AAPI Community Statement

Outschool Team Mar 23, 2021

The statement below was written yesterday about the rise in anti-Asian violence and last week's mass shooting in Atlanta to acknowledge the anger and fear that many in our community may be feeling about those events.

Before making that statement, we must also now acknowledge another mass shooting yesterday in Boulder which we are all still trying to process. We can’t begin to understand why or how this continues to happen or, to be honest, even what to say at this time about yet another tragedy in our country.

We still feel it is important to relay our original message on the earlier event, and hope the resources shared below can help all of our teachers and families in talking about these difficult current events with their learners.

Here at Outschool, we want to take extra care to welcome and support people with identities that have historically been marginalized. This applies to our internal team, Outschool teachers, and our wider learning community. The recent Atlanta shootings have compelled us to speak up. We are angered by the horrific increase in anti-Asian violence, especially against Asian women, and it saddens us that mass shootings and racist, hateful acts have become all too common in the world today.

We recently held a diversity training at Outschool and a clear take-away was that language creates reality. The increased hyper-partisan political landscape during the pandemic has been fraught with racist and xenophobic assumptions and has made the issue worse for Asian communities. While many countries, including the US, have a long history of anti-Asian racism, in 2021 it is simply unacceptable to sit back and stay silent. We must speak up to support those who are hurting at this time.

This event is also another example where those in a position of power have shown a shocking lack of empathy for the shooting victims and their families. We need to continue to educate ourselves on racial inequities and structural racism to understand how to do better.

Events like this make us feel even more urgency in our work at Outschool. We have an opportunity to connect learners from different cultures to have positive learning experiences together and to build empathy and understanding. We believe we must stand for all learners and fight against prejudice. As we have in the past, we will highlight classes that our community may find relevant, offering learning tools as well as support and solace.

We are blessed to have a diverse and accepting community and we are putting out the call for more classes that help learners understand bias, prejudice, and racism. These sensitive topics must be covered by experienced teachers who are qualified to lead in these subjects. We are committed at Outschool to make the world a better place for children of all backgrounds, races, religions, and economic statuses.

We have gathered resources for those in our community in need of support or looking to support others in fighting back against racism:

For detailed resources about speaking to your children about challenging topics please see here and here for past blog posts with amazing resources on the subject.

Some specific resources and discussions on the topic of anti-Asian sentiment can be found here:

Amir Nathoo

Amir is co-founder and Head of Outschool.