Thank you, Brookstone Teachers!

As we celebrate Teacher Appreciation Week, it is only fitting to honor those teachers with an official, “Thank you.” Thank you for what you do day in and day out and for the many ways, often unacknowledged, that you pour yourselves out for the sake of your students. We simply cannot say thank you enough.

Here at Brookstone, people matter. Our students matter and they know they matter. They know our teachers are FOR them, fighting for them, working on their behalf, and doing everything they can to provide the perfect environment for them to thrive and succeed.

Javonne Stewart, Head of our Lower and Intermediate Schools, wrote this to parents not long ago:

An article in the New York Times, “Why Building Relationships is Vital in Schools,” outlines an important fact, that schools are often defined by the relationships that are developed among students, teachers, and administrators. I thought about Brookstone as I was reading this article. And although the article focuses on students in schools who are from a different socioeconomic and cultural background, it confirmed for me that teachers and administrators are part of the recipe for success for students, whether the impact is small or large. Last fall at the Distinguished Alumni dinner, almost every honoree mentioned the impact that a Brookstone teacher had on their journey to success. What resounded even louder was that they didn’t feel like their success was defined by good grades or being a model student but by the moment that someone took interest in them, believed in them, allowed them to explore new avenues, or encouraged them to go beyond the goals they had set for themselves. Because of Brookstone teachers and the relationships they build with students, our Brookstone alumni are blazing paths and carving out niches that not only put themselves in the limelight but also spotlight the service that needs to be done to help others experience the same opportunities. So as we grow leaders in our classrooms every day, I smile to know that our teachers are building relationships with students who will go on to do great things!

Upper School Social Studies teacher Patrick Griffin, one of the recent winners of our ABC Award (Above and Beyond the Call of Duty), wrote in an email after receiving the award:

I have been blessed with some truly, truly amazing students this year. Hard workers, good citizens of our community, and excellent human beings. I win every day I teach them, and today belongs to them at least as much as it does me. The same goes for the people I work with. I’ve been a teacher for twenty years now and I’ve never encountered a faculty as universally good and kind as this one is. On top of that, I got to share the recognition with a teacher whose joyfulness and whose impact on the lives of her students I find inspirational.

All of this is on top of seeing my students come through their exams in one piece. Several of you helped a couple of my students, who were acting entirely on their own initiative, make some zany but accurate review videos for Macro they could only have the courage to do if you made their learning environment, all through the school, profoundly fun and safe. The students who won today’s awards, with all of our help, are going home to prepare for tomorrow’s APs with smiles on their faces, confidence in their hearts, and enough in their brains to know they deserve the first two. You did that.

So as we come to the end of another school year, we celebrate our teachers. We celebrate them, thank them, and applaud them for the work they do! It matters more than we can ever measure.

And how do we know our teachers are making an impact? When we filmed our seniors last week and asked them what they would miss most about Brookstone, over and over and over again, they said, “The teachers.” The teachers. The teachers.

Thank you, Brookstone Faculty. We love you and are so grateful for you!

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