It may come as a surprise, but in the nearly 1600 private schools across the country, there are only 60 Heads of color. Only 1% of that group of 60 are women. As one of the few Heads of color, two years ago, I was invited to the Independent School National People of Color Conference (POCC) to be honored for the work that I do along with my 59 other colleagues. Unfortunately I was unable to attend, but I am not sure that I would have accepted, even if my schedule would have allowed. After being invited to the event, I felt bothered, ...wondering why the number was so low in 2015. Ultimately, instead of being upset, I decided to act.
For the second year in a row, diversity practitioner, Alison Park and I co-lead a group of private school educators of color in their continued journey to become leaders. Our intention is to share with our cohort the various necessary steps it takes to lead - whether in a private school or beyond.
For experienced, emerging and questioning leaders of color at all stages of their careers, this yearlong series offered participants time and support to:
- clarify their visions and goals as educators,
- identify core leadership competencies and challenges,
- design their own professional growth plans, and
- network and build vital personal and professional relationships.
While this affinity space may not grow the number of Heads of color in private schools beyond 60 in the immediate future, I know that every member in our cohort left knowing that she/he has the ability to lead in whatever profession they chose to pursue.