November 2019 Update from Pollyanna
Pollyanna advances systemic change by developing stronger communities.
Pollyanna works with academic and other institutions to achieve their diversity, equity and inclusion goals. Through its unique conference models, discussion platforms, and racial literacy curricula, Pollyanna increases cultural competence.
February 2020
Thank you to everyone who supported Pollyanna in 2019 by either hosting a conference, conducting an assessment, using our curriculum, welcoming us in for professional development or contributing to our fundraising goals. Thank you on behalf of the: 
  • over 2000 people who attended a Pollyanna Conference in 2019, and challenged and supported their schools to become more inclusive.
  • heads of schools and diversity practitioners who support our mission and understand the vision.
  • over 500 schools that downloaded our free K-8 Racial Literacy Curriculum.
  • teachers who attended our professional development workshops and are learning how to talk about and teach race.
  • parents and guardians who downloaded and read our free Parent/Guardian Companion Guide and brought conversations about race into their homes.
  • children who now see themselves in the books they read in school or are exposed to people and places new to them.
Wait until you see what we’re planning for 2020!
What's Happened
St. Andrew's in Austin
St. Andrew’s welcomed its community to the first intra-conference on January 11. Building Community Through Inquiry: Culturally Responsive Teaching, Culturally Caring Community tackled building a more inclusive, multi-cultural school community and involved conversations with administrators, alumni, faculty, parents and students. Dr. Ali Michael opened and closed the day with personal reflections and concrete steps. Director of Diversity Kendall Evans and his team, along with Pollyanna Project Managers Kathy Chan and Claire Hannan-Radomisli, planned a meaningful day.
Grace Church School's Panel
In January, Jean Robert Andre, Dean of Equity at Grace Church School organized an informative panel for parents and guardians to learn more about racial literacy. Our Curriculum Specialist, Monique Vogelsang, joined the esteemed panel of parents and fellow educators –– including Olugbala Williams of Poly Prep and Morika Tsujimura of Grace Church –– to share insights on how to develop racial literacy in schools and helpful resources for parents and guardians to bridge the conversation home.
NYSAIS Workshop for Parents & Faculty
On Tuesday, January 21, Marymount opened its doors for a NYSAIS/Pollyanna workshop for over 100 faculty and parents. Curriculum Specialist Monique Vogelsang ran a 3-hour presentation on the importance of teaching race at school and at home. Using Pollyanna’s free K-8 Racial Literacy Curriculum and the Parent/Guardian Companion Guide as the basis of the discussion, she shared essential knowledge about race, and how to engage in productive conversations about race and racism. 
January's Open Professional Development
Since June 2019, Pollyanna has been hosting open PD events to offer schools the opportunity to learn more about our Racial Literacy Curriculum. In January, Monique Vogelsang guided educators through a discussion about our Curriculum, which is designed to help students gain knowledge about race as it has been constructed in the US. Employing lessons in history, literacy, science, geography –– with STEAM extensions –– the curriculum supports students in acquiring an awareness of their own racial socialization and skills for engaging in productive conversations about race and racism. Register below for one of the next open PD events.

What's Next

What We Offer
Cross-Constituent Assessment
This is designed for a school that wants to investigate cultural and environmental perspectives on DEI topics, a Cross-Constituent Assessment is designed and implemented and consists of online surveys, focus groups and a comprehensive summary of both qualitative and quantitative data to provide infrastructure for on-going initiatives.
Independent School Conference
This original conference emphasizes our motto “Every Voice Matters” by including all constituent groups at schools: administrators, alumni, diversity, equity and inclusion practitioners, faculty, parents, students and trustees. This Conference model is available to schools around the US and in Canada. The school that hosts this conference in a specific geographic region welcomes peer schools in that region to discuss challenges and effective practices around a specific diversity, equity and inclusion (DEI) topic, and generate Action Plans to create movement at each of the attending schools.
Pollyanna designed the Intra-Conference as an institutional capacity-building opportunity for schools that want to deepen their knowledge, enhance practices and improve skills in the areas of DEI. This is for schools that would like to build community, develop a strategic plan, or rewrite mission and vision statements. This Conference brings a school together and establishes and strengthens community connections. It informs the community and provides a platform for sharing personal experiences, expressing opinions and perspectives, and generating solutions for growth. Constituent groups included in this model are: alumni, alumni parents, employees, students and parents.
K-8 Racial Literacy Curriculum

Engaging and accessible, the Curriculum is designed to help students gain knowledge about race as it has been constructed in the US, and aims to help students acquire an awareness of their own racial socialization and skills for engaging in productive conversations about race and racism. If you use any of the lessons and post them to social media, tag Pollyanna!

Parent/Guardian Companion Guide
The Guide provides an in-depth overview of each unit featured in the K-8 Racial Literacy Curriculum, recommends questions and conversation suggestions for parents and guardians to facilitate dialogue at home that centers on race, culture, and identity, and suggests reading and viewing material to enhance racial literacy. 
Professional Development Workshops and Parent Discussion Groups
We offer Racial Literacy Professional Development for faculty and also Racial Literacy Discussion Groups for parents at your school. For more information about PD and Discussion Groups or to schedule workshops and discussions, please email Claire at  
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