Saturday Academy is dedicated to working towards a society without systemic disadvantages based on race, ability, age, gender expression and identity, national origin, religion, sexual orientation, and socioeconomic status. We recognize that these identities can intersect and that advocating for all is essential to make progress towards equity.
We acknowledge that we can do better to inspire all young people to pursue life-long learning and critical thinking, and we are committed to continuous improvement. We are working to identify and amend the ways that dominant culture, privilege (e.g. white privilege) and implicit bias occur in our workplace environment, our recruitment of instructors, mentors, and students, and in educational spaces. We know there is a lot of work to do, and our goals will continue to change and grow.
Equity in our organization means breaking down systemic barriers and making our programs accessible to all. We aim to foster an inclusive climate in our workplace, classes, camps, and internships, where people with any identity and background will feel that they belong. We must provide learning communities where children can explore their curiosity while feeling heard, respected, and safe. To achieve this, we must communicate openly with one another and with our broader community. We invite partnerships and feedback to specifically change our programs to welcome people who face systemic disadvantages.
We have made recent progress on our equity journey, offering support for wider access and greater diversity: camps and classes in more locations, including grant-funded programs offered directly at underserved schools and through community partners, tuition assistance and sliding scale tuition, offering nutritious food options at our in-person programs, broader distribution of information about our internship program and application, building systems that support chosen names as well as legal names, and increased pay equity for our seasonal and part time staff.
We need to go deeper. In summer 2022, we delivered training for all of our classes staff that incorporates equity and inclusion for students of all experiences and backgrounds in classroom environments. We are developing our shared organizational values to guide our day-to-day decisions and assessing our spending and investment levels with BIPOC and non-male owned businesses to ensure we are investing in equity in all ways. We have plans to create a program-wide equity statement for internship positions and deepen partnerships through a community advisory board to build programs in alignment with community partners’ needs.
All of Saturday Academy’s community benefits when our organization and our programs are more equitable.
Saturday Academy was founded in 1983 to engage young people in hands-on, in-depth learning by connecting them with community experts as instructors and mentors. Our founders believed “income, race or gender was not to be a barrier.” Our Equity Statement is intended as a guidepost to strengthen and continue our founding vision.
Updated August 17, 2022