Not so long ago, at least from your parents’ perspective, social media was not part of society. There were traditional media, and there was a social connection, and neither had any real relevance to the other. Information was shared face-to-face, over the phone, in a letter, or via the grapevine.
In these uncertain and challenging times, divisions and tensions have escalated globally and the College has not been immune. Stories of racism at the College surfaced on social media last week. As already communicated, the specific student at the forefront of these was immediately suspended and has since left the College.
Unfortunately, the College Council has been led to believe this was not an isolated occurrence. It has since been alerted to a number of other incidents that are also cause for alarm. Accusations and counter-accusations have been made in public which have escalated divisions and tensions. Impatience and frustrations have also risen.
Despite some perceptions to the contrary, the Council responded immediately by establishing an independent committee to look into these matters. This Committee is not only made up of representatives from Council, the College (staff and students), parents and alumni, but also has an independent member. The Committee has been drawn up to reflect the diversity at the College.
St Peter’s College, a Christian private institution a little over 20 years old, entered the education arena and mental grounding allowing them to cope with life’s challenges and correctly assimilate a world that often presents conflicting messages. We have always purposed that our students, regardless of any negative external influences, be best equipped to make the right choices; that they always consciously choose to do what is just and noble. Part of this includes an ever-present focus on diversity and inclusion that creates cohesion amongst the students and enables them to have rich and fulfilling personal and professional relationships beyond the school gate.
In light of the announcement from the President, I thought it would be beneficial to share some book-related resources to help get us through the next few weeks, both in terms of our school work, and reading for relaxation and escape.
Before I start, I encourage all of you to try and read more at this time. Reading is (typically) a low-screen time form of entertainment and escapism. Reading allows us to process our thoughts and feelings through the thoughts and feelings of our favorite characters. This is helpful in a challenging time like this. There is a book out there for everyone