As the morning neared 7:15, students coming from all directions walked through the brisk air and into the the doorways of Lane Tech High School to attend the Student Relations Committee meeting being held in Room 113.
Led by Assistant Principals Ms. Hanly and Ms. Thompson, the committee was created in reaction to the various sexist and racist incidents, which have created an uneasiness within the Lane community.
The meeting consisted of around 43 new members, separated into groups that consisted of roughly eight students and one teacher. The groups were given two questions to discuss for the duration of the 30 minute meeting: What is the problem and what can we do to solve it?
Ms. Hanly spoke to the students before the groups separated for discussion and reminded the newly formed committee that this is a safe space, saying that members should speak their mind to achieve real change.
“As a member of this committee, you have to be comfortable with being uncomfortable,” Hanly said.
The group conversations lasted around 20 minutes and most of the topics gravitated towards terms like “microaggression” and “ignorance.” Most groups identified the main problem as the inability of students to realize how their words can affect other people. The groups took the problem, and discussed ways in which they could help fix the culture of the school.
“I think that some people, because of their environment or how they were raised, aren’t ever going to change,” said Zak Katich, Div. 763. “The only thing we really can do is try to better educate people.”
With this meeting being a first step, the committee plans to keep the momentum going, planning on a potential second meeting next Wednesday, March 1, during division, according to Hanly.