During 2013 I visited more than 120 boarding schools from Florida to Victoria British Columbia, from Los Angeles to Maine, and from Toronto to San Antonio. This experience was insightful, exhausting, and invigorating. There were large and small schools, wealthy and modest schools, urban and rural schools. There were sunny warm days and rainy cold days. There were hotel rooms, rental cars, and airports, as well as remarkable chance meetings and frustrating closed doors.
It was a delight to learn so much about the culture, layout, and tone of each school. The roads and buildings establish a frame for each school as they merge with the grounds and towns where they reside. The people and policy vary widely among schools in both culture and vibe. Some schools are formal while others are casual. Some are restless and others are sleepy. As I review the year I want to thank the schools I visited for their kindness. Where there was something exceptional I tried to acknowledge it. Below you will find a “Best of Show” from my travels.
Best Gate Keeper – Pickering College
Best CFO office – Randy Smith, The Putney School
Best Grounds – Shawnigan Lake
Best Greeting – St. Michael’s University School
Best Surprise Meeting – Gow School
Best Winter Snowy Day – Blair Academy
Best Sunny Day – Emma Willard School
Best Arch – Shattuck St. Mary’s
Best Gate – St. Stephen’s
Best Golf Cart Ride – Deerfield Academy
Best Snack – the apples from Scattergood Friends
Best Lunch – Pomfret (thank you Bobby Fisher)
Best Early Morning Entrance – Northfield Mount Hermon
Best Chapel – St. John’s Prep
Best Cose By Coffee Shop – The Northwest School
Best Fireplace – St. Georges RI
Best Donuts – Taft
Funniest Meeting – Ashbury College
Most Presence – Karrie Weistock, Branksome Hall
What’s the “Best of Show” at your boarding school?