2017 Archives

SMU hosts "Race to End Racism" Forum


The following are from the Feb. 1, 2017, editions of CBS 11 News and the Feb. 2, 2017, edition of The Dallas Morning News.

February 3, 2017

From The Dallas Morning News:

Highland Park High School students lead forum to improve community race relations

By Elvia Limón
Staff Writer

UNIVERSITY PARK -- Beth Cooper, a senior at Highland Park High School, read from a list of questions displayed on her laptop to a table of six other teenagers. 

"Have any of you ever felt discriminated against?" 

All of them shook their heads except for 17-year-old Hdree Ashenafi. 

"I have when I lived in Utah," said Ashenafi, a senior at Frisco High School. "I didn't really feel it in elementary or middle school. I started to notice it in high school." 

The questions were part of an exercise during the second annual DFW Leadership Council Forum hosted by Highland Park High School's student council. More than 200 student council leaders from 20 high schools throughout North Texas came together on Wednesday at Southern Methodist University to discuss their perceptions of race. 

The students were divided into random groups where they discussed and presented solutions to improve race relations within their communities. . . . 

The students ultimately decided to tackle race relations in the community. The forum was held at Highland Park High the first year, but it moved to SMU when twice as many schools responded to their invitation this year. 

The council also created an initiative called "Race to End Racism," which they hope will be picked up by others schools around the country, Hinton said. The students have created a website, several social media sites and a hashtag to help promote the forum's message. 

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