Student Life

Equity and Inclusion

In Support of Social Justice and Equity

The primary goal of the Office of Equity and Inclusion is to support inclusive education at Holderness School through its pursuit of community, character, and curiosity. Through programming and policy, we work to support students and encourage them to consider others and their ideas, develop curiosity, and approach life with a heightened understanding of social justice and equity. In addition, Holderness School strives to adhere to the NAIS Principles of Good Practice for Equity and Justice.
Inclusive teaching strategies and active learning communities begin with the acknowledgement that we are all learners. Within our community we strive to share our ideas and perspectives in multiple ways with our students, their families, and our colleagues in order to ensure the success of each individual and further strengthen our community.
The Office of Equity and Inclusion at Holderness School focuses deliberately on support and programming connected to:
  • Racial and ethnic identity
  • Gender dynamics
  • LGBTQ+
  • Socio-economic status questions
  • Notions and understandings of equity and inclusion for our entire community

Equity and Inclusion Programs

List of 3 items.

  • Student Conferences

    Each year, Holderness sends students to each of the following conferences as a part of their individual cultural and identity development. These students then become leaders within the Holderness community when they return to campus and share their experiences with their peers.
    Student Diversity Leadership Conference
    SDLC is a multiracial, multicultural gathering of upper school student leaders (grades nine - 12) from across the U.S. SDLC focuses on self-reflecting, forming allies, and building community. Led by a diverse team of trained adult and peer facilitators, participants will develop effective cross-cultural communication skills, better understand the nature and development of effective strategies for social justice, practice expression through the arts, and learn networking principles and strategies.

    White Privilege Conference
    Students and faculty participate in The White Privilege Conference. The “WPC is a conference that examines challenging concepts of privilege and oppression and offers solutions and team-building strategies to work toward a more equitable world.”

    AISNE High School Students of Color Conference
    The High School Students of Color Conference was created in recognition of the unique needs, experiences, and challenges of students of color in independent schools. This conference brings together high school students of color in the kind of critical mass that provides for a “majority experience,” which is not the norm in most of our schools. The conference seeks to raise self-awareness, build community, provide support, and cultivate leadership among students of color.

    Asian American Footstep Conference
    Asian, Asian-American and mixed-heritage Asian students attending independent secondary schools in New England are invited for a daylong series of empowering workshops, activities, and performances. Begun in 2011 by Aya Murata from Phillips Academy in Andover, the conference provides students with a safe space to explore issues specific to their experiences. The goal of the conference is to inspire youth to embrace their identity and culture, to educate students through stimulating workshops and speakers, to connect and foster a community within the independent school network to share ideas and experiences, and to affirm experiences of Asian, Asian-American and mixed-heritage Asian students.

    Lakes Region Students of Color Conference
    The LRSOCC is hosted yearly by Holderness School and is designed to recognize the unique needs, experiences, and challenges of students of color in independent schools, particularly in the Lakes Region area.  Using the “unconference” style, the students participate in student-driven discussions, which examine issues of leadership, inclusion, equity, race and the media, social justice, and more. Additionally, they will develop a localized support group and community.
  • Annual Community Events

    Yearly Social Justice Theme
    Each year the faculty and students explore a topic related to equity and inclusion through programming, within their residential life curriculum, and in their classrooms. These themes rotate on a year basis and are as follows:
    • Race and Ethnicity
    • Gender and Sexuality
    • Privilege
    • Ability
    Multicultural Around the World Program
    The Around the World Program at Holderness School is founded in our belief in a global community. It allows our students an entire month to learn about one of the many nations represented by our international students. This includes weekend activities and events designed and created by students.
  • Community Groups

    Multicultural Club
    The Holderness Multicultural Club brings together students for conversations and peer education. The club hosts events on campus in addition to presenting to the community in order to further develop our understanding of our global community.

    Affinity & Identity Groups
    Affinity groups create safe spaces for students to consider identity exploration and self-development in addition to providing majority experiences for those who are often in minority positions within the school and community populations.

Holderness School's Strategic Goals for Social Justice & Diversity:

  • We will develop and strengthen the practices needed to continuously and deliberately build a respectful, safe, and diverse community.
  • It is imperative to educate contributing global citizens and to foster the connections, understanding, and sense of responsibility that will be required to achieve this goal.
  • We will integrate concepts of social justice, specifically notions of empathy and fairness, throughout our curricula, seeking to promote an understanding of how to learn and lead in a complex, inter-connected world, and to educate our students toward a richer humanity.
  • We will strengthen and extend our connections to our global Holderness family and seek opportunities to benefit from their diverse knowledge and experience.

Take The Next

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Holderness School
33 Chapel Lane, Holderness, NH 03245

MAIL P.O. Box 1879 Plymouth, NH 03264-1879
PHONE (603) 536-1257