Renowned educator, speaker, and New York Times best-selling author Jessica Lahey will speak at the Academy on Thursday, December 10 at 7:00 p.m. in the Stuart Black Box Theater at the Charles Hosmer Morse Center for the Arts. Lahey writes the bi-weekly column "The Parent-Teacher Conference" for the New York Times, is a contributing writer for The Atlantic, and a commentator on Vermont Public Radio. Her new book is The Gift of Failure: How the Best Parents Learn to Let Go So Their Children Can Succeed, released in August 2015.
This past week, I had the opportunity to celebrate my mom's 80th birthday. Fortunately, the conference I was attending was close enough for me to take her out to dinner with my dad and niece, Casey. Throughout the dinner and my visit, I was reminded of many things we take for granted. For example, my mom and dad reminded me that when they were growing up, the only way they got ice cream was to make it; there were no refrigerators. They also reminded me of the good times we shared in Bellows Falls and Wolfeboro, times with family and friends, some of whom are no longer with us. As a gift for her birthday, all of my family—kids, grandkids, and great grandkids—made a scrapbook, each one filling a page with memories and expressions of love and gratitude. It is in that spirit that I offer ten things for which I am thankful.
Three St. Johnsbury Academy faculty were selected to take part in Arts Connect at Catamount Arts, a juried members show featuring work by 75 artists from across New England. A photograph by Art Department Chair Rosie Prevost and prints by teachers Kim and Bill Darling will be displayed at Catamount from November 21 to January 17.
St. Johnsbury Academy's Faculty Speaker Series continues on Monday, November 23 at 7:00 p.m. at the library in the Mayo Center. The series, created by Assistant Headmaster for Academics Jeffrey Burroughs, is designed to showcase the extraordinary talents, interests, and expertise of the St. Johnsbury Academy faculty and staff. This week the series will feature Academy Headmaster Tom Lovett. He will discuss Pope Francis' background and how it has influenced his leadership of the Catholic Church.
On Thursday night, we held a Community Forum to discuss the impacts of Act 46 on the Academy. Act 46, passed by the legislature at the end of the last session, seeks to control education spending in Vermont by encouraging consolidation of smaller districts to form larger districts of 900 students or more and by setting allowable spending increases for districts. It has caused some consternation and confusion around the state as districts seek to find suitable mergers and keep their spending increases within the prescribed limits. The purpose of the forum was three-fold: to clear up any confusion about how Act 46 would affect the Academy, to give some insight as to how we set our budget and our tuition, and to assure our local districts and communities that we remain committed to being good, thoughtful, and responsible partners.