Our Pride mural
As the 2023 heads of the diversity committee, our main objective has been to uphold and enhance the legacy that our school strives to achieve - a positive and diverse environment that fosters inclusivity. Throughout our tenure, we dedicated ourselves to making a meaningful impact on the girls.
At QSA (Queer Students Association) the idea of a permanent symbol of pride in the school was proposed and discussed. As heads together with QSA, an important sub-committee under the umbrella of diversity, took up the challenge to make this a reality. While raising and lowering of the pride flag was a possibility, we believed it to be performative and not representative of our school's unwavering support for LGBTQIA+ members of our community. After confirming support from school management, who were also instrumental in the formation of this idea, we worked diligently in May to finalise the details of a mural that would convey our message of inclusivity and support. Ms King and the school management played a crucial role in supporting our initiative, and we are incredibly grateful for their contributions.
To create the mural, a competition was held in the school, unfortunately, only one girl submitted a design. As a result, the diversity heads sought help from Grace Van Loggerenberg (Form V) and Rebecca Trickett (Form V), the student heads of art. Throughout the month of May, the team worked tirelessly on the design, with Grace taking the lead in creating a design. Early on in this process Ms Theophanous had suggested that the permanent mural be a mosaic to accompany and complement the existing mosaic on The Edge wall, which became the basis for the design. Feedback from various parties, including Ms King, the QSA heads, Ms Cooper and Ms Mowatt, helped to refine the design until it was completed in early June.
To install the mural, we contacted Lindsay Gaydon, an Old Girl (class of 1985), who provided valuable input, including dimensions, logistics, cost and timeline. After much effort, the construction was scheduled to begin in August. Shortly after we returned from prelims, the mural was installed within two days. We are absolutely thrilled with the final product and we truly are grateful for the opportunity we were given. The mural was designed in such a way to be a timeless piece that stands for the school's values. The LGBTQIA+ community and our school share the core principles of hope, love and inclusivity we hope to have represented.
To all our St Mary’s students, this is for you. You belong here and
St Mary’s is your home.
THIYA KALAN, OLIVIA SMITH, LEBONE TSHETLO
HEAD AND DEPUTY HEADS OF DIVERSITY