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Dear Noble Family,

My greatest hope is that you are well and safe, but I also recognize that for many, that may not be the case, which is why I am sadly coming to you today. I sent a note to Noble staff last week that addressed what we are seeing throughout the country. I wanted to share some thoughts with you as well this evening.  

As a Black woman, I am devastated by the murders of Breonna Taylor and George Floyd, outraged by the racist act against Christian Cooper in Central Park, and I continue to hold the killing of Ahmaud Arbery at the forefront of my mind in the midst of it all. It is a lot to bear and I know many of us are angry, sad, or simply sick and tired.  At Noble, half the students and families we love and serve are Black; many of the colleagues we hold dear to our hearts and count on every day are Black.  We all have a responsibility to protect and honor the dignity, life, and humanity of the people who make up our Noble family, and Black lives across the country. 

It is heartbreaking to witness what is happening throughout Chicago and the impact it is having, particularly in the communities we serve.  In the midst of a global pandemic where black and brown people have already been disproportionately impacted, Noble students, families, alumni and staff are seeing destruction in their own neighborhoods.  We tragically lost two alums and a student over the weekend.  My heart has broken countless times over these past few weeks and even still, I cannot begin to imagine the toll this is taking on the hearts and minds of our Noble family. The impact of what we are feeling and experiencing during this unprecedented time will live on for months and years to come. 

To our Black students, families, and colleagues: we see you and we support you. I don’t have a solution to the systemic racism in our country, but I do know this: something has got to change. Noble plays a role in creating that change and is committed to eradicating racism and prejudice in our city. But I recognize Noble alone is not enough. Now is a time for our country to stand up to the white dominant and anti-Black systems and structures that have us adding too many names to the list of Black lives lost. 

This country was already broken.  We are just seeing the continued manifestation of its brokenness. However, when things break it is an opportunity to rebuild and make it better. Or in this case, make it right for the first time in our history. Please do not hesitate to ask for help if you need it.  I am here. We are here. There are too many of us in our Noble family for any one of us to have to struggle alone in silence. 

That’s the one thing giving me hope right now.

 

Constance Jones
Chief Executive Officer
Noble Network of Charter Schools

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