Celebrating Juneteenth

Celebrating Juneteenth
Posted on 06/19/2020
Dear CPS Community,

Today, we join communities across the country in celebrating Juneteenth. On this day in 1865, two and a half years after the Emancipation Proclamation, officials in Texas finally issued an order freeing the remaining people held in slavery. Today, June 19th remains a powerful opportunity to hail the abolition of slavery and to honor the lives of African-American people.

Juneteenth is also an opportunity to confront the racism that persists throughout our country. This year in particular, as people in every state take to the streets to protest the Black lives lost to police brutality and to demand safety, justice, and equality, our nation is engaged in difficult but critical conversations about the lasting and devastating effects of systemic racism.

Here in the Cambridge Public Schools, we remain firmly committed to becoming an anti-racist school district - to actively address practices, structures and systems that perpetuate inequity. I’m proud of the progress we’ve begun to make together, but we have a great deal of work to do in dismantling the barriers to racial equity in CPS. We will continue to center the voices of Black students, educators, staff, and families, and those of all people of color, as we design and implement additional strategies to realize our vision.

I encourage you to take some time today to talk to your friends and family about Juneteenth and about the legacy of slavery in the United States. Boston.com has published “10 things to do in Boston during Juneteenth weekend,” featuring live and virtual events to mark the occasion.

Happy Juneteenth! Have a great weekend.


Kenneth N. Salim, Ed.D.
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