Equity and Inclusion News and Events

List of 3 news stories.


    The COVID-19 crisis did not deter Director of Equity and Inclusion Gardy Guituea from continuing the conversation surrounding equity and inclusion at Newark Academy. If anything, it helped push it further.
    Starting shortly after returning from spring break for remote learning, NA students, faculty, and staff were invited to join an important discussion hosted by Gardy on how to build community in times of crisis. Like the learning experience for the foreseeable future, this would have to be done remotely while socially distancing.
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  • Newark Academy to Host Second Annual New Jersey Students of Color Conference

    Newark Academy will host the second annual New Jersey Students of Color Conference (NJSCC) on February 29. Students of color from regional independent schools in northern New Jersey are invited to gather and connect with one another in order to further social dialogue both within their respective communities and across institutions. The theme of this year’s conference is Internalized Oppression and Self-Love Within Identities of Color.
    Attendees will hear from keynote speaker Nyle Fort, who is a minister, activist, and scholar based in Newark, NJ. He has worked in education, criminal justice, and youth development for over a decade in various capacities including: the National Director of Communities Against Militarized Police; Founder and Co-Director of the Organizing Praxis Lab at Princeton University; and lead trainer at Momentum, an activist incubator that builds large-scale social movements in the United States and around the world.
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  • Newark Academy Presents Don S. Polite Jr. as Black History Month Speaker

    Don S. Polite Jr. will address The Burden of Respectable Behavior: Race and Gender Under the U.S. Jim Crow Empire on February 19 at 6 p.m. in Newark Academy’s Middle School Commons. Mr. Polite, NA’s featured speaker during Black History Month, is a Ph.D. candidate in Latin American and Caribbean History at the University of South Carolina, is the featured speaker. He is a recipient of the Gilder-Lehrman Research Fellowship, the Grace Jordan McFadden Scholars Program Fellowship, and the Southern Regional Education Board Dissertation Writing Fellowship.
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PoCC/SDLC Reflections

List of 3 news stories.

  • Jeff Vinikoor

    Humanities Department Chair Jeff Vinikoor attended the National Association of Independent Schools People of Color Conference: “For me, the highlight of the conference was hearing from our students, who attended the SLDC while I and the other NA adults were at the People of Color Conference. The students had spent several days reflecting on their own identities and the NA community. I was moved by their insights and willingness to share openly with the adults. I was reminded that we in the NA community need to ensure that every student feels welcome and valued — and sometimes our students of color do not feel that way. I will continue to think about how we enact a culture, policies, and practices that make our school community a place in which all students can reach their potential.”
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  • Kumar Ghafoor '10

    Alumni Board of Governors Member Kumar Ghafoor '10 attended the National Association of Independent Schools People of Color Conference: “The student presentation on Saturday morning.  I wish everyone in the NA community could have been there for that. One to witness how brilliant our students are but also to see how courageous they are to share their real experiences of NA. The students gave their presentation to all adults who attended the trip from NA, including the Upper School principal, teachers, parents, Trustee and Board Members, and the diversity director. The students showed such strength in their willingness to be vulnerable with us and I am filled with hope and energy after being present for it.”
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  • Monica Zhang '21

    Monica Zhang '21 attended the National Association of Independent Schools Student Diversity Leadership ConferenceI learned how much I live in a bubble at NA, and I also learned how to listen. It was only through deep listening of others' struggles that I was able to open my eyes to the world around me and truly see how privileged I am within and without the NA community. Listening does not just mean hearing what someone is saying only to immediately reply and cut them off; to truly listen means to process someone's words and respond in a manner focusing on them and not yourself. I realized that when a friend tries to talk to me about an issue, I always try to relate it to a problem I experienced; however, I learned from SDLC that it is important to stop magnetizing your own problems, especially when your peers need you the most. I hope to share this skill of deep listening with my NA community.”
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To the Newark Academy Community,
The brutal death of Minneapolis resident George Floyd on Monday, May 25 as result of police action was the latest in a long history of violence perpetrated against people of color in this country. The subsequent protests -- peaceful and otherwise -- are expressions of rage, fear, frustration, horror and despair that communities of color are feeling, and have felt for generations. Martin Luther King observed, “A riot is the language of the unheard.” As much as we may deplore the violence and destruction of property, we cannot avert our eyes from the root cause of these outbreaks: systemic injustice that is persistent and ongoing.
Newark Academy is not immune. Our entire community -- and most especially our students, families, faculty and staff of color -- are wounded, angry and exhausted as injustice and oppression have once again emerged to remind us that regardless of past efforts, there remains so much more to be done to be a truly equitable and inclusive community.
We hear and affirm the voices of our courageous NA students who have reached out to us over the past several days. We applaud those students, families, faculty and staff who are participating in demonstrations of solidarity in Newark, Morristown and throughout the state. We applaud these actions and those of which we are, as yet, unaware.  
As the adult leaders of our community, we remain committed to working side by side with our students and faculty to effect change at Newark Academy. As an educational community, we must work together to harness our knowledge and feelings into productive actions. While Newark Academy cannot singlehandedly remedy the scourge of systemic racism, we will not abdicate our responsibility to be part of the solution. As an entire community, we must remain focused on the needs of students; we must continue to increase our understanding of the disparity of privilege that exists between white people and people of color; and we must set aside our uncertainties to engage in the difficult conversations around racial justice that must take place.
Our work together will begin tomorrow with “Making Meaning of Minneapolis” discussion groups for Middle School and Upper School students. These meetings are not intended to bring resolution, but to give our students the opportunity to express their feelings, to begin constructive dialogue and, when they have been heard and affirmed, to take action. Newark Academy has the opportunity to become a model for the kind of community that we need in this country.
Donald M. Austin
Head of School
David D. McGraw, Chairman of Board of Trustees
Samuel W. Croll, Chair-Elect of Board of Trustees
John Amosa, Director of Athletics
Tom Ashburn, Principal, NA Middle School
Richard DiBianca, Ph.D., Principal, NA Upper School
Keith Fischer, Director of Admission & Enrollment Management
Pegeen Galvin, Dean of Students
Sam Goldfischer, Director of Business & Finance
Lisa Grider, Ass't. Head of School/Ext. Affairs
Gardy Guiteau, Director of Equity & Inclusion
Sarah Guelich, Director of Human Resources
David Kapferer, Director of Technology
Robert Mallalieu, Director of Library Services &
Summer Program 
Kirsti Morin, Middle School Counselor
Lisa Mulligan, Director of Development
Von Rollenhagen, Dean of the Faculty
Lou Scerra, Director of Institutional Research &  Strategy 
Brian Stephenson, Director of Operations
Carol Spooner, Upper School Counselor
Jeff Vinikoor, Director of Studies
Renée Walker, Ed.D., Director of Communications &  Marketing
Kerry Winiarski, Director of College Counseling