Administrators at one of New York City’s most prestigious prep schools are telling parents that students and faculty who are distraught over the “tragedy” of Donald Trump’s election can find a safe and comforting space in their school hallways.
Ethical Culture Fieldston School, one of the most exclusive prep schools in the city, is attended by the children of New York’s most wealthy and powerful movers and shakers. In a letter sent Wednesday to the school community, the principal of Fieldston’s lower school, George Burns, expressed his grief and sorrow at the election of Trump.
“And now when we most want to weep and mourn, we must come to work and be a source of both solace and inspiration to all our young students,” Burns’ letter read. “We have long known the challenge of being the faces of reassurance and comfort after continuous tragedies, but this seems very different.”
The letter goes on to warn teachers that students may come to class with “worries, anger and dismay,” the product of weeks of gathering information about the traumatic national election. Careful to cover his bases, the principal also warns that “[s]ome [students] may even have parents who woke up happy this morning. They will need time today to talk about what happened.”
The letter assured worried parents that Fieldston will do its best to oppose Donald Trump’s perceived agenda. “[Students] need to know, as we all need to, that people in this country will work hard to make sure that everyone is safe, no matter where we come from, what we look like, who we love or how and whether we worship. People will continue to work hard to protect everyone’s rights and to make the world a better place.”
The letter closed by saying that both group and individual discussions would be available to students, and suggested that parents continue reassuring their children at home.
Fieldston has a lower, middle and upper schools, serving students from Pre-K through “Level IV” – 12th grade. Tuition, which pays for books, supplies, lunch and health insurance along with Trump-related emotional support, ranges from $45,000 to $47,000 per year per student, depending on grade level.
Students who apply to the preschool must undergo a rigorous application process, which includes an hour and a half of “playgroup observation.”
Perhaps now they will also be screened for emotional stability in the face of certain Republican-driven doom.