Parent Newsletter by Franny Shuker-Haines

Dear Buxton Families,

Greetings from Buxton—Spring Edition!

This is one of my absolute favorite times of year at the school. The kids are so hungry to be outside in the warm sunshine that you can find them sprawled and draped everywhere: over the stone wall in front of the Main House, on the Art Building hill, swinging on the swings. (Quick aside: where else in the world do teenagers still swing on swings? Try it next time you’re on campus. It’s still really fun.) The whole mood of the campus is lighter, a little less serious, a lot more fun.

This past weekend, two students, JY and Eric, organized a rousing outdoor basketball game, complete with live commentary by Tom and Brandon. I talked to a lot of sore but excited people about the game last night at dinner. This is exactly the kind of fun we want our kids to be creating in their free time, and I applaud JY and Eric for making it happen! This is in addition to the proliferation of (weird—yes, I said it!) clubs popping up this spring: Vegetable Club, Ice Cream Club, Cheese Club. Our kids are definitely creative.

Speaking of creativity, this past Friday, we took the whole school over to MASS MoCA for the Teen Invitational Art Show, where we (once again), got the greatest number of awards and “earned” the biggest donation (around $2,000) for our art department. Kudos to our terrific fine arts faculty (Frank, Ben, Amrita, Willie) and all of the amazing students who see making art as a hugely important part of their day-to-day lives. Also: they were the best dancers at the after-party!

Meanwhile, this joint is jumping in a whole bunch of ways: the Marine Science class just came back from their four-day visit to the Cape, and the seniors just finished the yearbook! The Algebra I class took a field trip all the way to Spring Street in downtown Williamstown to map out the town. The Story Forms class drove up to Burlington, VT to participate in a Moth storytelling event (and Jenna even got up and told a story!). We hosted a big two-day board meeting that included a lot of student interaction and feedback—something both the board members and the students LOVED. (We will definitely figure out a way to keep that going!)

As you know, Spring Arts is now less than two weeks away, so rehearsals of all kinds are heating up. I am so excited to see everything come to fruition over that amazing weekend, and I hope you will all make the effort to be there. It’s such a spirited and celebratory time. Don’t forget to RSVP to Lindsey!

And two weeks after that is . . . graduation! More on that soon, but in the meantime, I want to remind families that graduation is a mandatory event for all students. It is the most formal thing we do at Buxton, and one of the most important rituals we have. Each graduating senior gives a speech, and those speeches are profoundly personal, important, and earned. It is of paramount importance that the rest of the school be there to witness and honor those speeches, to sing in the all-school chorus, and to be (for the last time this school year) a supportive member of this tight-knit community. Graduation starts at 11:30 and goes to about 2:00, so please plan accordingly.

Hard to believe we are in the home stretch. I hope you all are enjoying the spring weather, and I look forward to seeing everyone at Spring Arts!

All the best,


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