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Diversity

Diversity, Equity, and Inclusion

What We Value

Committed to fostering an inclusive community, Lycée Français de New York celebrates diverse identities and lived experiences, which enrich our students' learning. We respect, support, and value our students' and employees' voices, and we strive to offer an equitable environment in which they can thrive. 

The Lycée's mission to graduate, "Citizens of Culture and Courage," is foundational to our work to foster an equitable and inclusive learning community -- where all students are guided to achieve their full potential. This work is ongoing and intentional, and building on the diversity of origins, belief systems and experiences in our international community.

Message from the Board of Trustees to the Lycée community

"The Lycée Français de New York welcomes students from around the world, of every race, ethnicity, religion, socio-economic background, gender identity and sexual orientation. Consistent with its mission to embrace diversity, our school strives to build a community of teaching and learning that is inclusive, culturally sensitive and equitable, and in which all feel a strong belonging in the pursuit of educational excellence. The Board recognizes and embraces our mosaic of differences and is committed to eradicating racism, and to building an empathetic anti-racist community free of prejudice and bias of any kind, in partnership with all stakeholders: the students, the parents, the faculty, the staff, the administration and alumni.
    • students in classroom looking at front

Our Work

The Lycée's Director of Diversity, Equity, Inclusion and Belonging, Dr. Angela Gittens, leads a team of four DEIB Co-Coordinators, whose goal is to deepen our DEIB efforts across the school community of students, faculty, staff, parents and alumni. In complementary roles as teacher and staff member, they serve annual terms as part of a school-wide approach to delivering on our mission.

For the 2023-2024 school year, our co-coordinators are as follows:
  • Primary School Coordinator: Julien Relmy, Elementary Teacher
  • Secondary School Coordinator: Sylvain Charles, History-Geography Teacher/Advisor
  • Student Coordinator: Sitara Herur-Halbert, Communications Manager
  • Staff-Alumni Coordinator: Juliette Lopin, Digital Learning Integrator of the Elementary

Our Objectives

List of 4 items.

  • Goal 1 : Create equitable experiences for students

    • Developing clear anti-bias reporting mechanisms and structures for students at all grade levels
    • Implementing school-wide training for faculty, staff and students, including workshops on unconscious bias and the history of racism 
    • Broadening the diversity of faculty and staff through recruitment, with support from Jen Cort, who advises schools and institutions around the country on diversity, equity and inclusion efforts. 
    • The creation of a revised Equal Opportunity Employment (EOE) statement.
     
  • Goal 2 : Enhance community reporting, representation and resource sharing on diversity, equity and inclusion, and related topics

    • Benchmarking our activities with New York City independent schools, North American independent schools and French schools
    • Keeping our community engaged and informed about our activities, through Head of School communications, weekly newsletter and other channels
    • Sharing stories of our activities on our school blog, including student, classroom, Cultural Center, training and community activities, representing many different points of view and perspectives
  • Goal 3 : Bring a diversity of perspectives and experiences into the curriculum

    • Making classroom resources, in French and in English, more reflective of diverse perspectives and experiences
    • Dedicating a significant portion of Lycée's Cultural Center programming to diversity, equity and inclusion-related topics, including student conferences, workshops, artist-in-residence program, and cultural events
    • Expanding professional development opportunities, including continuing annual faculty and staff participation in the NAIS People of Color Conference, Dalton Diversity Conference, with a goal of broadening representation in Primary, in Secondary, and in the Administration
  • Goal 4 : Research and development

    • Learning from the efforts of other independent schools and institutions around the world to implement processes, procedures, and accountability measures and best practices in education and outreach for the Lycée's bilingual, international community.

Who we've worked with

As we work on issues of Diversity, Equity, and Inclusion in our unique bicultural environment and forge goals that suit our community, we also take advantage of the expertise of local, national, and international leaders in the field. These thought leaders and educational organizations include:
  • Dr. Tracey Benson, academic activist and co-author of Unconscious Racial Bias in Schools: A Developmental Approach to Exploring Race
  • Dr. Derrick Gay, international expert on diversity, equity and inclusion in schools and other institutions
  • Morningside Center for Teaching Social Responsibility, Columbia University-based nonprofit that helps schools foster caring, collaborative, and equitable environments for students  
  • Pollyanna, NYC-based nonprofit that works with academic and other institutions to achieve their diversity, equity and inclusion goals.
  • Tanenbaum Center for Inter-religious Understanding, a non-sectarian nonprofit that combats religious prejudice, confronts hate, and builds respect for religious difference 
  • NYSAIS, New York State Association of Independent Schools
  • NAIS People of Color Conference, national conference for students, teachers and education leaders
  • Dalton Diversity Conference, a daylong conference for NYC-area schools to train school leaders (students, faculty, staff and parents) to broaden inclusion in and outside of the classroom
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