Welcome to the Headmaster's Blog where you'll find updates, thoughts, and events regarding Saint David's School, the education of boys, and other items of interest. This is by no means meant to be a complete account of all that happens at Saint David's. Please refer to the school's website for more complete details -- it's more a Headmaster's musings.


Monday, June 20, 2016

Exploring a World of Enzymes


Last week, Saint David's offered a summer program for rising sixth and seventh graders conducted through the school's ongoing collaboration with the DNA Learning Center of Cold Spring Harbor Laboratory, the world's first science center devoted to genetics education. 

Participants entered the World of Enzymes, where they built molecular models; observed enzymatic reactions that are used for food production and healthcare; used enzymes to cut and splice DNA; analyzed DNA with gel electrophoresis; and prepared a personal DNA fingerprint. Quite a week!

On Friday, the boys shared their findings with parents and family members. It is clear that they learned a lot, including how to properly use sophisticated laboratory equipment for their experiments, and were able to put their natural curiosity to work in the DNA field. 

The World of Enzymes is one of two week-long summer academic camps offered by Saint David's. The other, Secrets of the Civil War, begins this week.  It is provided through our partnership with The Gilder Lehrman Institute of American History.


Friday, June 17, 2016

Construction Update

The demolition of Graham House is fully underway with interior demolition of buildings 18 and 20 taking precedence.

This week the arches in the Hume Library are being carefully removed and reinstalled in the small gym, which will become a swing classroom and meeting space.



Hume Library North and South will be Eighth Grade homerooms for the next two years.  At the end of the project, Hume South will be a reference library (one of three libraries that the school will ultimately house), and North will be part of a new suite of First Grade classrooms that will run the length of 89th Street, all with the high ceilings and beautiful light the northern exposures of the Delano and Aldrich townhouses are known for.

This photo depicts the construction work being done to transform the sixth floor into a middle school regulation size gymnasium.

The last shot is of the sixth floor of the Graham House Wing with a new metal floor.  This will ultimately be a 7th grade classroom suite with a commons.

It is very exciting to see the work on this transformative project moving along and the plans starting to take shape!







Monday, June 13, 2016

Spain Summer Study Tour

A cohort of our rising eighth graders and a group of their teachers arrived in Salamanca, Spain, yesterday for the Spain Summer Study Tour.

Their arrival coincided with the Feast of the city's patron saint, San Juan de Sagahun, so the boys enjoyed a dramatic fireworks display last night.

For the next two weeks they will spend their mornings immersed in customized Spanish language classes at Colegio Unamuno, and their afternoons and evenings engaging in a variety of cultural experiences.

Today, they are enjoying a tour of the city, a visit to the bullfighting ring, and a tour of the bullfighting museum before a welcome dinner out at a restaurant.

This rich educational and cultural experience is available through Saint David's partnership with the University of Salamanca, the provincial government, and the local schools, which created a program that is customized for our boys.

It is a powerful way for the boys to augment and deepen what they have learned in their Spanish immersion classes at Saint David's over several years.

Tuesday, June 7, 2016

37 New Alumni

These 37 incredible boys are our newest cohort of alumni.

I and their teachers congratulate and wish them a relaxing, well-deserved summer and all our best wishes as they set off in September to secondary schools near and far.

As I mentioned in my Commencement Remarks on Friday, I have seen them grow from their Pre-K days, developing into well mannered, confident young men who are ready for their next step. Like the David of our school's name, I am confident that they will step forward and lead with conviction and character whenever called upon. 

Return to Saint David's often, boys! Exciting things are happening at your alma mater, and you will always have a home here.


Friday, June 3, 2016

A Monumental Groundbreaking Moment

Thursday was a monumental day in the history of Saint David's School as we celebrated the groundbreaking for the school's consolidation, renovation, and expansion project in the lobby of Graham House. 

In his opening remarks, our Board President Dan Connolly '77 observed that the purchase of that building by Saint David's in 1972 was an "act of extraordinary courage and wisdom and vision that set us on a course 44 years long to this very moment...we stand on the precipice of the future of Saint David's, a wonderful moment."

Then came the big moment:  Our four student council officers broke through the wall that separates Graham House from the current school, repeating the action taken by our student council officers way back in 1953, when Saint David's School first expanded from 12 E 89th to the building immediately to its east.

We now officially begin this project, which will maximize the potential of our program in alignment with our mission, fulfilling a dream of our Founders.

Saint David's has been fortunate to have been served extremely well by bold leaders, stewards, professionals and benefactors in her past,  and her stewards, leaders, benefactors and professionals today are no exception.  Their remarkable vision, hard work, and dedication to the mission of this great school is an inspiration to us all.

The Founders would be proud.


Wednesday, June 1, 2016

OLIVER!

This morning our fifth graders continued a great year-end tradition at Saint David's, The Fifth Grade Musical.

The boys performed Oliver! and they were fantastic, providing impressive performances and demonstrating great vocal ability.


They have been mastering the dialogue and musical numbers for weeks, and clearly gave it their all.

Congratulations to the cast on a job well done, and to their Producers/Teachers James Hubbard and Jamie MacNeille, Director Phyllis Clark, Musical Conductor Jeff Moore, and the Parent Committee of Cynthia Chapman, Susan Kissane, Tara Neumann, Joyce Restituto, and Ann Roberts.

Musical theater is alive and well at Saint David's!