Faculty Senate conducted the final meeting of the 2019-2020 academic year yesterday, and a key part of our conversation focused on how to best support our students in light of ongoing events. As one senator put it …what is happening outside our walls is profoundly impacting our students right now.
During the meeting, AS Senate Pro Tempore, Adah Barenburg asked the Senate to endorse the document below, produced in collaboration with AS Student President Neolanie Defiesta, and the leadership of the Black Student Union and African Caribbean Club.
The endorsement was unanimous. Please read over the following steps, they provide meaningful ways to support students with intentional kindness, respect, collaboration, and accountability.
Steps faculty can take to support black students:
(1) Trust students if they say they cannot complete their normal work at the end of this quarter and if they request an Incomplete support your students beyond this quarter by committing to work with them to finish their work in a caring way.
(2) Commit to working beyond this quarter to have constructive conversations with black faculty, staff, and students about how to remove anti-blackness from your college, department, and classroom.
(3) Show you care by checking in and holding space for students during this time.
(4) Inform students of their grading options including what the P/NP option is, what an Incomplete grade is, extend deadlines on assignments if appropriate, and be flexible with students if they are on the cusp of a passing grade.
(5) Respect that students will have different needs during this time and one approach will not fit what all black students need during this time.
(6) Communicate with students that if they need more support than their faculty member is providing to contact their department chair and provide a contact email for the department chair.
Thank you for the extraordinary work you’ve accomplished this year.