Jan. 6 is a day that will be forever seared into the hearts and minds of Americans. Inexcusable, avoidable and reprehensible acts of domestic terrorism reconfirmed the ugly truth about our nation. We are divided. We are not listening to one another. And too many of us remain silent when harm is inflicted on others because of our differences.

Now more than ever, as educators and as human beings, we must guide the next generation and use our collective talents to help students make sense of this frightening event. But first, we must look within and remind ourselves to always engage in civil discourse. That is the foundation of not only our democracy, but humanity. 

Mary C. Barlow, Kern County Superintendent of Schools