Student Life

Diversity, Equity, Inclusion and Belonging

At Denver Academy, Diversity, Equity, Inclusion, (DEI) and Belonging (DEIB) are foundations of our educational community. Our commitment to these values is ingrained in our decision-making, actions, curriculum, and mission. Fostering well-being through these principles is an integral part of our school culture. Denver Academy values the mental, social, and emotional health of our community and recognizes that nurturing a sense of belonging takes effort and commitment. We pledge that we will continue to maintain a growth mindset with the goal of overcoming barriers and biases. All are welcome at Denver Academy. We ask that all members of our community — students, caregivers, faculty, staff, and visitors, commit to treating each other with respect and kindness. An inclusive environment thrives when all voices, regardless of background, belief, and ability, are acknowledged and valued. Together, we can create a community that inspires all students to reach their full potential in an accepting and safe environment.

JEDI Mission

We are committed to seeking Justice as we identify systemic barriers in education, practicing Equity so each student thrives in our community, celebrating the Diversity of backgrounds and experiences on our campus, and advocating for the Inclusion of all who attend our school.

JEDI Student Groups at DA

List of 3 items.

  • Students of Color and Allies (SOCA)

    The mission of SOCA is to embrace unity through respect in order to create an empowered, diverse, and safe community. This student-led group began in the 2019-20 school year and is open to ALL middle and high school students. SOCA is unique to Denver Academy and was founded by student leaders. SOCA meets bi-monthly during lunch periods.
  • Young JEDIs

    The Young JEDI mission is to build a stronger, safer community by advancing students’ abilities to empathize, achieve common goals, and build a sense of community. The Young JEDI program is project-based and woven into the monthly character values of the Elementary Division.
  • Gender and Sexualities Alliance (GSA)

    Since 2009, DA has proudly supported the Gender and Sexuality Alliance (GSA). The goal of this group is to create a safe and affirming school community for all, regardless of sexual orientation, gender identity, or gender expression. Denver Academy’s GSA groups in both Middle and High School are registered nationally with GLSEN (Gay, Lesbian and Straight Education Network). The groups meet bi-monthly during lunch periods.

Meet the JEDI Team

List of 6 members.

  • Photo of Katherine Bradford

    Katie Bradford 

    Dean of Arts & Media/JEDI Chair
    Bio
  • Photo of Anthony Slaughter

    Anthony Slaughter 

    Director of Information Technology/JEDI Co-Chair
    Bio
  • Photo of Katey Frankel

    Katey Frankel 

    10th Grade Teacher
  • Photo of Kate Owen

    Owen 

    Bio
  • Photo of Emily Popper

    Emily Popper 

    Middle School Teacher
    Bio
  • Photo of Hannah Topka

    Hannah Topka 

    Elementary Teacher
    Bio

Professional Development

Each year, DA sends representatives to the Student Diversity Leadership Conference (SDLC) and the People of Color Conference (PoCC). These diversity leadership conferences are presented by the National Association of Independent Schools (NAIS). They provide an opportunity for DA representatives to gather with more than 7,800 adults and students from independent schools across the country to learn, collaborate, and support one another and to bring this knowledge back to our community.  Teachers have also participated in professional development workshops with Learning for Justice, Facing History, Educating Children of Color, Diversity University, and the Colorado Diversity Network.

Colorado Diversity Network

Denver Academy is one of eight founding member schools of this network. The Colorado Diversity Network is a group of independent schools working in collaboration to create a statewide network of faculty and staff training focused on issues of equity, inclusion, diversity and belonging in the classroom. Below are some examples of events and workshops presented by CDN and attended by DA teachers and staff:
  • Rosetta Lee - Keynote at Anti-Racism in Action Conference
  • Intro to Anti-Bias and Anti-Racism in the Classroom by Liz Kleinrock
  • Joel Baum from Gender Spectrum
  • Social Justice 101 with Learning for Justice featuring Dr. Sarah-Soonling Blackburn
  • Health and Wellness through an Identity Lens with Julie Lutton
  • Anti-Bias and Anti-Racist Instructional Practices for K-6 Educators with Britt Hawthorne

Events

At Denver Academy, our students engage in several nationally-recognized events promoting DEIB work. Some of these events include:

Denver Academy Indigenous Peoples Land Acknowledgement

We would like to acknowledge that Denver Academy sits on Cheyenne land and that they were the land’s original stewards. We also wish to acknowledge all other Indigenous Tribes and Nations who call Colorado home. We commit to care for this land and to support indigenous peoples.