The Parent Education Series will host a live web broadcast Wednesday tackling the subject of raising children amid national conversations around race.
The hourlong free webinar, which parents can sign up for via Eventbrite under the title “Talking to Your Kids About Race,” will air live at noon on Wednesday, July 15.
The event will go over racially related topics for parents of both younger and older children — when and how to begin talking about race, allyship with diverse populations, early childhood and race, talking to mixed-race children about their experience, and more.
Charlene Margot, Parent Education Series progenitor and host of Wednesday’s webinar, said that the impetus stemmed from the current discussions happening nationwide around race and equality.
“The idea of the series is to educate parents, students and community members around talking with their kids — that’s the primary goal, is giving parents the skills and strategies they need to better communicate with their children,” she said. “And so it became very obvious this spring that the topic of race and racism was on everybody’s minds. So we really want to focus on that.”
Margot said that further inspiration sprung out of an article by one of the panelists, Burlingame-based immunologist Kareem Graham, who published an op-ed titled “White parents, talk to your kids about race” in the San Francisco Chronicle June 9.
“I’d love to see white parents with school-aged children talk to their kids about race by, first, starting to talk about their own realities,” Graham wrote in the piece. “Tell your kids that structural racism is not their fault, but they benefit from it in countless ways. Their movements through life — through neighborhoods and boardrooms, through interactions with store clerks and law enforcement — will be free of the burdens and tensions that black people must swallow and endure daily.”
The rest of the panel — described by event organizers as “a distinguished panel to address this question (of talking to kids about race), and to offer insights into an often difficult, fraught subject” — includes:
- Julie Lythcott-Haims, a former dean at Stanford University and New York Times bestselling author of How to Raise an Adult and Real American: A Memoir.
- Donald Grant, executive director at the Center for Community & Social Impact at Pacific Oaks College.
- Eric Abrams, chief inclusion officer in the Stanford Graduate School of Education.
As of Monday, Margot said that over 600 audience members have signed up to participate — far more than the usual draw for the organization’s web series.
“I was a little shocked at the huge response … It shows we’ve really hit a chord in the community,” she said. “People from, believe it or not, as far away as Ireland have contacted me and signed up.”
“The influence of this program I hope will be widespread and well-received,” she added.
Wednesday’s event will take the form of a Zoom session, along with a live Q&A.
The event may reach capacity, Margot said, but a recording will be available on the Parent Education Series YouTube channel after the event.
The Parent Education Webinar Series is sponsored by Sequoia Healthcare District and the Sequoia Union High School District.