CDM Letter to School Committee (8/23/20)

Citizens for a Diverse Milton

On the occasion of her retirement, Citizens for a Diverse Milton (CDM) wishes to express our appreciation for Mary Gormley’s depth of commitment, and decades of contributions, to the Milton Public Schools. Over the last 20 years, Ms. Gormley and CDM shared the goal of equity in educational opportunity for every student in Milton Public Schools (MPS). We did not always agree about how to achieve that goal, nor about the speed of the district’s progress toward it. Nevertheless, she consistently returned to our monthly meetings to hear what we had to say, to address our questions and concerns, and to work together on strategies to improve educational equity. Some of these strategies included: requiring a diversity committee of parents, teachers and administrators in every school; co-hosting twice yearly Districtwide convenings of diversity committees; including CDM representatives on hiring committees for educational leadership positions; prioritizing professional development on cultural competence and implicit bias, and increasing the use of data to identify challenges to and progress toward educational equity.

As the School Committee considers how to choose Superintendent Gormley’s successor, we encourage them to conduct a thorough, national search for an educational leader whose experience, skills and approach match the many challenges of the moment including Covid 19 and following through on MPS’ commitments to racial equity and justice.  As a broad spectrum of the Milton community has demanded over recent months, we would expect that the search criteria would include: the ability to assess and react creatively to swiftly changing circumstances; a demonstrated commitment to diversity, equity and inclusion in education; and a track record of achieving success in promoting educational excellence for ALL students. CDM is ready to assist in the search and selection process and, in the meantime, to continue to work with MPS staff to ensure that the educational needs of all MPS students are addressed despite unprecedented challenges.

On behalf of Citizens for a Diverse Milton,
Patricia Latimore

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