Student Life

Inclusivity & Belonging

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Burke's is dedicated to building and sustaining a diverse and inclusive community in which learning from and with others who bring different backgrounds and lived experiences are the cornerstones for academic success.

400 Ways to be a Burke's Girl

There is no one way to be a Burke's girl. Every student who sets foot on our campus belongs here, no matter her interests or background. As a school, we are shaped and powered not only by the unique experiences that each girl brings to class but also by what she discovers about herself as she grows and learns over her nine years on our campus. She may try out for a sports team or run for an elected office or find refuge in the arts (or all three!), but however she chooses to spend her time, she is surrounded by girls who support and uplift her. She may wear a jumper or skirt, or she may choose instead to wear pants, but she finds joy both in the classroom and on the playground.

Gender Inclusion Statement
In fulfillment of our mission and commitments, we strive to ensure that Burke’s is a school where all our students feel safe and comfortable to express their whole selves, including their gender identity. Burke’s supports, respects, and values each girl’s identity and expression across the gender spectrum. Burke’s is committed to the education of all students who identify as girls, regardless of their biological sex.

List of 6 items.

  • Upper School Advisory Program

    Our primary goal is to develop a “brave space” in our advisories where students may feel comfortable exploring and sharing the deeper part of themselves. Students in grades 5-8 meet weekly in their advisories program and H.E.A.R.T. class (Health, Emotional Awareness, Responsibility, and Time Management) classes. We know that students learn best when they can show up to class ready to learn, receive feedback, and push through academic and personal challenges.
  • Affinity and Alliance Groups

    Affinity and alliance groups provide an opportunity for students with similar backgrounds, experiences, and commitments to gather in a safe space where they can share pieces of their backgrounds and build common connections in their community.

    While meeting, groups may create educational opportunities for the community, discuss national and global events, and discuss topics that the girls may be grappling with. We hope that sharing their experiences with other students from similar backgrounds who they might not otherwise get to know will create a stronger sense of community for our students as well as a richer understanding of their own and others' stories.

    As we are aware that children's identities are constantly evolving, we encourage girls to attend as many groups over the course of the year as they wish. The students meet in small groups facilitated by faculty members and discuss topics derived from students’ interests. Both students and faculty participate in the discussions and activities. 

    Upper School Affinity Groups: LatinX, Black Heritage, Asian/Pacific Islander, Perfectly Mixed, Allies and Upstanders, Adopted, Gay Straight Alliance (referred to as GLOW), Neurodiversity, Jewish

    Lower School Affinity Groups: Students of Color, Neurodiversity, Family Diversity
  • K-8 Identity Curriculum

    At a very young age, children begin to notice similarities and differences in the people around them as well as what comprises their own identities. 

    At Burke's, we place a high priority on helping our students navigate these sensitive and often confusing years as they figure out who they are going to be and how they fit into the world. Doing this work also helps children develop the kind of multidimensional thinking that's necessary for the development of compassion and empathy toward others — something that is especially important for today's learners.
  • Semi-Annual Equity & Inclusion Survey

    Launched in Spring 2021, this tool is designed to inform us on how well we are living up to the promise of our Mission statements and measure the sense of inclusion and belonging of all Burke’s students. The students answer survey questions anonymously and data is collected and kept confidential. The survey is administered by an external consultance to all students twice a year, once in the fall and once in the spring. Please see a letter from the Director of Diversity, Equity, Inclusion & Belonging for more details
  • Community Events

    BLEND Dinner
    Each fall, our families and employees join together for BLEND, a dinner to learn about and celebrate each others' identities and cultures. 

    Community Dialogues

    All members of the Burke's community are invited to attend these events. During the dialogues, parents/guardians and faculty/staff are invited to participate in a facilitated discussion around topics of diversity, inclusion, equity and community. These courageous conversations are designed to be a safe space to investigate and share ideas, insights, and different perspectives. Check for dates in the school calendar.

  • P.A. Inclusivity and Community Building Committee

    We believe that there are "400 ways" to be a Burke's family.

    The social, demographic, and cultural diversity at Burke's is a reason for celebration, but it is also a source of personal exploration, collaboration, and creative problem-solving. This Committee strives to support the Burke’s community by creating open discussions for inclusivity and diversity topics. The responsibilities of this committee include hosting diversity-centered events, facilitating community dialogues, and leading discussions on books, films, and articles that highlight inclusivity and diversity topics.


List of 2 members.

  • Photo of Renita LiVolsi

    Renita LiVolsi 

    Director of Diversity, Equity, Inclusion and Belonging
    415.751.0187, ext. 329
  • Photo of Anna Yatroussis

    Anna Yatroussis 

    Associate Director of Diversity, Equity, Inclusion and Belonging
    415.751.0187, ext. 213
Burke's mission is to educate, encourage and empower girls. Our school combines academic excellence with an appreciation for childhood so that students thrive as learners, develop a strong sense of self, contribute to community, and fulfill their potential, now and throughout life.
Burke's admits students of any race, color, national and ethnic origin to all the rights, privileges, programs, and activities generally accorded or made available to students at the school. It does not discriminate on the basis of race, color, national and ethnic origin in administration of its educational policies, admissions policies, scholarship and loan programs, and athletic and other school-administered programs.