Pollyanna is completing its climate assessment, using the input from the focus groups they conducted in the fall and over 350 responses to the survey they shared in the winter. We thank the community members who generously gave their time and insight.
This Spring, the ICC has formed an additional Task Force to consider some of the blind spots that may be holding back our efforts to cultivate a sense of belonging for all students. Comprising a balance of ICC members and non-members, this Task Force will host conversations open to the Grace community and use those discussions to inform the recommendations they deliver to the Board this summer.
Over the summer, the Board will read through the recommendations from Pollyanna and from the Task Force, identifying strategic priorities for better fostering a culture of antiracism, equity, and belonging at Grace.
Pollyanna has completed the first phase of their assessment process, conducting over 30 meetings with members of the Grace community in forms ranging from individual interviews to large zoom groups. The next step is the community wide survey that is included in this email. We know how full people’s schedules are, but this is exactly the right time to do an independent review like this one—and your participation will help make it a success. When you receive the survey, please take a few minutes to complete it.
The Board has engaged Pollyanna, Inc.
to conduct the Independent Review announced in the July letter. Pollyanna will begin its work by conducting focus groups within seven constituencies of the school: faculty/staff, students, current parents, alumni, alumni parents, trustees, and administrators. Letters engaging members of the community started going out last week, beginning
with the faculty/staff group; other constituent letters will follow in the coming weeks. Participation in these focus groups is integral to Pollyanna’s learning and discovery during this process. Following the conclusion of the assessment phase, Pollyanna will issue a summary of findings and recommendations, which will be made available to the community.
This fall, as its first major initiative, the ICC will launch an independent review into the ways that racism persists at Grace, examining the school’s culture and environment from the perspective of students, families, faculty, and staff of color. The ICC will engage and directly manage an outside consultant to conduct this work with participation by the community. The internal review will look at the prevalence and handling of microaggressions, at specific racist statements and actions that have been reported directly and at those that have been shared on @blackatgrace. It will have a broad reach, including the process by which the administration evaluates and responds to complaints. In addition, the review will look at admissions, recruitment, hiring practices, and board operations--all with the goal of attracting and supporting more students, faculty, administration and trustees of color. The ICC will issue quarterly progress updates. A final report of findings, with actionable recommendations, is expected to be shared with the community in the summer of 2021.