St. Stephen's is committed to providing a diverse learning experience
|St. Stephen’s supports diversity as an essential component of a quality education that encourages respect for and empowerment of the individual and discourages the formation of stereotypes and prejudices. Through our steadfast commitment to diversity, St. Stephen’s broadens the educational experience of all students. St. Stephen’s further believes that our commitment to diversity is an ongoing process, which will continue to strengthen and enhance our school community.|
The school actively seeks students from a variety of backgrounds and from all areas of Austin. Our students come from diverse backgrounds and we support and nurture their differences as well as work to prepare them for their future contributions to our increasingly diverse world.
|Emerging Scholars Program|
In 2008, St. Stephen’s Episcopal School, Breakthrough Austin
, and the Emerging Scholars Fund launched a partnership to aid low-income, first-generation college-bound students by providing financial assistance for Breakthrough students attending St. Stephen’s Episcopal School
. The goal of the partnership is to remove the financial barriers to success for Breakthrough students, who will be the first in their families to attend college. While these Breakthrough students will face many challenges on their path, from entering St. Stephen’s as a ninth grader to walking across the stage with a college diploma, lack of financial resources should not be one of those challenges for students participating in this program.
The Emerging Scholars Fund was founded by Carolyn and Jack Long based on the simple principle that education truly is the great equalizer in American society. The fund provides the financial resources to fund up to 12 students participating in the Breakthrough Program through four years of high school at St. Stephen’s and four years of “gap” funding at any public college or university in Texas. An additional seven Breakthrough students currently enrolled at St. Stephen’s also are eligible for college gap funding. The unique aspect of the Emerging Scholars support is that it spans the eight years from high school through college and is dependent only on the student remaining in good standing in school and with the Breakthrough program.
St. Stephen's Episcopal School admits students of any race, color, national and ethnic origin, gender identity/expression, or sexual orientation to all the rights, privileges, programs, and activities generally accorded or made available to students at the school. St. Stephen’s does not discriminate on the basis of race, color, national and ethnic origin, gender identity/expression, or sexual orientation in administration of its educational policies, admissions policies, scholarship and loan programs, and athletic and other school programs.
St. Stephen’s, an equal opportunity employer, follows a policy of nondiscrimination with respect to employees and job applicants. Employee policies/procedures and the recruitment and hiring of prospective employees are made without regard to race, color, gender identity/expression, national origin, age, disability, sexual orientation, or other status protected by applicable law.
|Director of Diversity|
The director of diversity is a senior administrative position. Created in 2010, the director serves as the nexus of St. Stephen’s efforts to sustain and advance an inclusive community, as defined by our school’s mission statement and consistent with its core values. The director is charged with ensuring that diversity is integrated throughout the community and curriculum at SSES.
The director of diversity:
- Serves as a resource to parents, students, faculty and staff
- Consults with the administration and staff on how to best serve a diverse population
- Mediates racial and cultural misperceptions
- Counsels and mentors students
The mission of the All School Diversity Committee is to be aware of and sensitive to the needs of the many different constituencies of the community, to foster awareness and understanding of diversity in its broadest definition, to provide professional opportunities for faculty and staff to engage in dialogue about diversity issues, and to support the campus in its efforts to celebrate diversity. This committee identifies and pursues opportunities to broaden the horizons of all St. Stephen’s students through its work in admissions, chapel services, diversity education and community-building events. The committee is chaired by the Director of Diversity and members are volunteers from various constituencies of the school community.
Unleashing the Potential of Emerging Scholars
|Meet Adria and Brian Sheth|
When Adria and Brian Sheth met at the University of Pennsylvania in the late ‘90s, neither could have predicted that they would be instrumental in helping other bright, promising students achieve their dream of attending college.
Yet a decade later, living 1,600 feet down the road in Austin, the Sheths helped forge the Emerging Scholars Program at St. Stephen’s, providing financial aid to academically advanced, low-income students with the potential to be the first in their families to attend college.
|In many ways, diversity is the foundation of the curriculum of St. Stephen’s. Through readings, classroom discussions and movies and through lessons taught at every grade level, multiple voices and differing backgrounds at SSES are integral to our strong academic program.|
|St. Stephen’s offers many opportunities for students to travel abroad and engage in activities and programs that will expose them to the global community. St. Stephen's believes that summer adventures broaden our students' understanding of the world, strengthen their applications to colleges and universities, and prepare them for the day when careers require that they collaborate in a global economy. Trips offered to our students include Haiti, El Salvador, Nicaragua, Spain, France, Italy and many others.|
These groups are designed to provide support, enrichment, education and fun for members of the entire school community. Each group has a student leader and has at least one faculty advisor. They meet regularly, bring in guest speakers, and generally support the diversity effort of the school.
Upper School Diversity Discussion Group
Prejudice Awareness Middle School Group
Korean Culture Club
GSA — Gay Straight Alliance
Night of Nations — 6th grade celebration of world cultures
Chinese Culture Club
Black Student Culture Club
National French Week
|"The diversity of the student population has added to the value of my experience at St. Stephen's. On a daily basis I am able to interact with students from different countries all over the world. As a result of being able to explore various world views through my interaction with peers, I have developed a greater understanding of other cultures and I am challenged to exercise empathy." |