The Joys of a Collaborative Community

Dear Parents,

The past few weeks have loudly reminded me of how lucky Putney is to have Putney parents. First, there was the college admissions scandal, which is sad for so many reasons. I confess that I was not surprised to learn that some parents were bribing their kid’s way into college, only that it was so clumsy – and I felt terribly sorry for the kids involved. That news was followed by the Washington Post article about a top school which had to warn the parents of its senior class to stop trying to sabotage other students’ chances at competitive colleges. This week we have had ten educators from other independent schools here on campus as part of our ten-year NEASC accreditation visit. They were delighted by how open and mature our students (your children) are, and how collaborative the community is. They saw the joy Putney students take in each others’ accomplishments. Some of them had never experienced a school culture in which students don’t define success by how many others they have beaten out. I never take our students for granted, but it is wonderful to see them through fresh eyes.

On the theme of celebrating others’ success, I hope that you will join us for graduation if you can, and if you can’t, please arrange to let your child stay through that celebration even if they are not yet graduating. When younger students see graduation, it sticks in their minds as something to look forward to and strive for, and it’s a lovely tradition here. This year’s graduation speaker will be Tory Voight, who graduated from Putney in 2003. The first in her family to go to college, she went on to Wellesley and MIT, and then worked in the Obama White House. Most recently she has been working as an Engineering Program Manager at Google.

We are looking forward to seeing many of you here for Family Weekend. If you plan to be on campus, please let us know by completing the RSVP form that was sent to you by the Registrar’s Office. Dorms will remain open through the weekend and we have lots of activities planned for students, but it would be helpful if you let your child’s advisor and dorm faculty know if you plan to take your kid off campus for the remainder of the weekend.

Best to you all,


Emily H. Jones
Head of School

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