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Chiefs launch 'Kingdom United' initiative to promote racial equality in schools

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Posted at 4:27 PM, Nov 05, 2020
and last updated 2020-11-05 17:32:15-05

KANSAS CITY, Mo. — The Chiefs announced a new social justice initiative Thursday called "Kingdom United," a partnership with City Year Kansas City and Kansas City area schools which hopes to promote racial equality.

It will provide strategic educational books and multi-media resources about race, diversity, inclusion and acceptance for students from kindergarten through high school, according to an announcement from the team.

"One thing that we know about football is that it brings the community together," Chiefs Team Clinician Dr. Shaun Tyrance said. "On game day, everyone is cheering for their favorite team, and it doesn't matter where you are from or the color of your skin. We believe that racism and intolerance are learned behaviors, as no one is born disliking someone else because of their race or culture. Kingdom United operates on the assumption that if you can teach negativity, then you also can teach love and acceptance.

The pilot program will launch in four area schools:

  • Whittier Elementary in Kansas City, Missouri, which is a City Year Kansas City school
  • University Academy in KCMO
  • Wolf Springs Elementary in Overland Park
  • Hillcrest Elementary in Lawrence

The effort also will include Spring Hill Elementary in Pflugerville, Texas, which has been adopted by Chiefs defensive end Alex Okafor.

Schools that choose to participate in the program "must dedicate at least 30 minutes per month to teaching their students about race, diversity, inclusion and acceptance,"according to the release.

Each grade level will receive a diversity-themed book appropriate for those students. Teachers will be provided discussion questions to foster additional classroom conversations.

Each school will hold a "book of the month" on the first school of the new month as a kick-off event to introduce the new material.

Chiefs players, coaches, former players, staff members, cheerleaders, Red Coaters and other volunteers also will make virtual special guest reader appearances.