Director of Diversity, Equity and Inclusion

Administrator / Full-Time

The Rivers School, Weston, MA

The Rivers School seeks a Director of Diversity, Equity, and Inclusion to begin in July 2023. The DEI Director, a full-time senior academic administrative position, reports directly to the Head of School and is a member of the Senior Administrative Team, and will collaborate with and report regularly to the Board of Trustees. The Director serves as the institutional leader who will set the strategic vision and corresponding systems and structures for Rivers to meet its mission. Primary responsibilities include partnering with the Senior Administrative Team and the Board to ensure equity in governance, organizational structures, and processes; identifying strategies for the recruitment, hiring, and retention of faculty and staff; leading and managing the DEI team; developing and implementing faculty and staff training to enhance cultural understanding and competency; creating and implementing programs designed to foster a culture of inclusion and a sense of belonging among students, faculty, and staff.

Scope of the Position

The Director of Diversity, Equity, and Inclusion (DEI) is a senior administrative position and leads a team that includes five direct reports: The Associate Director of DEI, Coordinators of diversity programming in both the Upper and Middle Schools, as well as the DEI Student Support Liaison, and the Administrative Assistant in the office. DEI initiatives are supported by the Trustee Committee on Enrollment Management, Marketing, and Diversity. Specific responsibilities of the position include the following:

Strategic Oversight and Management

The Director of DEI will partner directly with the Head of School and Chair of the Board of Trustees’ Enrollment Management, Marketing, and Diversity Committee to design, propose, and execute DEI- specific strategy and vision. The director of DEI will also oversee all DEI programming and initiatives.

Duties include, but are not limited to the following:

  • Design, propose, and execute a DEI-specific strategic plan as part of a broader strategic plan;
  • Sit on the senior administrative team and advise the Head of School;
  • Work closely with the Board to communicate Rivers’ institutional vision and strategy, facilitate professional Board development, offer strategic expertise on questions of governance and structure, communicate DEI needs and challenges, etc.;
  • Partner with division heads, directors, and department chairs in working to accomplish the specific objectives articulated in the strategic plan;
  • Manage a team of five (Associate Director, Division Coordinators, DEI Student Support Liaison, Administrative Assistant);
  • Oversee all DEI programming and initiatives, including the creation of a yearlong DEI plan in collaboration with associate director and coordinators;
  • Partner with various administrators to assess and address issues of general school culture and climate with respect to diversity, equity, and inclusion.

External Relations and Admissions

The Director of DEI will partner directly with the Associate Head of School for External Relations (AHER), the Director of Enrollment Management (DEM), and the Director of Communications and Marketing (DCM) to fully integrate DEI into all external facing offices. Duties include, but are not limited to the following:

  • Partner with AHER to build stronger relationships with all external constituencies (parents, alums, prospective families, etc.) with a specific focus on families and alums of color;
  • Partner with DEM to develop new strategies for recruiting/retaining a more diverse student body; to draw more families invested in our DEI mission statement; to evaluate the current admissions process through an equity lens and make recommended changes; to assist in developing new processes and support programs for applicants and enrolled students of historically underrepresented groups and their families;
  • Partner with DCM to tell and market our DEI story with authenticity and consistency; to enhance our regional and national profile; to communicate Rivers’ institutional vision around diversity, equity, and inclusion; to publicize the school’s diversity, equity, and inclusion efforts.

Recruiting, Networking, and Hiring

The Director of DEI will partner with division heads, Upper School Dean of Faculty, and department chairs to diversify faculty/staff and to recruit, hire, and retain faculty/staff with DEI skills and expertise. Duties include, but are not limited to the following:

  • Attend relevant conferences and network with prospective candidates;
  • Evaluate all potential candidates via interviews and feedback;
  • Work closely with division heads and Upper School dean of faculty to evaluate current hiring processes through an equity lens;
  • Institute best practices in supporting and retaining faculty/staff with marginalized

Adult Education, Professional Development, and Support

The Director of DEI will work with the division heads, the Upper School Dean of Faculty, and the department chairs in further developing the social and cultural competencies of the adult community. Duties include, but are not limited to the following:

  • Work with the Upper School Dean of Faculty, Head of Middle School, and directors to build DEI components and expectations into the evaluation and review process;
  • Work with the Upper School Dean of Faculty, Head of Middle School, and directors to build a sustainable DEI professional development model for all faculty/staff that creates opportunities and expectations for professional and personal growth;
  • Collaborate with the Dean of Faculty, Head of Middle School, and Associate Director of DEI to develop antiracist training for all new faculty/staff;
  • Partner with the director of new faculty development to support and retain faculty with marginalized identities and orient all new faculty to DEI at Rivers;
  • Build capacity in our adult community by providing and overseeing training for specific
  • constituents in the Rivers community: Board, parents, athletics,
  • Promote, support, and manage faculty/staff attendance at conferences related to growing their DEI skill set.

 Student Life and Leadership

The Director of DEI will develop student leadership in matters related to diversity, equity, and inclusion. Duties include, but are not limited to the following:

  • Amplify the community’s culture of citizenship, belonging, and interest in understanding others across the entire student body;
  • Partner with the Dean of student life and grade deans to support students with marginalized identities, including work with bias incident reporting and protocols;
  • Oversee student clubs and organizations related to issues of diversity, equity, and inclusion;
  • Oversee affinity group leadership and cultural calendar

Curriculum and Instruction

The Director of DEI will partner with division heads, the Upper School Dean of Faculty, the Upper School Dean of Studies, and professional development coordinators in each division to integrate DEI practices and thinking into teaching and learning at Rivers. Duties include, but are not limited to the following:

  • Collaborate with division heads, Middle School Curriculum Director, and department chairs to develop a more systematic approach to DEI in the classroom across both divisions;
  • Promote, advise upon, and support curriculum development aimed at helping students think critically about identity, multiculturalism, and systems of power;
  • Collaborate with division heads and Upper School Dean of Faculty to promote and support inclusive teaching practices and cultural competency;
  • Partner with the Upper School dean of studies to consider issues of bias, equity, and representation related to course placement and advancement.

Opportunities and Challenges

Rivers’ DEI staffing and programming have evolved from a half-time position, a handful of stand-alone events, and a Day of Consideration to a six-person team and intentional year-round programming that engages the whole community. We believe this is an exciting opportunity for a strategic, collaborative, and community-oriented leader. The current priorities, opportunities, and challenges include:

  • Cultivating a unified vision for the school’s diversity, equity, and inclusion work as essential to educational excellence and integrated into all aspects of the school;
  • Coalescing a plan for the next arc of the school’s DEI efforts, bringing together current work and building on the existing foundation provided by previous Directors, faculty and staff, and the school’s current administration;
  • Implementing strategies within constituency groups to promote cultural competency;
  • Bringing a listening ear and an intersectional lens to the school’s DEI work, particularly in its efforts to support the students, families, faculty and staff who bring diversity and dimension to the school community;
  • Providing an institutional equity and inclusion lens within the senior leadership team and Board and cultivating the abilities of others in those groups to serve in that capacity as well;
  • Partnering with and supporting the school’s enrollment, business, communications, and other operational areas to achieve best practices related to supporting the school’s diversity goals and equity and inclusion aspirations;
  • Developing and empowering the faculty and staff leading DEI work in their divisions and departments to work confidently in support of student success, social and emotional wellbeing, and sense of belonging;
  • Working cognizant of the differences in supporting and creating programming for students across grades 6-12 and the teachers educating and parents guiding them;
  • Leading, supporting, and collaborating with a dynamic and thoughtful DEI team;
  • Serving as a senior leadership team member as the school navigates a Head of School transition

Qualifications and Personal Attributes

  • An orientation to think, lead, and act at both the strategic and operational levels and the ability to manage details and the larger picture;
  • A highly relational and communicative DEI practitioner who is experienced and skilled in working with, supporting, and providing accountability for administrative colleagues, faculty, and staff and the gravitas and experience to work with parents and Board;
  • A strong eye for talent and the ability to contribute to the recruitment and retention of a diverse and aligned faculty and staff;
  • A team builder, educator, and mentor who calls individuals into the work, supports their development and deploys them aligned to their strengths and roles, and responsibilities;
  • A steady demeanor and the ability to maintain a professional distance and stand strong when navigating the challenging work facing DEI leaders in schools;
  • A deep appreciation for the development of young people and a desire to engage with students as a part of their work;
  • A collaborative, confident, and humble leader with energy, a sense of humor, and a commitment to self-care.

To Apply

Interested and qualified candidates are invited to contact the consultants in confidence at their earliest convenience. Candidates will ultimately need to submit the following materials as separate PDF documents by November 14:

  • A cover letter expressing their interest in this particular position;
  • A current résumé;
  • A list of five professional references with the name, relationship, phone number, and email address of each (references will not be contacted without the candidate’s permission);
  • An educational philosophy or leadership statement;
  • Candidates will be asked to respond to writing prompts that will be shared upon inquiry

Chris Boyle, Search Consultant

The Rivers School

Weston, MA
Middle School, High School
All Gender