From new board chair: intro & middle school info

Dear TIS Community,

While I know many of you, I would like to introduce and re-introduce myself to you. I am Scott Kerman, and at the Annual Meeting the Board elected me president of the Board of Trustees. I am honored and excited to serve as president. My family and I have enjoyed eight amazing years at TIS, and I look forward to further contributing to a school and community that have contributed so much to my children.

I must admit that although I am excited to serve TIS as board president, I also begin my term with some trepidation. The outgoing president, Michelle Kerin, and the other officers of the Board—Kim Marcus, Michael Hummel, and Mark Holman—served the school with distinction. We owe a great deal to them, particularly because they were charged with the responsibility of steering TIS through rocky seas during their tenure.

Fortunately, I will be working closely with an equally talented group of officers—Paula Prince (Vice President), Jennifer Cooperman (Treasurer), and Laura Sokolowski (Secretary). In addition, we have an exceptional group of Trustees with whom to serve, including our outgoing officers and a few new members, Lynda Wannamaker, Sean Onitsuka, and Michelle Gans. Not to mention our amazing Head, administration, faculty, and parent community.

There is much the Board hopes to accomplish this year. In response to recent discussion among parents and Dr. Orsini’s presentation at the Annual Meeting, I’d like to focus on middle school in this article. Both as a parent and a board trustee, perhaps the number one question asked of me by other parents over the years at TIS concerns middle school. I think it is terrific that parents are so gratified by their experiences at TIS and the education their children receive here from our exceptional faculty that they—even when middle school is years and years away—are extremely interested in the opportunity to extend their time in our community.

In my experience as a teacher, I have worked in K-8 and pre-K - 8 schools. There is much to recommend these school models for how they can enhance the educational opportunities of students and promote a strong school community. Of course, with opportunity come challenges and even risks. Thus, the decision to create a middle school is significant, one that the Board must consider carefully and thoroughly.

In light of this, the strategic plan directed Dr. Orsini to conduct an investigation into the feasibility of creating a viable middle school at TIS. As we have come to expect from Dr. Orsini, he undertook this task with extreme professionalism and meticulousness. The information gathered during this process was summarized for the parents at the Annual Meeting. Dr. Orsini told the Board that the next step in this process is to determine more precisely the interest among current fourth grade families—and perhaps third grade families, as well.

Early in the fall, the Board will meet to hear Dr. Orsini’s recommendation regarding middle school and deliberate the matter formally. In the meantime, we will work closely with Dr. Orsini to assist him in this process. Please contact Dr. Orsini or email me at board@intlschool.org if you have any comment or questions regarding middle school.

As I stated above, there is much we can do as a community to enhance the already exceptional education our students experience at TIS. Middle school is just one piece; there are many others that I hope to discuss with you in person and through these articles in the future. TIS is moving forward every day, and my fellow board members and I are honored to be here working with you to contribute to that progress.

Scott Kerman, TIS Board Chair, board@intlschool.org