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Explore Cushing’s 5-week Summer Session programs
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You'll have the BEST SUMMER EVER! 

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Developing a Leadership Culture

Last month, our Dean of Student Life, Mr. Chris Howes headed to The Symposium in Pedagogy of Leadership sponsored by the Gardner Carney Leadership Institute in collaboration with the Klingenstein Center for Independent School Education. The central goal of the event: to learn and absorb the art and science by which an educator can systematically instill and develop in students the desire and capacity to lead.
Mr. Howes served as a presenter in a session called Transforming Culture Through Leadership Development. Drawing on his past experiences working at Severn School and his current work at Cushing this year, he spoke about developing and building a pervasive and fully integrated culture of student leadership. “It is possible for every child to develop leadership skills,” he said. “It is our obligation to provide them with the avenues to exercise and practice these skills.”
He relayed that attendees were particularly interested in Cushing’s revised student handbook. “We went from rules and policies to expectations and values, and people were really excited about hearing how we did that. The lens through which I presented our student-centered approach was perhaps a different lens for them, and it clearly struck a chord as we discussed the conduct system, shared responsibilities, and leadership programming.”
As for his own takeaways from the symposium, Mr. Howes shared discussions on brain research and its relationship to education and children. “Working with kids, it’s important for us to understand where they are in the process of growth, and most importantly to recognize that they aren’t ‘done’ – they’re still ‘becoming’.

Cushing Academy

39 School Street
Ashburnham, Massachusetts 01430

Cushing Academy

Cushing Academy exists for students and develops curious, creative, and confident learners and leaders. Founded in 1865, Cushing is a co-ed, college preparatory boarding and day school for students in grades 9-12 and PG. Our students, who come from over 30 states and 30 countries, excel in our outstanding academic, art, and athletic offerings. We welcome you to visit our community and beautiful 162-acre campus in Ashburnham, Mass., just one hour from Boston, to experience all that Cushing has to offer.