ALLEGHENY COUNTY (KDKA) — Graduates from the North Allegheny School District are petitioning the school board to adopt more anti-racist practices across the district.

“NA For Change” was formed by six alumni who held a rally in Blueberry Hill Park on Wednesday, followed by a caravan along Perry Highway.

The group later attended the school board’s virtual meeting, where they outlined a petition that now has over 200 signatures.

(Photo Credit: KDKA)

“It’s up to us to help bring to mind these different topics and experiences from the past in order to move forward for the district,” said group member Mckenzie Morrissey.

The petition generally asks for the district to implement more productive ways to stimulate diversity and address racism.

Some specific stipulations in the petition address reformulating the district’s diversity committee, placing a greater emphasis on diversity in hiring practices, revising their disciplinary policy for hate speech and discrimination and expanding the curriculum to include more about black history and anti-racism.

“These are things that are very, very, not easy to change, but they’re very possible, and that’s why we did it,” said group member Hailey Zeise.

“NA For Change” plans to present an implementation plan and a way to track the district’s progress at a later school board meeting.

Organizers say they were inspired to create the group after seeing commonalities in conversations with other students of color.

“Just talking to current students and hearing their experiences and being heartbroken that what we faced wasn’t singular,” said Lucia Bautista.

KDKA reached out to the school board for comment but did not hear back as of Wednesday evening.

The full petition can be found here.

Shelby Cassesse