October 26, 2016

Dear Flint Hill School Families,

A special thank you to everyone who helped make this past weekend’s Homecoming such a huge success. It was exciting to see so many people on campus to cheer on our great Huskies and to join us as a school family throughout Friday evening and all day Saturday. Special thanks to event Co-chairs Mica Howard and Shaun Marzett, as well as Volunteer Coordinator Sibel Unsal and Concessions Chair Katrina Tiedge.

We are a nimble group for sure. On Friday, we dealt with rain and then the wind whipping up the bonfire at various moments. And on Saturday, the wind was blowing forcefully for most of the day. All of this made for an unforgettable event! One of the greatest qualities of being at Flint Hill is that everyone pitches in and works hard to make every single event stand out in our memories.

The School Store in particular was a huge success, under Sharon Giuliani’s amazing leadership. The combination of  Friday’s rain and Saturday’s winds required the merchandise to be taken down from their nice displays and boxed up, to protect everything from the elements. But none of that  deterred our shoppers, and your support and understanding made a huge difference!

The atmosphere overall was very Flint Hill. The sense of excitement, energy and commitment made it a wonderful day for everyone, including prospective families. I ran into a number of families that I had met at offsite admission fairs and Open Houses, as well as some of the families that attended the Lower School Information Session, which occurred that very morning. They came just to get a sense of our community and what it would be like to be a member of our school family. I appreciated seeing others reach out to make them feel welcome. They experienced our warmth, care and four core values in action. They were able to experience Flint Hill at its best. One family, after attending the volleyball game, took the time to talk with coaches, to tour the Upper School building, to enjoy Spirit Alley, and the Robotics demonstration.

We should all be reminded that, right now, we are moving into the heart of the admission season. While we have a very strong admission team working to make certain that we provide the most personal, open and accessible approach possible to our prospective families, we are all a part of that team. Every one of us came here at some point from another school or program. And while we can invest a great deal of time and money in our website, marketing materials and viewbooks, we should never lose sight of the fact that it is the “word of mouth” that is the best marketing of all. When you talk to other families and when you share your stories about the experiences your children are having here, that is what makes Flint Hill come alive for others.

We have a tremendous amount to offer without question. Since the start of this school year, we have seen our Upper School Literary Magazine, “The Rough Draft,” receive two national honors that place it among the top of student literary magazines in the country. Our scholar-athletes have already earned three conference championships in golf, boys’ soccer and volleyball, and the football team is on track to win their title as well. We have seen students rise to the challenge in their coursework, leadership and determination, and a number of our faculty have already spoken at regional and national conferences. The list could go on and on. And we are just reaching the end of the first quarter!

I want to encourage you to help us with our admission efforts. Share the accomplishments of your children and of all of the great students here at school. Feel free to invite prospective families or friends, who have children and haven’t considered Flint Hill yet, to attend a game, join you at the Holiday Shoppes or to come watch the Nutcracker and the Upper School Shakespeare production that will soon be performed. Help them realize that there may be a place for them right here at Flint Hill.

Any support you can provide is appreciated. Everything we do here is intentional, deliberate and strategic. We have a great mission and an incredible vision. We take pride in the profound outcomes that our graduates are able to experience. I heard that again and again as I spoke to alumni at Homecoming. They shared with me how well they were doing in college and, in every case, they referenced back to the experiences that they had here with us.

I also look forward to seeing many of you tonight at the State of the School presentation on our Campus Master Plan. It should be an incredibly exciting event as we are going to deviate from the norm, take a “meaningful risk” and talk about where we are going as opposed to what we are doing. We are a school on the move. We are a school that has a vision of where we are going and has the energy and the drive to make it all happen.  And, importantly, we remain absolutely focused on the education of our students and the confidence and competence they gain from our experiences.

I look forward to seeing you soon. Thanks for playing a valuable role as an extension of our admission team!

Best wishes to you!
Sincerely,

John M. Thomas
Headmaster