Wednesday’s panel will include City Councilman Yiaway Yeh and Palo Alto High School teacher Arne Lim, both of whom grew up in Palo Alto, and students from Paly and Gunn. Klausner, Palo Alto PTA member Sunny Dykwel and Board of Education member Dana Tom will moderate a discussion of issues related to the city’s growing Asian population. The event is “Growing Up Asian in Palo Alto,” a presentation by the Palo Alto PTA Council.
All people, regardless of race, are invited to attend and participate, according to the Council.
The panel discussion comes at a time when the school district’s demographics are rapidly changing. In the last decade, the Asian student population has grown by 1,500 children. The group now makes up about 30 percent of the district’s enrollment of more than 11,000 students, according to district figures. In some classrooms, students of Asian heritage are the majority
Organizers of Wednesday night’s panel hope it will be the first in a series of events that will spur more dialogue among the various Asian ethnic groups, including Korean, Indian, Chinese, Japanese and Vietnamese. A more unified Asian community could open up conversations and mutual understanding with other groups in the community, he said.
The event will be held from 7 to 9 p.m. at Mitchell Park Community Center, 3800 Middlefield Road, Palo Alto. Translators will be available in Mandarin and Korean.