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Communication requires listening….

November 13, 2016

Earlier tonight, I sent the message below to the Saline Area Schools community:

SAS Community,

I want to take this opportunity to reach out and assure you that as a district we are being particularly sensitive relative to our students and their perceptions of the recent campaign and election.

We remain firmly committed to making sure that every student and every member of our community is valued and welcome. We will continue to work against bullying and toward resolution of conflict in all of our interactions.  As always, we encourage open dialogue regarding issues that are concerning for our students.

Our mission remains:

We will equip all students with the knowledge, technological proficiency, and personal skills necessary to succeed in an increasingly complex society. Our ultimate goal is to instill in our students a desire for lifelong learning.

As a school district and community, it is up to all of us to ensure that our students become strong and active citizens. We will continue to model, teach, and reinforce critical thinking and appropriate conflict resolution skills, as well as, how to disagree respectfully.


Scot Graden

When having conversations about the recent election (or most other topics) I encourage us to remember the following ideas:

  • We agree to set aside the desire to persuade the other and instead focus on developing a better understanding of each other’s perspectives, and the hopes, fears, and values that underlie them.
  • We agree to be curious and to avoid the pattern of attack and defend.
  • We choose to ask questions and move beyond stereotypes and assumptions.
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