News & Updates 5/27/22

From Todd:

The shooting at Columbine High School in Colorado took place in my first year as an educator. In my second year, a student named Fred D. lived on my dorm floor who had a brother who had survived the shooting by hiding in a janitorial closet with two friends. The family moved to Massachusetts from Colorado and they sent their four children to three different boarding schools. There was one thing in common with all three of the schools, they were all in very remote locations. Fred’s mom was a talented artist, and that career allowed her and her husband to roam the wilderness of New England to visit their children every weekend. I cannot imagine how many miles they put on that Suburban. They were great people who had no hesitation about public displays of affection. Fred knew that every time his dad saw him there was going to be a hug that lifted him off the ground and twirled him around. Fred was over six feet tall as a 7th grader and played three varsity sports, but even in a crowded rink after a tough game, Fred's dad would growl as he lifted his middle son into the air. Each time I saw this hug, I thought of Columbine and the impact that it had on this amazing family. They came within a few feet of losing their oldest son, and maybe this “twirling hug” tradition existed before the shooting, but I felt like it was borne out of an appreciation for how close they had come to the ultimate tragedy. 

For two years of pandemic we have talked about putting the safety of the community first, and sadly that extends to issues revolving around guns. We ordered new security doors for both buildings four months ago, and they will be installed this summer along with buzzers, auto-locks, and cameras. This year we added an app to all our teachers phones that allows alarms, texts, and verbal communications between teachers, parents and police. All classroom doors lock and have additional security straps as a back up. We have had the Nantucket Police, the County Sheriff and the State Police review our evacuation plans, and they support our strategies. Ultimately, these items could save a life but there are always gaps that can never be filled.

I think it is a critical concept that schools carefully navigate political topics. We have an absolute focus on nurturing all the children on this campus, and that should never be political. We hope that they become open minded and kind citizens who have the skills to learn about issues and find solutions to societal problems. Of course beyond politics, there are issues that are right and wrong. As someone who works with an incredibly talented group of teachers and students, it is becoming clear that current gun laws and mental health resources are not protecting our community. I don’t feel like I am being reactionary when the recent shooting in Uvalde was the 27th school shooting of 2022.

I feel very safe on this island, and there is comfort knowing that there has never been a school shooting at an independent school. I just feel more and more like Fred’s father. As the pattern of gun violence continues to expand, it just feels like it is getting too close to the people we love. 
Ever Grateful,
Todd Eveleth
Head of School

2022-2023 Calendar: Please note that this calendar is subject to change. Check the website for the latest! Calendar 2022-2023.pdf
  • From the 7th Grade: Help defray the cost of our recent 7th grade trip to Camp Cody! Printed 22-23 calendars with pictures from Nantucket New School are $25. Orders are due by Tuesday, May 31. Click here to place your order!
May 30 - Memorial Day - No school
June 3 - Last Day of After-School Programming
June 8 - Field Day/Pizza Day, Last Day of School
June 9 - Graduation 10:00 a.m.
June 10 - Summer Kick-off Party 5:00 p.m. (Please note: This event is for community members 21+ only.)
  • We can't wait to welcome current parents/caregivers, alumni, parents of alumni, and supporters of Nantucket New School. We'll have music, delicious apps, beer & wine, and we'll celebrate a ribbon-cutting of our new Sport Court. Click here to RSVP!

Nantucket New School