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Black Lives Matter protests: Cornish headteacher calls for cultural tolerance

Black Lives Matter protests: Cornish headteacher calls for cultural tolerance

Published by Sarah Yeoman at 6:05am 10th June 2020.

A headteacher from Cornwall is calling for cultural tolerance in the wake of Black Lives Matter protests across the world.

The anti-racism demonstrations were sparked by the death of George Floyd, who died in police custody in America.

Action was staged across Cornwall over the weekend as part of the global protests.

Sarah Matthews, headmistress at Truro High School for Girls, says efforts must be renewed to educate the next generations about the need for tolerance and better understanding.

She says it is important that everyone strives to create a more fair and equitable society where different cultures and opinions are welcomed and listened to.

black lives matter protest truro
The Black Lives Matter protest in Truro at the weekend

“As a teacher, I believe a vital part of my job is to encourage our students to become global citizens, to develop a real understanding of the world and a tolerance for those who live within it, irrespective of race or ethnicity. The tragedy of George Floyd can never be allowed to happen again; much work still needs to be done and this is something we must work together to achieve.”

“At THS we will not tolerate racism of any kind and this is reflected in all that we do. Our school is made up of girls from many different nationalities, 12 in our boarding community alone, who live and work together as a family. We are proud of our broad and diverse community. In some virtual lessons, the girls have been reflecting on what has taken place in the USA and it is heartening to see that they are as appalled as we are and share our desire for a more positive and inclusive future.”

Sarah Matthews, Truro High School

black lives matter protest truro
People gathered at the Black Lives Matter protest on Lemon Quay, Truro

International students make up an important part of the school population at Truro High with the school increasing in size by more than 10% last year.

The school says "parents are keen to sign up their daughters to take advantage of its superb exam results and excellent pastoral care". 

In the boarding houses, the growth has been even more significant with the number of students due to be living on site this September 45% higher than it was just two years ago.

“It is wonderful that so many families can see the benefits of a school that promotes tolerance and understanding. Here in Cornwall we have a very welcoming local community and the warmth that local people show to our boarders from all around the world is a key factor in making them feel at home very quickly. The British families at THS really value the opportunity their daughters have to make friends from around the world, broadening their horizons”

“International students make a huge financial contribution not only to the running of the school, but also to the local economy through shopping and family visits. Whilst our community of day pupils continues to expand, it is heartening to see that our international community is more than keeping pace enabling both those students, and the school, to thrive at what, for many independent schools, is a very difficult time.”

Sarah Matthews, Truro High School

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