The Ultimate Honoring of a Colleague

skal2.gifOne of aspect of our school that we cherish is our sense of community. On Friday, May 16th, we had a wonderful example of how this manifests itself with the honoring of our physics teacher, Eric Skalinder, who will be retiring at the end of the year. Today was the last day that our seniors would be on campus before scattering off to complete their senior service projects and it was a fitting tribute.

Our dean of students and Biology teacher, Jeff Terwin, sent out an email last week asking all faculty to dress in the “Skalinder uniform”. This consists of athletic shoes, blue jeans, a white t-shirt (with printing that shows through), and a white dress shirt. It also includes three felt pens, red, blue, and green, placed in the pocket in the order of the spectrum from inside to outside. One student created a Facebook group and the network began to spread the word. Hundreds of us, me included, participated in the day. There were freshman who hadn’t even taken a class with him, faculty, staff, and even the head of school, who I have never seen in blue jeans, dressed for the day.

Eric then best sums it up best in an email he sent later in the day:

Thanks to all of you for your surprise this morning.

I was surprised when, after about five minutes, I realized that students in my first class were almost entirely dressed in white shirts and jeans. I thought, “How clever of B Block students to give me such an amusing tribute.” It gave me a real case of the goose bumps.

I should have realized that something more was up when the Director of Communications came into the room to take a few photos. When I had a brief break right after 9AM I was absolutely floored to discover that a stunning number of folks were running around the halls of the Upper School wearing white shirts and jeans.

It is truly an honor to receive the warm wishes inherent in this gesture and I love the amusing way in which it has been expressed! Thanks a million for the wonderful feelings this has brought to me on this beautiful spring day!

Below is a picture of the large number of participants.


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