Students in Early School through 5th kick off their year in style.

By Meghan Benson | Community, Primary School

Every month, Primary School hosts a special event to bring students and faculty closer together: the Community Meeting. 

What sets this (always festive) occasion apart is that it’s not a typical teacher-led gathering. Instead, it’s an opportunity for students to take charge with each class handling emcee duties. The rotation begins with the 5th Graders in August and concludes with the 1st Graders in June, allowing students to develop their leadership skills and gain experience in public speaking.

During these meetings, a variety of familiar school activities unfold. The Pledge of Allegiance is recited. Birthdays are recognized. Songs are sung. The highlight, however, is the introduction of the catchphrase for the month’s “FRIENDZY” unit. (FRIENDZY is part of a character education program focusing on important skills such as building a strong community, leadership, friendship, and executive functioning.)

The catchphrase for this month? I am, because we are. 

While the core structure remains consistent, each Community Meeting has its own unique elements. It’s an opportunity for classes to showcase interesting happenings, like performances or art pieces. During the August meeting, a quilted banner adorned with student-drawn flowers was revealed by Katie White, PS Art Teacher, and Nancy Justice, a well-known TPS substitute. Over the summer, Justice stitched flowers PS students created last spring onto the piece that will now proudly hang in the school’s Giving Garden.

These monthly Community Meetings in Primary School exemplify the strong sense of community that thrives here on campus. It’s a testament to the collaborative and inclusive atmosphere that characterizes our school.