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Leslie's Take

Leslie
St. Jean Baptiste H.S.
11th grade

In Saint Jean Baptiste High School, one can notice that there are a huge variety of girls from different ethnic backgrounds. The school basically indicates how the world around us really is. Yet, that doesn't mean there are no problems in my school. The issues that do cause problems do not concern race so much but rather religion.

At St. Jean's, the school encourages us to share our cultures with others in order to provide a better understanding of one another. This is done by having a prayer read in several different languages during mass. Students also work together through fundraising and community service events held throughout the school year, and through class projects. Within our school community, most of the faculty wants us to have an open mind about the people who come from different cultures and different religious backgrounds.

Even though St. Jean's is a Catholic school, it accepts students of varied religious backgrounds. Most teachers also accept students for who they are and for what they believe in. This happens because our own faculty is very diverse --coming from several different countries and different religious backgrounds.

There was one experience at my school that I will never forget, however. Last year, as a sophomore at St. Jean's, my religion class was discussing several different religions of the world. This discussion lasted for the whole period among the students. The teacher was rather quiet. Toward the end of the period, the teacher had stated that people who do not believe in the same God that Christians believe in are sinners and will most likely go to Hell. In my class, most of us are Catholics, but we still felt hurt about this remark. We felt that the school wanted us to accept all people no matter what and here was a teacher stating those who are not meeting the Christian standard will go to Hell.

Personally, I feel no one has the right to judge people especially when it concerns his/her religion even at a Catholic school. Teachers, who are the ones who are supposed to act professional and be respectful in a school environment, are sometimes the ones who act more immature than the students they teach. In today's society people know that in order to make life more productive they have to respect each other. Therefore, teachers should respect their students and base their judgements not on religion (or race) but on the work they do and the effort they put forth as students.