Staff Editorial: SOAR meeting sparks important dialogue

Race conversations vital to have between students, administration


Carissa Prestholdt

Senior Victoria Caraball makes an announcement during the SOAR meeting Nov. 25. Students discusses what impact race has in their life.

The St. Louis Park community places significant value on diversity and student voices. This culminated in the meeting of Students Organized Against Racism (SOAR) Nov. 19.

The Echo Editorial Board applauds SOAR for creating this opportunity for student voices to be heard.

Conversations about race are very important and at Park many believe we are doing well at talking about this difficult subject. In reality, we really need to work on it.

SOAR succeeds at having a space and time for students to express their thoughts, as well as fostering a comfortable and encouraging environment to facilitate these conversations.

The club’s meetings allow students who don’t have as much of a voice in our school to speak up. The Board recognizes the greater accessibility of the meeting by having it during fifth hour.

However, we urge SOAR to have a higher frequency and regularity of discussion events to expand the reach of the message as well as the experience of having those difficult conversations about race.

The Park administration should be involved in these discussions, but so far, SOAR meetings have seen little to no participation from the administration.

Though we are fortunate that Park values student voices, it is still important that this effort comes from many sides; the administration needs to hold up its end.

Not only should the administration make it a priority to attend these meetings, but everyone else at Park should do their best to make it to these discussions because they impact the whole community. Without these difficult conversations about race, we aren’t able to learn and grow in our understanding of diverse perspectives.

As SOAR looks to organize future events, it is important for more students and administration to attend.