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Head's Corner, June 14, 2013
Below is the entirity of Dr. Ingrid Tucker's address to CMS students and families at our annual Moving Up and Moving On event, Tuesday, June 11, 2013.
Good Morning Cambridge Montessori Families,
On behalf of our faculty, staff, administrators and Board of Trustees, we welcome you to our “Moving Up and Moving On Ceremony”. This is a joyous occasion as we celebrate the completion of a Montessori cycle. It is also a celebration of each child’s journey.
As we so often hear, the journey of a million miles begins with the very first step. At CMS we are fortunate to play an important role in your child’s journey almost from their beginning steps until they are prepared to take their first steps onto a high school campus. There are so many academic and social accomplishments that occur over time. Today we honor Cambridge Montessori students from our Toddler to Middle School Programs for the milestones that they have achieved and for those that are yet to come. We thank you for allowing us to partner with you and hope that this day brings you sunshine and sheer joy!
CMS has many reasons to celebrate. We had an exceptional year! Last spring the CMS community and the Strategic Planning Committee, comprised of the Head of School, three members from the Board of Trustees, and four faculty and staff members, identified the school’s long term planning strategy for the next three years. Last summer, The Leadership Team reviewed the goals, identified the outcomes for each year and met with the internal staff at the start of school to discuss their role in the implementation. The “road map” has provided the community with direction and accountability so that we could collectively advance the mission of the school.
Some of this year’s (Year One Outcome from Strategic Plan) highlights include, the creation of our Learning Support Team, we re-instated an active and viable Parents Association, we increased enrollment (already at targeted budget), we have the highest retention in over a decade, we have increase diversity among faculty and staff, we have provided diversity training for all faculty staff and interested parents, we have doubled professional development, we have increased internal and external visibility, we have appeared in two major magazines (Briefings and Montessori Today), we have provided and required a basic Montessori overview (Montessori 101) for all faculty and staff and offered this to any interested parents. Our success has been a group effort.ww
Thank you for joining us as we celebrate our Cambridge Montessori students. All of this would not be possible without a team. There are two very important team players that are instrumental in all of our journeys. I would be remiss if I did not acknowledge Board Chair Webster O’Brien, who has been a good and faithful servant of CMS since his son Bennett was a toddler.
Today Webster and his wife Jennifer, our Lead Teacher in the Yellow Room will celebrate their son Bennett’s successful completion of Middle School. Their son Wilson is a fifth year in the Onyx Room. Webster has been an active Board member for eight out of the twelve years at CMS. While on the Board, Webster served as Treasurer, Crisis Management Extraordinaire, he was a member of the Marketing and Strategic Planning Committees and for the past three years he has been the Board Chair. At the end of the month, Webster will transition off the Board. Rachel van der Voort will assume the Board Chair role on July 1. We are thankful for his incredible leadership. It is our hope that he remains an active and engaged parent as we prepare to embark upon our 50th anniversary.
We also want to give honor where honor is due to Elementary and Middle School Director Jennifer Haines Butler. Jen has played a significant role in the lives of many children for the past 8 years. She helped establish our successful Middle School and is a passionate educator. Although Jen is just moving across the street to the Middle School where she will devote a majority of her time, we wanted to take this time to give her a huge round of applause for her commitment to students and faculty at CMS. Her journey warrants celebration!
This is a special day for Jen’s daughters Charlotte and Annabelle as well. They each will be moving up from the Primary and Toddler programs. Jen will continue to be an integral part of the Cambridge Montessori community. In addition to working in the Middle School she will assist the Development Office with reaching out to CMS alums, an area that we recognize is critical to our long-term sustainability. Our relationships with our alums must be strengthened and Jen is the perfect person to help us cultivate those relationships.
Both Webster and Jen have been amazing members of our community and we are eternally grateful.
Each place has its own journey. In the words of Ernest Hemingway, “It is good to have an end to journey toward; but it is the journey that matters in the end.” We hope that the CMS journey really matters to you. Whether you are “moving on” from CMS or simply “moving temporarily” we wish you and your loved ones continued success in your journey and hope that you have a wonderful summer!
To all our CMS students, families, faculty, staff and friends- I wish you a happy, healthy and safe summer! See you in September!