We are also pleased report that the recent hiring season for the 2018-19 school year will increase our faculty and After School staff diversity by 15% taking our total staff diversity to 35%. Also, in the last three years, we have doubled our Financial Aid funds available to families.
Montessori School of Durham’s Diversity and Inclusion Committee works with the Head of School each year on various topics related to retention, recruitment, and other issues. The committee also organizes Parent Affinity Groups and sponsors educational events to support the community. Contact Julie Barnes or Sarah Kate Fishback, via email with questions or for more information.
Members of the Diversity and Inclusion Committee
On February, Montessori School of Durham joined with 8 other Triangle independent schools to host a Job Fair for underrepresented teachers and school professionals. We look forward to hosting another soon!
Tammy Squires, Head of School
In April 2018, Tammy attended the NCAIS Diversity and Inclusion Conference. The topic this year was "Creating and Nurturing an Inclusive Community." She also participated in the "Growing in Diversity & Reconciliation" 3-week course led by Dr. Terrance Ruth, Dr. J.D. Greear, and Tremayne Manson. In the summer 2016, Tammy attended the American Montessori Society’s Diversity Conference where she learned from Derrick Gay’s presentation, “The Double-Edged Sword of Diversity: Reframing Community-Life Initiatives in Montessori Schools.” Learn more from his TedX Video.
Cynthia Hughey, Assistant Head of School
Cynthia has recently completed a Racial Equity Workshop with local activists, Organizing Against Racism. OAR teaches participants how to deconstruct historical, cultural and institutional racism and build something new and revolutionary in its place. As they offer workshops throughout the Triangle, Cynthia enthusiastically recommends this workshop for any and all people interested in dismantling racism. Learn more at oarnc.org.
Prior to this, Cynthia has also regularly participated in Ruth King’s Mindful of Race workshops. Learn more at ruthking.net.
Staff: Professional Development
here. Anti Bias Education The Program/Cultural Diversity Committee spent two years studying Anti-Bias Education and used their study to develop culturally inclusive guidelines for holidays in the classroom and will lead a school-wide professional development series on the text in 2017-18. Learn more about this book
2016-17 Parent Education Series
Our Parent Affinity Groups
Affinity Group work provides a safe space for all participants to identify salient issues and common concerns through dialogue, using our individual voices to bring about affirmation, fellowship, connection, and empowerment. Some common goals of affinity groups include:
– discussing issues related to racial/ethnic/cultural identity development;
– providing a safe environment where people who share a racial/ethnic/cultural identity can come together for building community, fellowships, and empowerment;
– providing families with an opportunity to discuss feelings, concerns, and issues of cultural heritage, race/ethnicity and racism in a safe space;
– offering underrepresented people in a community a safe space to come together to feel less isolated and more connected and affirmed, to build strength, pride, and resilience;
– building on parents’ pre-existing knowledge regarding issues and experience with race and racism and help parents foster a positive social identity for children;
– enhancing the collaborative efforts between different groups in order to create equity for all.
Goals courtesy of National Association of Independent Schools
Currently, Montessori School of Durham Affinity Groups include:
Families of International Origins,
Families with Diverse Structures,
LGBTQ Families and Allies,
Parents of African-American or Multiracial Children,
Parents for Social Justice,
Parents of Children with Allergies, and
We anticipate developing more Affinity Groups in the future with parent support.