Inclusion at Marist

To fulfill Marist School’s mission in education, it is imperative that we foster an inclusive and welcoming school community. We are committed to doing what is necessary to encourage a culture of belonging where all students are best positioned to learn and grow.

Our Action Steps

List of 6 items.

  • Fearless Dialogues Partnership

    In February 2020, we formally partnered with cultural competency experts Fearless Dialogues for a two-year engagement during which we will invest considerable energy toward fostering a culture of change that features trust, accountability, and mutual support. Specifics of our process with Fearless Dialogues are below.

    Year One (Spring 2020 through June 2021)
    Activities during Year One focus on helping us alter the chemistry that has prevented us from building the inclusive school environment we want and need to have.

    • Program Audit – In April and May, Fearless Dialogues audited the 26 programs that Marist’s Office of Inclusion & Diversity either sponsored, co-sponsored, or supported during the past school year. The audit metrics evaluated the execution, outcomes, and overall effectiveness of these programs in reflecting, reinforcing, or promoting Marist’s diversity, equity, and inclusion values. While the majority of the programs received high marks, Fearless Dialogues has a number of recommendations that we will begin to implement during the 2020-2021 school year.
    • Curriculum Audit – Fearless Dialogues, alongside our new Curriculum Review Task Force, will work together to perform a review and valuation of the Marist School curriculum, which will determine the strengths and growth areas for embedding social justice, equity, and diversity into the classroom and student experience. Our intention is to enhance our coursework regarding the issues and history around race in order to prepare our students to be culturally sensitive servant leaders in our world. This work was to have begun this spring, but, because of the COVID-19 pandemic, will begin in fall 2020 instead.
    • Faculty/Staff Training – This fall, Fearless Dialogues will take Marist’s entire faculty and staff through training sessions that work toward transformation and change in self and others, helping to open eyes to see gifts instead of stereotypes, enable an environment for hard conversations, and cultivate the hope that leads to sustainable change. This training originally was to have occurred in April, but was postponed due to the COVID-19 pandemic.
    • Experiential Learning Sessions – A foundational part of Fearless Dialogues’ work with Marist is to create spaces where each member of our community can feel comfortable speaking thoughtfully and courageously across differences. To accomplish this, Fearless Dialogues will lead a series of five workshops for a cohort of 200 members of our school community, including students, parents, alumni, administration, and Board of Trustees. Those that participate in these workshops will become ambassadors to foster a culture of meaningful engagement across differences during the second year of Marist’s partnership with Fearless Dialogues.

    Year Two (2021-2022 Academic Year)

    The goal of Year Two is to help Marist begin to embody the practices that inform healthy discourse and community-building across differences. By developing shared understanding, sharing experiences, and providing shared language and tools, sustained cultural change can begin to flourish.

    • New Student Orientation – As new students enter Marist, they will participate in an orientation workshop to set expectations and cultural norms of the Marist School community. This type of orientation will become an ongoing component of the orientation activities experienced by all new Marist students.
    • Student Engagements by Grade Level – Fearless Dialogues will take all Marist students through a series of workshops based on the theme “Embodying Courage.” These workshops will equip students to live out a commitment to know, to embrace, to listen, to care and acknowledge, and to act, thus helping create an inclusive community that embraces and celebrates differences. The workshops will draw from Catholic teachings on solidarity, human dignity, care for the vulnerable, and responsibility for nurturing God’s creation and will reflect and uphold the Marist mission and values.
  • Office of Diversity, Inclusion, & Belonging

    Marist School’s Office of Diversity, Inclusion, & Belonging has a full-time director, who has a voice in all conversations regarding student life. The director is assisted by several coordinators who help with programming related to diversity, inclusion, and belonging.
  • Policy Updates

    Recognizing that every aspect of our school community needs to be considered as we work toward building an anti-racist culture, we have reviewed, clarified, and updated our school policies related to discrimination, including racism, and harassment. We worked on our revisions with the help of students of color as well as with the oversight of our Diversity Advisory Council. The new policies, documented in our Parent-Student Handbook, will be conveyed to students at handbook assemblies and orientation activities. Parents will be required to review the handbook and affirm their commitment to these policies with a signature before their children can begin school.
  • Diversity Advisory Council

    We have expanded the membership and role of our Diversity Advisory Council. The group now includes members representing current parents, faculty/staff, Board of Trustees, and alumni. The group will meet monthly to help guide the activities of the Office of Inclusion & Diversity and advise on incidents that threaten the school’s commitment to a welcoming and inclusive school community.
  • Student Diversity Advisory Council

    In fall 2020, we formed our new Student Diversity Advisory Council (SDAC), which will work with the Office of Inclusion & Diversity to promote a culture of inclusivity in the student life at Marist. Student leaders on the SDAC will be part of the cohort trained by Fearless Dialogues, and we expect they will attend the National Association of Independent Schools’ Student Diversity Leadership Conference and lead the Diversity Summit we host each spring for students from many area independent schools.
  • Faculty Leadership in Diversity, Equity, and Inclusion Initiatives

    We acknowledge that faculty and staff play a key role in promoting an anti-racist culture at Marist and in supporting our students of color. As mentioned above, all Marist faculty and staff participated in training and experiences led by Fearless Dialogues, which equipped them to recognize and address racism, to dialogue across differences, and to seek understanding through the lens of compassion. Additionally, we continue to broaden our nationwide efforts to recruit a diverse faculty and staff, including attending multiple teacher of color hiring fairs and visiting historically black colleges and universities.

Recent Communications

List of 10 news stories.

  • The Marist AAPI Affinity Group organized its inaugural Lunar New Year Potluck on February 9.

    Marist AAPI Affinity Group Shares Lunar New Year Traditions

    Newly established this school year, the Marist School AAPI Affinity Group is a vibrant hub, fostering connections among Asian American and Pacific Islander (AAPI) students. The group has quickly become an integral part of campus life, serving as a space where students delve into their shared experiences, traditions, and values while strengthening bonds and celebrating diversity. Recently, the group members and moderators marked the Lunar New Year, a significant holiday in many Asian cultures.
    Read More
  • Zane Johnson '25, Alia Abdo '25, Erin Davis '25, Gabby Ovadje '24, Eden Gebeyehu '24, Brooke Thomas '25, and Jayden Rachal '26 decorated the Bishop Gunn Administration Center display case for Black History Month.

    Marist School Celebrates Black History Month

    The observance of Black History Month at Marist School provides an opportunity for the entire community to explore African American culture, history, and literature, fostering a deeper understanding and appreciation of the African American experience while also aligning with the school's mission to form students in the image of Christ through inclusivity and acceptance. This acknowledgement holds particular significance for our students, as it allows them to actively engage with and celebrate the diversity of perspectives within our school community.
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  • Jordan Snellings ’11 spoke to Marist students and teachers at the Martin Luther King, Jr. Day Assembly.

    Alumni Speakers Focus on Service and Justice at MLK Day Assembly

    The theme of Marist School’s all-school assembly in honor of Martin Luther King, Jr. Day was service as a pathway to justice. Through a collaborated effort between Marist’s Diversity Team and the Marist Alumni Office, students, faculty, and staff were inspired by the Marist graduates and faculty members who spoke eloquently on the topic. Marist values and Church teachings focus on service to others, and Martin Luther King, Jr. himself famously said, “Everybody can be great...because anybody can serve. You only need a heart full of grace, a soul generated by love.” It was energizing to hear engaging stories of servant leadership, all of which provided excellent models to which Marist students can aspire.
    Read More
  • CNN correspondent Nick Valencia gave the keynote address at the inaugural Hispanic/Latino Heritage Month Assembly.

    Inaugural Hispanic Heritage Month Assembly Celebrates Belonging

    Over the years, Marist School has recognized Hispanic Heritage Month in a variety of ways in classes and clubs across campus, but, for the first time, Marist held an all-school assembly to spotlight the national opportunity to appreciate the rich history, culture, and contributions of Americans with ancestry from Spain, Mexico, the Caribbean, and Central and South America. Marist is intentional about uplifting the blessings of diversity on our campus, and this assembly was a way to do just that in honor of the 9.2% of Marist students who identify with this background. A 2023-2024 signature event of Marist’s Office of Inclusion & Diversity, the Hispanic/Latino Heritage Month Assembly was organized by Marist history teacher Mr. José Gregory and a team of student leaders. By all accounts, the event was a resounding success.
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  • Progress Update on Inclusion & Diversity at Marist School

    Our Catholic and Marist values call for Marist School to foster a community of inclusion, and we work energetically toward that goal every single day. We are pleased to share this progress update about our multifaceted efforts surrounding inclusion and diversity. These initiatives ensure we acknowledge and honor the God-given gifts of every member of our school community and advance our important mission to form the whole person in the image of Christ.
  • The Real Talk Girls Conference attendees with Renee Ducre '89.

    Real Talk Girls Conference Celebrates Women’s History Month

    The Marist School Office of Inclusion & Diversity hosted the Real Talk Girls Conference on Monday, March 13. The afternoon event held on Schola Brevis, the first day of Term 3, marked the midway point of Women’s History Month. Open to all students, the event featured three guest speakers and table discussions led by Marist student leaders.
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  • Marist School Remembers Dr. Martin Luther King, Jr.

    As Marist School joins the nation in marking the birthday of Dr. Martin Luther King, Jr. on Monday, January 16, Marist President Fr. Bill Rowland, S.M. shares Dr. King’s most powerful quotes as inspiration to continue advancing the principles of racial equality and nonviolent social change.
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  • Mr. Aaron Hill served as an SDLC faculty member working to plan and provide curriculum for the SDLC conference.

    Student Diversity Leadership Conference Attendees Present to Marist Faculty and Staff

    Eighteen individuals representing Marist School recently attended the National Association of Independent Schools (NAIS) People of Color Conference for faculty and staff and the Student Diversity Leadership Conference (SDLC) for students held concurrently in San Antonio, Texas.
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  • May 2022 Progress Update on Diversity, Equity & Inclusion at Marist School

    We are pleased to share this update about Marist’s ongoing diversity, equity, and inclusion efforts along with an announcement welcoming Mr. Aaron Hill, Marist’s incoming director of inclusion and diversity.
  • Progress Update on Diversity, Equity & Inclusion at Marist School

    Marist School is pleased to share a progress update on our ongoing work surrounding Diversity, Equity, & Inclusion. The update covers the various and most recent action steps we have devoted ourselves to in order to foster the inclusive, welcoming, and anti-racist school community our Catholic faith and Marist values call us to have. These steps, focused on the work we have done in the last 18 months, build upon and enhance the significant programming that has been in place at Marist School for many years. 

Marist School

3790 Ashford Dunwoody Road, NE
Atlanta, GA 30319-1899
(770) 457-7201
An Independent Catholic School of the Marist Fathers and Brothers