About Us

Diversity

St. Bernard’s is dedicated to the pursuit of academic excellence, and we welcome all who share in this passion.  The school seeks and enrolls students from all backgrounds who are bright, curious, and enthusiastic about learning.  We believe that a varied community makes our experiences with one another richer, therefore we strive to reflect the cultural diversity of New York City in our student body and faculty.  Boys reside in 55 different zip codes throughout the city and beyond.  Our families reflect many different structures and represent a large number of cultural, religious, and ethnic backgrounds.  Parents of St. Bernard’s boys, for instance, were raised in 55 countries and speak 24 languages.
Our Junior School boys learn to appreciate the diversity among themselves.  Using the books they read and guided discussions with their teachers, they learn to appreciate varied cultures and perspectives.  They begin to learn how to respond to situations that arise in and out of the classroom.  In the Middle School boys focus first on defining their own identities and then on becoming better, more active citizens of the world.  A social justice class in Grade V gives boys the chance to explore complicated issues, such as the Civil Rights movement, that affect them in particular and society in general.  In the Upper School boys are part of small advisory groups that meet weekly with a faculty advisor to discuss current topics.  

A parents’ roundtable meets to discuss relevant topics, to invite speakers, and to plan workshops and activities.  St. Bernard’s cultivates a community which shows respect for others and an eagerness to embrace diversity and mutual understanding in its students, families, teachers, administration, and staff.

COMMUNITY INITIATIVES & RESOURCES

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  • The Admissions Office

    St. Bernards admissions officers work with many organizations to help to enrich our student body.  Some of the organizations which are instrumental in placing students and educating parents about independent schools that St. Bernards depends on include Early Steps, Prep for Prep,  A Better Chance, and Jack and Jill.

    St. Bernard’s does not discriminate against applicants on the basis of race, religion, color, national, or ethnic origin.  A financial aid program provides assistance for qualified families from many different backgrounds and circumstances.
  • Board of Trustees Diversity Committee

    The Board of Trustees Diversity Committee is responsible for assessing current and future diversity programs and initiatives at St. Bernard’s School.  The committee is comprised of trustees, the president of the Parents Association, and the headmaster.
  • Faculty and Staff Diversity Committee

    The administrators, teachers, coaches, and staff members who serve on this committee are dedicated to identifying, implementing, and supporting diversity related initiatives at the school.  They collaborate to recognize challenges, set goals, implement objectives, and create opportunities as well as form sub-groups that focus on particular topics.  Its members organize and support affinity and interest groups.
  • Parents Association’s Community Gathering

    The Parents Association's Community Gathering Committee seeks to foster a deeper understanding and appreciation of the diverse backgrounds and cultures within the St. Bernard’s community.  The committee plans and hosts several events for parents throughout the school year featuring a range of relevant topics and group discussions relating to the boys’ and families experiences.  This committee coordinates with other independent schools and external groups focused on current issues surrounding diversity and inclusion.
  • Parents Association’s Multicultural Fair Committee

    This groups mission is to increase the awareness of the various cultures within the school community by organizing the Multicultural Fair, an annual school event when the entire student body and faculty come together to learn and celebrate different cultures of the world.  Last year the fair focused on India.  This years fair will feature Japan.
  • Old Boys Diversity Council

    The council’s mission is to encourage and participate in diversity and inclusivity within the extended St. Bernard’s family.  The Old Boys Diversity Council is inclusive among all racial, religious, ethnic, and socio-economic groups.  The council believes diversity is at the heart of our shared experiences as alumni and make our shared experiences richer, and St. Bernard’s a fuller space.  The OBDC will support St. Bernard’s via outreach programs, mentorship efforts, and professional networking events.  The council looks forward to developing sustainable best practices for advancing equity work and inclusion in our school.

Recent Diversity Events

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  • A Conversation about Stereotypes and Perceptions

    by Nita V., Community Gathering Committee Co-chair 2017-18
     
    Last week, the Parents Association and the Community Gathering Committee hosted an evening at St. Bernard’s with a conversation focused on stereotypes and perceptions.  Panelists discussed how and why stereotypes start.  They explored whether there are any positives to having stereotypes and, most importantly, how to talk to our children about the stereotypes and perceptions others may hold. 
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  • Multicultural Fair 2018: JAPAN, Tradition Meets Modern

    by Miya Y., Multicultural Fair Committee co-chair 2017-18

    On Friday, April 6, 2018, St. B’s boys celebrated Japan with the annual multicultural fair.  Boys received their customized multicultural fair passports and took a trip to Japan, embracing this year’s themes of matsuri (festival) and old meets new Japan.  


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  • Musicians from the Dominican Republic Visit St. B’s, March 6, 2018

    Boys in kindergarten, first grade, and seventh grade enjoyed special performances from musicians visiting from the DREAM Project’s Bachata Academy in the Dominican Republic.  St. B’s Old Boy Benjamin de Menil ’88 established the tuition-free academy in 2013 in an effort to help preserve the country’s musical tradition and to teach and encourage young musicians.
     
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  • DIWALI CELEBRATION AT ST. B'S

    This week St. Bernard’s has been celebrating Diwali, the festival of lights.  Diwali marks the Hindu New Year, and it is one of the most important holidays in India.  This year Diwali celebrations began on October 30 and continued through November 3.
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  • CELEBRATING BLACK HISTORY MONTH AT ST. B’S

    Carter G. Woodson, an African American historian, felt passionate about his mission to celebrate the history and accomplishments of black people in the United States.  While working to see his dream come to fruition, Woodson set the foundation for what is now known as Black History Month or African American History Month.  It is observed annually every February.  Since the 1970s United States presidents have issued national decrees with a theme each year.  This year’s theme for African American History Month is “Hallowed Grounds: Sites of African American Memories.”
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PROFESSIONAL DEVELOPMENT

Faculty and staff attend diversity events, workshops, and conferences for professional development. Members annually attend the NAIS People of Color Conference and the NYSAIS Diversity Conference. The Faculty and Staff Diversity Committee researches speakers for presentations and develops workshops that foster ongoing dialogue about diversity amongst its members.

SCHOOL LIFE & PROGRAM

In class, an assembly, or a special scheduled event our boys’ education is enriched by speakers and performers from a variety of cultural backgrounds. Students in Grades VIII and IX annually attend a greatly anticipated class trip abroad to experience and learn a different part of the world. Recent classes have gone to Morocco, Ecuador, and India. Students go on field trips to take advantage of the rich culture of the city and surrounding areas. Teachers enjoy the opportunity regularly to incorporate cultural lessons and activities into school life. In addition, our students engage in community service and public purpose projects that nurture respect and understanding of the people and communities they serve. We welcome you to explore some of the many events and experiences we have at St. Bernard’s in the Recent Cultural Events box.

COMMITMENT

St. Bernard’s School adheres to a long-standing policy of admitting students of any race, color, religion, and national or ethnic origin to all the rights, privileges, programs, and activities generally accorded or made available to students at the school. It does not discriminate on the basis of race, color, religion, sexual orientation, or national or ethnic origin in administration of its educational policies, admissions policies, employment policies, scholarship and loan programs, or athletic and other school-administered programs.