Diversity Collaborative

The Diversity Collaborative recognizes the value of diverse perspectives and the importance of including members of groups that have previously been underrepresented in international school leadership. The Collaborative will go beyond compliance and tolerance, to championing inclusion, and respecting and celebrating diversity.

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Little data exists on the diversity of international school leaders, but US data from the National Association of Independent Schools (NAIS) suggests that while women and educators of color are increasingly assuming a variety of leadership roles in schools, still only about a third of US private school heads are female and only seven percent are educators of color. In a presentation on the leadership pipeline, Liz Duffy, ISS President, stressed that, "It’s important that the leadership of international schools reflects the increasing diversity of students and families in those schools, especially since many studies have shown that diverse teams make better decisions and such teams provide effective role models for all students."



The Diversity Collaborative is committed to creating a more diverse, inclusive, equitable and just environment among the leadership of the international school community. This collaborative hopes to utilize the talents of leaders in education to create lasting changes in the way we engage, support and promote educators who encompass a broad range of identities.

Diversity in leadership is an educational and moral imperative because it improves education through role modeling, inclusive decision making and equitable access and opportunity. Embracing diversity in leadership helps to improve our schools and the world.

With diversity comes:

  • More Learning
  • More Innovation
  • Broader Opportunity
  • Broader Access to Talent
  • Better Decisions
  • Better Performance

Attracting, sustaining and supporting talented leaders in our schools who reflect the diversity of our students, faculty and society benefits us all. Through leadership diversity, inclusion and excellence, international schools thrive and strengthen as learning communities.

We welcome all school community members to join in the effort to ensure we have a broad spectrum of people in leadership positions across our international schools. All who are ready to champion this stance are welcome.

Currently the Diversity Collaborative has assembled and identified five strategic focus areas:

  • Pipeline Development
  • Conference and Trainings
  • Mentoring and Sponsorship
  • Data Gathering
  • Best practices


Sustaining School Leaders: From the Pipeline through the Search Process and into the Profession

Spring 2018 edition of InterEd

By Liz Duffy, ISS President & Beth Pfannl, ISS Vice President Administrative Searches and Governance Services

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Promoting Diversity in Leadership

Presented at ECIS April 2018 Conference
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