Over the past two years, we have watched as the School Committee has wrestled and debated issues of inequity and racism within Cambridge Public Schools. Certain members have strived to present themselves as well-intentioned in anti-racism work, while their actions have furthered racial and cultural divides in this city. With three open seats on the committee, we have the opportunity to make a shift: from infighting and inaction to collaborative anti-racist work that bravely takes on the biggest challenges our school district continues to face.

For this reason, we ask for your No. 1 vote for Bernette Dawson for School Committee. Bernette is a district parent and is uniquely equipped to join the committee to do the kind of innovative and collaborative work needed to better educate and support all students across the city. She is passionate, focused and dedicated, and she listens to others and responds effectively. Bernette has been on the front lines as an advocate for her two sons, one of whom has been getting special education services for the past nine years, and as an active volunteer at the Baldwin School  and Rindge Avenue Upper School.

Bernette is committed to holding the highest standards of academic excellence for all students, dismantling racial inequity and white supremacy culture, advocating for marginalized students and families, launching universal pre-K and adding “hearts and hands” in the classroom to best support students and teachers. Her goals are necessary and needed, and she has the passion and dedication to carry them out.

We need leaders who are not lost for words when they are asked about white supremacy in our schools, leaders who have been fighting for equity in education throughout their lives and leaders who know that supporting students, teachers and administrators of color is crucial. It is time for those of us who want a just and equitable city to look inward and be brave enough to elect leaders such as Bernette Dawson, who will not settle for anything less than our district living up to its promise to educate each and every one of our bright, beautiful students to reach their full potential.

On Nov. 5, please join us in voting No. 1 for Bernette Dawson for School Committee.

Erin Howell, Wendy McDowell and Maggie Schulz, Cambridge Public Schools parents