Dear Notre Dame Family,
Our hearts are heavy. The murders of George Floyd, Breonna Taylor, Ahmaud Arbery, Tony McDade, and countless others have stirred national consciousness and a call to action, including here at Notre Dame. We mourn with the world in the senseless loss of their lives. We affirm that Black Lives Matter.
As stated in his piece “I Cannot Remain Silent” posted in The Atlantic by former Chairman of the Joint Chiefs of Staff, and NDHS alum Admiral Mike Mullen ‘64:
“We must, as citizens, address head-on the issue of police brutality and sustained injustices against the African American community. We must, as citizens, support and defend the right—indeed, the solemn obligation—to peacefully assemble and to be heard.”
Let us clearly state, Racism is wrong. Racism is always wrong. Police brutality,racial profiling, and false claims against black people are all wrong. Notre Dame High School unequivocally condemns all racism in every form at every level of society - systemic racism, institutional racism, racial inequality and individual racism - and we must actively work to eradicate it in all forms including here at Notre Dame.
We have begun to move forward to address issues of injustice and systematic racism being brought to the forefront for all the world. The Notre Dame Board, administration, faculty and staff are committed to making concrete and real change. We are listening to our students and school community and recognize that one town hall and prayer service may be a beginning, but are definitely not a solution.
We are closely reviewing our educational program to see how we can better address issues of racial and gender inequalities and injustice in our school community and implement strategies to ensure we continue to educate the hearts and minds of all. We will include students, parents, faculty, administration, and alumni in the review process.
We will also be educating our faculty, our students, and the greater Notre Dame community on how we can all listen, question, and use our voices to root out injustice and racism and promote equality and social justice in our world. We welcome your constructive, thoughtful insight and teachable ideas as we work together as a community to make Notre Dame a better place for all.
We recognize that our original message was an inadequate response to a heinous act and rightful call for justice. We sincerely regret and apologize for our initial silence. We also recognize that our initial message was hurtful and shortsighted, especially to our black students, alumni, families and community members. That is not who we are or what Notre Dame stands for. With your help and support and united as Knights, we now move forward with zeal as our Holy Cross Mission of “Being Family”, “Building Respect”, “Bringing Hope”, and “Educating Hearts and Minds” directs us to do. We ask for your prayers and forgiveness.
We pray especially today for all those hurt by the murder of George Floyd because his life mattered. All Black Lives Matter to us.
With love and respect,
The Notre Dame High School Administration
Dear Notre Dame Community,
George Floyd’s tragic death has stirred national consciousness. As we seek understanding and ways to move forward, we rely on our Catholic Church leaders. Please note the statements made by Most Rev. Jose Gomez, Archbishop of Los Angeles and the United States Conference of Catholic Bishops which provide us with some enlightenment and guidance. Our students will be discussing their feelings on these matters in a constructive town hall forum this week. The power of prayer cannot be underestimated during challenging times. I encourage you to join the school community in a prayer for peace and justice.