Back-to-School Day returns in person

Nathan Wang

Back-to-School Day returned in person on Sept. 24 after being on Zoom for the 2021-2022 school year. Held at the start of the school year, Back-to-School Day allows parents  to experience their child’s class schedule and learn more about their teachers.

Parents gathered on the Quad and were served refreshments while the Upper School Jazz Band performed.

Jane McFadden (Everett Lakey ’25) said in-person Back-to-School Day was a good opportunity to familiarize herself with the school campus and teachers.

“It’s lovely to be on the campus, to see other parents in person, to see the teachers [and] see what my child’s day is like,” McFadden said.

While teachers and parents both enjoy the advantages of being back in person, Head of Upper School Beth Slattery said Back-to-School Day can also be difficult for teachers who only get 10-minute time slots to introduce themselves and cover year-long class content.

“It can sometimes feel like a fair amount of pressure because you just have this 10-minute window,” Slattery said. “I think that it can be a little bit more stressful for them than it is for parents.”

Slattery said in-person Back-to-School Day parking is always difficult when so many people gather on campus.

“Parking is always a challenge, Slattery said. “So it’s one of the few days of the year where we understand that people are likely to be parking in the neighborhood, like homecoming. It ends up being manageable, but not ideal.”

Science teacher Nate Cardin said in-person Back-to-School Day allows him to introduce the classroom setting better than on Zoom.

“I like showing the parents around the lab to show them where their students will get to do lots of fun experiments,” Cardin said. “If I have time, I like doing a little experiment, which you obviously can’t do on Zoom.”

History teacher Chris Clement said being in person for Back-to-School Day is an irreplaceable experience.

“It is nice to actually see parents in person and talk to parents again, even if it is for just 10-minute chunks of time, Clement said. “There’s something about just being able to meet with them and set the school year straight.”