sonya-conwayToday marks a few “lasts” for us here in the Middle School: the last full week of school; the last athletic games and practices; and if you’re in my class, the last, but not least, dreaded geography test! And among these lasts, we ushered in a remarkable “first” today, the very first Student Diversity Committee-run workshop for our students.

This year in the Middle School, we formed the first-ever Multicultural and Community Development Committee, comprised of faculty and staff, as well as a Student Diversity Committee. Together, these groups have made incredible progress in shaping the vision, values and climate in our Middle School. Both committees have been working together all year, meeting with the consultants visiting Milton, coordinating programs, and collecting feedback from their peers. For me, and I’m sure for others in our community, today was the pinnacle of a year’s worth of incredibly hard work. Addressing the “Big 8” social identifiers: ability, age, ethnicity, gender, race, religion, sexual orientation, and socioeconomic status, is complicated and can be uncomfortable, to say the least. However, in order for all of us to grow in our understanding and appreciation of the diverse world around us, we must engage in these conversations. Though this was a first, it is just the beginning of bringing us together to teach and learn through listening and speaking with each other and putting the students at the center.

As a committee member, I continue to be in awe and inspired by the energy, care, and deep thinking of my colleagues and these students. On behalf of the committee and the Middle School community, I express deep gratitude to Ava M., Sarah G., Anna H., Neha M., Karol Q., McCoy D., Henry D., Omar H., Jubi O. and Soraya D., for their tireless work, countless hours, dedication and openness as members of the Student Diversity Committee. It has been a pleasure to work with you all this year.

I wish you all a wonderful long weekend.