- From the Desk of Dr. Sands
The Value of Simplicity
As we are in the midst of this holiday season, please remember that the greatest gift that we can give our children is the gift of time and love.
The other day, two Middle School students came in to see me, wanting to address a concern they had. I figured it was going to be a social issue, and it was, but not what I was expecting; they wanted to discuss the way some students talk about money at school. When the advisory holiday gift exchange guidelines were set, a few girls bemoaned the maximum limit of $10, as “it would be impossible to buy anything for under $100.”
The girls are aware that the world is not fair, but they wanted me to remember that they and many others will not be taking a fancy trip over break, as their parents’ discretionary money pays for tuition. They described themselves as middle class—which is a floating bar to be sure—and while they were not complaining about their circumstances, they were asking the school to be mindful of the differing circumstances of others.
I told them that by upper school, the girls tell me they rarely hear any mention of wealth or circumstances, and students in general are not interested in discussing their parents’ occupations. In fact, you parents are blessedly relegated to the role you no doubt cherish the most: care and love giver to your offspring. It is your most important role and the one that no one else can lay claim to.
As we are in the midst of this holiday season, please remember that the greatest gift that we can give our children is the gift of time and love. Here at Marlborough, we will try to keep school a place of safety and calm. We are fighting a culture of constant noise and excess, so we will do our best to remain an oasis of simplicity and joy. We are currently displaying our gorgeous student-decorated windows and Winter Fest is on the horizon. I hope that all of our students will have a very merry, depressurized winter break with little work and lots of time for family and friends.
I will be celebrating a very happy few days off with our son and daughter-in-law as we enjoy the beauty of California in Big Sur—our gift to one another. May we hope for peace and remember that we are a nation made strong and vibrant by pioneers and immigrants who suffered mightily to make this an incredible and vibrant country, and the many ways in which we celebrate this time of year helps to make us a richer and more vibrant global village.