Seattle’s Columbia City, a self-described “neighborhood of nations” and “one of the country’s most diverse zip codes,” will soon feature an “anti-racism” preschool that “focuses on experiences of people of color,” according to Western Washington’s King5.com news.
The school will teach a curriculum that endeavors “to change biases” through stories of race and racism.
“When we’re telling stories to our kids, especially about people of color, we want to make sure that we’re showing them stories about people of color that aren’t just about people existing in the past,” said teacher Jasen Frelot.
“We’re looking to create the confidence,” teacher Benjamin Gore added, “that when these kids go into predominantly white schools that don’t highlight counter-narratives, that they bring that to the school.”
“I like the idea,” parent Taryn Coe said, “of these kids being exposed to role models that don’t look like them…there’s a lot of Disney princess culture that happens in our house.”
“They see white princesses and think, ‘I want to be like that,’” Ms. Coe continued, “and I think it’s really important that they see there are so many other ways you can accomplish other than just being a white princess.”
Set to open next fall, the school is currently holding a series of community workshops for children and parents at Columbia City Church of Hope. The church describes itself as a “progressive community of faith” where “everyone is welcome,” including “old, young, gay, straight, believers, doubters, fence-sitters, activists, scientists, poets, and slackers.”
“We work for justice,” the church’s website explains, “especially for those who are systematically denied it: people experiencing homelessness, those who identify as LGBT, People of Color, those who are economically marginalized.”