News Archives

Head's January Message

January 23, 2020

­­Every other year, our board of trustees hosts a special forum and invites all parents and guardians to come out to share their thoughts and dreams about how Burroughs can become a better school. At 7 pm on Wednesday, February 5, we will hold the forum. I hope that everyone will attend and bring their ideas.

Throughout their time at Burroughs, students repeatedly hear from me, and from their teachers, about the importance of a growth mindset: the research-based understanding that intelligence, athletic ability, and any other skill is not fixed, but can be developed. We hold to these ideas as a school, and I hold to them as a head. I believe Burroughs is a strong school because we share the characteristics of our strong students — we have always been open to new ideas and have pushed for continual improvement.

Four years ago, we reached out to parents about the future of STEM at Burroughs, and parents shared their thoughts. Those ideas were implemented during the planning of the STAR building, which has now become an incredible fixture on campus. Two years ago, we asked parents to think about the newly designed five-year strategic plan; those thoughts guided the board's thinking as they imagined the future of tuition aid and financial sustainability at the school, as well as future building, hiring and programming.

While the STAR building and other physical manifestations of change at Burroughs are obvious, what’s harder to see is how, over the last decade, we have developed an enormous number of initiatives and improvements. Most of those have been informed by the forums.

Here is just a sampling:

  • In the world of curriculum and activities, we've added four seminars from 7th through 10th grade around leadership, cultural competency, and student health; redesigned the math-tracking system; introduced new courses in computer science, songwriting and global feminism; organized new trips to Washington, D.C. and to Qatar; and formed a robust 7th- and 8th-grade interscholastic sports program.
  • In the world of student support, we've increased capacity in academic support, college counseling, personal wellness, diversity and inclusivity, and service learning; established new affinity groups; and added a new learning management system.
  • And in the world of parent programming, we've grown the Family Network and the Community & Equity Partnership to provide more and better programs for our families. We also moved more of our parent social events to campus so that everyone can afford to come, and everyone feels comfortable attending.

I am so grateful to parents and guardians for the hours devoted to driving our students, helping them with homework, volunteering for our events, thanking and supporting our teachers, and giving to the annual fund. Now, I ask that you add to that list by giving your thoughts and opinions on the 5th.