Hewitt News

Equity and Community Life at Hewitt: 2022-2023 Year-in-Review
Hewitt News

Throughout the 2022-2023 school year, the Hewitt community worked with consultants Martha Haakmat and Jason Craige Harris and our equity and community life coordinators to continue advancing our School’s commitment to diversity, equity, and inclusivity (DEI). This work involved every constituency at our School: our Board of Trustees, Parents’ Association Board, Hewitt Alumnae Council, faculty and staff, leadership team, equity and community life coordinators, parents, guardians, and students. Together, we strengthened our cultural competencies within and beyond the classroom and continued building the knowledge, vocabulary, and strategies necessary to help us move from words to actions.  

Below are highlights from a year of meaningful work dedicated to understanding the role each member of our community plays in forging a more inclusive and equitable future.

Administrative Leadership: Leadership Team and Equity and Community Life Coordinators

  • Oriented themselves to their roles in DEI and anti-racism strategic thinking and planning
  • Explored their own DEI competencies, areas for growth, and strategies for engaging in honest conversation across differences
  • Ensured school-wide DEI work was mission-aligned and involved collaboration across constituencies
  • Met regularly to share updates about DEI in each constituency, problem solve, and share resources to support ongoing work in each area of school life        
  • Planned, organized, and hosted assemblies, workshops, conferences, and student affinity groups
  • Articulated clear DEI-related goals tied to the School’s strategic objectives and informed by Hewitt’s Anti-Racism Task Force recommendations              

Volunteer Leadership: Board of Trustees, Parents’ Association Board, Hewitt Alumnae Council

  • Articulated connections between the School’s mission, vision, and values and its commitment to excellence, diversity, equity, inclusion, and belonging 
  • Practiced engaging in honest and respectful dialog across differences
  • Built governance level systems for incorporating DEI into Board and Alumnae Council processes
  • Clarified how best to support ongoing DEI learning and work for the Board and Alumnae Council
  • Planned strategic goals and action steps for governance level work toward equity
  • Discussed policy implications related to Hewitt’s Statement on Gender Diversity 

Faculty and Staff 

  • Practiced recognizing and responding to identity-related bias incidents and microaggressions
  • Explored how classroom practices, including storytelling and conversation, can deepen DEI awareness and engagement among students
  • Used Learning for Justice’s Social Justice Standards to scaffold lesson planning and strengthen student and employee’s cultural competency skills
  • Select faculty and staff were trained in successful affinity group facilitation, including setting group norms, planning topics for conversation, monitoring group dynamics, and guiding a group through thorny issues.


  • Gathered and analyzed evidence of Hewitt’s commitment to diversity, equity, and inclusivity and brainstormed what it looks like for our school to live our DEI mission
  • Developed strategies for engaging in honest and respectful dialog across differences and in difficult situations
  • Learned how the stories we tell can shape how we treat others 
  • Explored a variety of everyday situations in which we might be called upon to practice empathy and demonstrate kindness
  • Practiced listening and observing as strategies for discerning where students can be of support to others in the school community
  • Middle schoolers learned tools for better aligning their storytelling with the values of humility, curiosity, and empathy
  • Upper schoolers discussed the nature and pace of Hewitt’s DEI work, the benefits and difficulties involved, and how we might strengthen student and family belonging

Parents and Guardians

  • Explored practices for promoting a culture of connection and belonging in which each person feels seen, heard, and valued for their full and authentic self
  • Engaged in small group conversations focused on building listening and storytelling skills through the lenses of dignity, respect, empathy, and belonging
  • Learned about the psychology of compassion and belonging and what it can teach us about empowering children to make a real difference in the world

As we move into the 2023-2024 school year, we look forward to welcoming our next Director of Equity and Community Life Alia Carponter-Walker, with whom we will continue to build on the great momentum, enthusiasm, and key learnings from this year.