Student leaders share experiences with faculty

Anusha Mathur

Students and faculty participated in student-led discussions about fostering more effective and inclusive learning in the school community March 13.

Faculty across all departments and student leaders of clubs and organizations, such as Prefect Council, Peer Support and Asian Students in Action attended the meeting.

Groups discussed student mental health and the representation of marginalized groups in classroom settings.

They also brainstormed ideas about how to address them.

Prefect Caroline Cook ’19 said she was grateful that both students and faculty were given a safe space to discuss their perspectives and personal experiences.

“We wanted it to be from the students,” Head of Upper School Laura Ross said. “The questions and organization came from the students. Facilitating those kinds of conversations is hard. We just tried to give advice on how to ask questions in a way that doesn’t invite defensiveness but invites conversation. But it really all came from the students.”

ASiA leader Lucy Kim ’19 said that she does not have many opportunities to gain insight into the faculty experience, so she enjoyed hearing teachers’ anecdotes and ideas at the meeting.

“I am both relieved and gratified to see HW push so genuinely to make the school a more nurturing and comfortable environment for both the students and the teachers,” Kim said.

The meeting focused on initiatives that students and teachers can implement in their daily lives to better the learning environment.

“We came away with a sense of both teacher and student experiences as a part of the Harvard-Westlake community,” Moon said. “We also established an initiative for further dialogue between students and faculty.”