Sun Prairie Area School District hires first-ever director of systematic equity and inclusion

The role was designed to “create equitable outcomes for all students”
Mr. Michael D. Morgan Jr.
Mr. Michael D. Morgan Jr.(Sun Prairie Area School District)
Updated: Jun. 11, 2021 at 3:08 PM CDT
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SUN PRAIRIE, Wis. (WMTV) - The Sun Prairie Area School District announced Friday the hiring of the district’s first-ever director of systematic equity and inclusion.

The district selected Michael D. Morgan, Jr. for the position, who is currently the principal at Prairie Phoenix Academy.

The position was created after the district had conversations with Sun Prairie community members, staff members and stakeholder about how it can better work to create an equal environment for all students, according to the district.

“We could not be more excited to welcome Mr. Morgan to our District’s leadership team. I have no doubt that he will do meaningful work and create changes that go far beyond the wall of our District,” Superintendent Brad Saron said.

The role of the director will be to promote equity and inclusion within the community and develop effective communication and relationships with diverse communities.

Morgan was selected for a large group of candidates. His leadership experience, commitment to creating systematic change and ability to connect with a diverse population is what qualified him for the position, the district said.

The hiring of Morgan comes after Saron stated the district would be creating this position after Patrick Marsh Middle School faced backlash after a history lesson that the district called a “grave error in judgement.”

The assignment was given out to some sixth grade social studies classes, according to an email from principal Rebecca Zahn. The activity was designed to cover the politics of ancient Mesopotamia and asked students to apply an ancient law called Hammurabi’s Code to different scenarios. One scenario asked, ”A slave stands before you. This slave has disrespected his master by telling him ‘You are not my master’ How will you punish this slave?”

Saron also stated the district would be reviewing the curriculum and was seeking an equity assessment and audit to find places where the district can do better, and engage in “community-wide healing discussions.”

The three teachers at the heart of the assignment all resigned from their positions on April 13.

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