Diversity, Equity, and Inclusion
SCDS actively seeks to increase the breadth of diversity and inclusion in our entire community: the gifted children at the center of a dynamic learning process, their families, and our faculty, staff, and board of trustees. In order to create a more diverse, equitable, and inclusive community at Seattle Country Day School, we have incorporated DEI into all our work, from strategic planning, to curriculum, to parent programs. Highlights from this work are noted below.
OUR STRATEGIC PLAN: SCDS NEXT
With a planning process begun in 2019, and with the assistance of two expert consultants, SCDS is implementing a multi-year strategic plan. This plan, called SCDS Next, focuses on two interconnected priorities: retaining and attracting excellent faculty and increasing the diversity and inclusivity of our community (including the student body).
The Synapse program is a social and emotional learning program for grades K–8 that is infused with diversity, equity, and inclusion concepts. Synapse educates children in four foundational SEL ideas, ones inextricably linked to DEI: self-knowledge or self-awareness, social relationships, celebration of self-identity and others’ identities, and social awareness. Read more about Synapse, here.
The school partners with Courageous Conversation, a racial equity organization based in San Francisco that works with our families, faculty, and students to help them engage, sustain, and deepen conversations about race. Through Courageous Conversation, the SCDS community develops their own racial literacy and consciousness, and examines the impact of race on their lives — allowing for better conversations about race and racism. Starting fall 2021, all parents and guardians who are new to the school will be required to participate in Courageous Conversation within their first two years at SCDS.
RIPPLES (Race in Parenting Learning Circles) is a parent-led group at SCDS, founded in 2020, whose mission is to facilitate open, honest conversations among parents about race and racial equity — both to promote their own understanding and to keep pace with what their children are learning at school and from a rapidly changing society. Sometimes, these conversations center around a shared resource, such as a book or article; others are informed by the exchange of ideas. Central to all RIPPLES discussions is the participants’ willingness to share their lived experiences, to accept hard truths, and to truly listen. Ultimately, RIPPLES aims to create ripples of reflection and growth in the school community by encouraging all parents to join in these enriching, growth-oriented, and deeply connective conversations. For more information, explore RIPPLES’ online FAQ or contact email@example.com.
SCDS offers a series of stand-alone parent workshops called Decoding the Language of Today's Social Activism. The workshops explore the history and meaning of phrases such as "Black lives matter," "white privilege," and "defunding the police." Attendees deepen their understanding of issues related to racial equity and social change while receiving support in culturally competent communication and parenting practices.
Read the board of trustees’ full statement on diversity here.