Dear families, friends, and community,
At Westrick Music Academy, we are uniting our voices in solidarity with the Black community, including past and present faculty and staff, our youth, our families, and our patrons. We are united with those who continue to face injustice, those who are marginalized, and those whose freedoms are unjustly denied. We are united in our commitment to being agents of change.
The Westrick Music Academy mission declares that we must provide “opportunities to grow in a supportive, inclusive, and joyous environment…” On behalf of the board of directors, as well as the artistic and administrative staff, we reaffirm our commitment to these principles. We recognize that being actively anti-racist must be reinforced continually through our policies and practices for us to complete our mission’s promise fully.
With this in mind, we have begun a thorough review of our policies and practices regarding diversity and inclusion. As a first step, we are creating a new position on the Board of Directors that is dedicated to safeguarding and enhancing a supportive and inclusive environment for all members of our community. As an initial step forward, this board member will lead a listening tour among our community members. This position will be formalized in a board leadership reorganization scheduled this month. In addition, we will continue to research different types of racial and inclusivity training opportunities that best fit our board and administration ahead of the 2020-2021 season.
So that our music can be enriched by diversity and gives honor to the Black community, we will continue to be diverse and intentional in our repertoire and with the artists with whom we collaborate.
As recent events continue to evolve, we have seen choristers linger a little longer after their virtual classes in solidarity. Many within our community have participated in peaceful demonstrations with some of our choristers leading the way. Parents have reached out to us to ask for accountability and offer ideas. Our vibrant community makes this organization so strong. We will continue to work together to take the necessary steps to move forward, united.
Earnest in our desire to do more, we are committed to uniting our voices in solidarity as we begin the work of being part of the change.
On behalf of WMA Board of Directors,
Brian Bezick, Outgoing President
Carolyn Sauer, Incoming President