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Anti-Racism & Equity Initiatives

A Message from School Leadership

Dear CH-CH community,

We thank the CH-CH students, alumni, and educators that keep our eyes open to, and focused on, the systemic racism that is inherent in their experience and in the experience of students around the country. We again apologize for this reality and pledge to keep working to be better in our institutional understanding, support and reckoning. Your determined and inspiring actions have held a mirror up to the School and sparked many difficult and much-needed conversations about our reflections. Through well-attended affinity groups for students, educators and parents; personal meetings and discussions with school leadership; and challenging conversations on social media, we have been listening and affirming accounts of systemic racism and microaggressions against black students and students of color.
But listening alone is not enough.
We continue to process all that has been shared and present our constantly evolving plan of action, the CH-CH Strategic Diversity, Equity, Inclusion and Belonging Plan, located below this message.
This plan is created and executed in collaboration with the School’s Director of Diversity, Equity, and Inclusion, Nikki Turpin, and our Diversity Committee. It has been informed by many conversations with students, faculty and staff, as well. The plan outlines both the strategy and some of the concrete steps we continue to take in nearly all areas of school life to uncover and remove instances of bias and build a system based on equality for our students of color.
As the shared leadership team for CH-CH, we are committing our Board of Trustees and School Administration to this crucial work, and we are building it into the fabric of who we are as a school moving forward.  For example, the Board of Trustees has recently established a Diversity, Equity, Inclusion, Justice & Wellness Committee, a standing Board committee, that brings together Trustees and educators to apply a strategic lens to the institution’s approach to addressing a wide-range of complicated needs to better support the student experience.
Furthermore, in 2021, the School launched a five-year Strategic Plan that presents a timeline for the growth of CH-CH in all areas of school life. The new Trustee-approved Strategic Plan acknowledges that tactical elements of the plan will continue to be identified and grow over the years as student and school needs require. Progress will requisite continued effort and accountability on our part. We look forward to the ongoing identification of opportunities for Board engagement with the broader community, including students, parents, alumni, faculty, and staff. This has been, and will continue to be, achieved through a wide-range of learning and engagement opportunities, such as affinity group conversations, book club meetings, guest speaker presentations, video viewing discussions, governance conference attendance, and Trustee workshops.
This developmental process will also require new levels of transparency in our work and decision-making. This is one area that we, as school leadership, feel strongly about. We want to make sure that you know where we stand, what we have done, and what still needs to be accomplished. Transparency is crucial in our community taking this journey together, and we look forward to providing exactly that.
We pride ourselves at CH-CH for being an empathic and welcoming community that allows our students to thrive, and this is only achievable when we have a system that works for each of our students. We are ready for the hard work ahead, and thank you again for the continued fight for social justice.

Lance Conrad, Ed.D.
Head of School
Chapel Hill-Chauncy Hall School

Charlotte Merrell
Board Chair
Chapel Hill-Chauncy Hall School

Land Acknowledgement

Chapel Hill-Chauncy Hall School is located on the ancestral homelands of the Massachusett and Pawtucket Tribes. We acknowledge the painful legacy of the region’s colonial history and commit to better understanding it, while also celebrating the vibrancy of Native American cultures and working to build a more inclusive community.


Nikki Turpin, CH-CH's Director of Diversity, Equity and Inclusion

CH-CH Community Reads

List of 5 items.

  • Spring 2023

    Above Ground by Clint Smith

    A remarkable new poetry collection from Clint Smith, the #1 New York Times bestselling and National Book Critics Circle award-winning author of How the Word Is Passed.

    Clint Smith’s vibrant and compelling new collection traverses the vast emotional terrain of fatherhood, and explores how becoming a parent has recalibrated his sense of the world. There are poems that interrogate the ways our lives are shaped by both personal lineages and historical institutions. There are poems that revel in the wonder of discovering the world anew through the eyes of your children, as they discover it for the first time. There are poems that meditate on what it means to raise a family in a world filled with constant social and political tumult.

    Purchase your copy
  • Winter 2022-23

    Do the Work: An Antiracist Activity Book by W. Kamu Bell

    Revelatory and thought-provoking, this highly illustrated, highly informative interactive workbook gives readers a unique, hands-on understanding of systemic racism—and how we can dismantle it.

    Purchase your copy here
  • Fall 2022

    No Ashes in Fire: Coming of Age Black and Free in America by Darnell L Moore

    When Darnell Moore was fourteen, three boys from his neighborhood tried to set him on fire. They cornered him while he was walking home from school, harassed him because they thought he was gay, and poured a jug of gasoline on him. He escaped, but just barely. It wasn't the last time he would face death.

    Three decades later, Moore is an award-winning writer, a leading Black Lives Matter activist, and an advocate for justice and liberation. In No Ashes in the Fire, he shares the journey taken by that scared, bullied teenager who not only survived, but found his calling. Moore's transcendence over the myriad forces of repression that faced him is a testament to the grace and care of the people who loved him, and to his hometown, Camden, NJ, scarred and ignored but brimming with life. Moore reminds us that liberation is possible if we commit ourselves to fighting for it, and if we dream and create futures where those who survive on society's edges can thrive.

    Purchase your copy
  • Winter 2021-22

    The 1619 Project by Nikole Hannah-Jones

    A dramatic expansion of a groundbreaking work of journalism, The 1619 Project: A New Origin Story offers a profoundly revealing vision of the American past and present.

  • Fall 2021

    How the Word Is Passed: A Reckoning with the History of Slavery Across America by Clint Smith

    A deeply researched and transporting exploration of the legacy of slavery and its imprint on centuries of American history, How the Word Is Passed illustrates how some of our country’s most essential stories are hidden in plain view—whether in places we might drive by on our way to work, holidays such as Juneteenth, or entire neighborhoods like downtown Manhattan, where the brutal history of the trade in enslaved men, women, and children has been deeply imprinted.

    Purchase Your Copy from Frugal Bookstore in Roxbury

Ms. Turpin's Corner | Blogs, Podcasts, and Videos

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Ms. Turpin's Corner | Resources and Initiatives

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CH-CH Strategic Diversity, Equity, Inclusion and Belonging Plan

As stated in our mission statement, Chapel Hill-Chauncy Hall is a school that embraces differences in learning style and culture in a richly diverse and supportive community. To further support our mission, CH-CH recognizes that we must affirm this not only through our words but also our actions. Chapel Hill-Chauncy Hall affirms our identity as an anti-racist school and commits to becoming a school that is justice-seeking and -minded in our actions. While we have begun to do this work in multiple areas, we know that our efforts need to be consistent and transparent. Our vision is for CH-CH to be a school that embraces the dreams of all of our students; that teaches all community members to identify and dismantle systemic oppression; that allows all of us to be our authentic selves; and where we, as a school community, unequivocally state that we will be an abolitionist institute of learning.

These strategic initiatives were composed after multiple conversations with CH-CH staff, faculty, and students, including the Diversity, Equity and Inclusion Committee.  It is presented on behalf of the senior administrative team, including the Head of School, and is intended to convey a singular voice from the School to our community.

Chapel Hill-Chauncy Hall will continue to engage in this work through workshops, affinity groups, ongoing community conversations, assemblies, and curriculum work. We will work toward implementing the following initiatives, which focus primarily on curriculum, wellness, and transparency.

Training, Education, and Anti-Racist Action Planning

Throughout the year, the entire CH-CH community will take part in educational experiences designed to build anti-racism into the culture of the School.

  • Establishing comprehensive anti-racism strategies and procedures, including faculty and staff training, to help prevent and respond to issues of racism and discrimination in the community.
  • Requiring CH-CH employees to set annual equity-focused professional goals and review them yearly with their supervisors and school administration.
  • Building time during professional development for awareness, education, and introspection in an environment of grace and humility as a critical step in dismantling systemic inequities within our community.
  • Holding monthly Diversity and Wellness Summits, and placing a greater emphasis on these topics in our curriculum and community daily life, as a whole.
  • Committing the Board of Trustees to ongoing training in justice, equity, diversity, inclusion, and anti-racism work.

An Equitable and Accountable Discipline Process

The time has come for CH-CH to uncover, acknowledge, and reduce racial disparities within its discipline process by rebuilding a system with increased transparency and a focus on restorative justice.

  • Constructing an anonymous incident report form for students to feel more comfortable about informing the School administration of discriminatory incidents. This will help to create a safe method for students to process and respond to experiences of racism and inequity in our programs and community.
  • Collecting data on past honor committees and results to uncover instances of bias. We will use this data to inform future work with these committees and to better determine how and where we might implement policies and actions to mitigate future issues. This information will also be used to assist in professional development and professional goals.
  • Rewriting clear Community Handbook guidelines that will allow grace and autonomy, but also a clear understanding of what the School’s response should be when a student’s actions fall outside the expectations of our community.
  • Training a small group of staff and students on Restorative Justice principles and practices with an eye to increasing community involvement, in the coming years. 

Curriculum and Access

As we listen to our students and alumni, the need is clear to build more learning opportunities and discussions on race and social justice into the curriculum. 

  • Identifying and deconstructing areas in our school culture, curriculum, programming, and communications that have contributed to systemic racism within our organization.
  • Creating and maintaining an Open Door policy for students to connect with the Administration.  This shall be created through Office Hours with the Head of School and Director of Diversity, Equity and Inclusion.
  • Adding celebrations that offer windows and mirrors to our community. These celebrations will not only honor those they represent but will allow us to educate on and expand cultural awareness. We have received feedback from students and faculty on expanding and new celebrations, including Heritage month, Pride Month, and Indigenous Peoples’ Day, and we welcome further community input on how to include these and other events into this school year. 

Health, Wellness, and Connections

We recognize the impact that structural racism has on the well-being of our students, and we are committed to supporting them as they work toward dismantling it.

  • Supporting our residential life program by providing more opportunities to connect as a community and learn how to advocate for care.
  • Creating multiple programs around healthy self-care and mental wellness and increasing access to community supports.
  • Identifying and securing more opportunities for alumni and current students to connect and engage with each other through mentoring opportunities and social events.
  • Developing opportunities for alumni to engage in anti-racism conversations and work.

Communication and Accountability

This will be a journey that we will all take together, and clear communication and accountability are key. We will continue to update the community on our progress. 

  • Creating a racial equity communications strategy that includes community-wide messages to respond to racial and social inequities.
  • Growing the number of informational materials presented in families' native languages.
  • Reporting to the community each trimester to outline the progress we have made in these initiatives, as well as the work that is to come.

Our intention is that these initiatives will directly impact the Chapel Hill-Chauncy Hall community positively and allow us to continue to support each other; we know that there is still more work to be done. While the circumstances of this year present unique challenges, we will continue to update you on our progress and new initiatives that we set forth. We particularly look forward to continued input from the student body and including newly identified action items from the students.

DEIB Initiatives for 2021-2024

  • Create a purpose statement for the PGA so as to reflect support for the School’s philosophy with regard to community, belonging, race and anti-bias.
  • Create Parent Norms for inclusion in our handbook so as to foster clarity with regard to parent community expectations and increase the number and quality of positive parent interactions.
  • Incorporate admissions practices aimed at identifying individual families’ willingness to embrace CH-CH’s philosophy around equity so as to enroll families who have a high probability of engaging and supporting our continued work through this lens.
  • Offer ongoing parent equity/diversity education so as to build cultural competencies consistent with the stated goals of the School’s anti-racism statement.
  • Integrate age-appropriate anti-bias values, language, and expectations into student community standards and codes of conduct (informal and formal).
  • Ensure that the voices of students directly affected by bias, as well as other members of the student community, are central to building an anti-racist/anti-bias student culture, and the protocols for continued support and advancement.
  • Deepen DEI-related skill-building to include support for how to: a.) eliminate micro-aggressions and b.) amplify values of anti-racism/anti-bias, empathy, and social justice in student life outside of the classroom (i.e., sports fields, dining hall, and on social media).
  • Leverage Middle School as an entry point when anti-racism/anti-bias knowledge and awareness can be translated into community action and shared responsibility.
  • Continue to develop and expand Professional Development time and resources centered around DEI training.
  • Building a diverse faculty and staff community that mirrors our student population by creating and monitoring specific and transparent hiring, developmental and retention goals.
  • Develop strategies for administrative advancement and mentorship into leadership roles for faculty of color with a particular emphasis on dismantling racial hierarchies.
  • Acknowledge the particular challenges and needs of the non-teaching staff and develop specific anti-racist/anti-bias programming tailored to meet their needs.
  • Create strong, meaningful relationships between alumni of different classes so as to provide opportunities for alumni to remain connected to CH-CH outside of traditional alumni events.
  • Develop ways to increase the visibility of alumni of color in day-to-day student life so as to familiarize and normalize the success of alumni of color for the student body as a whole.
Located 10 miles from Boston, Chapel Hill-Chauncy Hall (CH-CH) is a private, college preparatory day and boarding school for grades 7-12/PG. CH-CH cultivates intellectual courage, creative ambition, and unwavering empathy that drives students to achieve their best.
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