Seeking to be an optimist (because that just feels so much better) and after observing the efforts of my summertime colleagues, I began thinking about the upcoming school year and how it will be better than the past few we’ve experienced—no jinx.
Seeking virtue and excellence where I know I have found it in the past, I went searching for that life-affirming, creative élan vital that every school has the capacity to bring forth and offer to its community, and I found it here on our hallway walls.
Too often these days, we argue amongst ourselves in ways that are neither compelling nor valid, and we seem to think that being vociferous, righteous, and adamant—sans reasonable evidence—is a valid appeal to share our perspectives.
It was my impulse to follow this because I am a life-long prep school educator, an instructor of International Relations, and a citizen of the world with an eye on pragmatism but a heart for diplomacy and equity. Let’s keep an eye on our nation and our world and work to make it a safe, healthy, just place for us to live and thrive in.
Back in the day, I had a wonderful history teacher in high school, Miss Simmons, who had taught all four of my older siblings and was a venerable fixture at the school. She was my teacher for three years, from ninth to eleventh grade, and I think we studied European, World, and US history.
It’s now time to close that social distance so that we can re-engage our minds, to reconnect them with big ideas, creative ideas, collaborative ideas as we look to re-connect to the habits of mind that make us all successful learners. So, close that distance and reconnect.
All this time outside was certainly a boon to body and soul, but what about the mind? Our school seeks to serve the mind—to help students learn to use their minds well and to develop habits of mind and thinking routines. Observation, practice, and research come to agreement here on the positive impact of being in nature.
Our School motto “De mieux, en mieux,” like our rites of passage for our students, is cherished and meaningful. I am excited to see how my colleagues bring it to life once again this spring with a new round of innovations in service to our students and to the School motto and our valued traditions.
This spring may be a little different still--we’ll be adding masks to the athletic equipment list--but the sports equipment will be coming out again; it’s a much-anticipated restart with some increased opportunity and plenty of safety to go around.
A view across the current educational landscape reveals a shrinking student population heading into higher education as a result of two salient factors: 1) economics, and 2) population dynamics. Essentially, the forces at work here have to do with graphs heading in two different directions: increasing costs and decreasing students.
In my mind, I am already there; living in the future, that is. It is a better place than where we are now: less stress, better health, sharper minds, greater humanity, warm, sunny days with rain overnight. We can act on stage together, play recreational or competitive sports, and go to the theater or arena to imbibe some art or root for the home team.
When I see the cars arrive and form their daily parking lot parade, my blood starts flowing. And while my feet may get cold, or my hands start to freeze, my heart gets warmed each and every time I see the cars form their daily parking lot parade.
The A, B, C’s of the 2020-2021 school year are associated with some new but also some familiar terms. By necessity, we have been compelled to use a number of these words and phrases, but by design, we retain and hold on tightly to others.
To educate our students successfully about elections and voting in general and about the current election we are experiencing, Brimmer's faculty have researched, explored, and shared resources with each other and their students and reached beyond the classroom to provide students with opportunities to learn about and discuss a process that is essential to their democratic lives.
Living in the past is very appealing these days, as the past (pre-2020) seemed—was—so much better than the present. But fortunately for me, the past has dropped by for a visit several times since last Saturday. In each instance, it put a smile on my face (under my mask, of course) and a song in my heart.
The time we are living in now calls for a great deal of honesty—honesty with ourselves, honesty with each other, and honesty with our community and nation. We need to wrap our arms around this value and hold onto it tight in order to contend with what is in front of us.
As an inclusive private school community, Brimmer welcomes students who will increase the diversity of our school. We do not discriminate on the basis of race, religion, sex, gender, gender identity and expression, disability, sexual orientation, national origin, ancestry, or any other characteristic protected from discrimination under state or federal law, in the administration of our educational policies, admissions practices, financial aid decisions, and athletic and other school-administered programs.