One of the great things you can do in independent school is to decide to take a day off from class and explore one particular subject in depth. The subject could be about current events, social issues, health and wellness issues, or a particular academic subject. In a very different format than regular classes, we can have the opportunity to engage topics from different perspectives, angles, and lenses. It allows students and adults to explore, and learn together, with sufficient time and space to delve deeply. With opportunity for prolonged dialogue, the subject takes on special meaning and import: having the entire population of 600 in the Upper School talking about the same things on the same day creates a synergy that lives beyond the day. We can experience the value of fruitful and productive conversation, and at the same time build spirit within the School.
We are planning to present these special days at least once a year and the first one is scheduled for next Tuesday, December 11. The subject will be gender equity. Based on some survey work we did last year in the Upper School, talking with students and faculty, and looking at the current cultural state of affairs, we believe that we will all benefit from looking at gender role and modern society. We see ongoing conversations, controversies, and contemplations about gender in the world around us, and we are impacted in school as we try to assist students in their development as young adults.
Organized by a creative group of students and faculty, the day will include a keynote address by a nationally-renowned expert, Dr. Jackson Katz*, in gender equity and masculinity, followed by different workshops, films, and reflective discussions to process what is being presented. Students will have several choices for both workshops and films, allowing them to explore aspects of gender that are of particular interest to them. The day’s main agenda is to provide information for consideration and conversation, on a subject that impacts everyone. * Note: To learn more about Dr. Katz, please click here or visit http://www.jacksonkatz.com/
We see this mutual exploration experience as an important day for our students and faculty, and we hope that you will support the idea at home. We will send more information soon about the available workshops and films, and perhaps you’d like to assist your child in making their choices.