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Dr. deChabert's biography

Over the past nineteen years, Dr. Meredith J. deChabert has served in several leadership capacities at Rye Country Day School in Rye, NY, including time as the school’s first Director of Diversity, as Middle School Principal, as Upper School Principal, and currently as the Assistant Head of School for Academics and Institutional Research. Throughout those nineteen years, she sustained a commitment to the classroom, continuing to teach at least one section of English Language Arts.

She has had a significant impact on a variety of areas of school life, including the PreK-12 academic program, administration and operations, faculty and staff professional development and support, student support services, marketing and communications, strategic planning, and Rye Country Day School’s signature programs: Diversity, Equity and Inclusion; Public Purpose; Sustainability; Global Studies; STEAM; and Academic Technology.

Education is and always has been Meredith’s greatest passion in life; she fell in love with school the minute she stepped into the classroom as a Kindergartener, and she has been in schools ever since! Meredith is committed to models of education that champion the fact that joy, diversity, equity, inclusion, belonging, social justice, social and emotional learning, and academic excellence are inextricably intertwined. She has helped to strengthen Rye Country Day School’s mission-level commitment to diversity, equity, inclusion, justice and belonging both through her formal role as Director of Diversity and in all of the leadership roles that she has held since. She worked with the Board and administration to establish and monitor strategic goals for diversity, equity, and inclusion; spearheaded a comprehensive review of Rye Country Day School’s financial aid program to improve holistic support for families and students; and designed and ran numerous programs to increase engagement and inclusion for students, faculty and staff, parents and guardians, and alumni.

Meredith oversees Rye Country Day School’s academic program through leadership of the Curriculum Council, supporting the division principals, and leveraging quantitative and qualitative data to measure and assess mission alignment. She co-chaired the Portrait of a Graduate development committee, co-chaired the Diversity and Inclusion Task Force in 2018 and co-authored the comprehensive Diversity, Equity and Inclusion Plan of 2020, instituted the Public Purpose program, and served as a key member of the RCDS@home Leadership Team in 2020 and the reopening steering committees of 2020 and 2021. Most recently, she successfully led Rye Country Day School through its decennial accreditation process, which required bringing together the voices of students, employees, parents and guardians, trustees, and alumni in one comprehensive assessment, the self-study, that analyzes every aspect of the school’s functioning from mission and culture to teaching and learning, governance, financial sustainability, operations, and student life and community. 

Over the years, Meredith also has been instrumental in the identification of multicultural curriculum resources and the coordination of professional development opportunities for faculty and staff specifically in the area of diversity, equity, inclusion, justice and belonging. She is a critical player in the inclusive hiring, recruitment, and retention of faculty and staff, and her leadership has also extended to the development of newer educators through her standardization of the Teaching Fellows Program.

Some of Meredith’s accomplishments in the area of the student experience include leading collaborative processes to design and adopt division schedules that center students, developing a Middle School service-learning program, adopting a Child Study Team process in partnership with the Student Support Services department, and redesigning student mentoring programs. She also spearheaded Rye Country Day School’s balance and wellness initiative, which included specific attention to the demands and stressors on students vis-a-vis homework and assessments, outside of school commitments, and extracurricular activities, and she supported skill-building in practices like mindfulness for students, employees, and families. 

Meredith’s notable contributions also extend to professional service beyond Rye Country Day School. She has served on many accreditation visiting committees in New York and New Jersey and on the boards of non-profit organizations dedicated to educational access and opportunity; she founded the Fairchester Diversity Practitioners Network and organized the first New York State Association for Independent Schools workshop for diversity professionals; she has presented at National Association of Independent School’s People of Color Conference and others; and she has attended myriad professional programs that feed her passion for learning, which she readily shares with others.

On a personal level, Meredith is intellectually curious, a lifelong learner with diverse interests, an avid reader, and an animal and nature lover who finds peace on small, local farms and the beach (inspired by her St. Croix roots). She can also be found hosting popular Friday gatherings for colleagues—including food, music, and dancing—in her backyard every May to strengthen community; being in community with others, especially in schools, is vital to her.

Meredith holds a Ph.D. in Education, Culture, and Society from the University of Pennsylvania and a B.A. in Anthropology from Columbia University.

The Board of Trustees of the Gordon School has selected Dr. Meredith J. deChabert to be Gordon’s next Head of School.

The news was announced Monday, May 20th 2024 with a pair of letters, one from Board Chair Damian Ewens '90 and one from Meredith.

Read Damian’s letter to the community here

Read Meredith’s letter to the community here