equity + belonging

.

Introducing
OUR OFFICE OF EQUITY + BELONGING

At Rocky Hill Country Day School, Equity + Belonging leads our community in fostering diversity, equity, fairness, and inclusion, by providing strategic direction on developing relationships with underserved, underrepresented communities.

We work together to recruit, welcome, and retain Mariners committed to our school’s mission, vision, and motto, “Know Thyself.” Throughout our Equity + Belonging journey, we are empowered to think critically, to communicate intentionally, and to navigate challenges ethically.

We define “Equity” as representing and expressing our full selves within our Mariner Community, and “Belonging” as creating a more inclusive learning environment for every Mariner.

“I am excited to reunite with my RHCD community, especially with the charge to lead our school’s Equity + Belonging journey. This year we will focus on courageous conversations to help us learn from our own, and others’, lived experiences. Let’s more fully and authentically use our wisdom for good!

I can’t wait to share spaces, engage in conversations, and discover what we don’t know together.”

MICHELLE JONES ’06 (she/her)
Director of Equityand Belonging
mjones@rockyhill.org
ext. 125

  • Master of Science, Higher Education Administration, Bay Path University
  • Bachelor of Arts, Political Science and Government, Spelman College
  • 2022 AISNE Middle School Student of Color Conference
  • 4C’s Merit Award Winner (2020, 2021)
  • Leader/Trainer, The National SEED Project
  • Equity Lead, ATD Student Success Council, QVCC
  • Member, Equity Council, CSCU
  • Master of Science, Higher Education Administration, Bay Path University
  • Bachelor of Arts, Political Science and Government, Spelman College
  • 2022 AISNE Middle School Student of Color Conference
  • 4C’s Merit Award Winner (2020, 2021)
  • Leader/Trainer, The National SEED Project
  • Equity Lead, ATD Student Success Council, QVCC
  • Member, Equity Council, CSCU

Introducing
OUR OFFICE OF EQUITY + BELONGING

At Rocky Hill Country Day School, Equity + Belonging leads our community in fostering diversity, equity, fairness, and inclusion, by providing strategic direction on developing relationships with underserved, underrepresented communities.

We work together to recruit, welcome, and retain Mariners committed to our school’s mission, vision, and motto, “Know Thyself.” Throughout our Equity + Belonging journey, we are empowered to think critically, to communicate intentionally, and to navigate challenges ethically.

We define “Equity” as representing and expressing our full selves within our Mariner Community, and “Belonging” as creating a more inclusive learning environment for every Mariner.

“I am excited to reunite with my RHCD community, especially with the charge to lead our school’s Equity + Belonging journey. This year we will focus on courageous conversations to help us learn from our own, and others’, lived experiences. Let’s more fully and authentically use our wisdom for good!

I can’t wait to share spaces, engage in conversations, and discover what we don’t know together.”

— MICHELLE JONES

Michelle Jones

Director of Equity
and Belonging
mjones@rockyhill.org
ext. 125

  • Master of Science, Higher Education Administration, Bay Path University
  • Bachelor of Arts, Political Science and Government, Spelman College
  • 2022 AISNE Middle School Student of Color Conference
  • 4C’s Merit Award Winner (2020, 2021)
  • Leader/Trainer, The National SEED Project
  • Equity Lead, ATD Student Success Council, QVCC
  • Member, Equity Council, CSCU

E

EQUITY
Representing and expressing our full selves within our Mariner Community

+

Symbolizing the way our layered identities and lived experiences intersect to create our full selves

B

BELONGING
Creating a more inclusive and equitable learning environment

In the spring and summer of 2020, RHCD administration built a plan to expand ongoing diversity, equity,  inclusion, and justice efforts within the community. We are happy to share our plan and progress with you here.

Action Steps

In the spring and summer of 2020, RHCD administration built a plan to expand ongoing diversity, equity,  inclusion, and justice efforts within the community. We are happy to share our plan and progress with you here.

Assess current work, community sense of belonging, equity, and culture in order to inform future steps.

Create structures which support and promote our commitment to DEI at RHCD.

Promote diversity and representation through hiring and admissions.

Increase support for students of color, LGBTQIA students, students with disabilities and international students.

Educate faculty to be leaders of DEI work and intentionally incorporate DEI into curriculum.

Provide support for families of students of color.

Address larger systems of injustice beyond RHCD.

E+B Strategic Goals 2023-24

Increase diversity of faculty, board of trustees, and student body while prioritizing inclusion and equity.

Expand professional development and curriculum to continue to build an anti-racist, just, equitable and inclusive institution.

School Representation

E+B Committees

Our Equity + Belonging Subcommittees comprise faculty, staff, parents, students and alumni working together throughout the school year in order to develop strategic goals that align with RHCD’s mission, and to assess our Mariner E+B progress! Rocky Hill’s E+B Subcommittees include:

Communications

  • Streamline + coordinate DEIJB community outreach
  • Increase accessibility of social media platforms
  • Create resource list of accessible communication methods

Curriculum, Teaching + Learning

  • Develop deeper understanding of curriculum flow through an equity lens
  • Provide feedback about DEIJB resources for curriculum planning
  • Assist with streamlining inclusive teaching practices and strategies

Hiring Practices

  • Members attended AISNE’s Building Inclusive Hiring Practices Workshop
  • Provide feedback to HoS regarding job postings and descriptions
  • Increase representation of marginalized groups in hiring pool

Student Advocacy

  • Develop vision and mission for this student-led committee
  • Engage student involvement from each grade
  • Attend weekly meetings with Direction of E+B and/or E+B Committee Member(s)

Student Support

  • Develop deeper understanding of ACE services through an equity lens
  • Create spaces for students to unpack identities in community
  • Outline outreach system for support services on campus, like the Student Support Team

Our Mission – inspiring each other to discover
our true selves and use our wisdom for good
– drives all that we do.

Who We Aspire To Be

Community Norms

We welcome courageous conversations, and our Community Norms help guide school wide discussion across all divisions.

INSPIRE
EACH OTHER
Be fully present. Take risks and participate.

Speak from the “I” perspective.

Honor confidentiality.
DISCOVER OUR
FULL SELVES
Listen to understand vs. listen to respond.

Accept the speaker’s viewpoint as true for the speaker in the moment.

Manage both intent and impact.
USE OUR WISDOM
FOR GOOD
Lean into discomfort. Be willing to have the tough, candid, caring, courageous conversation.

Accept non-closure.

Accept working through conflict to its resolution as a catalyst for learning.

Affinity Groups

Affinity groups are optional and open to all RHCD community members (student, faculty, staff, parents, alumni, etc.)

Purpose:  A space where those who share an identity can discuss issues related to that identity and transfer those courageous conversations into collective action that promotes a more inclusive campus community.

HERE ARE SOME OF
OUR AFFINITY SPACES
AT RHCD:
HERE ARE SOME OF
OUR AFFINITY SPACES
AT RHCD:
ASIAN AFFINITY
GROUP
ASIAN AFFINITY
GROUP
BBIPOC / PEOPLE
OF COLOR
GROUP
BIPOC / PEOPLE
OF COLOR
GROUP
BLACK AFFINITY
FORUM
BLACK AFFINITY
FORUM
JEWISH AFFINITY
GROUP
JEWISH AFFINITY
GROUP
LATINX / LATINE
AFFINITY GROUP
LATINX / LATINE
AFFINITY GROUP
LGBTQ+ AFFINITY
GROUP
LGBTQ+ AFFINITY
GROUP
MIDDLE EASTERN
/ NORTH AFRICAN
MIDDLE EASTERN
/ NORTH AFRICAN
MULTIRACIAL
AFFINITY GROUP
MULTIRACIAL
AFFINITY GROUP
NATIVE /
INDIGENOUS /
FIRST NATIONS
NATIVE /
INDIGENOUS /
FIRST NATIONS
NEURODIVERGENT
AFFINITY GROUP
NEURODIVERGENT
AFFINITY GROUP
WHITE ALLYSHIP
AFFINITY GROUP
WHITE ALLYSHIP
AFFINITY GROUP

Events & Resources

Family Partnership Series: Chat & Chew with our Student Support Team Members

Join Michelle Jones, Director of Equity and Belonging, Traci Fairchild, Director of Counseling and Wellness, and Helen Dembinski, Director of ACE, for a courageous conversation about why we celebrate costumes, not culture. Grown Ups are welcome to grab a bite to eat in Campbell and meet at the round tables in the lobby starting at 11:30 a.m.

E+B 'Welcome Packet'

Our Equity + Belonging Welcome Packet is a collection of resources that we have found impactful to our RHCD E+B Journey. As we look over different terminology and browse resources that spark our interest, let us be reminded of the beauty of being a lifelong learner. We are courageously challenged to learn what we don’t know together, and we are grateful for every effort made to use our wisdom for good.

The Windows and Mirrors of Your Child's Bookshelf

Grace Lin | TEDxNatick

What your child reads sets the path for their own self-worth as well as how they see others. Grace Lin is a children’s book author/illustrator whose book, “Where the Mountain Meets the Moon,” received the Newbery Book Honor. She shows how the books that are not on your child’s bookshelf are just as important as those that are.

Our Equity +
Belonging Report

Our Equity +
Belonging Report

Workforce Diversity

5

languages

5

nationalities

5

ethnicities

Our Journey

Summer, 2020

 

In the summer of 2020, RHCD updated the Diversity statement for the school and moved it to the front page of the website: Rocky Hill Country Day is committed to working against forces of discrimination and oppression. The school seeks diversity and encourages the ongoing sharing of ideas, experiences, and dialogue that will broaden perspectives. By practicing and teaching equity and inclusion, we aim to dismantle systemic racism, oppression, and inequality in our community and the world around us.

Summer, 2020

Summer, 2020

In the summer of 2020, faculty and administration established a whole school  DEI Committee and created a working structure and mission for the group.
Summer, 2020

Summer, 2020

In the summer of 2020, RHCD ordered So You Want to Talk About Race from a black-owned bookstore for every employee to read over the summer. Some faculty members participated in a summer long book club option each week, and all faculty and staff participated in fall discussions about the text and its relevance to our school and community. 
Summer, 2020

Our Journey

January 1, 2020

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January 1, 2020

February 1, 2021

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February 1, 2021

March 1, 2022

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March 1, 2022

We Need You

Our doors are always open
and we welcome courageous
conversations!

Report incidents of bias or
discrimination that occur
at Rocky Hill Country Day School.

Help us gain a deeper
understanding of the sense
of belonging our students
feel within our RHCD campus
community.

Rocky Hill Country Day School is committed to working against forces of discrimination and oppression. The School seeks diversity and encourages the ongoing sharing of ideas, experiences, and dialogue that will broaden perspectives. By practicing and teaching equity and inclusion, we aim to dismantle systemic racism, oppression, and inequality in our community and the world around us.

Our Journey

Summer, 2020

 

In the summer of 2020, RHCD updated the Diversity statement for the school and moved it to the front page of the website: Rocky Hill Country Day is committed to working against forces of discrimination and oppression. The school seeks diversity and encourages the ongoing sharing of ideas, experiences, and dialogue that will broaden perspectives. By practicing and teaching equity and inclusion, we aim to dismantle systemic racism, oppression, and inequality in our community and the world around us.

Summer, 2020

Summer, 2020

In the summer of 2020, faculty and administration established a whole school  DEI Committee and created a working structure and mission for the group.
Summer, 2020

Summer, 2020

In the summer of 2020, RHCD ordered So You Want to Talk About Race from a black-owned bookstore for every employee to read over the summer. Some faculty members participated in a summer long book club option each week, and all faculty and staff participated in fall discussions about the text and its relevance to our school and community. 
Summer, 2020

Fall, 2020

In the fall of 2020, the committee created sub-committees to focus specifically on student support, curriculum review, communications, and hiring practices as a starting point.

Fall, 2020

Spring, 2021

In Spring 2021, RHCD hired Michelle Jones to serve as the Director of Equity + Belonging

Spring, 2021

Spring, 2022

In Spring 2022, RHCD hosted the 2022 AISNE Middle School Student of Color Conference.

Spring, 2022

May 7, 2022

On May 7th, Rocky Hill celebrated the installation of a Rhode Island Slave History Medallion on our beautiful and historic campus. “Voices” was a celebration of history, voices, and perspectives, which featured songs, African drumming, a Tribal land acknowledgment by members of the Narragansett tribe, Upper school artwork, and most importantly, the voices of RHCD students. The Medallion can be seen on the granite post at the front entrance of the school.

May 7, 2022

CONTACT US

If you have any questions, or would like to know more about Rocky Hill Country Day School, please fill out the form below.

Rocky Hill Country Day School

530 Ives Road
East Greenwich, RI 02818

Phone: 401.884.9070
Fax: 401.885.4985