Welcome to Heads Up, a blogging experiment that aims to:
- connect the people, parts, and principles of Durham Academy;
- share ideas about learning and human development;
- spotlight a few of the many wondrous things I get to see every day at Durham Academy.
Thanks for reading the posts below — and sending news, links and ideas worth sharing.
Michael Ulku-Steiner, Head of School
Big Apple, big gratitude, big ideas, big lives
Last week I enjoyed a quick trip to New York City, where I joined a specially-invited dozen DA alumni (graduates ranging from 1979 to 2008) for a listening and brainstorming session for our strategic planning process.
As was my similar day in San Francisco, the dinner was a delight – overflowing with gratitude for teachers and popping with good ideas about the school and the future of education. Just as we will share the compiled data from our recent online survey (look for those in Thursday's News and Notes), we will share the compiled results of these listening sessions after the last of them: November 20 in Boston.
Our New York group was helpfully diverse, with an actor, an artist, two attorneys, two financiers, and a range of businesses represented in the group. DA alumnus Torsie Judkins (Director of Community and Diversity at the Town School) hosted us in the school’s library overlooking the East River.
Later in the week, along with her enthusiastic thanks for the dinner, I received the picture above from Valerie Kennedy Miller. Loyal Heads Up readers might remember Valerie’s poignant account of the early days of integration at DA – emailed to me last spring and expanded in an article in the Summer Record.
Valerie now works as Senior Advisor to the Mayor of New York City’s Office of Appointments. She snapped this picture Thursday evening at the annual New York NAACP Legal Defense Fund dinner. With her (top left) are Cheryl Brown (the little girl who inspired Brown v. Board of Education) and Jack Greenberg (the last living attorney from Thurgood Marshall’s team of lawyers and the chief litigator in Brown v. Board).
As I have said to myself several times of late, our graduates continue to inspire us with the range and meaning of their work in the world.
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