Julia Shields headshot

Julia Shields

Lane High School and Charlottesville High School

I remember vividly my first faculty meeting. Downstairs in the basement at Lane, we all gathered in this big room, and I don’t remember who the first speaker was, he was an administrator, and gave what I thought was a lovely speech about how we must all be colorblind, and I ate — he went on at some length, but I found it quite moving that we were to ignore the racial differences. And then, the next speaker who was one of our principals stood up and gave us instructions for filling out the daily attendance chart, where we had to designate how many Black kids and how many white kids were there, when we had just heard we were supposed to be colorblind. And we all burst out laughing and he got furious with us. Apparently he wasn’t listening to the previous speech. So, we got a lot of laughs out of that.