Surviving and Sustaining: Building Community for People of Color in Independent Schools

Oct 13, 2021 9:00AM—10:30AM

Cost $400 members; $350 group-rate; $600 non-members

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Surviving and Sustaining: Building Community for People of Color in Independent Schools

SESSION 1: October 13, 2021 | 9:00am - 10:30am

SESSION 2: November 17, 2021 | 9:00am - 10:30am

SESSION 3: January 12, 2022 | 9:00am - 10:30am


Do you have the space you need to be in community? This three-part online affinity group serves to encourage collaboration and discuss shared experiences that affirm the reality of People of Color (PoC) in independent schools and the broader community. Intended for people of color who are interested in building community and finding support through an affinity space. Additionally, we will explore how you can thrive and succeed in predominantly white institutions (PWI) through boundary setting and self-care.

Facilitated by The San Francisco Equity Leaders (SFEL) a cohort of DEI Directors from Bay Area independent schools and consultants, this workshop will be a brave space for PoCs who are dedicated to working to disrupt the inequity that exists in education. Participants will leave with new energy to seek out and speak out “what’s next?” as well as with new tools to develop strategic partnerships within and across schools.

The SFEL team will present Layering On The Overcoats, A PoC Pack: a checklist that aims to affirm people of colors’ experiences, and the additional burden we carry while navigating the world of independent schools. The PoC Pack brings to light daily microaggressions, addresses cumulative effects on PoCs, and reminds participants that PoCs are not alone in the struggle. This will be the foundation from which we come together to explore how to organize across schools and build communities that help us sustain a career in education and thrive while doing it.


This workshop is intended for people of color, in any role or capacity, in their school communities.

Do you work at an independent school outside of California? Click here for a discount on our non-member registration!



My biggest takeaways were the importance of self care, building a community of other like-minded leaders of color and the personal and professional toll it takes to do this work. I am evaluating my current work and taking steps to ensure it is sustainable and life-filling in the future.

Thank you so much for providing this space for continued growth, reflection, and important conversations. Thanks, also, for the thoughtful care package and for always reminding us to take care of ourselves. Our existence is resistance, so self-care is critically important.

I learned how to not make myself small. To speak up. To find my co-conspirators on campus and lean on them for support. I also learned to take care of myself.




Quise Rodriguez has worked both a teacher and administrator in independent and public schools for the past 15 years. She holds an administrative credential as well as a Master’s Degree in Social Justice and Equity in Education from UC, Berkeley. Being born and raised in Oakland, she has a deep love and respect for the Bay Area and its roots in diversity, activism, and community. Having attended independent schools as a child, the value of education was instilled in her at a young age. She enjoys the challenge in independent schools of growing and addressing their diversity, equity, and inclusivity needs.


Betsy Brody has worked in educational institutions for 27 years, both in the classroom and as an administrator. Her journey began in France where she taught ELL ranging in age from 5 to 85 in public schools, specialized educational industries, and private homes. She worked as Director of Admissions at International High School prior to joining San Francisco Day School six years ago as Director of High School Counseling and Co-Director of Diversity.


Loren Moyé has been teaching for 29 years, 22 of those years at San Francisco Day School. Prior to SF Day, he taught in the San Francisco Unified School District. His teaching experience covers third and fourth grades, all subjects, and seventh and eighth-grade math. He was formerly a co-director of Aim High, a free summer program for low-income middle school youth in the Bay area. He is currently the Director of Diversity and Dean of Faculty at SF Day and on the staff for the National SEED Project.


Flora Mugambi-Mutunga grew up in Kenya and relished being around children and their families. She pursued an education that would further cultivate her interest in working with youth. The early days of her career found her working as an early childhood educator and mental health clinician in private and public settings. With an ongoing interest in understanding how embracing diversity in all its forms can be value-adding to individuals, communities, and organizations, she became a member of Town School as the Director of Community Building & Inclusion.


Aaron Mullen joined the Cathedral School For Boys community in 2002. He joined the Cathedral community as the Athletic Director, and his connection with the students is what has motivated him to continue his dedication to the school. His current role as the Director of Inclusion and Student Life allows him to combine his commitment to equity and social justice with his belief that all students should have a voice. He served as the POCIS co-chair from 2014-2016, inspiring diversity practitioners around Northern California to pursue equity in their schools. 


Anthony Witte has served in independent schools for 16 years, formerly working at Children’s Day School as the Director of Inclusion and before that teaching Mandarin at Head-Royce School in Oakland. He holds a BA in Asian Studies from UC Berkeley and a Master’s degree in Education, Equity, and Social Justice from San Francisco State University. He currently serves on the board of POCIS and the Center for Progressive Education, previously served on NAIS Call to Action diversity workgroup, and has been a presenter and facilitator for the NAIS People of Color Conference. He is also a co-author of Diversity Work in Independent Schools: The Practice and the Practitioner. 

Cancellation Policy

Life happens. We understand that there will be times when you cannot attend a workshop that you have registered and paid for. We strive to be as helpful and flexible as possible when things out of your control happen. Please visit our FAQ page for detailed information about our cancellation policy and answers to frequently asked questions about enrollment and membership.