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For Early Childhood Education

Our Commitment to Being Color Brave

A Message From Our CEO & Founder Kristen M. Waterfield

At The Malvern School, we believe our differences are what make the world a beautiful place.

The heartbreaking events over the past several months – which have shined a light on unthinkable acts of racism and discrimination – however, underscore that around the country and across the globe, too often it’s differences that divide us, senselessly fuel violence and needlessly cause suffering and pain.

The need for widespread change has never been more clear, and as educators and parents, we recognize we have a critical role to play in supporting our communities and planting the seeds of positive change with the young children in our care. This is a responsibility we have never taken lightly. Yet, as we listen, learn and reflect, we recognize there is more we can do to help foster a more accepting and inclusive world.

It starts with our renewed, more focused commitment to being color brave. Famously coined by Mellody Hobson, a leader I deeply admire, this means acknowledging and understanding differences when it comes to race – or culture or any other aspect of our lives – rather than pretending they don’t exist, so we can effect and model change. It means having thoughtful, honest conversations about our differences, not sweeping them under the rug, as we help young children make sense of the world around them and begin developing fundamentally important character values like kindness and respect.

Children are not colorblind. They are perceptive. They are curious. And they’re never too young to begin learning about and embracing diversity in meaningful ways that will shape their own lives and pave the way for a brighter future for all.

As such, across all Malvern School locations, we pledge to integrate more diversity into our curriculum, from the themes and values we focus on … to the books we read and the authors and artists we explore … to the resources we use in our classrooms … and more. These efforts are already underway and will be part of our strategic vision plan for 2021.

To enable this, we will be focusing on providing teachers and staff equity and diversity training and ensuring they are well equipped to engage with our young friends on these topics in age appropriate ways.

We’re proud to be working with leading industry groups, such as the National Association for the Education of Young Children (NAEYC), as they help guide our efforts and tackle this issue head on.

This is just the beginning of a critical conversation and movement, and we will keep you, our Malvern School community, informed every step of the way. If you have any questions or if you would like to get involved, we welcome your contributions and encourage you to reach out to your Directors.

We are all stronger together, and we are wholeheartedly committed to being part of the change that will make our world a better place.

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