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A Reflection from Our Interim and Incoming Presidents

A Reflection from Our Interim and Incoming Presidents

In a statement made to our school community last week, we shared our sadness regarding the death of George Floyd and our call for the world’s people to work together to eliminate racism. We chose to affirm our belief in the sanctity of life in this statement. As Roman Catholics and Sisters of Saint Joseph, this language is natural to us, however, it quickly became clear that the wording we chose unintentionally caused harm to some members of our community. For that, we are deeply sorry.

We understand that it is extremely critical, now more than ever, to unequivocally clarify that Black Lives Matter to our entire community, and especially to those people of color in our Mount family. We stand with you in the dismantling of racism that has caused deep pain to Black and Brown people, and we will start by dismantling that racism at home to ensure that no student encounters it at Mount Saint Joseph Academy. As evidenced by some of the stories that those in our community were courageous enough to share with us, we have work to do. We are resolute and unified in our determination to do it.

We will begin this work immediately, guided by the expertise of Juliana Mosley, Ph.D., a leader in diversity, equity and inclusion in academic settings. In the short term, Dr. Mosley will facilitate an in-person session on June 18 for alumnae of color and their allies who have graciously agreed to participate. We are currently scheduling more dates with Dr. Mosley for future sessions, both in-person and virtual, for our Mount community. These sessions will give way to an action plan that will identify changes we can expeditiously make at the Mount. We are committed to communicate regularly and with detail on our progress.

As lifelong educators, we understand the unbridled power of moments like these. We learn from our mistakes. We learn from listening. We learn from discussing that which is difficult, painful or uncomfortable for us to discuss. We learn from respecting and understanding experiences that we have not lived. We learn from empathy.

We would be remiss if we didn’t thank all of the members of our Mount family for engaging in this important conversation over the past few days. While it was extremely harrowing to read some of the dialogue, we see the Mount’s mission fulfilled when we give witness to the candid expression of unafraid women who seek to make positive change at home and around the world. 

With Unity and Reconciliation,
Sister Mary Dacey, Interim President
Sister Charlene Diorka, Incoming President