Pollyanna Conference

Saturday, October 22, 2022
8:30 a.m. to 3:00 p.m.

Harvard-Westlake School is excited to host its sixth annual Pollyanna Conference!  We hope you will join us in person as a participant. As always, the day promises to be exciting and informative.  We are excited to be back together on the middle school campus.   

Our theme for 2022 is “Teamwork is the Heartbeat: Building Communities of Inclusion Through Collaboration.” We are thrilled to announce that Nzinga Shaw will serve as our keynote speaker this year. Ms. Shaw is a seasoned Diversity, Equity, and Inclusion practitioner having served as the Chief Inclusion and Diversity Officer at a number of different blue chip organizations including the National Basketball Association’s Atlanta Hawks and Starbucks to name two. She will join us to further our them and to guide us in our focus on the ways that members of independent school communities can build teams and networks within their institutions that foster a robust, inclusive community. One of the great challenges to diversity, equity, and inclusion work is to develop buy-in and commitment that will last on a journey that is filled both triumph and challenge. We will dedicate our time during the conference to examine proven strategies and to customize them to fit the unique demands of your institution.

The mission of Pollyanna is to create a platform "where groups of people can explore together diversity, inclusion, and equity and share ideas, experiences and knowledge in order to become change agents in their immediate communities. The conference model is a dynamic, focused and interactive program that provides guidance and training for community leaders. The goal is to improve inclusion within communities and the understanding that racial, socioeconomic, religious and sexual diversity enhances all elements of the community."    

Pollyanna is structured a bit differently than other conferences. Each school will be represented as a School POD – with approximately 15 individuals who play a role in advancing the diversity discussion at your school. We ask that you send two members from each of the following constituent groups, if possible: head of school, administrators, alumni, diversity coordinators, faculty, parents, students (8th through 12th grade), and trustees. We will ask for a list of your POD members in early September 2022.


The morning will begin with brief opening remarks and a special keynote speaker. The balance of the morning will be dedicated to workshops broken down by constituent groups, each individually facilitated. After a break for lunch, there will be a dynamic student presentation. Each school will then reunite with its members for afternoon workshops, which will focus on discussions of next steps for each school. The day will end with a closing share-out session.


Harvard-Westlake Middle School, 700 North Faring Road, Los Angeles, 90077



The conference will accommodate the first 18 schools that register. The cost for each School POD to attend is $1,500 before June 30, 2022 and $1,800 after July 1, 2022. Please be in touch if the cost is prohibitive for your school. Once you have completed the short registration form and entered your credit card payment, we will be in touch with you regarding next steps.

For additional information, please email jjones@hw.com.