Hockaday. Photo by Danny Fulgencio.

The head of The Hockaday School will step down at the end of the school year.

Karen Warren Coleman, who spent five years at the all-girls school, announced her decision to the board of trustees before sending a message to the campus community.

“I am incredibly proud of all we have accomplished together on behalf of our students, and though it is not an easy decision to leave, I know that our extraordinary faculty and staff and the strength of this community will ensure that Hockaday continues to soar,” wrote Coleman, who will leave the school at the end of June.

Coleman wrote that it has been difficult for her and her husband, Andy, to be separated from their parents over the course of the pandemic.

She also wrote that the pandemic has led her to think about her personal and professional goals, and that now “feels like the right time to explore how I might have a different kind of impact” in education.

In the letter, Coleman described some of the ways Hockaday has worked to increase inclusivity and diversity. Over the past five years, the percentage of self-identified students of color has increased by 39%, and the diversity of the board members has grown to over 40%, according to the letter.

Coleman also referenced the school’s decision to allow more flexibility in graduation attire.

Nicole Small, the chair of the Hockaday Board of Trustees, also sent a letter to the school community. In it, she thanked Coleman and praised her work developing and implementing The Hockaday Difference, the school’s strategic plan shaping advances in academics, diversity, equity and inclusion, and financial sustainability.

The school announced last year that it would begin to phase out its boarding program, which had been seeing low enrollment.

“These efforts have benefited all the students who have been at Hockaday during this historic period, and they will continue to enhance an unparalleled Hockaday education and experience for generations to come,” Small wrote in the letter.

Plans regarding the interim and long-term leadership of the school will be communicated to the Hockaday community soon, Small wrote.



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