Each month, Parents and Allies of BMPA gather to meet and discuss our current initiatives in support of our mission and goals. You do NOT need to be a parent of a minority child to join these meetings — all Allies who are interested in achieving our common goals are welcome to participate.
While these meetings are typically in person, due to COVID-19, we have temporarily moved to a Zoom meetings format. Please feel free to register to attend the next BMPA Open Planning Meeting here.
Below are the minutes from our Open Planning Meeting that was held on September 21th, 2020.
BMPA is a non-profit 501(c)(3) organization and through donations and fundraising efforts. Our current budget is $170.31. Through events like our Chipotle fundraiser last January, we were able to provide two $1,000 scholarships to graduating Bexley high school seniors this past spring. We are very grateful for the recent, generous donation from Art with Anna. We will be transferring the BMPA account and moving over to OSU Bank.
New BMPA Website
Nate Riggs has helped us to develop a brand new website and we previewed it earlier this month. It looks phenomenal and has a lot of new functionalities, like sending e-newsletters, a blog with updates, an updated email process that follows current legal guidelines for mailing lists, etc. It will really help us improve our communications and connect with our members. We are almost ready to officially launch the new website.
Police Listening Sessions
Jonathan/Manika/Bryan/Courtney – need our community members to participate, as the city has really put in place a framework to listen, learn and change in the future.
Meeting with Dublin/Upper Arlington DEI Police
Akisa/Jess – meeting went well and their initiative has been beneficial. Hoping to connect Bexley to take some of that work into our city and form a similar DEI task force in our community
Town Hall Meeting
Overview, next meeting and Executive Committee information to be shared
Jonathan presented an update from the most recent meeting (information to remain confidential for student/family privacy reasons).
Lisa – we have had great progress with other example programs and with others, committee and subcommittee meetings. Looking at mentoring from different angles, connecting families new to the community with Bexley with established families or resources as well as community members interested in mentoring students of color, with respect to academics or career choices, etc. Bryan wrote grant that was funded by Rotary Club for FBI background checks to be covered for the mentoring program. Survey will be sent out to collect baseline data to inform how best to pair mentors with mentees.
Culture and Conversation Series – Hispanic Heritage Month
Variety of programming throughout the month (September 15 through October 15), partnering with the Bexley Public Library, including mariachi band, food trucks, cooking demonstrations, and reading Spanish-English children’s books. Event on Friday will maintain social distancing, be outdoors, and follow proper COVID protocols to ensure safety. People can pre-order/order food in advance (see marketing/event info on City of Bexley website). Please share info with your friends!
Racism in the Criminal Justice System Update
Manika – Thursday evening panel discussion in partnership with Jen Robinson & Monique Lampke, with three of our community judges. This is an opportunity for these community judges to come and speak with the Bexley community in regards to the justice system. Our vision is to help raise awareness about how the justice system works in general, and to also give community members the opportunity to ask our Franklin County justice system members questions. Intent is to highlight some of the challenges of the U.S. justice system and some of the experiences that the Franklin County community judges have had, and to have open conversations on the justice system.
Columbus Community Collaborative DEI Update
Manika – BMPA has had the opportunity to partner with other suburbs (Worthington, Dublin, Upper Arlington within the community, and established this initiative. A number of school districts and cities have created organizations and working on how to create an equitable, diverse, and inclusive community through monthly meetings.
City Council Update
Jen (City Council Liaison for BMPA) – meeting tomorrow night (Wednesday). Meeting will include third reading of legislation (ordinance against discrimination) that will make it illegal for renters and landlords in Bexley to refuse to rent to members based on source of income. Another relevant piece of legislation introduced at the last council meeting to make Juneteenth a paid holiday in the City of Bexley. Programmatic/educational aspect and day of celebration planned to address its significance in history, not solely a day off work. Survey will be going out for community feedback, feel free to reach out to discuss.
Children’s Program Update
India – working on an apple/pumpkin picking field trip and would like to do another kickball game outside before it gets too cold. This Sunday is our Art with Anna virtual painting event at 3PM, with supplies provided if needed (can contact BMPA or message us on Facebook about it).
SW Learning Pod Update
Bryan – Southwest Bexley learning pod run by volunteer (Gabby), may see information regarding support for supplies, food, etc. about this as long as Bexley is in hybrid.
Teacher Recruitment Fair – 10/25 – Update
Bryan – Minority teacher recruitment event tentatively slated for October 25, had success with prior event with Middle School Assistant Principal recruitment. Focus on minority recruitment as well as retention, asking for others to invite colleagues or contacts to attend and showcase our district/community’s support (school board members, teachers, district staff, etc.). Let Bryan know if you are interested in volunteering to help with planning.
Asian American Group Update: DNA Music Academy Concert
Akisa – Sunday, October 4 at 2PM outside at the Jeffrey Mansion field, all are invited to come out and listen, partnering with Bexley Parks and Recreation and will be streamed to be viewed virtually.
Meeting with N. Cassady Residents
Bryan – apartment complex has extended required departure of residents through May so that affected Bexley student families are not adversely impacted during the school year
WiFi Community Project
Bryan – project has been successful thus far.
Capital U Diversity Officer Meeting
Bryan – Capital U wants to partner with BMPA on mentoring opportunities, possible internships, etc. for students at Capital
Bryan – Fall e-newsletter recently released, set up on website. Highlighting different people (new residents, executive board members, teachers, etc.). Suggestions, ideas, etc. welcome for the winter newsletter.
Financial Literacy Series
Bryan – slated for first quarter of 2021 to discuss the basics of finance, like investing, college planning/savings for students, working with Bexley Public Library.
BMPA Endorsements Update
Bryan – as a 501(c)(3) there is a complex process we have to go through in order to endorse any given organization or policy. We are happy to partner with other groups in the community but typically will not endorse specific items because of that.
Bexley School District
Introduction to Bexley Teachers/Staff
Steve Shapiro (Coordinator of Experiential Learning, mentioned podcast “Nice White Parents” that might have utility for future discussions/community conversations), Darjul Degraffenreid (secretary at Maryland Elementary; 2nd year)
Seniors – College Panel
Bryan – October 11, open to anyone (not exclusive, but focused on high school seniors and students of color), info to come shortly on panelists
Superintendent Search Update
Bryan – interim superintendent appointed, former interim superintendent for Columbus City Schools
Elementary School Coordinators
Bryan – we have coordinators for each of the elementary schools and they will serve as liaisons between the school and the BMPA to better help support our community
Student and Community Engagement Updates
Leisan Smith – district director
Work with Harper’s Corner is continuing, collaborating with them on how to get books out to families.
Training ongoing, Jill Abraham (Chief Academic Officer) and Leisan are working on anti-racism work for November professional development day
Parent Institute coming up soon; all are welcome to attend three sessions: September 30 (micro-aggressions); October 21 (implicit bias); November 18 (understanding privilege)
Central Ohio Collaborative
Collaborative includes members from different districts and representative from OSU supporting work, meeting regularly as well