Year One DEI Plan Progress Report

The work being done to complete Windward's three-year DEI (diversity, equity, and inclusion) plan is in motion, and we are engaging our entire community—our families, faculty, staff, and board members—to maximize our ability to get all community members' voices heard. Below is a progress report on Windward's year-one initiatives.

For year one, our community's initiatives have four areas of focus accompanied by action items Windward is either in a planning, ongoing, or completed stage. In the report below, please note that for some items, "completed" is not listed as an option. This is an intentional choice as The Windward School has an ongoing commitment to diversity, equity, and inclusion to inform our daily work, shape our community, and guide our vision for the future. Much of this work will be an ever-evolving process, and we look ahead to remaining steadfastly engaged in our journey of progress. 

   

Recruit, Hire, and Retain Teachers, Administrators, Staff, and Trustees of Marginalized Groups

Collect data on diversity of teachers, administrators, staff, and trustees.
  • Obtain salary data and benefits from other independent schools
  • Compare salary data and benefits to their diversity statistics
Setting clear goals to increase percentages of BIPOC in faculty and staff positions.
  • Understanding percentage of BIPOC in candidate pools (by role and location)
  • For BIPOC faculty and staff that do not accept an offer or resign from Windward, perform deeper dive as to why
Expand access to recruitment fairs, job boards, and search firms for BIPOC and LGBTQ+ candidates.
  • NYSAIS Diversity Job Fair​
  • Carney Sandoe Diversity Job Fair​
  • Masters School Diversity Job Fair​
  • Virtual Diversity Job Fair at George Mason University
  • National Alliance of Black School Educators​
  • HBCU Connect​
  • LGBT Life Westchester​
  • Nemnet (including their resume database that highlights professionals of color)​
  • Strategenius – BIPOC-Owned Search Firm
Building relationships that support BIPOC communities​.
  • NAACP (both local chapter & national organization)​
  • Jack & Jill​
  • Black fraternities & sororities​
  • Career development and college/university diversity offices at HBCUs and other collegiate institutions with a large percentage of students of color

Analyze current recruitment process.
  • Revamp all job postings indicating our passion to find a candidate that will actively participate and promote Windward’s DEI efforts
  • Ensure that BIPOC are reflected in hiring committees
  • Review of interview questions using an equity lens​
    • Are all questions culturally appropriate for communities of color?​
    • Do our questions allow for candidates to feel comfortable to be their true selves?​
    • Are there specific questions related to previous DEI experience or ideas around DEI that can benefit Windward?​
Revise faculty/staff dress code to be more inclusive of all identities.
Plan faculty/staff affinity groups (race, sexual identity).

 

Increase Cultural Competency of All Teachers, Administrators, Staff, and Trustees

Contract with a DEI expert for a multi-year consulting commitment.
DivE In committee made up of Windward parents/guardians, faculty, staff members, administrators, and trustees representing every campus will meet regularly to guide, oversee, and execute our three-year DEI plan.
DEI expert Dr. Batiste to administer listening sessions for families, employees, and board members to gather data on our community's expectations, hopes, and concerns with regards to Windward's DEI commitment.
DEI expert Dr. Batiste to produce a report using qualitative research for the school administration and board of trustees, which is essential to drive our work forward.
Windward to institute baseline training for all Windward employees through faculty and staff professional development sessions throughout the year.
 

Commitment to DEI recruitment training, networking events, and conferences

  • "Overcoming Obstacles in Recruiting Faculty of Color" by Nemnet
  • NYSAIS hiring process training​
  • Faculty, Staff & Administrators of Color Event
  • Out Professionals Networking Event (NYC & Westchester)
  • Annual NYSAIS LGBTQ+ Gathering​
  • NAIS People of Color Conference – A total of 30+ Windward faculty/staff have attended from 2016-2020​
  • Numerous other workshops & conferences specifically focused on DEI

Conduct training for Windward's Board of Trustees.
Faculty and staff participate in professional development session to discuss 2020 summer reading book selections.
  • Head of School Mr. Willliamson offered three books for mandatory summer reading:
    • Born a Crime: Stories from a South African Childhood by Trevor Noah
    • Waking Up White: And Finding Myself in the Story of Race by Debbie Irving
    • Whistling Vivaldi: How Stereotypes Affect Us and What We Can Do by Claude M. Steele
  • This session is scheduled to take place on April 30, 2021.
 
 

Increase Community Engagement and Family Involvement in DEI Matters

The Diversity Office to host a DEI coffee event in the fall, and a second event is planned for the spring.
The Windward Institute to host a parent/guardian seminar "Building Personal Diversity Skills with our Windward Students" on January 26, 2021.
The Windward Parents Association to host Dr. Dena Simmons for a keynote "From Surviving to Thriving: Creating Equitable Environments through Emotional Intelligence and Culturally Relevant Practices" on April 29, 2021.
 
 

Increase Diversity of Student Body and Provide Opportunities for Students to Engage in a Positive School Experience of DEI Matters

Revise student dress code to be inclusive of all identities. 
 
Partner with Promise Project and research other organizations that provide affordable neuropsych evaluation fees.
Middle school student participation in MOSAIC.
Grade 9 student participation in Saturday Summit for Social Justice.
 
Launch gender sexuality alliance, Rainbow Club, for all middle school students.