Leadership Blog

Up to Cardigan Again

Post date October 15th, 2021
Our seventh grade students and faculty are less than a week away from their trip to Cardigan Mountain in the White Mountain National Forest. Hiking Cardigan is a beloved annual BDS tradition that began with the creation of our middle school. We’ve missed only one year since then: 2020. After that year without them, the preparations, planning, and anticipation by students, families, and teachers have never felt sweeter. Finding our way back to the milestones and traditions that were put on hold for health and safety reasons over the last year and a half has been an ongoing journey that...read more

Why I Give

Post date October 8th, 2021
Traditionally, I have saved a column like this for a day closer to National Giving Day in November. The seasonal timing was always nice and after a solid two months into the school year, the rationale for why a parent would give to Belmont Day had crystallized. By November, students have found their footing in the classroom, and they feel seen, known, understood, and cared for by their teachers. Connections to other parents have been solidified at socials or by attending assemblies. The hope is that by November, every student and parent feels we are delivering on the promise we make each year...read more

Any Given Wednesday

Post date October 1st, 2021
There is a small collection of BDS families, students, and some faculty who have been waiting for this column for some time now. You know who you are, (and you are welcome in advance). I fear the reign of our dominant Boston and New England area professional sports team is on the decline. The Red Sox, after a season in which they, at first, surpassed expectations are now stumbling to the end of the season. The Patriots will welcome prodigal son, Tom Brady, and his Super Bowl-champion Tampa Bay teammates to town this weekend for a matchup that I fear may leave the local football team looking...read more

Supporting the Whole Child

Post date September 24th, 2021
Two-plus weeks in and the life of the school has joyfully settled into its familiar rhythm. Parent socials are coming soon. Curriculum nights have celebrated the year ahead and the excellence of the faculty and the program. Interscholastic games have begun for our middle schoolers and field labs are about to begin for all of our students. For too many reasons to count, it feels great to hit an early stride in the school year. For all of that encouraging news, we realize, of course, that challenges remain, sometimes a bit less visible than a Wednesday assurance test or indoor masks might be...read more

Here’s To A Quieter Year Filled With Sounds of Joy, Learning, and Discovery

Post date September 17th, 2021
This past summer felt luxurious. I had time to walk, read, spend time with friends, feel safe, and spend two weeks away from campus. I also spent a lot of time reflecting on what I had learned and rebuilding the stamina to start this fall. After 18 months of nonstop planning, tension, anxiety, and heavy lifting it was amazing to feel like I could breathe again, the long sustaining breathing that guides the body out of constant movement and reaction, into pausing and thinking. It was the opportunity to dwell on a challenge put forth by Elena Aguilar in her May Educational Leadership article...read more

After the marathon… Ready for another run!

Post date September 9th, 2021
Welcome back, Belmont Day. We missed you! As we get the year started, I find myself thinking back to a bit of a personal milestone from what seems like a decade ago. It was, in fact, not two years ago in October of 2019, when my wife and I ran the Cape Cod Marathon. It was my first–and only–marathon, and I was grateful for the support from this community in the form of training and nutritional tips from parents to enthusiastic cheering from students and colleagues. We trained well, which is to say that we dutifully and diligently followed the training regimen we were given and we happened to...read more

To Everyone In the BDS Village, Thank You

Post date June 10th, 2021
Here it is—my last Scoop message of the year. As I consider all that has transpired over these last fifteen months, I am overwhelmed with immense gratitude for this entire community and all it has taken to get us to the close of this school year. There are many idioms one might choose to describe the power of our mighty community, but around here, the notion that it takes a village to raise a child is one that our school has long embraced. In this case, of course, it is not one child but 311. The village—large, far-reaching, and full of caring, loving villagers—has been on overdrive to guide...read more

A Stack of Summer Reading Awaits

Post date June 4th, 2021
Carrying on a post-Memorial Day weekend tradition, you will find the start of my summer reading in this issue of the Scoop. As many of you may recall, I set a goal of reading 13 books in 13 weeks—a book-a-week from Memorial Day weekend and through Labor Day. I am still striving to hit my goal—perhaps 2021 will be the year! For those of us who stayed local, this past rainy and chilly weekend provided the opportunity to read; perhaps you were able to get started on some of your own summer reading. Before I share my list, though, I will take a moment to honor Eric Carle, a Massachusetts native,...read more

A View From My Window

Post date May 28th, 2021
For those new to BDS this year, the location of my office has changed. For my first four years here, I occupied the office at the end of the administrative hallway in the Schoolhouse, where Ms. Parfit, our director of admissions, now resides. The path there is marked by blue handprints, emblems of a tradition that honors the arrival of each new student to the school. Each one dips their hand in blue paint and adds a handprint to the mural that is equal part art and community statement. In September, we will have a backlog to attend to as two groups of students add their prints to the wall—...read more

Empowering Meaningful Contribution

Post date May 21st, 2021
Each time I consider the school’s mission statement and its third critical phrase—“empowering meaningful contribution with our six core values”—I immediately think of Community Service Day. Today was dedicated to serving others under the watchful eye and thoughtful organization of Koreen McQuilton and a team of faculty. While the activities were varied—making blankets, dog toys, paracord bracelets, and greeting cards; gardening and farm work to help address food insecurity; trail maintenance and cleanup; plant kit fundraisers; and furniture painting—their purpose was singular. They were all...read more

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