Inclusivity and Equity (IE)
IE at Mirman bridges three areas of school life: curriculum and instruction, culture and climate, and institutional identity. Guided by the Board of Trustees' vision and strategic plan, students, families, and educators partner together to teach, learn, and practice inclusivity and equity in our connected community.
Statement of Inclusivity
We are committed to building a connected community that embraces multiple perspectives and cultural competency to strengthen gifted education and growth in the whole child. At Mirman, we strive to integrate inclusivity in our curriculum, school culture, and institutional identity. We honor and support a community built on diversity of thought, experiences, and identities to best engage our students in the academic, sociocultural, and complex world in which we learn and live.
Guiding Principles and Practice
We strengthen ourselves, our relationships, and our communities by affirming differences and enriching connections through cultural competency and anti-bias education. These intersecting practices enable us to nurture constructive lifelong learners through the following principles:
Cultural Competency — How we engage across differences and diversity within a community
- Cultural Self-Awareness: How does my cultural identity influence the way I interact on a daily basis?
- Awareness of Other Cultures: What is my understanding of the culture of the individuals/groups I am engaging?
- Cross-Cultural Effectiveness Skills: What skills do I need to work effectively across differences?
- Advocating for Equity through Inclusion: How do I manage the dynamics of privilege and bias that may impact my daily interactions, in order to work toward a better world?
Anti-Bias Education — What cultural competency looks like in curriculum and instruction through the lens of childrens' identity development
- Identity: Each child will demonstrate self-awareness, confidence, family pride, and positive social identities.
- Diversity: Each child will express comfort and joy with human diversity; accurate language for human differences; and deep, caring human connections.
- Justice: Each child will increasingly recognize unfairness, have language to describe unfairness, and understand that unfairness hurts.
- Action/Advocacy: Each child will demonstrate empowerment and the skills to act, with others or alone, against prejudice and/or discriminatory actions.
"Invisibility erases identity and experience. Visibility affirms reality."
— Louise Derman-Sparks and Julie Olsen Edwards
Adapted from Derman-Sparks and Edwards’ anti-bias education framework, in 2018-2019 Mirman launched affinity groups to affirm identity and experience for all of the constituents that make up our community — students, families, and faculty and staff. Affinity groups, regardless of age, are brave spaces to continue the ever-growing, ever-evolving work on our individual and collective identities. Affinity groups at Mirman never function in isolation, and in fact, intentionally gather together to engage in cross-racial, cross-cultural, and intersectional dialogues. These are spaces of connectivity, laughter, discomfort, discoveries, vulnerability, resilience, and most importantly, of immersion/emersion — we go in fully and come out more whole.
There are currently four affinity group offerings for faculty and staff that gather together throughout the school year for female-identified faculty/staff, people of color, LGBTQ+ individuals, and a white anti-racist group. These spaces are twofold — to connect and to learn. While a casual gathering of colleagues, each affinity group also integrates skills-building towards being a better colleague, educator, and partner.
Currently, Mirman offers two race-based affinity groups for families — a white affinity group and a people of color group. Both groups will be co-facilitated by parent-leads and supported by administration. In this work, Mirman honors the longest standing affinity group for families on campus: Families of African Ancestry at Mirman (F.A.A.M). Thank you to the founding members, as well as the past and present chairs for bringing Mirman’s community together and inspiring all that has been built since.
More information on affinity groups for students can be found here.
The teams that lead IE at Mirman include the Board Committee on Inclusivity and the IE Working Group (composed of select faculty and staff). Our work is guided by Mirman's mission, philosophy of education, core values, and the overarching question: "What are the different ways we honor our individual and shared strengths in service to our local and global communities?"
For more information, please contact the Director of Inclusivity and Equity, Connie Chiu, at [email protected]