Diversity & Inclusion
Since its inception, Episcopal Collegiate School has been committed to cultivating a diverse and inclusive community, one that embraces differences and values diversity. These principles are fundamental to the school’s mission and Episcopal identity.
The work of nurturing a learning environment where every student can experience the strongest sense of belonging is continuous in nature. The Board of Trustees supports a methodical approach to assessing and enhancing the school’s culture to ensure that we demonstrate through our words and deeds what it means to be a truly inclusive community. To help guide and facilitate those efforts, Episcopal Collegiate has partnered with Dr. Derrick Gay, an internationally recognized advisor on diversity and inclusion work with independent schools. Dr. Gay is a highly-sought-after educator and speaker and has more than 20 years of diversity and inclusion experience, specializing in helping institutions lay a foundation to carry on this work for years to come.
Dr. Gay has worked with the Board of Trustees, Senior Administration, and constituent Diversity Councils on a number of initiatives. He has led custom workshops for students, faculty, parents, and alumni to build awareness and to further cultivate a shared understanding. During the 2020-2021 school year, Dr. Gay conducted extensive climate surveys of Middle and Upper School students, as well as the faculty and staff. Based on the results of those assessments, the school’s leadership and Board adopted an initial set of recommendations, provided below, that are framing our current community efforts.
- Engage in a collaborative process to develop common Diversity and Inclusion language and framework that resonates with all constituencies and aligns with Episcopal Collegiate School’s mission and core values. Leverage and enhance current internal knowledge and structures in ways that advance Diversity and Inclusion.
- Provide ongoing education opportunities to support students, faculty and staff, parents, and Board to engage effectively with divergent viewpoints, perspectives, and experiences in ways that cultivate empathy and deepen understanding and belonging for all.
- Further develop the systematic effort to increase racial diversity across all school constituencies to enhance the learning community and foster better representation for our students within the faculty, staff, administration, and Board.
- Expand climate assessment surveys to alumni and families in order to learn from and integrate these perspectives to enhance the effectiveness of Diversity and Inclusion efforts at Episcopal Collegiate School.
Meet Our Advisor, Dr. Derrick Gay:
"We need to prepare students for the knowledge, skills and competencies that they need to flourish and be successful in this interconnected, global world."
-Dr. Derrick Gay
Dr. Derrick Gay has an expansive resume with his career in Diversity and Inclusion work. Some of his most recent clients include: Phantom of the Opera, Tom Ford, Columbia Business School, Grosvenor GCM, Barilla, and Business of Fashion. Recent education clients include: Sesame Street, KIPP Public Schools, International Fashion Academy, Latin School of Chicago, and more.
Dr. Gay has produced two Tedx Talks: The Double Edged Sword, and Why Elephants Hold the Key to Success in the 21st Century.
We encourage you to explore Dr. Gay's Tedx Talk, The Double Edged Sword and his feature interview with the Latin School of Chicago below.
Recently, John Michael Murphy, a Junior in the Advanced Broadcast Journalism Class, interviewed Dr. Derrick Gay about the diversity and inclusion work that he is doing with our school. This video was done in conjunction with ECTV, our broadcast journalism class. We hope you will take a moment to watch the video interview to the right!