Each academic year only 16 students are selected to be a part of European Art Classroom. To say that it is a privilege to be in Aix and travel around Europe is an understatement. Proctor has challenged and stretched me as a student and as an individual. Being here as a student in Europe is no different. We might not have the same rigid 8:00 am to 5:30 pm schedule, but we are challenged in other ways. We are given more freedom to explore and when I say explore, I do not mean just the sites.
Each week a new student gets to write the blog. We can write about whatever we want. The thing is when teachers give you the freedom to write anything it is either amazing and the words come flowing onto the page, or a painstakingly slow process where you are stuck so long looking at a blank screen that you start to hallucinate or forget what words even are. So where to start?
Each program at Proctor exists for a reason. Our unique academic model did not develop by chance, but rather through the vision and commitment of those who came before us at this small boarding school in central New Hampshire. In its infancy, Proctor’s Learning Skills program became one of the first formal academic support program for dyslexic students in the country. Over the past seventy years, Learning Skills has developed into an integrated academic support program unlike any other.
Last week an interesting article was published in Forbes magazine about the disruption occurring in the independent school world. Michael Horn discussed the challenges facing many schools as tuition prices rise faster than wages and technology and charter schools introduce new approaches to learning. At Proctor, we feel these disruptions all around us, and while we are cognizant of how we must adapt to an ever-changing landscape, we are as confident as ever in our educational model.
Our two-month adventure in Europe started in the United States, specifically in Boston after we said goodbye to everyone’s parents and Kayden. There was obviously a very indisputable sense of excitement among us that night. We left Boston that evening and after hours of flights and layovers, we finally found Dave and Jen waiting for us at the airport, along with Fifi and Liv. At last, we were all united.
As our time continues here in Aix-en-Provence, we all begin to feel less like tourists and more like locals. When we first arrived to Aix some 5 weeks ago, the city felt quite large and confusing. Jen and Dave reassured us that after a few weeks we would have the city memorized, and it would start to feel smaller and smaller.