The Importance of Diversity
Preparing for a Changing World
Diversity at Nashoba Brooks encompasses differences in
race, ethnic and religious heritage, socio-economic background, family
structure, sexual orientation, geographic origin, and learning style.
We would like to see such diversity in the composition of our student
body, faculty, and trustees, but it should also extend to the academic
curriculum and library holdings, to hallway discussions and athletics,
to all aspects of daily life at the school. The awareness and cultivation
and experience of diversity is a way of being in the world. It is a
celebration of life and its infinite potentials.
Nashoba Brooks is dedicated to both the intellectual and personal growth
of its students. Both of these goals are furthered and enhanced by diversity.
Both are obstructed by the homogeneity of a school community and its
Diversity provides our students with an appreciation for the breadth
and the richness of human culture. In educating our students about the
world, we must continually remind them and ourselves that most of the
world is very different from Concord, Massachusetts. The world is a
strange and fascinating place, filled with different landscapes and
cities, different painting and music, different religions, different
races and rituals and beliefs.
Diversity, at its deepest level, encourages the examination of different
ways of thinking about problems, different ways of understanding the
worlds. Many of the greatest achievements in the sciences, in the humanities,
and in the arts have come from men and women able to bring different
disciplines to a problem and to ponder from different perspectives.
Important discoveries in biology have come from people first trained
as physicists. Novelists have been transformed by travels out of their
native country. The boundaries between academic and artistic disciplines,
methodologies, and even modes of thought are often artificial and unnecessarily
restrictive. Diversity helps give our students the mentality and skills
to break through these boundaries.
As a practical matter, diversity prepares our students for occupations
and leadership in a world that is changing. In recent years, a national
consciousness of the importance of diversity, greater opportunities
for minorities, and the increasingly international nature of business
brought about by high-speed communication and global travel have all
diversified the office buildings and institutions of America. Tomorrow's
successful workers, citizens, and leaders will need to relate to people
of many different ethnic and cultural heritages.
No less important than the intellectual and practical value of diversity
are its contributions to human and personal growth. In attempting to
provide our children with the awareness and maturity to make moral choices,
what better can we do than expose them to a variety of life experiences,
from which they can draw lessons for their own lives? In attempting
to instill in our children self-respect and respect for other people,
what better can we do than place them in a living environment of many
different peoples and life circumstances and traditions? In attempting
to provoke in our children the life-long desire to constantly question
who they are and their place in the world, how better can we serve them
than to challenge them with the incomparable diversity and possibilities
of the world and its people? Above all, diversity helps us to escape
complacencycomplacency in thinking there is always one correct
answer or approach to a problem, complacency in believing that our values
are right and the other person's are wrong, complacency with ourselves
and our creative potential. Diversity is the richness of nature, the
constant questioning that leads to discovery, the grand challenge to
live and to grow.