Students at one of the most prestigious college preparatory schools in the United States could reportedly risk expulsion for single instances of speech someone deems offensive.
St. Albans School in Washington, D.C., is circulating an “anti-bias” draft policy among its administrators regarding potential punishment for “hate speech,” according to documents obtained by the Washington Free Beacon.
“It is the impact of hate speech, rather than the intent of those perpetrating it, that is of utmost importance,” the draft policy says, adding that boys could face expulsion “even in the case of a single expression, act, or gesture.”
‘It is the impact of hate speech, rather than the intent of those perpetrating it, that is of utmost importance.’
According to the draft policy, offenses can include “misplaced humor,” and such infractions “should be reported immediately to the student’s adviser” by students, teachers or parents.
“We also expect that anyone, whether student, faculty, staff, or family member, who witnesses, or has knowledge of an incident of hate speech, will report the incident to the appropriate individual,” it reads.
The policy assures no one will face negative consequences for making “a good faith report.”
The Washington Free Beacon noted it is unclear whether such policies have already been implemented.
Founded 1909 in the shadow of the National Cathedral, St. Albans is a college preparatory day and boarding school for boys that costs more than $50,000 annually for day students and more than $70,000 for boarding students.
The school released a statement about diversity, equity and inclusion in the wake of George Floyd’s death in 2020, committing to addressing “racial hate speech” and to “investigating and eradicating such behavior.”
“As noted in our June 27 letter, faculty and staff read Ibram X. Kendi’s ‘How to Be an Antiracist’ and Ta-Nehisi Coates’s ‘Between the World and Me’ this summer,” the statement read. “We had two training sessions and conversations based on these books during our opening faculty and staff meetings, and we will continue these conversations and training sessions during our October faculty and staff professional days.”
Coates’s book has also been inserted into the school’s curriculum. The school lists critical race theory texts in its list of “resources.”
The list of notable alumni of St. Albans who have gone on to wield power is extensive and includes former Vice President Al Gore, as well as numerous senators.
The communications office at St. Albans did not respond to a request for comment in time for publication.