About

Diversity, Equity, Inclusion, and Justice

Statement of Inclusivity

As a fully residential academic community founded in the Episcopal tradition and rooted in enduring humanistic values, St. Paul’s School welcomes and affirms the dignity of all human beings. Increasing diversity, strengthening inclusivity, and deepening equity require deep listening, open hearts, and open minds. We honor and affirm the experiences of our students, faculty, and staff. We take seriously our responsibility to equip our students to engage the world as global citizens who aspire to transform the world in service of the greater good and Beloved Community.
 
Our mission as a School is to educate each other, to bring forth what is best in each other, every day. We draw from the tenets of the Episcopal Church’s “Becoming Beloved Community” to advance racial healing, reconciliation, and justice in our School and in the world. Ultimately, our graduates carry with them the exhortation from the Last Night Prayer, “[k]indle in our hearts the honest purpose to do right.”
 

Strategic Priorities

In 2017, the School’s Board of Trustees charged the SPS Task Force on Inclusive Community to create action plans to further the School’s commitment to diversity and inclusivity and identify resources that would be required to move these plans forward.
 
Since then, members of the School community have worked collaboratively to implement the task force report recommendations and identify areas of additional opportunity and challenge. The work is ongoing, and the commitment is unwavering.

Community Engagement

Through deep listening and learning in different contexts and spaces, St. Paul’s School works to respect the dignity of every human being and to enhance community life by actively responding to the needs of a wonderfully diverse mix of students, faculty, staff, alumni/ae, and families.

DEI Councils

Under the leadership of Bethany Dickerson Wynder, director of diversity, equity, and inclusion initiatives, the School continues its commitment to integrate DEI work into community life through the development of new programs and structures that deepen existing partnerships and collaborations among students, faculty, staff, and SPS alumni of color. The director provides a central hub to support the Faculty DEI Council, led by Pankti Dalal and Omar Brown, the Student DEI Council, the emerging Interfaith Council, and with members of the Office of Advancement in developing an outreach plan for alumni/alumnae of color.
 
Faculty DEI Council
The Council’s work centers on identifying sustainable initiatives within the SPS community that support DEI as a defining ethos for life and work at the School. The Council partners with various groups on the grounds to enhance practices, policies, and procedures that foster inclusivity and a sense of belonging for every member of the community.
 
Student DEI Council
In September 2020, the School created the Student DEI Council, a student-led group whose purpose is to focus on issues pertaining to identity at SPS and serve as an advisory board to the Rector and the School’s administration. The Council is a vital voice on DEI initiatives and planning and works to increase student input and partner with the Faculty DEI Council.
 
Student Affinity and Alliance Groups
St. Paul’s School has 13 student affinity and alliance groups that are run by students, with support from faculty advisers. These groups provide safe spaces for students with shared identities or commitments to a cause to connect with each other and help foster greater dialogue and awareness throughout the SPS community.
 
View Current Student Groups

DEI @ SPS

List of 20 news stories.

The Next Chapter

During a webinar held in December 2020, Director of Diversity, Equity, and Inclusion Initiatives Bethany Dickerson Wynder and Vice Rector for Faculty the Rev. Michael Spencer discuss DEI initiatives at the School and opportunities to continue moving that work forward.

Special Events

Partnerships and Programming

List of 3 items.

  • Partnerships

    St. Paul’s School sponsors and partners with leading organizations actively engaged in the work of DEI education. These organizations include:
    • VISIONS, Inc.
      The mission of VISIONS, Inc. is to empower the creation of environments where differences are recognized, understood, appreciated, and utilized for the benefit of all through both time-tested and innovative training and tools, public advocacy, and consulting models addressing the personal, interpersonal, cultural, and institutional levels.
    • Hinderlie Associates
    • Diversity Directions
    • Association for Independent Schools of New England (AISNE)
    • National Association for Independent Schools (NAIS)
    • National Association of Episcopal Schools (NAES)
    • NAIS Student Diversity Leadership Conference and People of Color Conference
    • AISNE High School Students of Color Conference
    • National Anti-Racism Teach-In
  • Faculty and Staff Diversity and Training

    SPS actively recruits, hires, and retains a wide-ranging mix of talented faculty and staff. St. Paul’s School is committed to educating its faculty members as well as its students with a comprehensive professional development program devoted to building a vibrant and inclusive community.
    • All faculty candidates are screened for prior professional development in the area of cultural competency.
    • The School’s strategic plan for diversity in faculty recruitment increased the number of faculty of color on the grounds from 18 percent to 29 percent over the past seven years.
    • The percentage of Black and LatinX faculty of color mirrors the percentage among students for each of these groups.
    • Affinity groups, events, and programs are designed to attract and retain faculty of color.
    • The School uses a unique assessment protocol designed to mitigate implicit bias in the hiring process.
    • Annual DEI professional development is a requirement for every faculty member.
    • Consultant Keith Hinderlie works with faculty on responses to microaggressions and concerns raised by the Black@ movement.
    • SPS has sent one of the largest faculty cohorts to the National Association of Independent Schools People of Color Conference (POCC) each year for the last four years.
    • All faculty members are required to participate in immersive, off-campus diversity training by the summer of 2022. Nearly 70% have completed the requirement to date.
  • Guest Speakers, Visiting Experts, and Learning Series

    St. Paul’s School invites many guest speakers to share their experiences and points of view with the School community. A partial list includes: 
    Arshay Cooper, author, Suga Water, and a film screening of A Most Beautiful Thing, based on this memoir
    Keith Hinderlie, Understanding Microaggressions in the age of Black@
    Ibram Xolani Kendi, author, How To Be An Antiracist, historian, and scholar of race and discriminatory policy in America
    Liza Talusan, Practical Application to Reinforce Cultural Competency in the Community
    Jennifer Bryan, Navigating Gender and Sexuality Diversity in Inclusive Schools
    Joe Feldman, Grading For Equity: What It Is, Why It Matters, and How It Can Transform Schools and Classrooms
    Darryl Davis, Practicing the Values of MLK
    Angie Thomas, author, The Hate U Give
    Caroline Blackwell, Vice President for Equity and Justice, NAIS | Personal Mission: Finding Your Why
    Daniel Heischman,  Executive Director, NAES | Organizational Mission: Episcopal Identity and the Intersection with the work of Diversity, Equity, and Inclusion
    Paul Gorski, Equity Literacy
    Olivia Morehead-Slaughter, Mitigating Implicit Bias
    Christine Savini, Diversity Directions, Strengthening Diversity Recruitment
    Artist Roberto Lugo on identity and belonging
    Byron Hurt, An award-winning documentary filmmaker, author, and activist
    Rosetta Eun Ryong Lee, Consultant, Educator, Activist
Scholarship. Leadership.
Character. Community.
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