Possibility Models

Jason HeissererUncategorized

Friends,

This week, Crossroads is celebrating Pride Week as a lead up to Friday’s Day of Silence. Day of Silence is a student-led national event organized in thousands of schools, bringing awareness to the silencing effects of anti-LGBTQ name-calling, bullying, and harassment. On Monday during announcements, I talked a little about how some of our differences are visible and that there are unique joys and burdens to this. I also talked about how some of our differences are invisible; there are unique joys and burdens with this as well.

When I was growing up, I did not have the possibility models to help me think about, see, or understand my identity as it grew and developed inside me. Our students have more access to possibility models, true, but I advised them to be thoughtful about how personal our development around our gender and sexuality can be. I am proud that our GSA organized Pride Week and the Day of Silence for us so that students can see mirrors of themselves celebrated more specifically this week. I reminded students that we can celebrate with all kinds of participation as well and that some students may be participating in a personal and private way. This is okay.

So I invited students to think about Day of Silence in two ways: 1) as a way of standing in solidarity with students here and across the nation who feel silenced by bullying and/or by the lack of possibility models in their environments and 2) as a way of creating space for students who might need silence to think about and process their own identity questions and development as they connect to what we celebrate during Pride Week.

At Crossroads, there is enough room from all our students in all of their variety. There is enough time for us to grow into ourselves here as well. And there are many ways for us to be allies. We must make all of this happen together.

With great expectations,
Jason