Diversity, Equity, and Inclusion Across the School Community
Written by Christina Sopko, Far Hills Country Day School History Teacher, and DEI Coordinator
Widening the Lens: The Far Brook School Diversity Conference presented our Far Hills community with an excellent opportunity to discuss important issues related to Diversity, Equity, and Inclusion in schools. Alumni, students, teachers, administrators, and parents represented Far Hills at the virtual workshop, Where Do We Go From Here? Affirming Diversity, Equity, and Inclusion in Independent School. This topic was timely, as DEI efforts in education face multiple challenges. The goal was to bring together schools to discuss building, maintaining, and supporting diverse communities.
The Keynote speakers included Jim Best, former head of the Dalton School, who focused on how to bring a community together around DEI, and Jason Craige Harris, who recently facilitated a professional development session at FH focused on authentic conversations in our communities.
We were thrilled and deeply appreciative that FH alums Charlotte Cusano ‘07 and Frances Hildreth ‘07 attended the conference. Charlotte is an editor at Highlights Magazine, and Frances is completing a graduate degree at Maine College of Art & Design. Their participation and perspective were invaluable. Charlotte shared her thoughts about the conference, “My belief in the importance of diversity, equity, and inclusion as essential pillars of education inspired me to participate in the 2021 Widening the Lens Conference as a representative of my beloved alma mater. Far Hills always gave me a strong sense of belonging, and it is my hope that all students will look back at their time at Far Hills and remember that same feeling of being at home. The greatest joy of my experience attending the conference was the opportunity to witness the fierce curiosity of the eloquent student representatives of our community. I’m grateful for the opportunity to participate in this conference and hope I’ll be able to contribute to the important goals of learning, listening, and growing as we seek to understand one another.”
We look forward to making connections with our alumni as we continue to embark on our DEI work at Far Hills.