Diversity, Equity & Inclusion
As a school of the Sacred Heart, we believe that
each person is created in the image of God,
and we commit ourselves to foster an awareness that impels us
to act in the interests of equity and justice for all.
Rooted in our Catholic faith and in The Goals and Criteria of Sacred Heart education, Stone Ridge values diversity, equity, and inclusion as an integral element of the community and education. We believe that each person is created in the image of God, and we commit ourselves to foster an awareness that impels us to act in the interests of equity and justice for all.
New to her role this year, Michelle Black serves as the Director of Diversity, Equity, and Inclusion. The mission of the Diversity, Equity, and Inclusion (DEI) program at Stone Ridge is to advance understanding and respect among people of all cultures, religions, and races. This program aims to improve inter- and intra-group relations by creating brave spaces for dialogue; training inclusive student leaders, faculty members, and administrators by highlighting the benefits of diversity; and building bridges of understanding and respect among our different members of the Stone Ridge community. The School’s understanding of diversity is not limited to race and ethnicity, but rather a recognition that all individuals experience the world through various dimensions, such as age, ethnic heritage, gender, mental/physical abilities, and characteristics, race and sexual orientation. The dimensions can also include communication style, education, family status, first language, geographic location, income, military experience, organizational role and level, work experience, expertise, and work style.
We work to support and increase our community’s awareness, understanding, inclusion, cooperation, and celebration of all its members. Our commitment to the diversity of our student body includes our desire to present a healthy representation of diversity in the composition of faculty, staff, administration, and trustees, and likewise reflected in our curriculum.
ALL SCHOOL INITIATIVE - NO PLACE FOR HATE SCHOOL
For the fourth year, Stone Ridge will be a No Place For Hate School, a distinction bestowed on the school community by the Anti-Defamation League. Stone Ridge has been considered for this distinction because we continually work on building a safe and inclusive community in which respect is the goal and where all students can thrive. We empower students, faculty, administration, and family members to take a strong stand against hate and bullying, and we send a clear, unified message that all students have a home at Stone Ridge.
CULTURAL COMPETENCY and PROFESSIONAL DEVELOPMENT
Whether hosting a guest speaker or attending a national conference, faculty and students have an opportunity to participate in workshops, presentations, and affinity groups related to topics of equity and justice in teaching and learning. The Office of Diversity, Equity and Inclusion has held numerous opportunities for the faculty to learn, share, and openly discuss their own understanding of self and others in order to be more compassionate and empathic members of the school community. Cultural competence is the ability to successfully teach students who come from a culture or cultures other than one’s own. It entails developing certain personal and interpersonal awareness and sensitivities, understanding certain bodies of cultural knowledge and mastering a set of skills that, taken together, underlie effective cross-cultural teaching and culturally responsive teaching. These events have taken the form of all-school professional development, curriculum meetings, diversity conferences (such as the NAIS People of Color Conference), and an optional regular after-school Equity Team open to all of the employees to discuss, share questions, triumphs, and challenges within the DEI work at Stone Ridge.
DEI Programming in the Upper School
In the Upper School, students are empowered and encouraged in their DEI work both within the and outside the Stone Ridge community. The Student Diversity Board is led by seniors. All of our Upper School students have the opportunity to take part in many cultural groups such as Allies, Amig@s, Asian AppreciAsian, Black Student Alliance, Middle Eastern Students Alliance, and Spectrum.
DEI Programming in the Middle School
The Middle School holds Diversity Club meetings for Grades 5 & 6 and Grades 7 & 8, respectively, once a rotation. This Club, led by Middle School faculty facilitators, provides a space for students to learn and safely share their feelings, questions, and concerns about DEI in our School and the world. The Club helps provide a time and space for students interested in diversity and social justice to pose questions and process issues with individuals with like-minded students. Students also attend local full-day Diversity Leadership Conferences. They bring their knowledge back to the school community in a number of ways including Mix-It-Up Day and assemblies about microaggressions and anti-bullying.
Better Together as Parent Programming
Better Together is the newly named parent diversity group for adults within the Stone Ridge community who want to help create a diverse and inclusive educational environment for their children by elevating issues regarding culture, identity, and equity in ways that unify the broader Stone Ridge community. The program, launched in January 2019, will continue through the academic year.
Questions about Diversity, Equity and Inclusion at Stone Ridge, please contact Ms. Michelle Black, 301.657.4322 ext. 1553.