Diversity throughout C.H.S


Photography credit of Connor Jackson

Elena West giving an evoking speech on the importance of Charlottesville High School Diversity.

Kiran Matthews, Staff Writer

Charlottesville High School students were looking forward to the yearly appearance of this year’s Diversity Assembly Wednesday the 13th of November. The focus of this year’s assembly was ”Reaching Out,” a way to focus on diverse student experiences while attending C.H.S and the help they received from others.


The yearly diversity assemblies provide education to all students about race, as well as social problems and achievements. This helps each student here in our school to be aware of and inspired by equality and diversity throughout the classroom and social activities. Tina Vasquez, leader of the diversity committee said, “It is a chance to highlight voices that are not often heard, representing all backgrounds and demographics at our school. Joined with celebrating our diversity of cultures, languages, ethnicities, religions, gender and sexual orientation, as well as racial identities, it demonstrates our variety of experiences facing physical and/or mental challenges.” 


In particular, the 2019 Diversity Assembly featured many thought evoking performances, as well as a speech from a widely known guest speaker from U.Va. 


Starting the assembly was the C.H.S choir performing “A Bridge Over Troubled Water” which also helped symbolize the meaning and importance of diversity in our school. Next came the long-awaited appearance of Kevin McDonald, U.Va. Vice President for Equality and Diversity. He presented two proactive videos that truly enabled students to think about the importance of kindness throughout life. “There are plans in the works for Dr. McDonald’s office to follow up with this group to collaborate on future projects!” said Tina Vasquez, bringing hope for more exciting performances in the future. 


Many upbeat dance performances were also seen, featuring members from diverse clubs here at C.H.S., such as Latinx Unidos and the International Club. Each performance showed the ways of many different cultures and the importance of expression. Cutos to each performer for the mind provoking acts!


Another exciting aspect of the 2019 assembly was the contest centered around the main theme of “Reaching Out.” Students were asked to write short stories of how they were embraced into the Charlottesville High School community with kindness from others. The prose contest winner was Elana West-Smith, who created a breathtaking piece on her first days here at C.H.S and the care which was provided to her from upperclassmen. 


The assembly came to a close with a slideshow with pictures taken by photography students featuring well-known immigrant businesses here in Charlottesville, such as Marco and Luca’s. Many of these photos were awarded great applause from the audience upon showing due to their likeness in the community.

Altogether the 2019 Diversity Assembly gave students more aware of the difficulties and importance of diversity. “Students from other cultures/countries had a chance to shine, and students from various groups at the school got a chance to have their voices heard,” said Kara Menfi, another teacher who was a big part of the whole assembly. Anya Movius, a freshman student says “ The diversity assembly was a great way to expose the student body to cultures unlike their own.” It is hopeful that in the future more students are able to express and accept this diversity in our school systems.