Diversity, Equity, Inclusion & Justice
Inly deeply values diversity, equity, inclusion and justice (DEIJ), all of which are integral parts of the Montessori philosophy. Alongside fostering global citizenship and honoring a diverse range of experiences, we weave an anti-racist and anti-bias culture of inclusion into the fabric of our community.
Every member of the Inly community is responsible for being committed to DEIJ practices. We actively seek faculty and families who embrace and practice our Montessori core values of collaboration, respect, compassion and empathy.
How we facilitate DEIJ work
Inly’s dedication to DEIJ practices is exemplified in a number of ways.
Established in the summer of 2021, the Equity Advisory Council (EAC) guides and centers the work of DEIJ at Inly. The council is a one-year appointment and is composed of three board members, three parents, three faculty members and the Lower and Upper School Director. These individuals meet monthly to discuss ongoing initiatives and projects, report progress within each group (Board, Parents, Faculty/Staff, Administration) and work together to advise the Head of School on matters such as whole-school training goals.
Three DEIJ consultants guide our community’s growth in DEIJ:
- The Glasgow Group: writes and trains our faculty and staff on Inly’s Identity-Based Harm Policy
- Dr. Keith Hinderlie: works with the Administrative team to broaden our diversity perspectives in all areas of operation.
- Dr. Liza Talusan: presents workshops for the Board of Trustees, Parent’s Group, Faculty and Staff, the Equity Advisory Council, and Affinity Group Leaders.
Faculty and staff also participate monthly in Shared Learning Community work. We aim to place DEIJ work at the core of our ongoing professional growth.
The DEIJ Parents Group Committee is open to all current Inly parents and caregivers. Its aim is to maintain and support conversation and learning within our community on the subject of DEIJ. Everyone involved is committed to being a body of learners who are open and vulnerable with one another, and who create a space of inclusion. It creates opportunities for growth in alignment with Inly’s strategic mission and goals.
Inly’s Artist in Residence program elevates, amplifies and supports a Black, Indigenous, and People of Colour (BIPOC) artist. The selection process involves faculty, staff, parents and board members. The chosen artist will then join our community for 10 weeks of the school year.
Identity shapes students’ perspectives on and interactions with the world. Affinity groups, facilitated by a faculty advisor, meet regularly to build community and offer the chance for people with a common identity to gather together, process their experience in the world, and have the chance to develop and strengthen a positive self-concept.
A selection of Affinity Groups include:
- BIPOC Affinity Group
- Children’s House & Lower Elementary White Antiracist Affinity Group (WAAG)
- Upper Elementary & Middle School WAAG
- LGBTQ+ Affinity Group
Inly weaves DEIJ principles into our curriculum to align with four core goals of anti-bias education (from NAEYC’s Anti-Bias Education for Young Children and Ourselves, by Louise Derman-Sparks and Julie Olsen Edwards):
- Identity: Teachers will nurture each child’s construction of knowledgeable, confident, individual personal and social identities. Children will demonstrate self-awareness, confidence, family pride, and positive social identities.
- Diversity: Teachers will promote each child’s comfortable, empathetic interaction with people from diverse backgrounds. Children will express comfort and joy with human diversity, use accurate language for human differences, and form deep, caring connections across all dimensions of human diversity.
- Justice: Teachers will foster each child’s capacity to critically identify bias and will nurture each child’s empathy for the hurt bias causes. Children will increasingly recognize unfairness (injustice), have language to describe unfairness, and understand that unfairness hurts.
- Activism: Teachers will cultivate each child’s ability and confidence to stand up for oneself and for others in the face of bias. Children will demonstrate a sense of empowerment and the skills to act, with others or alone, against prejudice and/or discriminatory actions.
Learn more about DEIJ curriculum here.
The mission of the Inly Library is to foster a love of reading, but it is also a priority of ours to enable children to appreciate stories and widen their perspectives. The library collection seeks to represent the best of books published for young readers, ensuring that every student sees themselves represented on our shelves and sees the lives of people who live differently from themselves.
We strive to have our collection support Rudine Sims Bisho’s analogy of mirrors, windows and sliding glass doors. All of our book purchases are driven by the following questions:
- Will this book encourage intellectual curiosity, spark interest in social justice, teach students to be good public citizens and discerning digital citizens?
- Will it entertain, spark imagination or suggest new possibilities?
- Will a student enjoy reading it?
In addition to our expansive library collection, we also have three Little Free Diverse Libraries on campus. These are stocked with books that represent a variety of cultural diversity for all ages. Families are encouraged to take or leave a book.
Our DEIJ Office has created a toolkit on antiracism. It is intersectional, meaning acknowledges that our social identities are complex, layered and situational. We hope you will return to this resource continually.