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Mankato schools respond to ‘racist’ message | Letters to the Editor

Mankato area public schools are committed to providing families and the wider community with open, accurate and transparent information on all aspects of the school district, from classroom events and athletic activities to policies and plans. reviewed and adopted by the school board.

There is never a lull and school staff strive to provide accurate and timely communications to all stakeholders.

To aid in these efforts, MAPS uses social media platforms to recognize student achievement and promote positive work in our schools by dedicated staff, students and families.

We recognize, however, that not everyone uses social media in the same way. For some, the platform is used as a forum to exchange ideas, ask questions, and share opinions that may not be popular. MAPS is a steadfast supporter of First Amendment protections, and students in our schools are learning the virtues of this critical American freedom.

We share this background information to explain that while MAPS closely monitors social and alternative media discussions related to school district affairs, school officials do not respond to politically motivated posts, blogs, or websites. and / or factually inaccurate.

Alternative media, regardless of their political affiliation, is not real news. The school district does not grant credit by responding.

For example, at its December 5 meeting, the MAPS school board revised a professional development policy to align it with a Minnesota law that was passed in 2021: Law 122A.70 Teacher Mentorship and Retention of effective teacher .

The Minnesota School Boards Association (MSBA) regularly reviews new laws and provides school districts with recommendations for policy reviews to ensure they are consistent with recently passed legislation. The revised MSBA policy outlines the development of mentoring programs for teachers new to the profession or district, including resident teachers, teachers of color, teachers with special needs, or experienced teachers in need of counseling. peer mentoring.

The policy includes advice on finding additional funding as well as implementing mentorship programs.

For some in the alternative media universe, this policy has led to wacky headlines such as “Wildly Racist MN School Board Just Approved Unthinkable Plan for White Teachers” and “White Guilt Idiots: The Minnesota school board votes on race-based division measures for staff. . “

These headlines and claims are absurd and do not deserve a response, other than to remind those interested in specific information to keep following MAPS on social media and to rely on local media professionals big. valid and credible public that we are fortunate to have in our region.

Lies, inappropriate language, intimidation and threats cast a negative light on the entire Mankato community.

And worse yet, our children and youth are watching and reading. What are they taught about how to use social media? MAPS is not above criticism, nor do we believe that everyone should agree with everything we do.

We believe, however, that mutual engagement should be done with common courtesy, civility and honesty as a rule, and not as an exception.

Paul Peterson is Principal of Mankato Area Public Schools. Stacy Wells is Director of Communications.