Earlier today, head of school Rick Hardy sent the below message to students, faculty and staff regarding Trump’s recent executive order. We wanted to pass this message, and its sentiments, along to the broader CA community.
Dear CA Community,
I am writing in the wake of the Trump Administration’s executive order issued last Friday, January 27. That order, which outlined restrictions on visa issuance, screening procedures, and admission of refugees, in effect targeted people from predominantly Muslim countries, has raised many questions within educational institutions, particularly those with international communities, and has caused many people to worry. I share those concerns.
I want to begin by saying that to our knowledge, though none of our students themselves are citizens from any of the countries — Iran, Iraq, Libya, Somalia, Sudan, Syria, and Yemen — included in the executive order, a number of our students have family members from those countries. We acknowledge the burden that these students and families are bearing at this time, and we support them not just as members of this school community, but as members of our global community.
Yesterday I reached out to two national organizations, the National Association of Independent Schools (NAIS) and The Association of Boarding Schools (TABS), for both guidance and resources. While acknowledging that the executive order currently covers only seven countries, the staff at NAIS do anticipate further tightening of the visa laws, including requiring in-person interviews at the U.S. consulate for anyone seeking a visa to the U.S. We will continue to monitor developments and will pass along any new information as soon as it becomes available. That said, should any of you be worried about your travel plans for spring break, or for next year, I invite you to speak with me, another member of the senior administrative team, or anyone from the student life office. We are here to help, and even if we do not know the answer to your question, we will help you to find the answer.
I also want to acknowledge that some of you may feel angry or confused or hurt at this moment. You are not alone in feeling this way. Please know we will continue to ensure that CA is a place where everyone can be known, heard, and allowed to question what is going on around us, and where we can also be free to lose ourselves in rehearsal, in studying, in relaxing with friends; a place that is true to our mission and values, especially a place that is “enriched by a diversity of backgrounds and perspectives,” a value that serves as a reminder of our community’s ideals. I believe, as I know you do, that we are stronger and better as a living and learning community when we are drawn from all over the world, and when we hold different perspectives. This is not a statement of politics, but an affirmation of our values. Especially in times like these, I take comfort in that shared conviction, and it is one that we will stand by together.
In the days and months ahead, please look out for one another. Let me and other adults know what we can do to support you, even if that is simply listening. We are here for you – all of you.