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Rye Country Day School

Private K-12 School

Mailing Address
3 Cedar Street
Rye, New York 10580
(914) 967-1417
School Information
"Rye Country Day School is a coeducational, college preparatory school dedicated to providing students from Pre-Kindergarten through Grade 12 with an excellent education using both traditional and innovative approaches. In a nurturing and supportive environment, we offer a challenging program that stimulates individuals to achieve their maximum potential through academic, athletic, creative, and social endeavors. We are actively committed to diversity. We expect and promote moral responsibility and strive to develop strength of character within a respectful school community. Our goal is to foster a lifelong passion for learning, understanding, and service in an ever-changing world." The school enrolls 940 students, has a 7:1 student-faculty ratio, and offers courses in subjects ranging from the Visual and Performing Arts to Computer Science. (Source: (Source: (Source:
General Information
Rye Country Day School has a diversity and inclusion initiative, with many elements of anti-racism. The school announced that "board members, administrators, students, faculty, and parents/guardians have participated in anti-racism and anti-bias training and continue to engage in programming and discussions that address these crucial issues." Additionally, the school will also, "Explore a graduation requirement/capstone experience in each division in identity work (self and others) so that all students have experience and understanding of their own identity..."

Actions Taken

Admissions Policies
  • The school announced, "The Office of Admissions, in collaboration with the Board’s Diversity, Equity, and Inclusion Committee, is developing a recruitment strategy with an emphasis on race and socioeconomic status, which includes effectively communicating the School’s commitment to diversity, inclusion, and anti-racism—and to seeking families who share these values."
  • The school announced, "The Board’s DEI Committee, the administration, the DEI Team, and the Office of Admissions continue to collaborate to develop a DEI-centered admissions strategy."
Anti-Racism, Bias, and Diversity Training
  • The school announced, "...board members, administrators, students, faculty, and parents/guardians have participated in anti-racism and anti-bias training and continue to engage in programming and discussions that address these crucial issues."
  • The school announced, "Mandatory anti-racism training for faculty, coaches, staff, and Board members" and "Mandatory anti-racism training for students." For students, training "will include immediate and additional anti-racism and anti-bias programming on a regular basis in the required curriculum for all students."
  • The school promised that it will, "Train trustees in the same diversity, inclusion, equity, and justice language and skills as employees and students; ensure that the composition of the Board of Trustees continues to reflect the diversity of the RCDS community; charge Board Diversity and Inclusion committee with oversight of program recommendations and plan."
  • The school announced, "All RCDS employees will participate in anti-racism training on Monday, August 24."
  • The school announced, "Anti-racism training for students has been integral to our community-wide commitment to change. Students in the Upper School have all participated in several training activities. During orientation, they engaged in asynchronous work exploring oppression, as well as the Upper School’s new Restorative Justice program and its roots in anti-racism."
Curriculum Changes and Requirements
  • The school will, "Explore a graduation requirement/capstone experience in each division in identity work (self and others) so that all students have experience and understanding of their own identity, as only with this self-knowledge will they explore others’ identities within the context of different communities." The school announced that it will, "Conduct a comprehensive curriculum review striving to ensure that students see themselves and others reflected in the curriculum; that the curriculum teaches skills and concepts connected to equity, justice, and inclusion; that the curriculum develops students’ cultural competence; and that anti-racism is a foundational element of our classes, textbooks, student activities, and lesson plans."
Disciplinary Measures
  • The school will be, "Reviewing disciplinary procedures and holding members of our community accountable." The school added, "The School will review and expand disciplinary policies and procedures to ensure that students, faculty, and staff are held to the highest standard of accountability following any racist incident. We will revisit the ways in which members of our community report acts of racism and bias to ensure safety, support, accountability, and action."
Program and Research Funding
  • There was "a four-mile fundraising march through Rye led by recent graduates."
  • The Rye Country Day School (RCDS) Faculty and Staff Reading for 2019 included "White Fragility" by Robin DiAngelo and "New Jim Crow" by Michelle Alexander.
  • The "Third Annual Saturday Summit on Social Justice" included "student-facilitated workshops and affinity groups about racism, classism, gender oppression, activism and more. Some of the topics discussed in the workshops were: Race vs. Ethnicity vs. Nationality; Code Switching: Convenience or Survival; Activism: The Importance of Student-Led Movements; #MeToo: Identifying and Confronting Sexism; Understanding Privilege; and Microaggressions and Implicit Bias."
  • As part of the "Coalition of Differences initiative," "Over 90 students, faculty, and staff gathered virtually to process and share together in community. Students thoughtfully shared their perspectives and experiences on the topics of racism and recent events." Additionally, the "Action Against Racism initiative, a group of students and faculty coordinated by Director of Public Purpose Rebecca Drago and Director of Diversity & Inclusion Ali Morgan," coordinated "students' social justice work for the summer."
  • The school said in June 2020, "Over the last weeks, students and faculty have led and participated in a number of initiatives, including an all-school student-led Coalition for Solidarity, a special meeting of the ongoing Coalition of Differences that was launched in the fall... a discussion and resource-sharing session for Middle School students; and numerous meetings of the Action Against Racism initiative, a group of students and faculty looking critically at our school, and working towards making RCDS an intentionally anti-racist community."
  • For the summer of 2020, there was a "Summer Focus on Social Justice," which included "Diversity and Inclusion and Public Purpose programming for students, as well as for alumni and parents/guardians, will continue through the summer and moving forward."
  • The school's anti-racism resources included podcasts, such as "Intersectionality Matters!" ("a podcast hosted by Kimberlé Crenshaw, an American civil rights advocate and a leading scholar of critical race theory") and books, such as "Stamped: Racism, Antiracism, and You" (by Ibram X. Kendi and Jason Reynolds). The school also announced that it will be, "Retaining outside DEI experts to advise the Board."
  • The school will provide resources to students for "Civil Discourse and Brave Spaces," which will "Build awareness and prevention of microaggressions and macroaggressions through the formal training of students and employees."
  • Rye Country Day School sent delegates to the 2021 National Association of Independent Schools's Student Diversity Leadership Conference and the People of Color Conference.
  • In early December, the school held its "Fifth Annual Saturday Summit on Social Justice," which examined "the important roles that diversity, equity, inclusion, and social justice play both inside and outside of school communities."
Symbolic Actions
  • The school's 2020-2021 theme will be applied "to a number of timely issues, including systemic racism and the path towards change, the COVID-19 pandemic, dialogue across difference, and the upcoming national election, to name a few."
  • The school will consider a "Head of School title change," because "the word master bears the painful history of slavery in our nation and the systemic racism and injustice that have followed and plagued us since."
  • The school will, "Expand the staffing, resources, and reach of the Office of Diversity and Inclusion" and "consider creating an 'Office of Community Engagement' or 'Office of Community Engagement and Social Justice' to foster greater integration."
  • A "Diversity and Inclusion Task Force" was established.
  • On June 18, 2020, RCDS released a statement on Facebook stating, “To our alumni who joined us last night to discuss race at RCDS, thank you. To the students and alumni who have submitted posts to @blackatrcds, thank you. We urge everyone in our community to read and reflect on the painful experiences shared in these posts.” RCDS also mentioned that it seeks to “implement the School’s immediate and long-term action plans.”
  • On June 15, 2020, RCDS released a statement on Facebook saying, “We are listening, we are reflecting, and we are preparing for action. Tomorrow, you will receive a letter from me detailing immediate changes and sharing the results of the Diversity, Equity, and Inclusion Task Force, a strategic plan for ongoing action and institutional growth.”
  • On June 12, 2020, RCDS announced numerous events discussing anti-racism, as well as a school link to more resources on Facebook.
  • On June 12, 2020, RCDS released a statement on Facebook saying, “We must engage in ongoing critical assessment and honestly acknowledge that there is more for us to do to combat racism at our school and in our communities. As a community, we are deeply committed to doing this work. Black Lives Matter.”
  • On June 8, 2020, RCDS released a speech with a statement on Facebook saying, “My hope is that your class’s deep commitment to individual expression, the efficacy of dialogue to improve our understanding, and your radical inclusiveness will direct our path away from darkness and into the light of a brave, more inclusive, more just new world.”
  • On June 1, 2020, the headmaster released a lengthy statement in solidarity with the anti-racism movement on Facebook.
Last updated July 26th, 2022
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