A kind and ethical community is created with intention and action.
Morning Meetings always include a few minutes of silence during which we are intentionally present, centering ourselves, focusing on the breath, and noticing our own physical and emotional states. By practicing being present at Morning Meeting and throughout the school day, students are better able to focus, forge strong community relationships, and learn from their triumphs and failures.
During their time at Bay, some students begin to take a greater role in this practice by leading us in guided meditation or creative visualization. Juniors and seniors have the opportunity to go deeper into the roots of mindfulness by taking the three-week Immersive course in Buddhism.
Read an interview with a member of our first graduating class on how mindfulness has informed her life.
Ethics in the Classroom and the Community
A lively engagement with ethical questions is central to how teachers and students interact at Bay. This shows up in many spheres—in the classroom, in clubs and affinity groups, and frequently during Morning Meetings.
In confronting questions that traverse disciplines and demand rigorous thought, our students not only develop intellectual integrity, they also learn to see the connections between seemingly disparate arenas of human activity. They gain philosophical, religious, creative, and scientific lenses for addressing complex questions and issues, developing perspectives that are intellectually sophisticated and personally meaningful.
Within our community, the Bay Precepts are a daily reminder of our aspirations to ethical living. The expectations we have of ourselves and each other are visible in trusting relationships among and between staffulty and students—hallways lined with unattended backpacks are a common sight, and a hallmark of “the Bay way” is that students feel a great sense of safety and support from the adults around them.
The Bay School recognizes the importance that questions of spirit and practices of faith have played and continue to play in our world. Although Bay is not a religious school, we seek to understand and value diverse spiritual and religious traditions. We believe that having an understanding of religion as well as its interaction with science, art, and politics is essential to understanding human existence. The study of religion and philosophy is integrated into the required Humanities curriculum, and academic electives promote study of the major faith traditions.
Beyond academics, we honor the roles spirituality and faith play in an individual’s life. We encourage all members of The Bay School community to participate in their religious and spiritual traditions and make every effort for them to do this comfortably. We aid in our community’s awareness of these traditions through Morning Meeting, where faith adherents from within and outside of the Bay community share their experiences.
Land Use Acknowledgment
In keeping with the Bay Precept of living with kindness and honesty and being careful truth tellers, we acknowledge that the Bay School campus sits on the land of the Village of Yelamu, which is the traditional, unceded territory of the Ramaytush-speaking people, one of eight nations now referred to as Ohlone. The Bay Area was the site of trade, travel, gathering, and healing for more than a dozen Native tribes, many of whom continue to live and thrive here. We further acknowledge that colonization is ongoing and continues to adversely affect indigenous people here and around the world. The Bay School is committed to providing an education that works to dismantle ongoing legacies of settler colonialism by expanding our understanding of history, recognizing the hundreds of Indigenous Nations who continue to resist, live, and uphold their sacred relations across their lands, and considering how to repair historical and present harm.