A Message from St. Anne's President of the Board of Trustee
October 19, 2018
Dear St. Anne's Community,
As Board President it is with gratitude for and admiration of Peter Thayer's years of leadership and service to St. Anne's Episcopal School that I am letting you know that he has chosen to make the 2018-2019 school year his last as Head of School. During Peter's tenure, he has enriched the St. Anne's community and its academic, athletic, arts and after school programs. Further, the entire community has appreciated his strong work ethic, his positive spirit and genuine love for his students.
St. Anne's is known for its invigorating and rigorous academic program. During Peter's tenure, the school has enhanced its program in many ways including a commitment to sustainability and science with unique outdoor and STEM programs and a nationally recognized Singapore Math program. St. Anne's students graduate with strong communication and analytical skills developed in math, reading, social studies and language arts, as well as a love of the fine arts and a growing sense of compassion and justice.
Today, St. Anne's is also known as a school of inclusion, love and kindness. Peter and his team have significantly increased the cultural diversity of our student body; 30% of the students now identify as biracial, Asian, African-American, Caribbean-American, Latin, Middle Eastern and/or Native American. Our religious diversity has also increased significantly, making our school a community that welcomes and celebrates many beliefs.
Under his leadership, the school has undertaken two strategic planning processes, a comprehensive self-study, and hosted the Middle States Association accreditation team that affirmed our mission and good standing. The school's substantial increase in foundation and donor support, as well as the successful Open Heart, Open Minds Capital Campaign that raised $2.44 million, has enabled the construction of a new music room, enhanced financial aid, improvements to our playing fields and outdoor spaces, as well as new opportunities for professional development.
Upon learning of Peter's plans, the Board of Trustees began interviewing national search firms that will help us to identify our next Head of School. As we move forward in this process, we will continue to share information with the community.
On behalf of the School's community and the Board of Trustees, I want to thank Peter for his dedication to and love of St. Anne's. As he leaves our brick building and its red doors, we know that his spirit and legacy will continue to live in our community.
October 12, 2018
After considerable soul-searching and conversations with my family, I am writing today to officially inform the Board of Trustees that the 2018-2019 school year will be my 11th and concluding year as Head of School at St. Anne's Episcopal School. This timing feels appropriate as we will have set the future path of the school through the hard work of the Board and the Strategic Planning Committee, and the school is poised to take the next steps in its growth and deserves to have a new leader in place to set the pace for the journey.
In June I will have worked 41 years in four independent schools, so it seems to be a fitting time for Francie and me to explore new adventures together. I have always sought to honor my father's mantra "to leave a place better than you found it," and I have given my best to help fulfill the school's important mission without overstaying my capacity to make a difference for the community. What the future holds for Francie and me is still to be discerned. Certainly finding ways to spend more time together and with our three children is a priority. Since they are spread out all over the country, that will likely involve some overdue travel plans. Also, my mother is 93 and still quite vital, so I look forward to spending more time with her and connecting more with my numerous siblings and their families. In addition, I am excited to consider what personal and professional pursuits are yet to be discovered.
My opportunity at St. Anne's has been and continues to be one I will treasure forever. Words simply cannot express the depth of gratitude I feel for the wonderful years spent as a part of this community since 2008. The St. Anne's family afforded me the honor and privilege to work with some of the finest and most caring teachers, staff and administrators as well as providing personal and professional relationships and memories that will last Francie and me a lifetime. Since those red doors opened in 2002, our teachers have been the heart and soul of St. Anne's, and it has been my remarkable joy to learn from and with them. I have also had the great fortune of partnering with thoughtful and caring Board Presidents in Gordon Brownlee, Gretchen Hurtt, Hick Rowland, and now you. Along with the school, our trustees are growing and learning in their good governance and philanthropic support of St. Anne's. Our teachers and staff work hard every day to know, love, challenge, and inspire our children, and they bring incredible talent and dedication to this community. Our parents, alumni parents, and alumni are a source of support, collaboration, and encouragement. And our students continue to bring me joy and inspiration every day. I offer my deepest thanks to all of these great people, and I look forward to working together this school year to help secure the future for St. Anne's for generations to come.
I know some might wonder, "what comes next?" First and foremost is another nine months of engaging, energizing, and vital work on behalf of our St. Anne's students, faculty, and community. I remain blessed to partner with people dedicated to fulfilling our mission and serving the needs of each child. I am also dedicated to doing my part to ensure a smooth and successful transition for the next individual fortunate enough to lead this school, just as Harvey Zendt did for me. St. Anne's will be an extremely appealing and exciting opportunity for any number of talented educators seeking a community with the heart and mission to help children grow in wisdom and love.
Head of School