Alumni Letter to WCS
Alumni Letter to WCS
Why this petition matters
WCS Alumni, Students, and Parents, please considering signing the letter to show your support. Alumni, please add your graduation year to your last name (e.g., Smith '02) so we can share which classes are represented.
Head of School
Wichita Collegiate School
Dear Mr. Washer:
As you are no doubt aware, major protests have broken out across the country in the wake of a policeman’s videotaped murder of George Floyd in Minneapolis. The American people are heartbroken and angry at the loss of another Black life at the hands of police, and they are speaking up. It hits home as the underlying issues that fuel such tragic but common events persist in Wichita as much as any other city.
Conversations and education about endemic racism must not only take place in the streets. Premier educational institutions including Wichita Collegiate must speak up and take a leadership role. As proud alumni, we are here to support. Now more than ever, we must ensure we're raising young Spartans to navigate our diverse and complex world, acknowledge the role of race and systemic inequality, and be equipped to be active and moral leaders in our communities. WCS takes pride in grooming the next generation of leaders, and those leaders must understand how far we are from racial equity in order to build communities that work for everyone.
More immediately, these recent events require us to examine the roles that privilege and bias play within the school’s walls, ensuring that all students are accepted, included, and can thrive at WCS. We cherish our WCS education, the values we learned, and the strong community that supports us even to this day. We also acknowledge that WCS has historically been a predominantly white institution, where diversity and race were rarely discussed as much as they are now needed.
In the face of this historic moment we, as alumni, respectfully request that Wichita Collegiate (i) craft a comprehensive Lower, Middle, and Upper School curricula plan addressing diversity, inclusion, and systemic racism; (ii) share that plan to the Wichita Collegiate community for discussion and collaboration; and (iii) encourage its peer schools to do the same.
- We believe it is necessary for WCS to create a comprehensive plan for addressing these issues at the Lower, Middle and Upper School. Specifically, this plan should incorporate discussions of diversity, inclusion, systemic racism, and privilege into its ongoing curricula. The school should undertake these discussions with a self-critical eye, fostering conversations about how WCS itself, and elite institutions like it, can make active and lasting changes.
- We also believe that WCS should share and collaborate on this plan with its community -- including faculty, staff, alumni, and parents -- so that we can hold each other accountable. We encourage you to formalize this engagement by forming an Advisory Board composed of faculty, staff, parents, alumni, and other stakeholders. Any plan to address these issues can only be made stronger by inviting as diverse a group as possible to comment on it, now and into the future. We, as proud alumni, are here to collaborate and help in this important work.
- Finally, WCS must recognize its role as a community leader and encourage its peer schools to create their own plans for addressing these issues within their own walls.
We know firsthand the innumerable ways a Wichita Collegiate education benefits any student who walks through the school’s doors. But we now face a larger opportunity for serious self-reflection so we can affect lasting change on our WCS and Wichita communities for generations to come.
Proba te dignum,