One of the core tenets of Stephen Gaynor School’s five-year strategic plan is defining and strengthening our community values in order to support a rich, rigorous, and nurturing environment. A major part of this process is having a greater focus on diversity and inclusion. As the strategic plan continues to be more deeply implemented at Gaynor, more expansive changes in diversity and inclusion efforts will occur in addition to the work that has been ongoing such as guest lectures from Glenn Singleton and Dr. Derald Wing Sue.
“The PA’s Diversity Committee was launched three years ago to promote diversity and inclusion efforts throughout the Gaynor community,” said Traci Lester, co-chair of the Parents’ Association Diversity Committee. “This year I’m excited to be joined by my co-chair Megan Hogan and to continue to focus our efforts on raising awareness around this important work.”
Most recently, the Community Values Committee was officially renamed to the Faculty Diversity and Inclusion Committee (FDIC). This change is intended to distinguish it from the Strategic Plan Community Values Committee and to acknowledge the collaborative nature between the FDIC and the Parent Diversity and Inclusion Committee. The FDIC is dedicated to fostering an inclusive environment that supports and celebrates each individual in our school community, and ensuring that the values of inclusion and diversity are infused in all aspects of the school for students of all ages.
A dedicated diversity page has also been added to the Stephen Gaynor School website, under the “About” menu alongside Gaynor’s mission and history, which not only reaffirms the school’s commitment but also creates high visibility and adds transparency to the initiatives.
“I am thrilled with the changes,” said Susan Wine Bender, member of the PA Diversity & Inclusion Committee, and former president of the Parents’ Association. “Highlighting diversity and inclusion in such a prominent position on the website shows Stephen Gaynor School’s commitment to these values. The changes are part of the Strategic Planning Committee’s goal to create a comprehensive, school-wide plan for diversity and inclusion that is in line with the school’s mission statement. As part of the process, we surveyed what other independent NYC schools are doing. The changes to our website were made based on the data, while never forgetting Gaynor’s commitment to the individual student.”