Sacramento City Unified Leadership Responds to the Killing of George Floyd and Community Trauma

e-Connections Post

Sacramento City Unified School District leaders issued the following statements on the killing of George Floyd and the trauma to communities throughout the United States, including Sacramento: 

“Our community, and my family, grieves over the killing of George Floyd. Anger, despair, frustration, fear, and hopelessness are valid feelings,” said Sacramento City Unified Superintendent Jorge Aguilar. “We are in pain. Racism is part of the current design of our systems, from our schools to our prisons to our neighborhoods. And each of us is responsible for breaking down this injustice against our Black community. Today we grieve, protest, demand change – tomorrow we take appropriate and unrelenting action to bring justice. I ask our community, especially our youth, to demonstrate peacefully and to exert energy through civic action – participate, vote, make your voice heard by disrupting inequities each and every day. But the responsibility doesn’t fall on you alone. We need honest and frank conversations, from every level of government and to hold those standing silently to account.” 

“Almost every day our Black community is retraumatized by another name being added to a heartbreaking list of racist killings,” said Sacramento City Unified President Jessie Ryan. “Now, amidst the COVID crisis, many of our young Black boys and girls are being forced to process this pain in isolation. It is almost too much to bear. As a Mother and Oak Park community member, there are no words that offer sufficient healing. The pain and trauma our children and community are experiencing defies all logic. What we must do is stand together to demand justice, discuss racism and intolerance openly with our children, and understand and take action against the triggers that have pushed our community to the edge.”

Sacramento City Unified School District is one of the oldest K-12 districts in the western United States (established in 1854). SCUSD serves 42,671 students on 75 campuses spanning 70 square miles. Its students reflect the rich diversity that is the hallmark of Sacramento’s central city. Sac City Unified’s student population is 40 percent Hispanic or Latino; 17 percent Asian; 14 percent African American; and 18 percent white. About 7 percent of students are of two or more races or ethnicities. Residents within Sac City Unified speak more than 51 languages.