Students and administrators meet in weekly “Lunch and Learn” session to discuss race and inequality

February 4, 2016

Headmaster+Deborah+Holman+demonstrates+how+to+navigate+the+new%2C+BHS+Diversity+Matters+web+link+on+the+high+school%27s+main+webpage.+

Headmaster Deborah Holman demonstrates how to navigate the new, BHS Diversity Matters web link on the high school's main webpage.

As part of the administration’s new push for more action around race and racism at the high school, a new faculty and student “Lunch and Learn”  series was formed to implement action plans around inequality and equity.

 

The “Lunch and Learn” series will be sponsored by a different department or program every week in order to get student feedback on curriculum, practices and ideas for school improvement. The lunch is held in a different location every week. On Feb. 3 the weekly lunch was held in room 384 and was offered as an open discussion of what the high school can do, in general, to be more equitable and inclusive. Anyone can drop into these lunches.

 

On Wednesday, over the course of two lunches over 20 students met with Headmaster Deborah Holman, Interim Superintendent Joe Connelly, Deputy Superintendent for Teaching and Learning Jennifer Fischer Mueller, Dean Anthony Meyer, Dean Scott Butchart, Associate Dean Melanee Alexander, Associate Dean Alexia Thomas, Associate Dean Lisa Redding and students from every grade level.

 

The first initiative discussed was a high school website dedicated to diversity and race-related upcoming events.This webpage is linked to on the high school’s main website where students and faculty alike can go to look at race-related events and initiatives.

 

Several students of color voiced their experiences with being treated unfairly by teachers. Students proposed a clearer system for discriminatory. Students urged that complaints be dealt with by an agreed upon deadline.

 

Final items discussed were two proposals regarding hiring more teachers of color and changing the title of Headmaster to Principal. The first proposal discussed students of color being involved in the diversity hiring practices. According to Holman, the curriculum coordinators agreed to this proposal at an administrator’s meeting.

 

The proposal to change the title of Headmaster to Principal was agreed upon by those in the room. The proposal will now go to faculty for reactions, then to the superintendent’s office, and eventually to the school committee for approval or disapproval.
The next “Lunch and Learn” will take place on Feb. 10 and discuss the issue of equity and inclusiveness in math and science at the high school with a location to be announced.

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