In our partnership with the Board, we continue with resolve and determination to create an inclusive community at Brookwood —and to analyze how we can enhance and reinforce diversity, equity, and belonging in our community. We know this work benefits each and every member of our community and prepares all Brookwood students to graduate as academically accomplished individuals of conscience, character, compassion and cultural competence. We look forward to updating you periodically on our progress of both the strategic plan and other incremental progress toward building a climate and culture of belonging and preparing our students to thrive beyond Brookwood..
Please consider the following highlights from 2020-2021 as points on a continuum, with more to come:
76 members of Brookwood’s adult community participated along with the 9,000+ faculty, staff, administrators, current parents, and board members across 127 AISNE member schools who registered and participated in #1 New York Times Best-Selling Author, Ibram X. Kendi webinar talk: Go Beyond an Awareness of Racism, Contribute to the Formation of a Truly Just and Equitable Society
Conducted the NAIS Assessment of Inclusivity and Multiculturalism with participation rates of over 90% students in grades 4-8, administrators, faculty & staff; over 80% trustees, close to 30% parents. The data from AIM will provide Brookwood’s leadership team with reliable information to plan and create exceptional educational experiences for all in our community.
The 2019-2024 Strategic Plan has been guiding our work.
Brookwood provided faculty with the resources to be exceptional educators including:
- All Employee Professional Development: 3- hour long sessions with Dr. Liza Talusan: ENGAGING IN DIVERSITY, INCLUSION, AND ACTIONS SERIES
- All 16 department coordinators attended AISNE Workshop: Social Justice Standards: Anti-Bias Education
- 11 faculty attended AISNE Insight session with Paul Gorski: So You Think You’re an Anti-Racist? Shifts of Consciousness and Action for Well-Meaning White Independent School Community Members
- 10 faculty attended the 2021 AISNE Diversity, Equity, and Inclusion Conference over 4 days
- The admissions and communication team attended the Enrollment Management Association’s Anti-Bias Symposium for an in-depth look at how to work to make the application process more equitable.
Action steps we have taken to empower our faculty to impact Brookwood and Beyond:
- In June 2020, two DEI Coordinators (Jen Cunningham, Lower School, and Lisa Johnson, Upper School) were appointed to partner with the Director of Teaching and Learning and Interim HOS to coordinate overall DEI efforts; DEI coordinators became active members in AISNE’s DEI practitioner group
- Jen Cunningham also serves as Co-Chair of the Board of Trustees DEI Committee.
- Our DEI Coordinators led a parent education evening entitled “Deconstructing white privilege.”
- 13 faculty members of Employee DEI committee met monthly to:
- Draft a DEI mission statement
- Provide feedback on professional development sessions
- Prepare and facilitate book groups on race
- Support colleagues with creating DEI goals
We are in the process of hiring a full-time faculty DEI coordinator for 2021-22 school year.
Research and implement best practices for hiring and retaining diverse faculty and staff; increase the percentage of diverse employees, especially people of color, to expand the range of voices in our classrooms.
- Director of Teaching and Learning, Division Heads and DEI Coordinators attended a 2-day workshop “Build an Inclusive Hiring Process at Your School” with Liza Talusan, Ph.D.
Better understand the experience of our diverse students and families in order to ensure that they are thoughtfully included in our community; increase the percentage of students and families reflecting all forms of diversity.
- DEI Consultant, Erica Pernell, conducted five small focus groups via Zoom for parents/guardians & students by grade (grades 1-8) during February and March.
- Erica presented her findings to the Leadership Team at the end of March, including incoming Head of School Jon Bartlett, and to the entire employee community at the beginning of April.
- A video recording of Erica’s listening session to employees can be found here.
- Erica Pernell will continue to work with Brookwood faculty for the ‘21-’22 school year
- 8 students in grades 5-8 attended AISNE: 2021 Middle School Students of Color Conference