From the Head of School: A Celebration of Cerebration
You almost never hear or read the word “cerebration.” Yet it is so apt a word for us at Blake. The Oxford English Dictionary defines it as brain-action, from the Latin cerebrum or brain. To cerebrate is to use the power of reason or to think. I hope that as a new school year begins, the 111th year of Blake’s work with children, I am welcoming you back from a summer filled with many forms of cerebration. We have much of the same planned for the year ahead.
This parent newsletter is now, for the first time, being sent out as a true electronic newsletter. I hope that you’ll let us know if this means of communication works well for you or if you have suggestions that would help us communicate more effectively with you. Please feel encouraged to contact Cathy McLane firstname.lastname@example.org or me. (For those of you who wish to read this in traditional hardcopy form, please note you can print out those articles you desire to read at a later date.)
We begin the new school year at Blake welcoming to our community Anne Graybeal, Blake’s Upper School Director, another dozen other new faculty and staff who were introduced to you recently via divisional communication, and 175 very talented and exciting new students who, along with their families, bring an infusion of new energy and perspective into our community.
Over the summer new windows were installed in the Lower School classrooms on the Blake campus, the tennis courts and gym floors at Blake and Northrop were resurfaced, and many other physical plant repairs and replacements took place. We painted, repaired and in other ways prepared for the start of a new school year. Faculty pursued professional development projects, curriculum work was undertaken, Blake trips involving students and faculty and staff took place to Japan, Kenya and elsewhere. We ordered new MacBooks for all Upper School students and have begun to implement this exciting 1:1 program in this division. We completed Blake’s comprehensive Self-Study that is a part of our periodic reaccreditation. This effort will feed into the next iteration of a strategic plan, which, I expect, will be approved by Blake’s Board of Trustees this winter or spring.
Even though your summer was probably as busy as ours, I hope that everyone associated with Blake made time for lots and lots of reading. Summer is the perfect time for hours of uninterrupted time devoted to reading for pleasure.
We open the year with a very healthy enrollment, with sound finances despite a continuing uncertainty in the economic forecasts, with ambitious plans for the year ahead and with a yearning for the return of the students we teach to campus. I hear of a similar yearning from both the students and parents I’ve seen out and about over the last few weeks.
Late August signals the new year for teachers and all are ready and eager to welcome our students and their parents as we begin a new year of great cerebration.