Embrace Diversity


Isabelle Thomasy and Bella Williams

Is Bob Jones High School a diverse school? Most would say yes, but how do we honor that diversity?

First, we have clubs like the Multi-Cultural Club, Korean Culture Club, Taekwondo Club, Gay-Straight Alliance, and Interfaith Club. We have a Young Republicans Club and High School Democrats of America Clubs. We see diversity in student leadership positions and in student-voted positions like Homecoming and Prom courts. We also just see diversity when walking down the hallways and in our classrooms. In Madison City Schools, there are 80+ languages spoken. Though it’s been interrupted by COVID, we have an International Festival hosted by our Foreign Language Department. We also have students across the spectrum of socioeconomics.

The simple answer would be yes, we do honor and embrace diversity. But, not everyone sees through the same lens. Anne Elise Cairns, a senior, said, “[It] is more diverse than many places but not quite as diverse as others.” Being in the South, at Bob Jones we can see the diversity from just our surroundings, even though it’s not a lot compared to other places. We’re very diverse compared to rural schools in Alabama, but we’re maybe more average compared to more metropolitan areas. Kate Bodden countered the notion that Bob Jones isn’t as diverse as other places by saying, “There are people from almost every background, whether that be economic, race, and beyond that.”

Despite how diversity is shown at Bob Jones, accepting and embracing that is a challenge. Aimee Choup felt that we could more fully embrace diversity is by “[educating] people on history. And [talking] about different cultures.” Lily Shelton said that “[our] school needs to stand with students more and embrace more diversity *all the time* instead of selectively displaying it when it makes them look better.” 

With that in mind, if there’s a way that you feel that diversity could be embraced more at Bob Jones consider (a) talking with your teachers about your concerns, (b) leading a Patriot Path on something that you’d like to share about your culture, (c) forming a club that celebrates and shares your culture, (d) sharing book suggestions with Mrs. Huskey, our school media specialist, or (e) coordinating an effort with administration’s approval that would in some way honor culture. Even though we’re a diverse school and we have a lot of representation, we could still do more to embrace diversity. For example, we could do more to celebrate our Hispanic and Muslim populations.

In conclusion, opinions on the diversity at our school differ from student to student. But overall, people see it as a diverse school. We should take the initiative to make sure everyone at our school feels accepted and included while attending Bob Jones.