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.


Tuesday, June 20, 2017

Summer of 2017 Construction Update

Our construction project is moving along well. Here's an update of recent and current work:

Concrete pour on the rear of Graham House has been completed with the exception of the second mezzanine level. Concrete pours on the second mezzanine level in both buildings are scheduled for late next week. Once all welding is complete, the temporary columns supporting the truss will be systematically removed, allowing for the balance of the concrete to be completed.

The elevator pit slab has been poured and wall work is now underway. Steel work is also underway with large steel deliveries containing the balance of the steel needed for buildings 18 and 20.

CMU shear wall block-work has extended up to the fifth floor level. Now that the sixth floor is also poured, block-work can continue working up to the top of the building. The sixth floor block-work is scheduled to begin this week.

The phased demolition and steel infill work has commenced on the third floor. The first half of the floor will be completed next week, allowing demolition to begin on the balance of the floor.

Steel installation continues with phased selective demo on the fourth floor of building 22, and the second mezzanine of building 20. Steel laydown areas have been created on multiple floors in preparation for hoisting. Elevator walls have rebar installed, and the concrete forms are being installed today.

Demo in the basement has begun. Photo above shows the Lower School Dining Room area.  

Steel prep work on the second floor mezzanine is nearing completion. Concrete pours for the seating in the new Performing Arts Center continue in sequence as scripted.

Tuesday, June 13, 2017

Language and Culture in Salamanca


Members of the Class of 2018 are in Salamanca, Spain, for a two-week Summer Study program--our 7th year. They are having a fantastic time!


The boys spend their mornings in immersion Spanish classes at Colegio Unamuno, tailored to their level of proficiency with the language. In the afternoons, they and their teachers tour various cultural and historical sites. The boys also have several opportunities to interact with Spanish peers in both formal academic and informal situations.


The Spain Summer Study piques boys' intellectual curiosity as they engage in the culture, history, and language of Spain. This enriching experience builds on the immersion Spanish program at Saint David's, where our boys learn the language and about the cultures of Spanish speaking nations throughout their years at our school.


The Class of 2017


Friday afternoon, Board Chair Dan Connolly '77 and I had the honor of conferring diplomas upon the 41 members of the Class of 2017. 

What an incredible class! These boys displayed enthusiastic intellectual curiosity throughout their time at Saint David's.

They were also highly accomplished in music and on the sports field, truly representative of the classical ideal of balance at the core of our school.

Over the years I have watched them grow academically, aesthetically, athletically and spiritually. I am certain that they will continue their life's journey curious without bias, and guided by moral virtues.

Class of 2017, you will be missed. Return often to your Alma mater!

Thursday, June 8, 2017

Pirates of Saint David's


Pirates invaded Saint David's yesterday. From Penzance.


Our fifth graders performed Gilbert and Sullivan's operetta with gusto and flair to an audience of delighted parents, myself included.  Congratulations on a job well done to cast members Michael K. (Major-General), Adison L. (Pirate King), Ryan S. (Frederic), Laurencio G. (Ruth), Teddy G. (Mabel), Milo C., (Samuel) and Davis C. (Police Sergeant); and to all of the maidens, pirates, police officers, and stage crew members.


Each year Saint David's School closes the school year with this wonderful tradition, The Fifth Grade Musical, where the boys indulge their inner thespian, and get to sing their hearts out.


Music and drama are integral to our embrace of balance and the aesthetic at Saint David's. It was on full display yesterday, thanks in large part to Director Phyllis Clark, Musical Director Jeffrey Moore, producers Mary Beth Coudal, Jamie MacNeille, and Shane Meals, and parent volunteers Isobel Case, Kathy Egan, Amy Rohrbaugh, and Christine Tomas. 

Monday, June 5, 2017

Using Coding to Explore Geomtery

Our third graders have been using coding to explore geometry. Over the past two weeks, the boys have worked in pairs building scripts that make Pro Bot cars draw a variety of shapes.

The boys used the design process to build and test code that includes commands to have cars drive a certain length, turn a certain number of degrees, and repeat those steps a certain number of times. They used sheets of paper and markers to make artifacts of their code, and rulers and protractors to measure sides and angles during their debugging process. What a challenging, fun project!

Spring Gathering Celebration


On Thursday, we enjoyed the annual Spring Gathering, an event that brings together our alumni and alumni parent community for a Chapel talk and backyard celebration. This year, three very special women in the life of this school played a big role in the evening.


Julie Sykes--alumni parent, former admissions director, and current trustee--delivered a Chapel talk that touched all of us, addressing what makes Saint David's School so special. As someone who has worn so many "Saint David's hats" she certainly knows this school!

Julie relayed that Saint David's had been the school of choice when it came time for her three sons to begin elementary school because it offered, "a strong moral and ethical foundation, a great education, and a happy elementary experience." She also spoke of the strong community spirit among families, faculty and staff, who help each other during rough times, and of how the mission's aspiration "that they be good men" is embraced and valued by all. As the first Director of Horizons at Saint David's, she noted the remarkable support for that initiative among our alumni/alumni parent community.


After the Chapel, I had the great honor of recognizing two alumni parents, Linda Foran and Dorothy Faux, who served as co-chairs of the Alumni Parents Council with grace and distinction for ten years. Dorothy and Linda led the charge in attracting incredible speakers for our Alumni Parent Lecture Series, and in organizing outstanding cultural outings for our alumni/alumni parent community.

Julie, Dorothy, Linda, their fellow alumni parents and all of the alumni, including members of reunion classes 1977, 1997, and 2007 who joined us in celebration Thursday night, are reminders of the strong, committed, cohesive community that Saint David's is.