Community in Action – Middle School
The Milton Academy Middle School is committed to creating and sustaining a community in which diversity, equity, inclusion, and justice are lived and practiced each day. In our DEIJ programming, students explore how identity shapes their connections to others. Through Common Ground, community conversations, and focus days, we practice engaging in conversations that examine current social issues and their historical context. Through these conversations students learn to challenge dominant narratives as we strive to develop a deeper understanding of the ways in which identity shapes our experiences. To support students, we offer a number of affinity groups in which students who share a common identity have an opportunity to find a specific connection, explore identity, and discuss common experiences, both positive and challenging. Additionally, we seek to create spaces in which students can further examine allyship and offer a number of cultural and training groups to support this goal. With the guidance and support of faculty and staff, students work toward building an activism skill set in which they are empowered to disrupt norms and build more inclusive and just communities, both at Milton and beyond.
Affinity, Cultural, and Training (ACT) Spaces
Snapshot #1: Common Ground
In the Common Ground course, all Middle School students explore identity as it relates to themselves, their community, and the world. Students develop a shared language, based on their study of social identifiers, that empowers them to have meaningful conversations around identity. In each Common Ground course, students discuss and collaboratively explore historical and contemporary examples of identity and community. Common Ground courses culminate in social justice capstone projects, in which students apply what they have learned throughout the year to create an action plan to address a contemporary social justice issue. By participating in Common Ground, students build cultural competency, learn to understand different perspectives and explore ways to promote communities that celebrate empathy, understanding, and belonging.
In a recent Grade 7 Common Ground unit, students learned the structures of social movements, and they created their own social movement that would benefit others.
Snapshot #2: International Day of Women and Girls in Science
For the second year in a row, the Middle School celebrated the International Day of Women and Girls in Science with special programming for students and adults. Programming for this day focused on the vital roles and contributions of women in science, as well as seeking to further the full and equal access to and participation in science for women and girls and to achieve gender equality and the empowerment of women and girls. Our 2022 panelists were four women in STEM careers: Diana Perry (Physician and Instructor in Newborn Medicine and Pediatrics), Rana el Kaliouby (Co-Founder and CEO of Affectiva), Priya Sapra (Global General Manager of Software & Chief Product Officer), and Stephanie Kwei (Surgeon and Biotechnology Consultant).
Middle School Director of Equity and Inclusion
An experienced educator, Angelina has taught and served on the leadership teams at various independent and charter schools. Prior to Milton, Angelina served as the Assistant Principal at KIPP Academy in Lynn, Massachusetts. Previously, Angelina was the Director of Diversity, Equity, Inclusion, & Belonging and the Middle School Dean of Students at Ranney School in Tilton, New Jersey. She also worked as a middle school and upper school counselor at Stuart Country Day School of the Sacred Heart in Princeton, New Jersey and the Conservation Lab Charter School in Boston, Massachusetts. Angelina holds a Bachelors in Psychology from Providence College and Masters of Social Work from Simmons College. Angelina enjoys traveling, reading, and exploring the community around her when she is not working. She is passionate about DEIJ and has participated and facilitated multiple workshops and discussions in various settings.