The Westminster Schools, an inclusive educational and spiritual community, embraces and values the unique qualities and traits of each of its members. We recognize that an informed understanding of one’s own identity not only contributes to the development of a healthy, empowered young adult but also enhances the learning experience for each and every member of the community. Consequently, we celebrate our growing diversity through protection and exploration of individual difference articulated along a wide spectrum that includes, but certainly is not limited to race, class, gender, religion, and sexual orientation.
|Poet Adrienne Su Visits on March 27|
Award winning Poet Adrienne Su will read poems and visit with the Writing Fellows course and guests on Monday, March 27 at 3:00 p.m. in Parker Board Room. In reflecting about her experiences as a writer of Asian heritage, Su believes identity in her writing continues to evolve. "It's becoming more of a normal topic and less of an 'ethnic' topic. That's good.... It lets identity be just one more dimension of a poem, rather than its reason for being, and reducing the danger of falling into polemical territory."
Su is the author of the poetry collections Middle Kingdom, Sanctuary, Having None of It and Living Quarters
. You can read Su's poem Things Chinese
|Common Ground explores Waking Up White: And Finding Myself in the Story of Race|
The PAWS Common Ground committee's March 22nd evening book discussion of Waking Up White: And Finding Myself In The Story of Race by Debbie Irving, included sharing personal stories, exploring racial dialogue through affinity spaces and reflections on topics navigated in the memoir. Parents discussed a variety of topics cited by the author as significant to her personal growth, including racism and the GI Bill of the 1940s, the value of cross-racial allyship, and next steps toward community building individually and collectively. Stay tuned for other Common Ground events.
|Welcome Spring: Nowruz the Persian New Year Begins|
Welcome Spring: Nowruz the Persian New Year Begins
March 20th welcomes Spring in the United States and also kicks off the 13 day festivities of the Persian New Year known as Nowruz or "new day". It celebrates the rebirth of nature and begins at the vernal equinox, when the sun crosses the equator, which this year is March 20th. When the equinox arrives, millions of families of Iranian descent gather around a ceremonial table known as the haftseen and celebrate by counting down and cheering happy new year or "Eide Shoma Mobarak."
|An Evening with Dr. Jackson Katz|
An Evening with Dr. Jackson Katz
Wednesday, March 29, 7:00 p.m., Pace Academy Fine Arts Center
Parents of students at Pace, Lovett, and Westminster are invited to an evening with Jackson Katz, PhD, educator, author, filmmaker, and cultural theorist. Katz, internationally renowned for his pioneering scholarship and activism on issues of gender and violence, will present "Violence Against Women—It’s a Men’s Issue" on Wednesday, March 29, in the Pace Academy Fine Arts Center.
Katz will also be the featured speaker at Westminster's Upper School assembly that same week. He has long been a major figure and thought leader in the growing global movement of men working to promote gender equality and prevent gender violence and is also an advocate and trainer on issues related to race and equality. He is co-founder of Mentors in Violence Prevention, the author of two critically acclaimed books, and the creator, lead writer, and narrator of the award-winning Tough Guise videos. He lectures and trains widely in the U.S. and around the world on violence, media, and the many intersections of gender, sexual orientation, and race.
|Black History Month Assembly in the Upper School|
The Student Diversity Leadership Council will host musician, songwriter, activist, and entrepreneur Doria Roberts on February 16 for the Black History Month Upper School assembly program, Songs of Resistance: Music of Movements of Change.
Doria's mentor was civil rights legend and folk singer, Odetta Holmes, who inspired her album, Black Eyed Susan, released in 2011. Doria didn't pick up the guitar until her senior year at the University of Pennsylvania, as a break from her schoolwork in East Asian studies. She's been writing songs ever since.
|Students to Celebrate Lunar New Year|
Westminster students will celebrate Lunar New Year with a colorful and festive lunch display and menu on Friday, February 3 in Malone Dining Hall. This new year is named for the Rooster. Also known as Spring Festival, the season is marked by the lunisolar calendar so the date changes each year and runs through the 15th day of the month.
|Book Selected for Spring Community Read|
The PAWS Common Ground Committee has selected author Debbie Irving's Waking Up White: And Finding Myself in the Story of Race as its spring parent community book read.
Reflecting on her work, the author writes, "Waking Up White is the book I wish someone had handed me decades ago. My hope is that by sharing my sometimes cringe-worthy struggle to understand racism and racial tensions, I offer a fresh perspective on bias, stereotypes, manners, and tolerance. As I unpack my own long-held beliefs about colorblindness, being a good person, and wanting to help people of color, I reveal how each of these well-intentioned mindsets actually perpetuated my ill-conceived ideas about race. I also explain why and how I’ve changed the way I talk about racism, work in racially mixed groups, and understand the racial justice movement as a whole. Exercises at the end of each chapter prompt readers to explore their own racialized ideas. Waking Up White's personal narrative is designed to work well as a rapid read, a book group book, or support reading for courses exploring racial and cultural issues."
|Dr. Imani Perry - A Conversation About Race|
|Learn more about the Student Diversity Leadership Council (SDLC) in this student-produced video.|