Dear Castilleja Board of Trustees,
I am writing to you today in support of reinstatement of Bear Capron. From 1996-2004, I was on the faculty at Castilleja teaching Dance within the Visual & Performing Arts Department. During my time at Castilleja, I had the privilege and the pleasure of working closely with Bear.
Throughout my eight years at Castilleja, I was continually amazed and impressed with Bear's uncanny ability to zero in on the special abilities and unique talents that each young woman brings with her to Castilleja. It was always inspiring to watch Bear carefully construct an appropriate platform on which our students' attributes could shine. His acceptance of each girl's uniqueness, his sincerity in caring about each of his students' well-being, and his ability to challenge his students to move beyond their comfort zone were inspirational, even to a veteran teacher.
From 1995-2002, my daughter Lilian attended Castilleja for all seven years of high school, grades 6-12. It was in the role of a parent that I was to discover first hand just how important a role Bear's insightful, intelligent and encouraging teaching style would play in the education and well-being of my own daughter. It is with a sincere debt of gratitude to Castilleja, and to Bear in particular, that I write this letter.
The lack of openness on why Bear is absent from Castilleja is very troubling to me and to my husband, and quite frankly, has me perplexed. This apparent silencing of information seems to fly right in the face of so much of what I thought was held dear by Castilleja's emphasis on communication and community.
At the very least, the rationale for his dismissal needs to be made public. By not doing so, I'm sure that there are members of the Casti community that are imagining terrible scenarios for his dismissal that could potentially damage Bear's reputation and his career. This absence of courtesy and compassion on Castilleja's part toward a twenty-year beloved teacher is simply inexcusable. It is insulting to the rest of the faculty and confusing to our student body.
I am hopeful that an open dialogue can be started to resolve this situation in a thoughtful manner that befits the excellence we know as Castilleja.
Eugenia and Tom Haney
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