Trinity-Byrnes marks Annual Diversity Day
Timed to coincide with Black History Month, this was the fourth year that Trinity-Byrnes has held a Diversity Day, suspending regular classes and devoting time to explore issues of cultural difference, identity and perspectives.
A student steering group worked with faculty advisors to organize a day of activities for all students in grades 7-12. The day’s theme was understanding and appreciating difference, an important and relevant topic for students at a school which has an almost 18% minority population, including 7% international students.
Students began the day by asking, “What is diversity?” responses to which were turned into a short video, shown later that morning to the whole school. Small groups of students then talked about their experiences in a variety of previous school settings – some a few miles down the road, others on the other side of the world. Students from as far afield as Bangladesh, China, Belgium and Italy all shared their diverse perspectives and reflected on life and study in the U.S. International faculty, such as Assistant Head of School Rob Curran -originally from Britain- and Venezuelan Jose Colinas also shared reflections on living and working in the US as immigrants.
The morning was rounded off by performances from each of the 3 school dance groups – a classical Italian Tarantella, a traditional Irish set dance, and a contemporary New York piece, all performed in the school’s Sonoco gymnasium and directed by TBCS dance instructor, Susan Rowe, who is also creative director of the Florence-based SC Dance Theatre.
The afternoon featured a series of mini-workshops, with activities intended to encourage students to think about diversity and equity, and was rounded off by a Q&A with a panel of local guest speakers. Les Echols, Florence Chamber of Commerce’s Director of Community and Minority Enterprise, and Shane Orr, Santee Electric Cooperative’s Vice President of Customer Service, both spoke to students and faculty about the relevance of diversity in its widest sense, and answered questions from members of the audience.
“Taking time out from our regular schedule to work together on questions that are of inherent interest to teens and young adults makes a lot of sense to us. It’s thought-provoking, energizing and also demonstrates the school’s commitment to inclusion and to the continued internationalization of our curriculum and student body”, said Rob Curran.
Trinity-Byrnes Collegiate School is a coeducational, non-discriminatory,
college-preparatory day school serving students in grades seven through twelve located in Darlington, South Carolina.
Trinity-Byrnes fosters development of every student’s intellect and character through strong academics, a wide variety of athletics, and extra-curricular activities. For more information contact April Munn, Director of Admissions, at (843) 395-9124, firstname.lastname@example.org.