PoCC Equity Seminars

PoCC Equity Seminars are opportunities for deep-dives into pressing equity and justice topics for independent schools. Pre-registration is required for all seminars, and there is an extra fee to attend. Lunch is provided at the all-day seminars.   

Full-Day Equity Seminars

ES01. Ally Is a Verb: The Role of White Educators at PoCC and Beyond

Full-day Equity Seminar, 8 a.m.-5 p.m. December 4

This seminar will help white educators strengthen their competencies in supporting equity and justice initiatives in schools. Focusing on the importance of white affinity work and the development of accountable cross-racial partnerships, participants will examine how they can deepen their understanding of race and racism, whiteness, and the potential for transformative pedagogy by working with each other to develop their identities as anti-racist educators. Participants will discuss the history of racism and its current manifestations in the U.S.; consider their roles at PoCC and beyond; explore why it is important for white educators to examine their own racial identity in order to be effective; and learn how they can support each other in their work to understand the impact of race/racism on their lives.

Track: Anti-racist Teaching, Training, Activism & Allyship

Presenters: Anshu Wahi, The Northwest School (WA); Elena Jaime, The Brick Church School (NY); Xiomara Hall, The Chapin School (NY); Hannah Lucal, Center for Racial Justice in Education (CRJE); Randy Clancy, Critical Analysis of Race in Learning and Education (CARLE)


ES02. Connecting the Dots in Culturally Competent Leadership for Independent Schools:  Climate, Recruitment, Hiring, Retention, and Accountability

Full-day Equity Seminar, 8 a.m.-5 p.m. December 4

The goal of this equity seminar for independent school heads, faculty, and administrative and staff leaders is to explore the need for cultural competence as a central organizing principle for increasing equity and meaningful inclusion for all members of your school community. This full-day session will provide opportunities to practice, discuss, and adapt practices and methods—from attracting candidates to hiring, mentoring, and retaining them—that move the school in the direction of greater cultural competence in policies and procedures, as well as curricular and pedagogical practices. To work with NAIS school leaders, we have assembled a group of culturally competent administrative and faculty leaders from both higher education and independent schools to explore what it means to be a culturally competent leader.

Track: Leadership & Management for Equity and Inclusion

Presenters: Cris Clifford Cullinan, Actual Leadership in Vital Equity (ALiVE); Amani Reed, The School at Columbia University (NY); Emma Coddington, Willamette University; Ruth Jurgensen, The Francis W. Parker School (IL); Christopher West, Pasadena City College
 

ES03. Do You See What I Mean? Facilitating Courageous Conversations Visually

Full-day Equity Seminar, 8 a.m.-5 p.m. December 4

As educators and activists leading the work around diversity, equity, and inclusion in our schools, we are often called on to facilitate courageous conversations across identity, power, and difference. Although there are many dialogue models and tools, visuals can help set the stage, support thinking, and catalyze breakthroughs. Engage with veteran facilitators to learn common facilitation models, avoid pitfalls, and manage polarity. Learn how visual facilitation can help people see issues and perspectives more clearly. Through this workshop, participants will have an opportunity to unpack practical strategies for facilitating courageous conversations and will leave with a visual toolset to deepen their practice.

Track: Building Capacity: Skills, Competencies, and Processes for Equity, Inclusion, and Social Justice

Presenters: Kawai Lai, VizLit; Rosetta Lee, Seattle Girls’ School (WA); Tamisha Williams, Lick-Wilmerding High School (CA)
 

ES04. Examining Ourselves in Order to Be Culturally Responsive Educators and Create Inclusive Classrooms

Full-day Equity Seminar, 8 a.m.-5 p.m. December 4

What is culturally responsive teaching? In her book Culturally Responsive Teaching and the Brain: Promoting Authentic Engagement and Rigor Among Culturally and Linguistically Diverse Students, Zaretta Hammond makes the case that educators need to teach all of their students to be complex thinkers and independent learners. To do so, all educators, regardless of race, need to hold their students to high academic and behavioral expectations, while building trust and rapport with them; however, this requires the teachers to do the “inside-out” work: “developing the right mindset, engaging in self-reflection, checking our implicit biases, practicing social-emotional awareness, and holding an inquiry stance regarding the impact of our interactions on students.” In other words, we have to change ourselves, not fix and change our students of color.

Track: Building Capacity: Skills, Competencies, and Processes for Equity, Inclusion, and Social Justice

Presenters: Roslyn Benjamin, Live Oak School (CA); Paula Farmer, The Berkeley School (CA)
 

ES06. Practicing Anti-Racist Leadership: Foundations, Strategies, and Skills for Personal, Professional, and Institutional Growth


Full-day Equity Seminar, 8 a.m.-5 p.m. December 4

This seminar is about practicing anti-racist leadership every day on the ground in schools. Because we can’t dismantle systems of oppression from arm’s length, we’ll start with ourselves: how we identify, how we show up in conversations and conflicts about race, and what work each of us has to do. We’ll use experience-based, everyday scenarios to talk about race and racism in our schools—not as “gotchas!” but to identify leadership’s responsibilities and opportunities. And we’ll explore how whiteness, despite increasing racial diversity in our communities, continues to define our schools’ cultures and outcomes. While our conversation will be informed by research, this is a head, heart, gut, and “what’re you gonna do?” working session. Because reading an article will only get you so far!

Track: Leadership & Management for Equity and Inclusion

Presenters: Alison Park, Blink Consulting; Mitch Bostian, The Berkeley School (CA)
 

ES07. Resilience+Healing / Awareness+Accountability: A Deep Dive Into Implicit Bias, Racial Anxiety, Racial Identity, and Microaggressions

Full-day Equity Seminar, 8 a.m.-5 p.m. December 4

This session will draw on cognitive science and real-life examples to demonstrate how unconscious phenomena linked to race—such as implicit bias and racial anxiety—can impact us as educators. It will also examine frameworks to deepen our understanding of racial identity and microaggressions. Through this seminar, you will more clearly recognize obstacles to equity and inclusion in our schools that are seemingly invisible, and you will gain concrete skills to navigate racialized experiences. In affinity and multiracial spaces, educators of color will gain resilience strategies, and white educators will build accountability mechanisms to apply personally and within independent schools. This seminar will be illuminating and collaborative as we support each other in developing necessary proficiencies to face these pressing challenges.

Track: Self-Efficacy & Empowerment: Mind, Body, Spirit

Presenters: Sandra Chapman, Consultant; Jessica MacFarlane, Perception Institute
 

ES08. Restorative Practices in Action

Full-day Equity Seminar, 8 a.m.-5 p.m. December 4

“How we do race will be consequential to the kind of society we have in the future. Our racing will be impacted by our history, our experience, as well as our imagined future.”—John A. Powell, Racing to Justice. Consider your plate and all its curriculums, protocols, and best ideas. What holds all the critical conversations together, so they are not just talk but functional elements of vital, sustainable communities? How do we foster a sense of belonging to build resilient relationships despite the anxieties of our complex racial relationships? We can use restorative practices to build, maintain, and restore healthy connection. Join this collaborative learning experience, and leverage your expertise to construct a school model for belonging. Spend the day considering how restorative practices support just and equitable independent school communities.

Track: Leadership & Management for Equity and Inclusion

Presenters: Carla Young, Cranbrook Schools (MI); Bill Boyle, Transformative Engagement Solutions
 

ES09. Taking Care of Ourselves: Using Our Social and Emotional Intelligence to Thrive

Full-day Equity Seminar, 8 a.m.-5 p.m. December 4

Today’s socio-political climate dictates the necessity for people of color to display unfathomable emotional control. The world expects us to display enough positive emotion to contribute to white people’s comfort, while also stifling our outrage at the modern-day lynchings happening on a daily basis. This not only requires us to have a clear understanding of who we are, how we feel, and how to manage our emotions; it also requires us to have empathy, social engagement, and ethical responsibility. Participants will learn about core competencies of social and emotional learning, take time to reflect on their own competencies, and practice skills to strengthen areas of weakness. They will also gain an understanding of their resilience and develop a plan for how to thrive in any environment.

Track: Self-Efficacy & Empowerment: Mind, Body, Spirit

Presenters: Keba Rogers, Trevor Day School (NY)

 

The PoCC Leadership Institute for People of Color

8 a.m.-5 p.m. December 4

Gain powerful strategies to advance to the next level of leadership while building your network of fellow leaders, mentors, and sponsors in this unique seminar tailored for people of color. The PoCC Leadership Institute offers state of-the-art leadership development tools and strategies including the Everything DiSC™ Work of Leaders Profile, a premier research-based skills inventory that provides you with a deeper understanding of your individual leadership strengths and style. The seminar format includes in-the-moment coaching, peer exchange, and post-institute follow-up, all in an encouraging atmosphere designed to nurture and propel a compelling vision for fulfilling your career goals. Through facilitated dialogue with education leaders, gain an inside view into critical moves for long-term professional and personal growth and success. Topics include working effectively with mentors and sponsors, evaluating your advocate in the search process, acquiring the critical skills heads of school and key leaders wish they had before assuming their positions, and developing professional growth plans. Get invited to a post-institute online leadership development and support community. Assess your conference experience in targeting workshops throughout PoCC. Build a cohort of colleagues, mentors, champions and sponsors to walk alongside you in your leadership journey.

Presenters: Nicole DuFauchard, The Advent School (MA); James Calleroz White, The Galloway School (GA)

 

Half-Day AM Equity Seminars

ES10. Best Practices for Teaching High School Courses Focused on the African Diaspora

AM Equity Seminar, 8 a.m.-12 p.m. December 4

Learn about the depth and breadth of the African Diaspora—the spreading of people of African descent throughout the world and their contributions to world history and culture—and how best to teach your students about it. Develop a plan to inaugurate a course on the African Diaspora at your school and connect with colleagues you can lean on as you implement your new course.

Track: Building Capacity: Skills, Competencies, and Processes for Equity, Inclusion, and Social Justice

Presenters: Scott Styles, St. Paul’s School (NH); Kassie Freeman, African Diaspora Consortium; Rhonesha Blache, Teachers College, Columbia University; Nafees Khan, Clemson University; Cary Hurt, Grissom High School
 

ES11. Building Resilient Schools: Adverse Childhood Experiences, Racial Equity, and Trauma-Informed Practices

AM Equity Seminar, 8 a.m.-12 p.m. December 4

Participate in interactive activities to understand the importance of self-care for educators, and deepen your understanding of the impact of adverse childhood experiences and trauma. Gain tools to address cumulative and historical racial trauma, and be introduced to culturally responsive, trauma-informed interventions that foster resilience, socio-emotional development, and connection for students and educators.

Track: Building Capacity: Skills, Competencies, and Processes for Equity, Inclusion, and Social Justice

Presenters: Victoria Romero, Ricky Robertson, and Amber Warner, Corwin Press 
 

ES12. Grading for Equity: How Traditional Grading Perpetuates Disparities, and What We Can Do About It

AM Equity Seminar, 8 a.m.-12 p.m. December 4

Dive deep into the history of our traditional grading practices, and recognize how our continued use of those practices undermines equity and perpetuates disparities. Learn specific grading practices that are more accurate, bias-resistant, and motivational, and discover the impact of those practices as shown by qualitative and quantitative evidence. Talk with colleagues to normalize struggles with grading, to construct meaning from the more equitable practices, and to generate ideas for bringing these practices to their classrooms and schools.

Track: Equity & Justice Exemplars: Programs, Models, Best/Promising/Next Practices

Presenters: Joe Feldman, Crescendo Education Group
 

ES13. Ideas to Action: Strategic Planning to Meet Your Equity and Inclusion Goals

AM Equity Seminar, 8 a.m.-12 p.m. December 4

Schools do strategic planning all the time, but too often either the equity and inclusion leader isn't at the table or equity and inclusion aren’t mentioned in the plan. This session will provide some strategies for making sure that the school’s strategic plan includes diversity, equity, and inclusion AND that the DEI leaders on campus have their own road map for how the work will get done. In this session, we will also discuss how to communicate effectively with different constituency groups and how to do the work even when not everyone is 100% on board.

Track: Organizational Development & Institutional Change

Presenters: Stephanie Bramlett, Phillips Exeter Academy (NH)
 

ES14. Our Liberation Is Connected: Thriving Together by Healing Racial Divides Between Communities of Color

AM Equity Seminar, 8 a.m.-12 p.m. December 4

This seminar will use racial identity development models to lead you through self-discovery and reflective exercises. You will have the opportunity to critique photos, quotes, and short film clips that reinforce AAPI and black stereotypes and to examine case studies centered on AAPI/black interactions and other communities of color—both positive and negative—to ground discussions and action planning. The seminar will also facilitate small-group discussions in affinity spaces.

Track: Racial & Ethnic Identities: Developmental Models, Frameworks, Approaches

Presenters: Tinia Merriweather, Ethical Culture Fieldston School (NY); Rochelle Reodica and Jacqueline Kurzer, Marin Horizon School (CA)
 

ES15. Understanding the Phenomenon of Dialect and Its Critical Role in Linguistically Diverse Schools

AM Equity Seminar, 8 a.m.-12 p.m. December 4

Teachers of all disciplines use language as the medium with which to teach and otherwise communicate with students, and yet the ideas teachers have about what constitutes formal/informal, positive/negative, aggressive/passive, and incorrect/correct uses of language are often infused with stereotypes about the English language and its speakers. Such assumptions can degrade the quality of interaction (at best) and thoroughly undermine students’ opportunity to learn (at worst). Familiarity with linguistic stereotypes, particularly those that impact stigmatized and marginalized communities of color, can enable teachers to mitigate their biases as well as improve their teaching strategies and overall rapport with students.

Track: Building Capacity: Skills, Competencies, and Processes for Equity, Inclusion, and Social Justice

Presenters: Rabiah Khalil, Roland Park Country School (MD)
 

ES16. Understanding, Respecting, Connecting: A Guide for White Women Teaching Black Boys

AM Equity Seminar, 8 a.m.-12 p.m. December 4

The seminar is based on information from The Guide for White Women Who Teach Black Boys and includes content and activities from three key areas: understanding, respecting, and connecting. You will engage in concentrated, focused inquiry around your relationships with black male students and the impact of those relationships on academic excellence, race, racism, privilege, and white supremacy.

Presenters: Eddie Moore Jr., The Privilege Institute; Marguerite Penick-Parks, University of Wisconsin Oshkosh
 

ES17. You’re Not Crazy, You’re Not Alone: Resiliency in the Face of Implicit Bias, Microaggressions, and Everyday Racism

AM Equity Seminar, 8 a.m.-12 p.m. December 4

In this holistic experience, educators will develop shareable self-care techniques for lessening the negative effects of microaggressions (MA), implicit bias (IB), and everyday racism (ER). You will learn to identify MA, IB, and ER; respond instead of reacting to these stressors; re-center/refocus after racialized experiences; and process and release the energy generated by such encounters. The facilitators will help you understand these stressors as a result of internal “emotional barometers” being triggered, and they will introduce and model various evidence-based tools and techniques to improve emotional intelligence, analytical thinking, and internal awareness. You will learn a variety of self-care techniques, including meditation, conscious breathing, and active imagination.

Track: Self-Efficacy & Empowerment: Mind, Body, Spirit

Presenters: Jeff Menzise, Mind on the Matter; Maati Wafford, Barrie School (MD)

 

Half-Day PM Equity Seminars

ES18. Leveraging Social Media for Discussions on Education, Inclusion, and the Experiences of People of Color

PM Equity Seminar, 1 p.m.-5 p.m. December 4

Together we will critique specific social media and online platforms and review established spaces for people of color. We will define various online opportunities, providing language on how they are used and how one would participate within them. Participants will develop a Twitter account and a profile to be used in the workshop; they will practice participation in a Twitter chat with a live, in-workshop chat. In small groups, we will discuss how these opportunities could enhance our personal and professional growth. Participants will design an outline for continued participation and for bringing these strategies to school. Last, we will identify ways to participate in NAIS hashtags during the conference.

Track: Equity & Justice Exemplars: Programs, Models, Best/Promising/Next Practices

Presenters: Nola-rae Cronan, The Langley School (VA)
 

ES19. N!gga(er) in the Classroom, Hallway, Recess: Are We Becoming Moore Accepting of The Word?

PM Equity Seminar, 1 p.m.-5 p.m. December 4

Engage in activities to examine your personal and professional histories with N!gga(er), and explore pictures and feelings associated with the word. Explore the prominence of N!gga(er) in media, literature, and music and its impact on our youth. Learn to address internal racism and biases, and discover where they arise from and how they contribute to daily interactions and school culture. You will leave with ideas and skills to address inclusive language, policies, and practices, and you will develop plans for positive education leadership of the entire school community.

Track: Anti-racist Teaching, Training, Activism & Allyship

Presenters: Eddie Moore Jr., The Privilege Institute; Marguerite Penick-Parks, University of Wisconsin Oshkosh
 

ES20. Shining a Light! Illuminating Underrepresented Stories on the Elementary School Campus

PM Equity Seminar, 1 p.m.-5 p.m. December 4

This seminar will equip participants to go back to their schools with ideas to share with teachers, administrators, and their diversity committee, if they have one, about possible systemic approaches and specific projects to bring visibility to underrepresented groups. In addition to facilitating exercises similar to what we use in our own ongoing professional development to establish our group as a learning community, we will provide opportunities for smaller groups to connect and share ideas throughout the workshop. We will share our inspirations, our key learnings, and our collective commitment to illuminating and celebrating these stories in our community.

Track: Equity & Justice Exemplars: Programs, Models, Best/Promising/Next Practices

Presenters: Britt Anderson, Maria Montes Clemens, Melody Esquer Gil, and Priti Hulse, Prospect Sierra School (CA)
 

ES21. Stay Tuned: Practicing Listening Leadership in Schools

PM Equity Seminar, 1 p.m.-5 p.m. December 4

This seminar draws on original research by the presenter on the art and science of listening. It will introduce the practice of listening leadership, a key framework for understanding schools and enacting transformative change. This seminar is also informed by interdisciplinary practices and will demonstrate the power of melding school practices with researched practices from the field of humanities, sound studies, adult learning, and organizational theory and practice for change.

Track: Leadership & Management for Equity and Inclusion

Presenters: Nicole Furlonge, Klingenstein Center, Teachers College, Columbia University
 

ES22. Using Circles as a Restorative Practice in Independent Schools: Supporting Students of Color

PM Equity Seminar, 1 p.m.-5 p.m. December 4

Circles are a method of restorative practice that help community members reconnect themselves with others, create a brave space for all voices, and enable participants to be their best selves, particularly when conflicts may arise.  In this workshop, teachers and administrators can explore the indigenous beginnings of circles, the basic process of circles and how they may be used within the context of their school community to reinforce community values, strengthen positive relationships during conflicts, and provide diverse perspectives to engage in inclusion and equity work.  Participants will learn the essential elements of circles and how to organize, plan, and lead a circle. They will also have the opportunity to practice facilitating a circle with the goal of supporting students of color.

Track: Building Capacity: Skills, Competencies, and Processes for Equity, Inclusion, and Social Justice

Presenters: Ruth Bissell, Loren Moyé, Betsy Brody, and Justin Lenzi, San Francisco Day School (CA)
 

ES23. What Your AAPI Students and Faculty Won’t Tell You, But You Need to Know

PM Equity Seminar, 1 p.m.-5 p.m. December 4

Learn how the model minority myth affects members of your community, and learn strategies to prevent reinforcing stereotypes and marginalization of AAPI community members. Explore qualitative data collected from independent school student and adult communities.

Track: Racial & Ethnic Identities: Developmental Models, Frameworks, Approaches

Presenters: Drew Ishii, Sage Hill School (CA); Min Pai, Westland School (CA); Cheryl Ting, Redwood Day School (CA)