As Marlborough continues to strive toward its goal of “equity leads education,” several practices have been implemented and furthered this school year. Some of the major initiatives have been the translation of emails from Head of School Jennifer Ciccarelli into multiple languages and continuing the admissions team’s work to attract applicants from across Los Angeles.
After the racist comments made by members of the Los Angeles City Council, Ciccarelli sent an email to the entire community acknowledging this harmful event. Spanish and Korean translations of the email were also included. The decision to translate the letter was made during a meeting with members of the Critical Incident Team (CIT), which convenes to assess any significant issue that has a direct effect on students. Since the racist remarks by Los Angeles City Council members specifically impacted the Latinx community at Marlborough, the CIT sought to make the information equally accessible to all community members by hiring translators to translate the letter.
“I do think we’re pretty well united in really wanting to think intentionally about how we support every member of our community and making sure that every person feels seen, heard and understood,” Ciccarelli said.
Whether future letters will be translated into other languages is still being discussed, but for now, Ciccarelli relayed that she hopes this practice will continue. Ciccarelli said that she received several responses from parents to the translated letters that expressed their gratitude and support for the translations.
In alignment with Marlborough’s strategic plan goal of becoming more accessible to the Los Angeles community, this year’s admissions process will also place a heavy significance on bringing in applicants from across the city. The admissions team has been reaching out to more schools and different community-based organizations that help place students in independent schools, such as Young Eisenhower Scholars (YES), AXIS, A Better Chance (ABC) and The Alliance. By working with these organizations, the admissions team hopes to give more students the chance to be exposed to Marlborough and its opportunities and resources, according to Director of Enrollment Management and Collegiate Partnerships Jawaan Wallace.
“LA is such a huge city and we shouldn’t just be drawing kids that live in Hancock Park,” Wallace said. “We absolutely want kids from Hancock Park, but we also want kids from all over our amazing city.”
Specifically, Marlborough has been reaching out to more public schools. Additionally, the admissions team has been contacting schools that have sent a few students to Marlborough in the past but aren’t regular feeder schools. Often, administrators will select students that they think would be successful at Marlborough for the admissions team to meet. Additionally, in order to reach as many people as possible, the admissions team will host several Zoom events and will ask administrators to tell families at their schools about these opportunities to get to know Marlborough.
“There are so many benefits to our students being exposed to people coming from so many different backgrounds, and it provides an opportunity for our community to learn from one another,” Wallace said.