We have some truly amazing people doing some truly amazing work on campus right now. Leading our illustrious team of Campus Improvement Rockstars is Ann Ganter (mom of Tallulah in 5th grade and August in 6th grade). We caught up with her to find out what projects are in the works; here is her report:

  • Rycor installed 14 heat pumps this week & High Falls electric is onsite hooking them up. Goodbye to the propane, 18-year-old units & the 3 energy-hog dehumidifiers. Hello, antiviral bacterial screens & efficiency! 
  • Michael Wilcox & crew are running Cat6 cable EVERYWHERE! I even had them run a line to the music barn so we can install a phone. 
  • Yurt has been purchased! ETA August 17th with a 3 day set up. Xander Haskell (Alum, 2012) is lined up for framing the deck next week.
  • HMS parents Courtney Wilder & Ian McNaughton (Clyde, PreK) have taken the gardens to the next level. Garlic is harvested & drying. Garden is filled with squash, amaranth, tomatoes, potatoes & onions.
  • Courtney, Ian & myself cleared the pond of invasive plants & vines. We are almost ready for an outdoor classroom under the Catalpa, Cherry & Sycamore trees. Would love to set up volunteers to help clear the forest of debris & invasives.

We’ve also had Natasha Haskell (alum, 2015) on campus all summer, cleaning and painting throughout all our buildings, inside and out, and the difference it has made is astounding! The parent & grandparent team of John & Steve Cunningham (Dacey, nursery) have contributed their wealth of knowledge in the tech world to help plan out our WiFi infrastructure on campus, and they are composing a guide to support HMS families’ WiFi access at home.

While many of these improvements are part of our comprehensive COVID Reopening Plans, the work we are doing on campus will also allow us to more closely align our facilities and our student’s educational experience with our mission and goals. Upgrading our heating and cooling systems not only creates a contained ventilation system for each classroom, it also reduces our carbon footprint. Our new outdoor classrooms (with access to Wifi) not only provide safer learning spaces, they bring our children closer to nature and allow our staff to more fully integrate the outdoors into their teaching practice. Ensuring our students, teachers, and families have access to the internet and to technology that allows them to engage in meaningful learning and interact with their community when not on campus is not only a requirement of a solid distance-learning program; this work is intertwined with our commitment to equity and to maintaining a sense of community throughout this challenging time and for years to come.