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Kent Place School Begins Its 129th Academic Year

Kent Place School Begins Its 129th Academic Year

On Wednesday, September 7, Kent Place School celebrated the beginning of its 129th academic year with a warm welcome to students, faculty, and staff. The Class of 2024 lined the campus sidewalks holding colorful signs and cheering enthusiastically, with the help of Chumley the Dragon.

The morning began with the traditional Opening Convocation, a ceremony at which the entire school gathers to experience the spirit of community. 

“As you move through your day today and in the days to come, reach out, embrace new friends, and know that to include others is a hallmark skill of outstanding leadership,” said Head of School Jennifer Galambos. “Leadership is not a one-size-fits-all model. Good leadership takes on many different forms — it can be quiet or loud, obvious or behind the scenes, singular or collective, on the bench or on the field. From wherever you stand, you can be a leader on this campus. You belong to Kent Place in a way that means you have a team cheering you on, believing in your potential, and celebrating the road ahead.”

Dr. Galambos then introduced three student speakers, one from each division — Olivia Rodrigues ’31, for the Primary School; Ayah Bedri ’28, for the Middle School; and senior Ava Zinna, for the Upper School.

“Looking back at what I’ve learned so far in Primary School makes me excited to get ready for the new school year. I encourage all students to try new things and to not be afraid to mess up.” said Olivia. “I hope you take the time to get to know your teachers, make something you’ve never made before, join a new club, or try a new activity.”

Said Ayah, “For my fellow Middle Schoolers, this is a time to discover what you like, what you dislike, what you want to continue doing, and what you want to take a break from. The beauty of it is that we’re here just to learn, make mistakes, and strengthen friendships. Be curious, be kind, and be confident.”

“Our connections make us who we are, both individually and as a Kent Place community,” said Ava. “No matter what path you pave, the connections created here will always be there to support you. Make it a priority to build each other up, and the Kent Place community will do the same for you.” 

A traditional aspect of Convocation is a ceremony that symbolizes the school’s maxim — With Wisdom She Lights the Way. Dr. Galambos lit the first of four candles, then each of the student speakers lit one. A moment of silence, to give thought to the year ahead, followed. The Chamber Singers closed the event by leading the community in the singing of the Alma Mater. 

Upon exiting Convocation, Kent Place lifers — that is, students who have been at KPS since Preschool, Kindergarten, or first grade — handed out daisies, the school flower, to each student. 

The 2023–2024 academic year has officially begun!