Last evening, over 40 middle school and lower school parents joined us for a tour of the nearly completed Barn and an overview of how these new teaching spaces will impact student engagement and learning across disciplines. After the tour, they returned to the schoolhouse for a faculty/parent panel question and answer session on the topic of middle school excellence. In case you missed it, here is a recording of the forum, with opening remarks by Middle School Head Liz Gray.
Head of School
Schools are reeling after the shooting at Marjory Stoneman Douglas High School in Florida this week. We are left with a terrible feeling of vulnerability when schools—the institutions that celebrate innocence, demand safety, preserve childhood, and generate the leaders of the future—are sites of such tragic violence. Every school is reflecting on its own policies and procedures to ensure that we are doing everything we can to keep our students safe.
I Don’t Know If You’ve Read This Yet, But…
In the life of a school—once the tear for another summer gone by has been shed—September is about restoring routine both in the classroom and at home. We rediscover old friends and make new ones, and the familiar context of school highlights the growth that has taken place since June. For teachers, administrators, and parents, there is an additional trend to September that seems impossible to ignore—currently trending articles on what students need.
The Case for Cultural Competency
Today, Belmont Day is as diverse a community as it has ever been in its proud history. The Annette Raphel Scholarship for Leadership and Diversity, a merit scholarship for Boston-area students from African-American, black, Latino, or Hispanic descent, is in its first year. Our student community is comprised of 35% students of color. We have families hailing from 27 towns including towns as far afield as Andover, Framingham, Maynard, Bedford, Woburn, and Weston.
Innovation in the Most Surprising of Places
“It is always quietly thrilling to look at a world you know well but have never seen from such an angle before.” - Bill Bryson
I can barely believe that this is the last official Scoop article of the year. Fresh off the fields from Field Day, I feel as though I have simultaneously only just begun and been here for decades. This has been an extraordinary year full of growth, learning, excellence, and joy, and I am so grateful to have been along for this incredible ride.
It’s a big job, I was told, being a Head of School. “Lot of responsibility,” they said. “Are you ready?” “No doubt,” I replied. “Ready as I’ll ever be.” “24/7/365,” they said. That’s when I corrected them. “More like 364,” I advised.
Today, I got to hang up the tie, kick back, and watch Emmett Plante, Head for the day, take the reins. Now, there are those of you out there reading this thinking, ‘well, isn’t that a bit cavalier?’ I mean, what kind of credentials does Emmett bring to the job?
My first corporation meeting.
Like the horses that will run the Preakness Stakes this weekend, Belmont Day is also rounding the turn and headed down the home stretch. Every year, May is full of closure activities for each class, each student, and of course, the community as a whole.
It is as sure a sign of summer’s imminent arrival as flowers blossoming and later sunsets: the assignment of summer reading.
Since I started teaching, I have come to love summer reading. It offers a delightful reminder to escape into another world, an opportunity to learn something new, or simply a chance to hear a story you’ve heard before told with a new twist. Summer reading also serves as an early reminder of what comes next—a new grade, a new opportunity, a new understanding.