Statement from Gene Chasin, President and Chief Operating Officer of Say Yes to Education, in Response to the Protests Ignited by the Death of George Floyd
As so many vent their frustration and rage at our nation’s deep-seated and ongoing inequities, those of us at Say Yes to Education have been watching and listening.
Our thoughts and hearts are particularly with those in our partner communities of Buffalo and Syracuse, NY; Guilford County, including Greensboro and High Point, NC, and Cleveland, OH. In recent years in each community, school districts have come together with local government, faith-based groups, parent associations, philanthropy, social service organizations, higher education and local businesses in support of a goal that has only grown in importance these last few troubling days: to make it possible for all young people to break the cycles of poverty and systemic racism by fully developing their gifts and talents and gaining access to a college or other postsecondary education, as well as the means to afford it and the support to succeed in attaining it.
Say Yes communities have also shown courage by establishing new systems and structures for governing their partnerships, making room for fresh voices at common tables that have grown larger and more inclusive in the process.
We stand with these communities and their pioneering efforts to chart a path forward rooted not in violence but in the peaceful and transformative power of education. We have every confidence that their broad-based partnerships can help serve as a source of healing and hope in the challenging days and weeks that lie ahead for our nation.