Diversity, Equity and Inclusion

 

The Diversity mural (above), designed and painted by Peddie students, is proudly displayed in the Student Center. It was inspired by the variety of cultures, backgrounds and nationalities represented at Peddie.

The Peddie School embraces the sustained and ongoing work of making our community inclusive, safe and welcoming for all of our students and adults.

We are committed to the intellectual, social and moral growth of each of our students; we intentionally craft an educational community of individuals with diverse talents and backgrounds and we inspire each of our students to strive for the highest quality of citizenship.

To achieve this mission, Peddie seeks to remove every barrier to access, equity and safety for every member of our school. Each day, we work toward a more inclusive, antiracist and open community. And thus, we begin our labors anew.


We are committed to change.

School leaders are actively listening to the stories courageously shared by our students, alumni and community members of color and other marginalized communities at Peddie. We welcome you to send your experiences and feedback to diversity@peddie.org

Meet the team

Diku Rogers '12

Diku Rogers '12

Director of Diversity Equity and Inclusion, Teacher
Kari Hart Ph.D. '02

Kari Hart Ph.D. '02

Teacher, Institutional Researcher, DEI Coordinator for Employees
Everett Nelor

Everett Nelor

Assistant Director of College Counseling, DEI Coordinator for Families and Alumni
Morgan Spivey

Morgan Spivey

Teacher, DEI Coordinator for Students

AIM Recommendations

Beginning in Winter 2020, Peddie conducted the National Association of Independent Schools (NAIS) Assessment of Inclusivity and Multiculturalism (AIM) in an effort to evaluate and understand more deeply the climate of inclusion on our campus. Students, parents, faculty and staff, alumni and trustees were invited to participate in a survey, and Peddie's AIM committee received the results in May of 2020. Following are the recommendations based on the results of the AIM survey:

  • Provide the DDEI with the necessary resources and support. 
  • Implement an institution-wide reporting and accountability system for bullying, teasing and unjust, prejudiced, or discriminatory interactions.
  • Increase the structural diversity of faculty, staff, administrators and trustees to represent the diversity of the student body.
  • Demonstrate a sustained commitment to DEI by reserving time and space to have ongoing conversations and to provide community members with the common vocabulary/tools necessary to engage fully.
  • Evaluate and improve campus-facilitated interactions, advising/teaching practices and curriculum to ensure diverse representation, equity and inclusion.
  • Expand campus wellness efforts to include ongoing community programming focused on wellness and student concerns.
  • Evaluate and modify our physical plant, programs and school communications to provide an equitable, welcoming and validating experience for non-binary and LGBTQIA+ community members.
  • Revise the strategic plan to include a section specifically focused on DEI initiatives.

All-Gender Housing Initiative

We are excited to announce our pilot program for all-gender housing, which will start in the fall of 2021.      

Peddie’s all-gender housing is an additional residential option that does not prescribe to a gender binary and its associations. In all-gender housing, students in joint agreement reside together on campus, independent of their gender identity or gender expression. 

We know that a successful learning environment is dependent on the comfort, safety, and overall well-being of community members. We welcome individuals with diverse talents and backgrounds, and therefore want students to have the best possible experience at Peddie. In accordance with our core values, we are expanding our residential options. As a school that values diversity, it is our responsibility to have the structures in place to support that diversity. 

We are committed to maintaining an affirming and welcoming living environment free of discrimination based on gender and sexuality in all of our dorms. Along with the implementation of all-gender housing, we are also fortunate to partner with the Mazzoni Center, who will provide our community with educational programming and professional development to increase LGBTQ+ cultural competency. 

All-gender housing is an example of how we can live in community with, and hold space for, each other with care and intention. Our all gender dormitory will have the same spirit, camaraderie, and resources as our single gender housing options. Whether or not a student lives in all-gender housing, we will ensure that they are provided a rich residential experience.

 

Goals for The 2020-2021 Academic Year

  • checkConduct a search for and name a Director of Diversity, Equity and Inclusion (DEI). This faculty member will assist Peddie’s leadership, employees and Board of Trustees to enhance our focus on issues affecting our marginalized students. 
  • checkCreate a DEI Committee of school leaders, students and alumni. The Director of DEI will chair this committee. 
  • Identify and implement effective professional development for all Peddie employees.  
  • Continue to enhance the diversity of the curriculum.
  • Provide more candid conversations about diversity, equity and inclusion and a more supportive environment.
  • check pointHold a series of listening sessions between school leaders and students, parents, colleagues and alumni. These sessions will be a forum for sharing ideas and experiences.

Structural (Institutional) Goals:

  • Increase cultural competency and awareness. 

  • Develop a formal reporting system for biased and discriminatory behaviors.

  • Create a DEI council of students and faculty members.

  • Examine and reevaluate DEI metrics for essential aspects of the Peddie experience.

Community (Interpersonal) Goals:

  • Embrace DEI work as a continuous effort to learn and grow as a community.

  • Provide each other with the support to better understand issues of privilege, oppression and marginalization.

  • Navigate challenging conversations with empathy, respect and awareness.


 

"As educators, our faculty have the unbelievable opportunity to show students new texts and new ways of thinking; to guide and excite them in discussions; to deepen and develop their critical thinking and writing; and to sharpen and hone their intellectual rigor, curiosity and character. Urging students to reach for the highest quality of citizenship means an engagement with the frank realities and complexities of the world within our open campus and anti-racist community. The beauty of a great school is that it effects positive change in its society. We tell the truth and respect our students as individuals. We examine the problems of the world and inspire them to change it." Matthew Roach, English Department Chair


 

2019-2020 Happenings

In December 2019, a Peddie cohort attended the annual Person of Color Conference (POCC) hosted by the National Association of Independent Schools. Three faculty members participated in the POCC, which provides a safe space for leadership, professional development and networking for people of color and allies of all backgrounds in independent schools. Four selected student leaders participated in the Student Diversity Leadership Conference, a multiracial, multicultural gathering of student leaders from across the U.S. and abroad, which focuses on self-reflection, forming allies and building community. 

Beginning in Winter 2020, Peddie conducted the National Association of Independent Schools (NAIS) Assessment of Inclusivity and Multiculturalism (AIM) in an effort to evaluate and understand more deeply the climate of inclusion on our campus. Students, parents, faculty and staff, alumni and trustees were invited to participate in a survey, and Peddie's AIM committee received the results in May of 2020. Using the survey results, the committee will develop measurable benchmarks for diversity, equity and inclusion goals relating to our curriculum, infrastructure, governance and services. 

Recruitment

Peddie is committed to the creation of a deeply diverse community woven together with the common attributes of excitement, curiosity and character. In both our admission process and our hiring practices, we actively seek individuals from a wide range of backgrounds, ideas, histories and ambitions.

Academic programming

In and outside of the classroom, members of our community elevate and hear diverse perspectives. Our faculty strive to stay sharp, current and invested in issues of diversity, equity and inclusion in society, literature, history, math and the sciences and seek out opportunities for internal and external professional development with such issues in mind. Individual departments audit curriculum regularly with a focus on representation of diversity in all forms.

Student Life

Affinity groups, made up of community members with a common identifier of heritage or orientation (e.g., race, gender, religion, etc.) are a critical part of Peddie student life, empowering students and families as they prepare to engage deeply with others on campus. Affinity groups affirm students and families who identify with each of these backgrounds within the larger context of our diverse community. Members of each group can speak to the experience of the group from the "I" perspective. 

The Latest

March 2021 DEI Progress Report

Continuing its work towards making the Peddie experience as inclusive and equitable as possible, Head of School Peter Quinn provided an update on the school's Diversity, Equity and Inclusion (DEI) work to date. 

Diku Rogers '12 and Head of School Peter Quinn

Peddie is doing more to advance diversity, equity and inclusion on campus.

October 2020 DEI Progress Report

Continuing its work towards making the Peddie experience as inclusive and equitable as possible, Head of School Peter Quinn provided an update on the school's Diversity, Equity and Inclusion (DEI) work to date. 

Members of the first coed class

On the 50th anniversary of Peddie returning to coed, alumnae recalled difficult, sometimes isolating, but also illuminating experiences on campus

UNC statue

Regan Cook '19 shares how she helped research legal avenues for the removal of a Confederate statue on the UNC campus.

Peddie presents "The Laramie Project"

Peddie students staged an emotional production of “The Laramie Project” in October, a show the theater department called a valuable play that opened up many conversations on campus.