In early December, 17 faculty and staff members and 7 students attended the 2011 National Association of Independent Schools' People of Color Conference and Student Diversity Leadership Conference in Philadelphia.
SFS Diversity Coordinators Karen O’Neill, Kimberly Clarkson, and Rachel Jackson, with Upper School Language Department Head Auysha Muhayya, led a well-attended presentation entitled “Leaning into Discomfort: Productive Faculty Discussions on Socioeconomics,” that earned high marks from those who attended. Sidwell students led the DC-area adults in a workshop that encouraged shared reflections on diversity practices in area schools. And SFS parent and general session speaker Patti Solis Doyle spoke about how two of Sidwell’s graduated parents, Howard Ickes and Hillary Clinton, have paved a way for women and minorities in politics that continues to be paid forward.
Of particular interest to Sidwell participants was the keynote speech by Wes Moore, author of The Other Wes Moore: One Name, Two Fates, a book familiar to many in the Sidwell community. From Moore and Doyle to author Lorene Cary and entrepreneur Martin Nesbitt, speakers attributed their successes to the challenge, encouragement, and support that their independent schools had offered them.