Dear TC Community:

In my last email on June 2nd, I said “as educational institutions, we have the power to help end 401 years of racism” and “Teachers College in particular has an important role to play.”

Since then I have engaged in many conversations with staff, students, and faculty on what we can do right now. I acknowledge that this will be an ongoing conversation with numerous possibilities. But for now, I wanted to write to you with an update on my latest decision to establish two holidays for the College.

First, we want to support our employees’ ability to vote by making every Election Day in November a paid holiday. Everyone must have a say in local, state, and federal elections if we hope to change a structurally racist system.

In addition, the College will revise its calendar to include Juneteenth as a paid holiday, beginning this Friday, June 19, 2020. Juneteenth commemorates the end of slavery in the United States when the people of Texas learned of their emancipation on June 19th, 1865 – more than two years after the Emancipation Proclamation of 1863. It is a holiday for remembrance, reflection and a celebration of liberty. The College will be closed Friday in observance of Juneteenth, and employees will receive holiday pay. We encourage you to take this time to engage in advocacy, to learn, and to reflect on the significance of this day.

As we strive to make TC a more diverse, equitable, and inclusive environment for all our community members, it is important that we take a moment to reflect on this country’s history as well as on the work we must do together going forward. We can start by remembering those who came before us and their enduring struggle for freedom, equality, and respect for all.

Should you have any questions or concerns on how best to support staff requests, please feel free to contact a member of the Office of Human Resources at

We offer the following resources to our community:

Learn about the day

Support efforts to make Juneteenth a state and federal holiday

Participate in a virtual Juneteenth celebration


Thomas R. Bailey | President
Stephanie J. Rowley | Provost, Dean, and Vice President for Academic Affairs
Janice S. Robinson | Vice President for Diversity & Community Affairs