Taking Action on our Diversity, Equity, and Inclusion Plan
Dear BSM Families and Friends,
At Benilde-St. Margaret’s, we’ve always prided ourselves on being a strong, close-knit community that exists to love our dear neighbor without distinction. Our historic connections to the Sisters of St. Joseph, Christian Brothers, and Benedictines demand such. In the past few months, however, it has become apparent the values we espoused, the words we used, did not ring true for many of our students. The actual feeling of belonging was not a universal experience.
In order to live up to the values of our Catholic faith, to recognize the sacred nature of every person, and to ensure everyone in our community is seen and heard, we’ve taken a number of steps to move our diversity, equity, and inclusion (DEI) work forward.
Over the past few months:
- We have held several focus groups with students, parents, and alumni to gain a better understanding of their experiences at BSM.
- Our leadership team has met regularly with our DEI consultant to analyze school policies and identify areas for development.
- Faculty and staff have participated in several training sessions focused on equity and inclusion.
- Students learned the tenets of respectful dialogue.
- We have begun establishing strategies to attract and retain a more diverse faculty/staff.
- Our Board of Directors formed a new committee to oversee our long-term DEI efforts.
Though I am pleased with these initial steps, I know change will only happen when a true sense of belonging is intrinsic to what it means to be a Red Knight.
In order to keep our community informed, we’ve created a new page on our website, bsmschool.org/DEIaction, that provides a detailed account of our DEI efforts. We’ll update this page regularly as our work continues.
I want to personally thank each of you for your support at this important moment. Later this month, the parents of current students will be invited to take a survey to help us further assess our inclusion strategies. In November, we’ll host two virtual town hall events – one for current parents (Nov. 10) and one for alumni (Nov. 16) – as another chance to get involved. Look for more information in the coming weeks.
Thank you for walking with us as we strive to ensure our community is one where everyone feels a genuine sense of belonging.
Adam Ehrmantraut, Ed.D.