Dear Members of the Parker Community,
Now more than ever, our society needs citizens with empathic and ethical sensibilities, collaborative and critical thinking capacities, active intellectual curiosities with rigorous research skills and culturally attuned dispositions to be creative problem solvers in a diverse and complex world.
So, as our nation struggles to find a strategic path to bridge the divides that scar our body politic, we at Parker are working diligently with energy, optimism and effectiveness as we uphold our mission and implement the strategic goals we have set for ourselves.
This report features new developments in several major areas of the school’s educational program. See featured content links in the sidebar for more details on: important changes to the educational administrative structure; the Library Renovation; TIDES (Technology, Innovation, Design Thinking, Entrepreneurship for Society); DEI (Diversity, Equity and Inclusion); Alumni Association Leadership; and Parker publications. Although each of these areas has its own deliberate focus, each is also directly related to the others.
Together, DEI and TIDES are programs that extend throughout all grade levels and departments, educating students and adults for cultural competency and intellectual curiosity, courage and perseverance, collaboration and open discovery.
Both emphasize respect for the humanity of others; for the iterative process as a path toward creative insights and planning; and for the values articulated in our Mission, Ethos and Diversity Statements. And both need the faculty to provide students and adults with developmentally attuned ways that can expand horizons, deepen understanding and engage imaginations. To advance our work in this area, I am happy to announce Parker has just won a $50,000, 3:1 matching grant from the EE Ford Foundation and that we have already received a new gift toward this matching challenge and are now half way toward reaching our goal of raising a total of $200,000 to support DEI efforts.
The values of intellectual curiosity, respecting the humanity of others and fostering an open climate for creative problem solving inform our commitment to creating a dynamic, complete community. To achieve this aim, we pay close attention to the relationships among people, program and space. After several years of detailed and inclusive planning, I am thrilled to announce that Parker’s Board of Trustees has authorized the school to proceed with our plans to renovate our library. We have raised $4.8 million toward $5 million in construction costs, with a goal to raise the remainder of the cost for the project plus an additional $1 million to support TIDES programming. Construction will begin this coming April and will conclude before the start of school in September. This newly renovated space will expand access for learning for all Parker students and faculty.
And to support the development of coordinated thinking and action within the faculty and administration, we will be implementing new structures to support the growth of progressive education at Parker.
Parker is an institutional citizen focused on the quality of our students’ educational experience. Together, the faculty, administration and the board of trustees are engaged in coordinated efforts to empower Parker to provide outstanding progressive education by always improving our curriculum and teaching, by expanding access to the fullness of a Parker education for all students, and by strengthening our administrative, financial and facilities structures to support that education, now and in the future.
This is an exciting time for Parker and its commitment to strengthening our approach to progressive education and to widening access to teaching and learning at our school.
With best wishes for the New Year,
Daniel B. Frank, PhD