Hyde School: #3 What we Do

A student on the ropes course at Hyde School
A student on the high ropes course at Hyde School

So, a synopsis of Hyde’s beliefs and benefits begs the question: What do we actually do here?  Many alums will tell you that Hyde is just one of those places that must be experienced to be understood.  I don’t know if that’s true, but I do know that we do a lot of things that you probably won’t do anywhere else… certainly not simultaneously!  Here’s ten, selected from a long (and evolving!) list:

1.  Introductions – We get started on the very first night when each and every student stands before the entire community to loudly and clearly state his/her name, age, hometown, and graduating class. However long it takes, we get through everybody.

2.  The Hyde Greeting – I like to say, “Give ‘em 7… 5 fingers & 2 eyes.” Every student is taught to greet community members and visitors with a firm handshake, warm eye contact, and friendly conversation.

3.  Auditions – Not only does every student sing and dance in school-wide productions, he or she also sings a solo unaccompanied by musical instrumentation once a year. (So do faculty and parents!)

4.  The 4-Pronged Stool – Every student takes a college preparatory academic course load, plays interscholastic sports three seasons per year, performs in theatrical/musical productions, and engages in community service.

5.  High Ropes – We dangle on ropes 30 feet off the ground. We rappel on our climbing walls. All the while we place our trust in peers, faculty, and family members who belay us with safety harnesses. (Then we reverse roles and do it for them.)

6.  Faculty Evaluations… LIVE! – Each spring we tell our teachers how we think they’re doing – strengths, things to work on, what they mean to us – in front of the whole school.

7.  Job – Each day we participate in some way to help maintain the buildings and grounds on campus.

8.  Intentional Intrusion – We honestly and openly tell our peers how we think they’re doing in all aspects of their Hyde education.  They do the same for us.

9.  Family Renewal – Hyde families gather at least three times per year to set goals, assess progress, and support and critique each other.  Character development and personal growth are both a goal and an expectation for each and every member of the community.

10. Graduation Speech – Every graduate delivers his or her own personal commencement address at graduation.  (And that’s after the graduation ceremony we have for… parents!)

In the end, Hyde exists to help parents help kids develop character and discover their unique potential.  And whether or not those alums are right, we invite you to come visit us and see for yourself.

Onward,   Malcolm Gauld