Signature Programs

Diversity, Equity, Inclusion, & Social Justice

A Team Approach

Athenian believes that upholding our commitments will take full community participation -- a team approach. Our Director of DEIS and Director of People & Culture will support school-wide DEIS efforts with students and employees, and our Board of Trustees has formed a DEIS committee to work in parallel, to support and ensure we continue to make progress and hold DEIS as a school priority. In addition, our Director of DEIS will facilitate the new DEIS Advisory Council which includes faculty and staff, and will work with 23 student DEIS interns to advise, advocate for and support our shared DEIS goals.

On Campus Affinity Groups

Athenian Upper School students are invited to participate in or help create affinity groups. These identity-based groups help foster community and are a vehicle for connection, advocacy, and support for students who identify as members of a historically marginalized group. Each group has its own unique mission and an adult advisor with a shared identity. 
In addition to the groups to the right, the school recently formed the  Athenian White Antiracist Group (AWAG), an affinity space for students, staff, faculty, and administrators who are white or have proximity to whiteness (self-identified) and are seeking to learn more about their whiteness and its relationship to antiracism (unlearning and relearning).

Asian Student Union
Athenian White Antiracist Groups 
Black Student Union
Jewish Affinity Group (Jew Crew)
LGBTQIA+ Affinity Group (Alphabet Soup)
Mixed Race Affinity Space
South Asian Representation

What is an Affinity Group?

Unlike student clubs that are organized around a shared passion and open to all, affinity groups are just for those with a shared identity background. As we explain to our students, “you know you are in the right affinity group if you can say unequivocally, I am __________ and can speak to that group’s collective identity and experience from the I and we perspective.”

Sanjev deSilva, Director of DEIS

Sanjev deSilva brings 20 years of experience in education, youth development, and community engagement to his role of Director of Diversity, Equity, Inclusion and Social Justice at Athenian. Along with being committed to empowering young people to lead and create change in their communities, he is committed to using restorative practices to steward Athenian into its DEIS goals and objectives. During his 7 years at Athenian, Sanjev has been a Humanities Teacher, BlendEd Instructor, Dorm Head, Basketball Coach and much more.