About Us

Equity and Inclusion

Diversity, Equity, Inclusion, & Belonging

Our Vibrant Community

Brimmer’s diversity strengthens our welcoming and inclusive community. We host affinity group meetings for Middle and Upper School students and families of color and bring in speakers and hold workshops for on a range of topics addressing diversity, equity, inclusion, & belonging. We also hold numerous events that celebrate cultural traditions and share about our differences and our common humanity. These programs—along with our school culture and set of values—enhance our collective experience of community, educate our students about social justice and equity, and empower our students to be responsible citizens and empathetic, ethical leaders.

Jessica Christian, Director of Diversity, Equity, Inclusion, & Belonging

As a school, we must work hard to create an equitable environment for all and actively teach and practice anti-bias and anti-racism at every level.

Meet our Director

Director of Diversity, Equity, Inclusion, & Belonging Jessica Christian leads Brimmer's efforts to ensure that our community honors its diversity and fosters equity, mutual respect, appreciation, and the ability to embrace difference. She organizes events, programs, professional development, and meetings for students, faculty, and families, and facilitates our affinity groups. Ms. Christian is available to meet with members of the Brimmer community that might need individual attention.

Building an Equitable Community

Everyday Activism: Moving from Talk to Walk
Lawrence Alexander, our DEI consultant for the 2020-2021 academic year, gave the keynote address for our 16th Annual Bissell Grogan Symposium, which focused on our school-year theme, Building an Equitable Community. In his presentation, entitled Everyday Activism: Moving from Talk to Walk, Mr. Alexander spoke to Middle & Upper School faculty and students in grades 7-12 with the intention of helping our communities, and particularly our students, lead authentic systemic change. He addressed the protests and demonstrations, focusing on how we can sustain the change for which we have marched. You can view a recording of Mr. Alexander's presentation here.

Recent Communications

Affinity Groups and Training

List of 5 items.

  • Affinity Groups & Student Diversity Clubs

    Students have the option to participate in clubs and affinity groups including:

    • African American/Latino/Multi-racial Affinity Group
    • International Students from China Affinity Group
    • AAPI Club
    • GSA (Gender and Sexuality for All)
    • Student Diversity Leadership Club
    • Middle School Diversity Lunch Group
    • Grade 5 Diversity Lunch Bunch
    Topics discussed in our groups may include: celebrations of identity, history lessons, politics, current events, and microaggressions. The make-up and existence of our groups may change year-to-year as we respond to the needs of our community.
  • Student Conferences

    Brimmer students help to develop internal diversity programming at the Lower, Middle, and Upper School levels. Off campus, students attend conferences including:

    • NAIS Student Diversity Leadership Conference (SDLC)
    • AISNE Middle School Diversity Conference
    • AISNE Middle School Student of Color Conference
    • AISNE High School Student of Color Conference
    These conferences address topics of race but also cover in depth issues surrounding socio-economic differences, gender identity, and sexual orientation, among other things.
  • Community Meetings for Diversity

    All members of community—staff, families, and students gather each quarter for dinner and a meeting that focuses on the celebration of culture, announcing upcoming events at the School, setting goals for diversity efforts, and exchanging information.
  • Professional Development & Faculty Conferences

    Faculty members attend conferences and workshops through organizations such as AISNE and NAIS that focus on topics including white privilege, representation of diversity in the classroom, and teaching students of color. Faculty members also attend the NAIS People of Color Conference (PoCC) each year.
  • Faculty & Staff Training

    This includes workshops and professional development training from organizations such as the National Association of Independent School (NAIS); the Association of Independent Schools in New England (AISNE); Bay Area People of Color in Independent Schools (POCIS); the Gay, Lesbian and Straight Education Network (GLSEN); and Visions. The Diversity Director has bi-monthly internal meetings with all the members of the Diversity Council.

Recent Diversity, Equity, Inclusion & Belonging News

List of 3 news stories.

  • Chinese Culture Celebrations

    We were so happy to honor the Year of the Tiger and the Lunar New Year with our community members who celebrate! 
    Read More
  • Black Joy

    Emily Miller, Head of Lower School
    Black History Month has begun. While special recognition is reserved for the month of February, it is important that Black history becomes an integral and integrated part of our teaching and curricula, and not only a stand-alone topic.
    Read More
  • Honoring MLK

    In honor of Dr. Martin Luther King, Jr. Day, a group of our students came together to make a video, using parts of his “Remaining Awake Through a Great Revolution” speech at Morehouse College.
    Read More

Lower School DEIB Committee

List of 7 members.

  • Photo of Jessica Christian

    Jessica Christian 

    Director Equity, Inclusion, & Belonging
  • Photo of Emily Miller

    Emily Miller 

    Head of Lower School
  • Photo of Rachel Wolf Heyman

    Rachel Wolf Heyman 

    LS Drama Teacher, LS Diversity Facilitator
  • Photo of Ina Patel

    Ina Patel 

    Lower School Director of Teaching & Learning
  • Photo of Taylor Vaughn

    Taylor Vaughn 

    PK Teacher
  • Photo of Janeata Robinson

    Janeata Robinson 

    Registrar, Lower School Diversity
  • Photo of Debra Castro

    Debra Castro 

    Grade 1 Teacher

MS/US DEIB Committee

List of 7 members.

  • Photo of Jessica Christian

    Jessica Christian 

    Director Equity, Inclusion, & Belonging
  • Photo of Carl Vallely

    Carl Vallely 

    Head of Middle School, Co-Director of Faculty Recruitment and Mentoring
  • Photo of Joshua Neudel

    Joshua Neudel 

    Head of Upper School
  • Photo of Emily Luckett

    Emily Luckett 

    Upper School Counselor
  • Photo of Kelly Neely

    Kelly Neely 

    Director of Global Studies, History Department Chair, History & Global Studies Teacher
  • Photo of Nicole DeCesare

    Nicole DeCesare 

    Associate Director of Marketing & Communications
  • Photo of Elyse Seltzer

    Elyse Seltzer 

    Director MS/US Library, Supervisor of the Library Program PK-12, DEI Curriculum Liaison
As an inclusive private school community, Brimmer welcomes students who will increase the diversity of our school. We do not discriminate on the basis of race, religion, sex, gender, gender identity and expression, disability, sexual orientation, national origin, ancestry, or any other characteristic protected from discrimination under state or federal law, in the administration of our educational policies, admissions practices, financial aid decisions, and athletic and other school-administered programs. 
69 Middlesex Road
Chestnut Hill, MA 02467