Social and Equal Justice
On Thursday, March 22, a large group of 8th grade students from MJDS, Bruce Guadalupe and Milwaukee College Prep schools participated in the Repairing Together program at MJDS, talking to Paige Styler, Deputy Regional Attorney Manager of the State Public Defender's (SPD) Milwaukee Trial Office; Derek Mosley, Chief Judge of the Milwaukee Municipal Court and JoCasta Zamarripa, Representative of the 8th District in the Wisconsin State Assembly. They discussed social and equal justice and what that meant to teenagers.
In an interactive and personal setting the legal representatives and students shared their thoughts about how they could help make Milwaukee a great community. The presenters told students where they came from, what their work entailed, and who inspired them. The students were then divided into three groups. Each group joined a presenter to discuss what the students thought were troublesome issues in Milwaukee and how they could be solved.
Some student reactions were:
"I liked that we got to mix up and we got to see people that inspired us to do what we believed in. We started talking about issues that impacted us in a negative way, I saw how much each of us struggles and how much we all see our parents and older people struggle."
"It was really touching and moving because I saw adults that were representing every kid in the room in a different way. We all have so much knowledge because we all are either Jewish, African American, or Hispanic. We understood what it felt like to be pointed at because of how we were born or raised, everyone treated each other the same and there were no boundaries."
"Another reason I liked the field trip is because the subjects that we learned about are serious and you knew that you could trust us with the subject."
About Repairing Together
Repairing Together was initiated by Elsie Crawford in August 2016, to help build relationships among youths of different cultural and racial backgrounds. Students are learning to understand what it means to become caring, empathetic leaders in the greater Milwaukee community through social and environmental action programs. Repairing Together provides opportunities for these diverse groups of students to share their experiences and to get to know one another at a very personal level. Together they will find ways to help repair, and to give back to, the community.
At present 134 8th grade students are participating in the program. They are from Milwaukee Jewish Day School (MJDS), Milwaukee College Prep School (MCP) and Bruce Guadalupe Community School. From August 2018 Repairing Together will also involve Junior Kindergarten, 2nd and 3rd grade students. The project will be joined by the Indian Community School of Milwaukee. All these grades combined will total approximately 445 students.