Sunday, November 28, 2021

Letters

A More In-Depth Education

As someone who attended Guilford Public Schools K to 12, I can attest that this town takes pride in its top-of-the-line public schools. And this is not without reason: In this school system, I found teachers who inspired me, peers who motivated me, and was well prepared when it came time for university. However, multiplication tables and grammar mean little in comparison to lessons of empathy and inclusion.

While my Guilford education covered slavery and the history of Martin Luther King, Jr., it was not until university that I gained a deeper understanding about the systemic nature of racism and its pervasiveness in modern-day America. Having a more in-depth education about this topic would have allowed me to be a more informed and compassionate friend, citizen, and student, and made me less likely to inadvertently offend those I cared about.

My childhood and adolescent ignorance about this topic was avoidable, as it is for future Guilford students. Guilford has the opportunity to shift its educational system to one that fosters honest conversation about race and teaches its students about this country’s past and present. It has the opportunity to foster students who are not just academically intelligent but prepared to be citizens able to combat ignorance and discrimination in favor of inclusion and empathy.

A good education is meaningless if students emerge ignorant to inherent biases and accustomed to making peers feel excluded, and a school system cannot be top tier if it is only willing to cater to a specific group of individuals. I hope that the town of Guilford will continue to chase excellence beyond SAT scores and strive to graduate informed and empathetic students.

 

Anna Buchanan
Guilford