This is the first of the virtual “With the Door Open” spring 2020 series, with members of YES+ answering anonymous community questions about sex and sexuality. The panelists for the first one are Karin U. ‘20, Bianca R.P ‘21, Denise T. ‘21, Warren C. ‘21, and Jane P. ‘22.
The Brace Center celebrated International Women’s Day during exam week of Winter Term. A delicious, super-tasty cake awaited students in Commons for snack and/or dessert. Yum!
International Women’s Day (March 8) is a global day celebrating the social, economic, cultural and political achievements of women. The day also marks a call to action for accelerating women’s equality.
Students in Intro to Biology (aka Bio100) attended several sessions by yes+, Phillips Academy’s peer-to-peer sex educators. Led by Dr. Cath Kemp and José Navarro Peralta, Instructors in Biology, the initiative is part of a broader curricular design of the introductory biology class to embed relevant issues of race, gender, and sexuality into the science curriculum. Since not all 9th graders take Bio100, some dorms and other 9th grade classes joined bio students for this presentation.
Some student reflections:
“I did not know that different people felt pleasure in different ways. This was meaningful to me because it shows that everyone is different, so communication in a relationship is important.”
“I didn’t know that girls masturbated.”
“One thing I already knew was the important of protection when having sexual intercourse. I learned about this in 6th grade when I had my first sex-ed class. This is memorable because it is very important to my own health and the future partner’s health as well.”
“One thing I learned is the how frequent intersex babies are born. This is important because it was something I barely though existed but learned that it is more common than I thought. This changes my thinking on the topic because it enforces the fact of how people are expected to choose a sex and doctors encourage “correctional” surgery to intersex babies.”
“Even though many of us were initially suspicious of this presentation, it was an important presentation. We never talk about it in class and it is great to talk about things that affect all of us. We don’t talk about it and I feel it is very valuable that we actually do.”
Members of the Adult Advisory Board Dr. Flavia Vidal, MJ Engel, and Carol Artacho attended the Annual Symposium for the Independent School Gender Project in Albuquerque, NM in early February. There, they also had a chance to meet up with a former Brace Board Member and mastermind behind the current iteration of Phillips Academy’s Take Back the Night events, Kay Heffernan.
Folks at Phillips Academy are working on organizing the 2020 Take Back The Night event. As part of the preparations, they made this video. Do you think she will come?