Diane Wolk-Rogers, AP world history teacher and leader for the new Mind, Body, Medicine club and the Gay Straight Alliance club at Marjory Stoneman Douglas High School, is also a member of the Solidarity Council on Racial Equity, also known as SCoRE. Wolk-Rogers stepped out of her world history classroom from April 3 to 5 to attend the SCoRE meeting in Los Angeles, California.
Wolk-Rogers was personally invited to be a part of SCoRE as one of the 20 global leaders that contribute their intuition and perception on racial equity. SCoRE acknowledges all the significant first steps taken by these 20 members, however realizes all of them have to work together to help cure the problem of racial inequity.
“The CEO and President of W.K. Kellogg Foundation La June Montgomery Tabron had seen my Ted Talk and seen how I spoke out at the Town Hall and she liked my leadership and point of view and wanted me to be on the Solidarity board,” Wolk-Rogers said.
Tabron is the first African-American to head the W.K. Kellogg Foundation, which is a $9 billion organization as well as one of the world’s largest philanthropic organizations. Tabron works in communities to help children who were not given equal opportunities in the past to move past them.
Wolk-Rogers’ particular role is bringing in the educational side into racial equity. As solutions are discussed, they went over the need for different curriculum and programs that can be incorporated inside classrooms to work toward racial equity. Other perspectives that are incorporated include the arts, entertainment, business, politics and law.
This was only the second meeting as the first was held in Washington D.C. on Nov. 30, 2018 where all the members gathered to meet and communicate with one another. This most recent meeting focused on how to promote solidarity and finding solutions to the problem of racial inequity.
“For the benefit of our future, we need to promote solidarity, meaning everyone has their own truths and own side of the story and until we’re willing to sit down and listen to everybody’s story collectively and to treat each other with respect, we’re not gonna be able to have any kind of racial healing and solidarity,” Wolk-Rogers said.
Racial inequity is nothing new, as it has been going on for centuries. Children are already familiar to hostile environments due to global wars occuring and inner fighting in the country. Children will grow up in homes and school where discrimination of races is common and will never learn that it is not right
“Nobody benefits when you say one particular class of people are better than another. Everyone has to come together and heal their trauma together. We need to embrace each other. What we’re working on right now is we’re coming up with some collective action that we can use for racial equity so that all children,” Wolk-Rogers said.
Although SCoRE works to benefit those of all ages, they moved their focus more towards children, who they consider to be important in leading future generations. SCoRE wants all children to live in a place with equal opportunity and the desire to pursue equity.
“We realized the greatest impact is going to be on children,” Wolk-Rogers said.
At the meeting the members discussed how through the intense political divisions, the present generation can easily be lost on how to handle their struggles. Possible solutions were discussed, especially through civil discourse, listening to each others side of the story and not focusing on the difference but the similarities.
“These are some skills now that we can grow in. As an educator I know that we can bring this into the schools and teach our kids how to engage in all this and for them to hear the truth of what is really going on and to be able to solve these differences,” Wolk-Rogers said.
The members are convinced that if the movement starts now, there is still hope for future generations to live with a diverse population in one community and embrace each others similarities and differences.