The foundations of democracy and of our school are built by daily habits of recognizing the rights of those who differ from ourselves. -Elisabeth Irwin
is about acknowledging that although we are a progressive and socially aware institution, we still have work to do. In order to fulfill our mission of equity and justice, we must be active in combating marginalization and oppression, especially in our own community. For this reason, the school has dedicated a day to investigating social justice issues present at the school and beyond, through educational workshops.
This year’s theme is ACCOUNTABILITY.
We will be exploring the concept of owning up to one’s privileges and acknowledging the ways in which we contribute to systems of inequality. Although members of our community experience privilege in different ways and to varying degrees, we all have aspects of our identities that unfairly advantage us, as well as aspects that unfairly disadvantage us. We are all responsible for using whatever privileges we have to lift up those who are being marginalized.We hope that #ItHappensHere Day is a transformative and powerful experience for everyone.
To view LREI's Equity & Community page, please click HERE
To view a list of our student-led workshops, please read below:
Internalized sexism/racism/colorism/classism - all the isms impact us. What are the moments in which we’ve been complicit in oppression? What are the moments where we’ve stayed quiet? This workshop is a writing-style class where we would start by sharing stories about gender roles in our lives and at school, read related pieces, then share stories where we've been complicit in systemic oppression. Our goal is to unlearn the toxic societal messages that contribute to our engagement in systems of oppression and how to re-learn notions of intersectional feminism, with a specific lens on self-examination and internal/emotional labor.
Creating Communities Supportive of Mental Health
This workshop will unpack the impact and stigmas of mental health both within society and in our own community. Through group conversations and smaller activities for more personal topics, we will discuss the steps necessary to create a caring and attentive support network at our school and between each other.
Because the theme of the day of accountability, we would like to explore the ways people are held accountable whether that be good or bad. We would like to discuss the pros and cons of "calling in" vs "calling out" figure out who those terms are really for and within that we would like to talk about "drag " culture. What does it mean to "drag" someone and is it a good thing. The goal is that people will come away with an understanding of what form of holding people accountable they want to use for different situations.
Flip the Switch
This workshop hopes to examine the nature of code-switching in respect to both our personal identities and in larger societal context. During Flip the Switch, participants will do an activity about the ways we code-switch with different people we encounter. We will engage in discussions about when we code switch, why we code switch, and also on the burden that comes with code switching.
From Disability to Difference
What is disability and where does it come from? What is smartness and who defines it? If you want to examine the social constructions of disability and smartness, trouble the narratives around disability, and design a new paradigm for thinking about ability, then join us! We will do a robot-building project that helps us shift to a new framework that removes the dis/ from ability and helps us see the ways we limit each other by using labels about smartness.
This workshop will focus on socioeconomic status and how it is or is not discussed in relation to other social identities at LREI. We will look at socioeconomic privileges experienced by many and how these privileges can be ignored or overlooked and how it impacts the work we are trying to do at LREI. One of our goals is to help make socioeconomic status a natural part of social justice discussions and conversations about identity development.
How to Ally
This workshop is for anyone who wants to be an ally to marginalized people, but isn't sure how to start. We will examine our privileges and dominant identities; analyze and dismantle our defensive, unproductive reactions to uncomfortable ally situations; and discuss how to meaningfully support marginalized people. This includes explanations of relevant concepts such as white fragility, gaslighting, and white saviors. By the way, if you don't know what any of these words mean, this workshop is for you!
Jew Man Group
Our workshop is centered on what it means to be a Jewish male, both in our modern society and during historical times. Our discussions begin with historic representations of Jewish people, both anti-semitic views and attitudes towards Jewish communities. As time moved on the image of the Jewish person has changed. We will discuss what these changes are and how they happened. In speaking on our identity today, we would like to discuss what we can do in our communities as well as how we can work in other fields of social justice work.
This workshop will explore offensive and biased statements and jokes about different types of identities, which can be a trigger for some in our community. We will focus on statements and jokes made by students to fellow students. Using videos and discussion prompts we will look at why these statements are made and how they impact the person receiving them. We will also explore whether the actions we take individually, or that the school takes, are sufficient, starting by examining LREI’s current policy when offensive comments are made.
That's Not A Compliment: Cultural Appropriation and Fetishization
In this workshop, we'll explore the concepts of cultural appropriation and fetishism. We'll be discussing the definitions of these terms, their place in today's society, and what they mean to you. We'll break down the difference between cultural appropriation and appreciation and how these color racial interactions. We look forward to working with you all to debunk stereotypes surrounding sexuality and ethnicity.
The Adoptee Experience
In this workshop we will talk about what adoption is and the different types of adoptions that exist. We will also discuss the use of adoption-related language and the microaggressions that come from the misuse of affirming language. Included in this discussion is a look at the privileges experienced by those who are not adopted and the everyday impacts on adoptees in everyday life.
This workshop will revolve around exploring what toxic masculinity is, its dangers, and how we perpetuate it at school. We will delve into examples, explore what toxic masculinity means in relation to LREI, and look at the institutions in our everyday lives that perpetuate it. Our goal is not to solve the issue, but rather to address it and inform us all of its presence as well as offer concrete ways we can improve our community.
Whatcha Say To Me?
Many people confuse political correctness with a censorship of opinions. In this workshop, we will explore what constitutes censorship and what being politically correct really means. We will examine and discuss the gray areas of conversation and freedom of expression in relation to the impact of one's words.
Walk it Out
Privilege is complicated! The privileges we have are sometimes taken for granted or are not always noticed. In this workshop we will discuss our various privileges and engage in an experiential activity to highlight how people benefit or are marginalized by systems in our society and at LREI. By engaging in this activity, you will be able to investigate how your identities relate to a variety of interrelated systems of power, discrimination, and marginalization, while touching upon common assumptions and generalizations made about each of these identities.
What Does It Mean To Be White?
Our goal in this workshop is to explore how what we don’t know can hurt us and others, and the potential we have to make change. By the end of this workshop, students will be able to reflect on: What does it mean to be white? What sustains whiteness? Why does whiteness matter? What’s my part in whiteness? And finally, how can we use this experience to do our part to end racism.