Inclusion and Community

Theme for the Year: developing the ability to manage unconscious bias throughout our daily interactions both inside and outside of the school community in support of cultural competency
Hockaday's philosophy and purpose is to awaken the intellectual curiosity of every girl; to develop in each girl an enthusiastic spirit, a healthy body, and a sense of responsibility for herself and her actions; to foster an appreciation of beauty and joy in self-expression; to nurture a courteous attitude, a sense of grace, respect for the ideals of human worth and dignity, and a harmonious and mature character well-equipped to make responsible choices and withstand the pressures of today’s society. We foster a community of concern and friendship within the student body, faculty and staff, families, and alumnae to instill in every girl a love of learning, an understanding of herself and the ethical principles which guide her life, an appreciation of excellence in all its forms, and a commitment to what is right and good.
We accomplish our goals with involvement from all of our constituencies.  Those who teach and work at Hockaday are representatives of a diverse population with expert knowledge and training in their fields and possess a strong desire to change and grow to meet the challenges of the 21st century.  Our inclusive community fosters a racially, ethnically, and socio-economically diverse student and family population.  We recruit and enroll students who possess strong moral character, academic promise, sound ethics, perseverance, diligence, resilience, spirit, and sportsmanship.  Our alumnae, as well as parents, continue to maximize their connection to Hockaday by supporting the mission and work of the School with their time, talents, and resources.

We acknowledge the complexity of diverse life experiences and openly engage in building inclusivity.  Through the adopted approach of cultural competency, individuals and groups work effectively across cultures with a defined set of values, principles, skills, attitudes, policies, and behaviors.  This developmental process and continuum evolves over time for each individual, within programs, and throughout the school environment.  As a school, we implement a model of cultural competency which includes cross-cultural effectiveness skills, cultural self-awareness, cultural intelligence, and countering oppression through inclusion.

Our commitment to diversity, inclusion, and global initiatives is reflected in the Four Cornerstones, the Philosophy and Purpose Statement previously mentioned, the Mission Statement, and the Strategic Plan with the goals of preparing every girl for the diverse world in which they will live.  Our belief is that through shared and meaningful experiences cross-cultural competency can be gained over time as one community and one Hockaday.


Tresa Wilson

Director of Inclusion and Community

Tresa Wilson

All-School Programming

List of 5 items.

  • In-Service Professional Development for Faculty and Staff on Cross-Cultural Competency

    This ongoing training is held throughout the school year for all faculty and staff to develop the knowledge, skills, and ability to support all constituencies by becoming more culturally competent leaders, educators, and members of the school community.
  • Inclusion and Community Parent Education Series

    This is a unique series dedicated to providing the parent community with skills to effectively support identity development, anti-bullying, cultural competency, social-emotional learning, equity, and social justice at home by applying age appropriate techniques in support of the Character and Courtesy Education Series for Student Development.
  • Character and Courtesy Education Series for Student Development

    Character and Courtesy Education Series is a school-wide commitment based upon the Four Cornerstones that is designed to meet the needs of the student body at age appropriate levels with a focus on identity development, anti-bullying, cultural competence, social-emotional learning, equity, and social justice. Our goal is to develop effective 21st century global citizens through engagement, development of the necessary skills, and knowledge across all grade levels.
  • Intercultural Council

    The Council acts as an advisory body to the Eugene McDermott Head of School and the Leadership Team on matters of diversity, inclusion, equity and justice that affect the community chaired by the Director of Inclusion and Community. Responsibilities include promoting meaningful dialogue that cultivates mutual understanding and appreciation for individual and cultural differences within the Hockaday community; developing and supporting opportunities for students, parents, faculty and staff to cultivate the necessary skills and competencies to effectively engage in the multicultural society of the 21st century.
  • One Hockaday: Dr. Martin Luther King Jr. Celebration and Day of Service

    The school community acknowledges and celebrates the legacy of Dr. Martin Luther King, Jr.  In partnership with the Director of Service Learning, Laura Day, this celebration and day of service is dedicated to inspiring our community to embrace diverse cultures and ideas as well as to underscore the importance of inclusion and purposeful engagement through a life of servitude in our everyday lives.  We believe in the limitless potential of our student body as they face unique challenges, discover unknown problems, and work toward creating change living in a complex world. 

Cultural Competency Series (2018-2019)

List of 1 frequently asked questions.

  • Jessica MacFarlane
    Perception Institution

    In-Service Professional Development for Faculty and Staff: Our Brains on RaceTM: Implicit Bias, Racial Anxiety, and Stereotype Threat as Obstacles to Belonging

    Those of us in independent schools work to build a sense of belonging across our entire school community. Yet, research suggests that unconscious phenomena related to race, ethnicity, and other aspects of identity can get in the way of those goals. Core concepts from the mind sciences, including implicit bias, racial anxiety, and stereotype threat, can help to explain why identity differences can present challenges, even for educators and administrators with strongly held values of equity. Jessica MacFarlane, of Perception Institute, will share cutting-edge research demonstrating how these phenomena develop and their impact on everyday interactions and decisions in our schools. She will share evidence-based strategies to override these processes, in order to align behavior with values and promote belonging for all faculty, staff, students, and families at Hockaday.

List of 1 frequently asked questions.

  • Shanterra McBride
    Marvelous University

    Upper School Student Diversity Board Retreat: Focus on the Message. . . 

    The founder of Marvelous University, Shanterra McBride, facilitated a thought-provoking discussion by acknowledging the complexity of being an individual and a member of the board who advances the work of diversity, inclusion, equity, and justice.  Through this training, various aspects of identity were addressed and specifically holding diverse perspectives while upholding the board's mission was a focus. 
    There are numerous cultural identifiers such as ability, age, ethnicity, gender, race, religion, sexual orientation, socio-economic status/class, and diversity. The meaning of diversity may change depending on who is speaking and on who is listening.
    This interactive training focused on: 
    • Inviting others to the conversation, particularly when they don’t agree
    • Listening to others, especially when you don’t agree
    • Facilitating challenging and inspiring conversations
    • Leading others in your position on the Student Diversity Board
    These objectives helped the Student Diversity Board develop their overall intention and message. The overall purpose was to create a community where every Hockaday student is treated with dignity. The Student Diversity Board can be leaders in the forefront in transforming their school and their extended community.

List of 1 frequently asked questions.

  • Dr. Sandra “Chap” Chapman
    Sandra Chapman Consulting

    Character and Courtesy Education Series
    The Character and Courtesy Education Series is a school-wide initiative designed to implement skills-based programming for the student body at age-appropriate levels with an intentional focus on cultural competency. Dr. Sandra (Chap) Chapman, Director of Equity and Community at the Little Red School House and Elisabeth Irwin High School (LREI), facilitated a discussion with the student body in all three divisions and also provided designated school leaders with consultation sessions related to diversity and inclusion programming.
    These skills-based lessons focused on:
    What can I say to bias? . . . That’s not true, identity doesn’t limit you!
    During the Lower School Gathering, an important lesson about the impact of limitations on identity was conveyed through the telling of a short story involving two friends playing. In addition, students were provided with a specific language they can use when confronted with identity-based bias.
    When I say...You say…? Understanding how implicit bias impacts me and my brain.
    The Middle School Assembly began with the Stroop Effect Test, which demonstrated how quickly students make associations between items, even when they do not believe the associations to be true or they are dealing with conflicting information. After hearing from a sample of students and teachers, faculty and students learned how associations (biases) are made about people from different birth orders. Next a connection was made between birth order and other forms of identity using information from the New York Times’ mini-documentary, Peanut Butter, Jelly and Racism. The program concluded with known strategies for minimizing identity biases we may hold.
    When I say...You say? Understanding how implicit bias impacts me and my brain and what I can do about it.
    Beginning with the Stroop Effect Test at the Upper School Assembly, students demonstrated how quickly they make associations between items, even when they do not believe the associations to be true or are dealing with conflicting information. After watching the New York Times’ mini-documentary, Peanut Butter, Jelly and Racism, students completed an adapted exercise from the Perception Institute which revealed ways we are impacted by bias. The assembly ended with known strategies for lessening identity biases.

Professional Development

List of 8 items.

  • National Coalition of Girls' Schools

  • NAIS Diversity Leadership Institute

  • The Association of Boarding Schools (TABS)

  • Responsive Classroom Teachers Conference

  • Momentous Institute

  • NAIS People of Color Conference

  • NAIS Student Diversity Leadership Conference

  • NAIS Annual Conference

Recommended Publications

  • The Science of Equality In Education: The Impact of Implicit Bias, Racial Anxiety, and Stereotype Threat on Student Outcomes by Perception Institute
  • Anti-Bias Education for Young Children and Ourselves by Louise Derman-Sparks and Julie Olsen Edwards
  • Cultural Competency: A Critical Skill for Success in the 21st Century by Steven Jones
    • 2018-2019 Upper School Student Diversity Board

      2018-2019 Upper School Student Diversity Board

© 2017 The Hockaday School. All Rights Reserved