This post is written by Anna, a SuccessLink teen working in Teen Central this summer and a student at Boston Latin School.
The upcoming year for Boston Latin School
The mission of BLS seeks to ground its students in a contemporary classical education as preparation for successful college studies, responsible and engaged citizenship, and a rewarding life.
Some of you may know of a woman named Dr. Lynne Mooney Teta, known as LMT amongst her students. She was the headmaster of the exam school, Boston Latin School, which prides itself in preparing students for college and eventually life. It provides a sink or swim environment forcing incoming seventh or ninth graders to work as hard as they possibly can to keep up with academics, athletics, extracurriculars, peer influences, and mental health. This stress can become overwhelming, but the bright students who come into the school would then leave as aware young adults who had been studying global issues and act as leaders in their community.
It is not only rewarding to go to a school that prepares on this journey to success, but also being around the type of people who would one day become such great leaders. Said leaders will stand up for what they are passionate in, no matter how much time it would consume. This school, although seemingly picture perfect, has been in the media numerous times in this past year. With the racist allegations towards Dr. Lynne Mooney Teta, this has not been a good year for her nor the school. Dr. Teta tried to hold various assemblies addressing the racial issues present at the school on top of the workshops that were held in students’ english classes, homerooms, and lunch periods. These workshops gave students a chance to speak their mind on the present problems around them. I say students in a technical term, however it may be more fitting to describe them as young leaders. These young leaders throughout the school, whose ages range from 12-18, bespoke their determination on moving forward as a school in the right direction.
On June 21st, a letter was sent out to students, parents, and faculty announcing Dr. Teta’s decision to resign as headmaster from the school. In a school filled with such passionate students, there were many opinions being thrown around in real life and on social media. Many were relieved and many were upset about this decision.
On June 23rd, Malcolm J. Flynn, an assistant headmaster in BLS submitted his resignation letter, in which he explains his reason for his decision. He believed that Boston Public Schools Office of Equity portrayed BLS in a untruthful light. He talks about the real atmosphere of the school and how it not only makes students feel safe, but also is safe. Flynn goes on to voice his disappointment that Dr. Teta was only praised for her work as a headmaster, after she resigned. Moreover, Flynn decided that it was best for him to resign after 52 years because he felt it was impossible to continue.
This fall, students at BLS will return from summer vacation and meet their new headmaster. Alumnus of the class of 1957, former headmaster Michael Contompasis is coming out of retirement and serving in the interim while the district decides on a permanent headmaster.
What does this mean for the students of BLS this incoming year of 2016-2017? While many students are still upset over the fact that their former headmaster had resigned, their goal is still crystal clear: step forward as a school to provide a fair and safe learning environment for all of its students. These young leaders did not lose hope in what they fought for and will continue to do whatever it takes to achieve their goal. It is incredibly rewarding to go to school everyday with these types of people. My peers are all very driven and I am just glad to be seeing change happen as well as excited to see more changes. Keep doing what you’re doing!
Are you interested in learning more about leadership opportunities? The Boston Public Library, Teen Central has a Teen Leadership Council that meets monthly in Teen Central and there is a job help page that provides information on job opportunities, volunteer and internship opportunities.
Need a library card? Wondering how long you can borrow a book? Borrowing and Circulation information can be found here.
*”Teens Leading in the Community” features interviews and stories about teens leading in their communities by Jessi, the Teen Services Team Leader, Central, on the third Tuesday of every month.