Dear Flint Hill School Families
It is hard to believe that we are now on the cusp of moving into February. I feel like time is just racing by us, and we are hitting all of the school year’s key milestones in rapid succession. In fact, tomorrow’s Founder’s Day will mark a major one for our students and faculty alike. This special day was started many years ago as a way to celebrate the people who bring their passions and a sense of purpose to our wonderful school. It is a day devoted to reminding all of us that while Flint Hill has a great program and wonderful facilities, at the end of the day, it all comes down to the people we engage with every day.
The ceremony always begins with the ringing of our school bell four times, symbolizing our core values of honesty, respect, responsibility and compassion. Our Seniors, led by our Lifers, will walk in hand-in-hand with our Lower School students. The ceremony takes place in the gym on the Lower/Middle School Campus. Our Upper School students sit on one side and our Middle School students sit on the other side, while our Seniors and Lower School students sit right on center court. As the ceremony gets underway, we start the program with a brief memorial service for any graduate, former faculty or staff member who passed away over the past year. We read their names out loud, and the school bell tolls in memory of those wonderful individuals who at some point in the past brought life to Flint Hill.
The program then moves into the present and focuses on recognizing some of the many contributions, achievements, and accomplishments we experience on a regular basis, including students’ achievements and faculty and staff anniversaries. Here is a link to the faculty and staff I will ask to stand to celebrate milestone anniversaries this year. We will recognize those who are celebrating their 5, 10, 15, 20 and even 25 years of service to Flint Hill. For faculty and staff members who reach their 20th anniversaries, their portrait is hung on a “Wall of Honor” on both campuses. This year, Fourth Grade teacher Rob Taylor marks his 20th year of service to our great school. He is a remarkable gentleman, and we will share a bit of his story at the ceremony.
Founder’s Day always closes with the awarding of the Driving Spirit Awards. The recipients received nominations from students, parents, their colleagues and alumni. They are people who have truly made a difference and have carried the “Driving Spirit” into all that they do here at school, through the various roles that each may have played as part of their responsibilities. It is always a bit like the Academy Awards, because we attempt to talk about each recipient without revealing their identities until the very end. The Driving Spirit Committee always struggles with the selections as there are so many possible candidates among our remarkable faculty and staff.
It should be an exciting and celebratory moment for our entire School family, especially as we close the program by once again recognizing our Senior Class, the Class of 2018! They have done a tremendous job in guiding us through the school year, and their leadership has set a strong foundation for the year. They will be long remembered.
Enjoy the week and all the changing weather. Please keep watching your school calendar as we have lots of major events still. If we can be helpful in any way, please don’t hesitate to call on us.
John M. Thomas