action research in diversity and equity, NCACTE will highlight the work within North Carolina EPPs in this area. In addition, online forums or discussion roundtables will be held during the year to support this work.
Make a Difference
Continue to work towards creating a more equitable “face” of North Carolina’s teaching force to ensure that ALL P-16 students are represented in this face.
- NCACTE will establish a committee which will examine authentic and real solutions in ways to create a more diverse and qualified North Carolina teaching force. Through the voice of this committee, the Executive Board and the membership at large will advocate for inclusion of black and brown students in teaching careers.
- At the annual forum beginning in 2021, a strand for action research in diversity and equity will be created to highlight action research in these areas across our state and nation. This will hold us accountable for beginning the work in 2020 and sharing it widely in 2021. Through these assurances and initial action steps, NCACTE will engage the Teacher Education community across North Carolina in meaningful and productive dialogue which leads to justice for all and real systemic and equitable change in teacher education to support our P12 students and teacher workforce.
Quote cited from: Senegal, Pamela. (June 8, 2020) “Perspective | Work required to stamp out racial ignorance,” EdNC, June 8, 2020