Thoughts on Middle School information Night and why McAuliffe is such an incredible learning environment.

Tonight, we had our middle school information night. I’m sure that those who attended would agree that the alumni who returned to share their stories did so with a grace and ease that is highly unusual for children or adults. Each year we extend an open invitation to our alumni to return for this event to speak with parents. And each year I am amazed at how articulate and comfortable these young people are. Why is that??

What occurred to me was just how successful McAuliffe is in supporting young people as they grow into thoughtful, inquisitive, caring, reflective, independent, intelligent young adults. It goes without saying that we have amazing teachers and staff. But last night I realized just how important parent participation is in setting conditions for our students to be successful.

Over the past four years, I’ve engaged in many conversations about parent participation. Some of them have questioned the value, or asked about reducing number of hours. I have always believed that parent participation is valuable and an essential element in supporting your child’s growth.

Last night I realized that another critically benefit from the time, energy, and caring that you dedicate to our community is that you are directly and truly responsible for creating the conditions for our students to become successful young people.

Each interaction you have with a student on campus is another opportunity for that child to learn and grow and explore new ideas. Your role, whatever it may be, as big or as small as you may deem it, is incredibly important not only to the development and growth of your child, but to all the students in our community.

Thank you for making the commitment to ensuring that every child will be successful and thoughtful and reflective and caring. And empowering them to ask questions, make mistakes, and to grow in such a safe, accepting, and caring place.

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