What do you envision for your role as Director of DEI at Parker?
“I’ve always been drawn to big picture thinking and systemic change. I am driven by an interest in fairness, civil rights, and justice. As a teacher at Parker, I centered our long-term classroom studies, discussions, and social-emotional work on these ideas. In recent years, as current civic life turned down its current course, I dug into a renewed focus on citizenship and the responsibilities inherent in civic engagement. As a citizen myself, I found that the most meaningful work I could do was to engage my students in their rights and roles in society.
In the summer of 2018, I spent a week being trained at the Institute for Teaching Diversity and Social Justice. Following that, I returned to Parker with a renewed focus on the importance of this work in our school. The DEI work ahead for administrators, teachers, and our board members will require forethought, review, training, rethinking. The work is both personal and professional. In order to fully and effectively engage, we need to question the status quo and our places in it. We need to reflect on our stories and experiences in society and then look at our educational program with new eyes. DEI is not a five-month or one-year endeavor.
My vision for my role is that, along with our faculty and administrators, we will be engaged in professional development to build on our program to ensure a sense of belonging exists for our students, families, and professional community. A key aspect of my position is also to work closely with Jennifer Gresens and Matt Thornton in building connections with community leaders and to diversify our student body and faculty. I also look forward to working with faculty and alongside the Board of Trustees to establish a formal statement of support for and mission to address diversity, equity and inclusion.”