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An independent day school educating students PreK-Grade 12

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State of the School: A Great Success
State of the School Reception

The annual State of the School was a roaring success, complete with business updates on the school, research insights by the students, and a jazz performance for the community. The evening offered families a chance to connect with one another while learning about King School’s financial operations, its approach to teaching and learning, and the vision for the campus. 

Tom King presenting at State of the School

“King has managed to stay relevant throughout its long 150+-year history because it evolves, adapts to the needs of the times, and understands that – as our mission states – students need to be prepared for a rapidly changing world. King takes this responsibility seriously. Both our mission and our strategic vision reflect that commitment to you,” said Board Chair Tom King P’20, ’20, ’23, as he opened the event.

Tom King proceeded to share an overview of the financial operations of the school and recognized the work of his fellow trustees and the parent volunteers before introducing Head of School Carol Maoz to a packed Performing Arts Center theater on Thursday, September 22.

In her remarks, Maoz reinforced the theme of the year: Growing Together. “This Power of Community is what helps us be the tight-knit community that we are – and it would not be possible without evolving and growing together.”

Maoz presented King’s master plan, a conceptual and flexible road map that supports a long-term vision for the campus. The plan was conceived in 2017 and revised and approved by the Board of Trustees in 2021. The COVID-19 pandemic affected its roll-out, and the State of the School was an opportunity to update the community about its progress. 

Carol Maoz presenting at State of the School

“The 21st century is challenging old notions of pedagogy. This requires us to think carefully about how to better address student learning, how to support our faculty, and expand our programs,” said Maoz. “Our physical plant must remain responsive to these evolving needs and must match the quality of our program.”

While there is no specific timeframe for the upgrades to campus, Maoz said the plan will impact all three divisions. It will also realize the eight pillars of King’s Strategic Plan, which recommits to the student experience, places academic excellence at the core, and emphasizes the importance of research and inquiry for deeper learning. 

The highlight of the evening was delivered by six upper school students who spoke about applying inquiry and research to school disciplines both inside and outside the classroom. 

Senior Gouri Krishnan discussed how inquiry applied to her science research, while freshman Amy Powell focused on its application in studying the humanities. Senior Maddy Beck and sophomore Kioja Duff credited research for their progress in visual arts, and senior Bryce Heaton shared his similar experience as it relates to performing arts. Junior Spencer Neckritz offered an unexpected twist with reflections on research and inquiry that he and his crew team conduct as they practice improving their athletic performance as rowers. 

Bryce Heaton closed the presentation with a spectacular trumpet performance of a piece he thoroughly researched: Night in Tunisia by Dizzy Gillespie. Bryce was accompanied by Chair of King’s Performing Arts Department Garrett Mendez on trombone, Mathew Detory on piano, Victor Ramirez on bass, and assistant band director Tommy Weeks on tenor sax.

A cocktail party for new families preceded the presentation in the PAC, and an all-school reception followed the event. This was an opportunity for families, faculty, and staff to connect, reconnect and spend time experiencing the power of the King community. More photos from the evening can be viewed here.