Tamarah Stanley: Yorktown’s New DEI Coordinator

Tamarah Stanley: Yorktowns New DEI Coordinator

In 2022, Tamarah Stanley replaced recently retired Shari Benites as our school’s Diversity, Equity and Inclusion (DEI) Coordinator. A career educator, Stanley is no stranger to the effort it takes to support students. 

“I started my career in education 18 years ago as a high school math teacher. I did that for several years, then moved into school counseling and did that for 11 years. In my most recent role as a school counselor, I did equity and cultural response work. Now, DEI is my entire focus,” Stanley said. 

Though the new role will be a shift for her, Stanley’s connection to DEI advocacy runs deep.

“As a first-generation college student, I remember what it was like for me to be a high school student [having] to navigate that college application and scholarship process without having the knowledge or resources at home to aid in that process,” Stanley said.

Stanley’s passion for promoting student achievement creates her motivation to work with students to find their best path after high school. 

“My why is making sure that students are able to access information and understand how to apply the information that we are giving them to pursue whatever their post-secondary education plans may be,” Stanley said.

Even before applying to college, Stanley remembers feeling isolated in a community whose demographic makeup didn’t reflect her own background. However, she was able to create opportunities for herself by focusing on her unique strengths and experiences, a practice she now hopes to bring to our school.

“Everyone has their own journey. Everyone has their own story, and so, what I like about this role is that it gives me an opportunity to really sit down with students one-on-one and learn of their history, and where they would like to go,” Stanley said.

Stanley cultivates the unique perspectives and personalities of all her students—emphasizing that DEI encompasses everyone regardless of ethnic, cultural or experiential background. 

“We are talking about diversity; we are talking about representation from all cultures. Voices from all cultures….  Beyond race or ethnicity, there are still ways that everyone can contribute to the work of DEI,” Stanley said.

Stanley values the diversity seen at Yorktown and strives to make sure that everyone feels comfortable at school. Her role at Yorktown as DEI coordinator has now expanded to teaching our school’s staff about cultural responsiveness. 

“Beyond just race and ethnicity, also considering things like different learning abilities, language: things of that sort. I help to make sure that we are providing the necessary support for students, no matter their background or ability, to be successful,” Stanley said. 

Stanley’s goals extend beyond teaching DEI; she also hopes to create a community and establish connections with the students at our school.

“I think that I will be here for a while, so I’m excited about getting to know the students, teachers and families. In this year in particular, just seeing how I can make a difference,” Stanley said. 

As she integrates into our school’s community, Stanley has and will prove to be an indispensable ally and accessible resource for the student body and our needs.

“My door is always open. I want to get to know everyone, so feel free to stop by room 223 anytime,” Stanley said. 

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About the Contributors
Ajay Allman
Ajay Allman, Opinion Editor
Junior Ajay Allman is The Yorktown Sentry's Opinion Editor and is in his second year on staff. He's excited to lead the opinion section and help share the perspectives of Yorktown. In addition to his love for journalism, he is interested in neuroscience and is the president of the YHS Neuroscience Club. Outside of school, he loves to listen to music and expand his taste in tunes!
Miles Mann
Miles Mann, Head Editor
Miles Mann is a senior heading into his third year with The Sentry and first as Head Editor. When not in the classroom, Miles can be found doing homework, lifting or napping. Music is something he can’t live without, but he’s not picky about genres. Miles is beyond excited for another great year on staff!

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