Dear Flint Hill School Families,
We have officially entered the time of year when beginnings and endings come into sharp focus. Tonight, we will host our New Parent Information Night, a significant milestone for new Flint Hill families. This event allows families the opportunity to meet people, learn who to turn to if they have any questions, and begin to share in the excitement of joining our great school. One concept I talk about frequently, during the admission process to prospective families, is the “four Ps: People, Place, Passion and Purpose. All four are critical at Flint Hill and goes to the heart of who we are as a school. Those factors help to identify the “why” that makes our School experience so personal and meaningful. Tonight, they will meet new people, learn more about our passion and purpose, and begin to understand how to connect with this place.
An interesting mix of both beginnings and endings occurred last weekend. Each year, Reunion Weekend marks a return to School for our alumni and the chance to renew those relationships they once held so dear. This year, we organized significant individual activities for our 10-year graduates (Class of 2008) and our 50-year graduates (Class of 1968). The events were carefully coordinated by Director of Alumni Relations Maria Taylor and Alumni Relations Coordinator Bryan Stabbe, with support from the entire Advancement Office. A large number of members, from the Class of 2008, came back to meet with their classmates and faculty. And one of the highlights of the event was opening their Time Capsule, which was put away when they were Seniors. In fact, part of the fun is that no one remembers at all what was put into those envelopes or into the Time Capsule trunk. And as it happens every year, some students return for that exciting moment only to discover they had not put in an envelope for the Time Capsule. As one young alumnus reflected, “I guess I thought I was too cool to do an envelope…” Still, they are able to enjoy all of the artifacts from their graduation year that are housed in the capsule. Alumni always enjoy seeing that snapshot of their younger selves, and we always enjoy hearing about all of the things they have accomplished since their time at Flint Hill.
It was especially exciting to spend time with the graduates, of the Class of 1968. Fifty years is a long time, and 1968 was a powerful moment in American history. The focus for that Class over the weekend was to reflect, laugh, reminisce and just plain enjoy remembering their time at Flint Hill Prep. They all toured the Miller House they knew and loved. They wandered from room to room, pointing out where they had classes and where the headmaster’s office had been. They toured the Hazel Academic Building on the Lower and Middle School Campus and the Upper School building, all while thinking about what school must be like for the students who attend Flint Hill today. They also shared great stories about their time at School. Would you be surprised to know that at one point an angry headmaster expelled the entire class during their Senior year? Ultimately, it all worked out, but the Class enjoyed reliving those exciting days and memories of their rebellious youth.
On and on, our alums talked about the people who had made their experiences so meaningful. Whether it was classmates or an endless list of teachers who mentored them, they all made a real difference in their lives. Their purpose was the same as it is today: to get an excellent education, to be prepared, to be poised and to be confident and ready to take on whatever life would bring. Their success in life showed that the School prepared them well, even 50 years ago!
As part of a special reception, we renamed a room in the Miller House. The room that we have always referred to as the Parlor will now be referred to as the Falcon Room. The walls have been decorated with memorabilia from the Falcon years (the early part of our history), and the items reflect the tremendous foundation that our Falcons gave us. And while we now charge forward as Huskies, we will always value and admire our early history. Great schools are exciting, because each generation lays another layer on the foundation. And at Flint Hill, we keep getting stronger and stronger. That was clear throughout Reunion Weekend with all the activities and the people, who came back from the various classes, to take part in the luncheons, receptions, several classes, and even a robotics demonstration. There was a single common thread — everyone loved Flint Hill.
And so tonight, as we begin to welcome the next generation of Husky families coming into the fold, all of us need to do all we can to make sure that we continue to make this school experience personal and meaningful. Friday will give us the chance to welcome our grandparents and special friends to the School, and on Sunday, we will celebrate Mother’s Day! These are both opportunities to honor those very special people in our lives, who support us and our children.
Best wishes to you! I wish everyone a very exciting weekend ahead!
John M. Thomas