Diversity at St. John's
In a diverse community, the unique experiences of an individual help inform and educate others. Children need to ponder the wonder and complexity of the differences and similarities that make us uniquely and collectively human. Each child, thus, grows emotionally, spiritually, socially and intellectually, and is better prepared for the challenges of higher education, the workplace, and our increasingly connected and complex world.
St. John's is dedicated to fostering an atmosphere of equal opportunity in three key ways:
- Encouraging the enrollment of students from diverse economic, cultural, ethnic and religious backgrounds;
- Seeking to hire excellent faculty and staff from diverse backgrounds;
- Promoting a bias-free environment by addressing issues of diversity and equity in all aspects of the school and the students' education.
Three faculty co-chairs, appointed by the Head of School, lead a Diversity Committee comprising St. John's parents. The committee's objective is to celebrate diversity in our school and community and to promote it by encouraging the hiring and recruitment of faculty and students from varied cultures, ethnicities and socio-economic backgrounds. The committee also promotes a diverse school by supporting faculty and students with programs that encourage a bias-free environment.
Diversity in the Curriculum
In many grades, the curriculum provides opportunities for students to work with people from other cultures or those who are different from themselves.A few highlights:
- Second graders work with a school in New Brunswick, Canada. They share holiday traditions, practice letter-writing skills with their penpals, and chart tulip-bulb growth rates to practice math skills and understand the effects of climate.
- Third graders participate in an international feast as they learn to view their country in relation to the rest of the world.
- Fourth graders complete a four-week study of the holocaust, culminating in a narrative presentation during which students take on the role of fictitious children who lived during that time period.
- Fifth grade students spend significant time researching and discussing the customs and traditions of the Native American tribes.
- Through required foreign language classes (Spanish through fourth grade; Spanish, French and German in fifth grade; and one of those languages in sixth through eighth grade), students learn characteristics, beliefs, cultures, customs and traditions of others.