Diversity at University High School
University High School promotes an atmosphere of openness in which students can exchange ideas. We are proud of our small community and of the ways in which we are a diverse community. Diversity is fundamental to the mission of University High School. We reach out to include people of different races, ethnicities, faiths, socioeconomic circumstances and education backgrounds. We seek students whose perspectives can contribute to the classroom. The range of backgrounds found in our student body has a direct impact on the depth and quality of classroom discussions.
University High School Diversity Statement
I. Background University High School of Indiana Inc. is an independent, co-educational, non-sectarian high school on 116th Street near Towne Road in Southwestern Hamilton County, Indiana. The University High School mission is to expand the hearts and minds of students and to nurture excellence through academic, creative and athletic achievement. University High School draws its students primarily from several independent middle schools in Indianapolis and from suburban public schools in northern Indianapolis, eastern Boone County, and western Hamilton County.
II. Definitions The board of University High School affirms that diversity is one of the core values of its new community of learning and inquiry. The board believes that it is important to define these key concepts with precision in order to seize this unique opportunity.
What are our core values?
- Diversity, as described below.
- Commitment to excellence in all community members.
- Cultivation of a sense of personal responsibility within each student for his/her own education, health, character and happiness.
- Development of an active sense of stewardship within the school community and the greater community surrounding it.
- Fostering of creativity as a fundamental life skill.
- Mutual respect, support and trust.
What is a community of learning and inquiry?
- One that is committed to developing the hearts, minds and bodies of students through rigorous but flexible academic, creative and athletic disciplines.
- One that fosters skills in thinking, creating, serving, performing, cooperating and competing in an environment of diversity, mutual respect, support and trust.
What then is diversity for University High School?
- First, diversity does not mean that all values, goals, aspirations and behaviors have equal merit or are even acceptable in the University High School community. Diversity must occur within a framework of shared core values. Persons who do not share or honor these values may be better-suited to other communities.
- The continued shaping of core values is a dynamic process that true diversity enhances by refining the articulation of lived values.
- University High School strives for a diversity that enriches the mix of perspectives from which life is viewed and tested within a community of shared values and that broadens the inherently limited perspectives of individuals within the community.
- Diverse perspectives within a community of inquiry and learning are enhanced by gender and sexual orientation diversity, socio-economic diversity, racial and ethnic diversity, cultural diversity, intellectual and academic diversity, diversity in styles of learning and teaching, diversity in skill and talent sets.
- The diversity of a community of learning and inquiry is enhanced when a rich mix of differing perspectives is consciously sought within each distinct constituency of the school — board, administration, faculty, staff, families, students.
- Conversely, the richness of the mix is diluted when key constituencies are homogeneous rather than diverse, and the community of learning and inquiry suffers.
- Finally, diversity is enhanced, for both the school community and the community as a whole, when a diverse set of relationships with institutions (such as artistic, social, service, business and political institutions) within the broader community is established and valued.
III. Guiding Actions The board of University High School therefore wishes to seize the opportunity before it to create a diverse community of learning and inquiry by taking the following steps:
- By declaring diversity, so defined, as one of its core values;
- By committing itself to the task of achieving diversity within a community of learning and inquiry;
- By making a public declaration of its intentions, which it will strive to the best of its ability to honor and implement and by which it will expect to be judged by the greater community;
- By modeling these core values within its own membership;
- By directing the administration to develop ongoing plans for incorporating these core values into the whole of community life, including the curriculum, extracurricular activities, interaction within the school community and interaction with larger community institutions, with a particular focus on diversity;
- By directing the administration to report periodically on the development and implementation of this integrated plan to the board for advice, approval and board action as required;
- By directing the administration to develop criteria and methodology for measuring the success of both these plans and their implementation; and
- By supporting the administration, financially and otherwise, and by cooperating fully in the review and implementation of this plan.