Shipley inspired Dylan Matthews '17 every day to look deeper into current events and to make connections between the past and present. Shipley gave Dylan the space to find what he is passionate about and the resources to achieve his goals.
Fall is a busy time at Shipley, and in this month's letter, Steve shares some of his favorite memories from the All-School Assembly and Super Saturday. He also looks forward to the October 11th Positive Education Community Launch with Dr. James Pawelski.
Ellie Rampulla '17 began her education at Shipley in Kindergarten, then returned after ten years. "When I returned to Shipley after attending five other schools, I was stunned and impressed by the deeply-rooted values that every single Shipley student has. It is the Shipley community’s foundation of kindness, hard work, and compassionate participation in the world that makes it a truly incredible place."
Cesar Silva '17 says Shipley prepared him for self-advocacy and to step up and be a leader in his community. "I learned that as a leader in any setting, an official title does not determine the impact one makes in their community, but rather the actions of a person determine the impact one makes on their community."
Shipley's Director of Athletics, Mark Duncan, was recently featured in a Philly.com article, "The risks of your children and sports" which focuses on the considerations parents and guardians should take when deciding on sports participation with their children.
For well over a decade, Susan Reilly and her fellow third grade teachers have inspired their students to find joy in learning and to build confidence as public speakers through their annual Bagels ’n Bios unit.
Katie Balun ’17 discovered her passion for filmmaking in Shipley’s Middle School, thanks to the influence of a couple of her teachers. Now, she’s ready to attend New York University’s Tisch School of the Arts. Learn more about Katie and the role Shipley has played in her life.
Shipley Coach and PE teacher Bruce Nkala and his wife were initially drawn to Shipley because of the baby clue color worn by the School’s sports teams – the color of their home country Botswana’s flag. But the Shipley community, small class sizes, and individual approach to each student have solidified their affinity for the School. Read the Nkala family’s Shipley story.
Each year, Shipley parent and alumna Jennifer Flint Panetta ’88 and her son, Chris ’24, visit Shipley’s Development Office, where Chris makes a contribution to the Annual Fund. “It’s important that students understand, starting right away, that it’s more than just tuition that makes their experience possible,” says Panetta. Learn more about why Jennifer and Chris Panetta give back to Shipley.
Edie Harding ’71 has spent her career ensuring a quality education for others. As Senior Program Officer for the Bill & Melinda Gates Foundation, she focuses primarily on early childhood development, particularly for low-income students and students of color, and is a strong supporter for integrated social-emotional curricula such as Shipley’s own SEED program.
“I teach because I love the children, the families, and the teachers,” says Kindergarten teacher Claire Grillo. “At Shipley, I love the warmth of the community. While we have a solid curriculum, teachers have latitude, so we can explore learning with the kids.” Learn more about Claire and why she loves teaching.
As the school year comes to a close, our seniors are starting to say their goodbyes. This post is taken from a speech by senior and All School President Katie Balun, who spoke at a recent event welcoming new Shipley parents to our community.
It’s an important topic that’s sparked legal battles, political debates, and philosophical divides in communities across the country. Our roundtable explores the role of schools in navigating this complex subject. How are Shipley and other schools responding to the issues surrounding gender identity and sexuality diversity? Shipley’s Head of School and a national expert weigh in.
Prashant Bhuyan ’96 is a digital entrepreneur and cognitive data scientist who specializes in developing artificial intelligence solutions to help financial enterprises make better informed decisions. Shipley provided him with a “foundation to be introspective,” while also pushing him towards exploration that ultimately fostered his entrepreneurial spirit.
Studying Inspirational Figures is a hallmark of Shipley’s sixth-grade curriculum, culminating in an Instagram-style final project in history class. Here, students in Ms. Boreanaz’s class give us an inside look at the project process.
During this February’s All School Assembly, Shipley’s 6th Grade School Choir performed “You Are Courageous to Me,” an original song with music and lyrics by Sarah Shoumer ’23, a new student at Shipley this year. In this post, Sarah tells us how she took her song from the page to the stage.
As the school year closes, Steve finds inspiration in learning about the Shipley experience from many members of the community, and shares an important thought for the summer break, “The time to reflect often results in greater growth than being overscheduled.”
While mindfulness is something I’ve been interested in for a while, I only began seriously looking into it about a year ago. I started making regular practice a part of my life in the beginning of March, and already I can see a difference.
As an English teacher, it is important to me that my students learn to be effective writers, but it is also important to me that they are critical readers, thoughtful analyzers, and competent communicators. If I want to assess writing skills, the assessment has to be a paper. However, sometimes I want to assess something else for which writing is not the best or only option.
The end of the academic year is quickly approaching, and as schedules get hectic, Steve reminds us to slow down and enjoy the moment. He talks about the student-planned Impact Day activities in each division, and the last All-School Assembly of the year, the highly anticipated Oaks and Acorns celebration.
Picture this: there’s an instructor at the front of the class, and she’s teaching students how to read. Here’s the twist: these “students” aren’t your typical elementary school students – they’re your typical elementary school teachers. And in the workshop, titled “The Challenge of Learning to Read,” we were going to get to experience all over again what it was like to learn to read just as our students do in our classrooms every day.
With the completion of Shipley's Learning and Research Center (also known as "The LARC"), the opportunity arose to sift through the library's book collection. In this post, librarian and English teacher Kate Gearhart takes us through the history of some of the things she found left behind in the library.
From choosing which test is right for you to aiming for your perfect score, in this three-part series, Shipley students give the inside scoop on college admissions exams. In this week’s post, Eliza Green ‘18 and Natalie Shah ‘18 break down the ACT section by section to give insight into boosting your score.
Confidence to Explore: In this series, Shipley alumni show how the confidence they gained from their Shipley education didn’t end on graduation day. In this post, Maddie Norris ’12 explains how her experiences with Shipley’s French program and The Brain Tree School led her to Uganda and France today.
Inspired by the NCAA March Madness tournament, Steve stresses the importance of balance in the lives of our student-athletes. "We should have them in programs that stress the importance of balance in their lives – after all, even for athletes able to earn a scholarship, an athletics career will rarely last beyond college graduation."
From choosing which test is right for you to aiming for your perfect score, in this three-part series, Shipley students give the inside scoop on college admissions exams. In this week’s post, Shipley’s Natalia Joseph ’17 gives her top SAT testing tips.
The Ilyases were looking for something more than just an excellent academic education when they explored independent schools for their children. They wanted a school where their kids were going to be free to define themselves and feel a strong sense of community. Learn more about the Ilyases and how Shipley’s environment supports each child’s sense of identity.
Shipley's Lower School Student Council aims to strengthen the Lower School community by identifying and improving various aspects of the School, from lunch selections to after-school programs. Learn more about Lower School Student Council and hear from the students about why they feel it's important.
Andy Shepherd has been teaching at Shipley for 17 years, and for 17 years, he’s been giving back to the School. As the recipient of financial aid to attend private school, he says he gives to Shipley “to create opportunities for kids out there like me, who want a better opportunity.” Learn more about Andy Shepherd and why he gives back to Shipley.
You’ve probably seen Dana Veraldi ‘02’s t-shirts on friends and in magazines. Her brand book is a portfolio both of her products and her art. With fans like Justin Bieber, Orlando Bloom, and Mark Ruffalo, DEERDANA has achieved a cult following. Read about how this artist and Shipley alumna got her start and how her success has grown.
Members of Shipley’s DECA team attended a three-day State Career Development Conference in Hershey, PA, with 10 members qualifying for the International Career Development Conference, the most in Shipley’s DECA history.
In this month's letter, Steve speaks to the "remarkably positive" atmosphere and sense of things at Shipley. From a very successful Swamp Night, to athletics championships, to the fifth grade Think, Care, Act Fair, February has been a wonderful month for the Shipley community.
Vincent Fumo ’16 says that the most important part of his growth as a person at Shipley was rooted in the diversity of activities and clubs that were available to him. “These experiences have helped me learn who I am and what I love to do,” he says. In addition to a rich array of extracurricular options, Vincent appreciates the academic depth and breadth of his Shipley experience, and that he was able to tailor it to his specific interests. Learn more about Vincent and how Shipley prepared him for the future.
“I think writers are writers from the beginning,” says Roxana Barry Robinson ’64, who has enjoyed a decades-long career as a critically acclaimed journalist and author of fiction and biography. In her role as president at the Authors Guild, Robinson looks after the future of the writing profession. Read more about this award-winning author and Shipley alumna.
Shipley’s Girls’ Varsity Basketball team beat Germantown Academy 52-47 to win the PAISAA State Championship. This is the fourth state title in six years for the Gators and the third state title for Head Coach Sean Costello.
Mallory Avnet ’16 was shy and insecure when she first entered Shipley in eighth grade, but her experience in the Middle School musical changed all of that. “I reached higher, dared bigger, and smiled wider with each and every practice. Not only did I make friends for a lifetime, but I also finally became the girl I so longed to be,” she says. Learn more about Mallory, how she gained confidence, and how Shipley has prepared her for a very bright future.
Assistant Head of Middle School Stu Malcolm believes that “education should be more about process and less about content. ‘Content,’” he says, “is at our fingertips. The challenge is to give students the skills to manage, evaluate, and synthesize it into a meaningful whole.” Learn more about modern day Renaissance man, Stu Malcolm.
Leo Duke ’16 credits Shipley with making him the person he is today. Leo’s teachers engaged his critical thinking skills, pushed him to do his very best work, and made him feel like they were partners in his education. He simultaneously felt like he was part of a supportive community while maintaining his individuality and was pushed to “run to the roar” of life. Learn more about Leo and how Shipley has prepared him for life.
In our rapidly-changing world, there is a lot of uncertainty about the future. What skills, knowledge, and experiences will our students need in order to thrive professionally and personally? How can Shipley and other schools ensure that students are future ready? Shipley administrators and alumni weigh in on the topic.
Lauren Grajewski ’16 transferred to Shipley in her sophomore year of high school. She chose Shipley because of its strong theatre program and theatre faculty, who were invested in her success. Next year, she will attend NYU’s Tisch School of the Arts for a BFA in Acting in the Stella Adler Studio. Learn more about Lauren Grajewski and how Shipley prepared her for the future.
Traditional exams and testing have climbed the ranks of what’s trending in education. Across all disciplines and grade levels, Shipley teachers are exploring new and more effective methods of assessment to broaden the spectrum of their students’ understanding of the material being taught in the classroom. Learn more about how Shipley students are making the grade beyond testing and learning more in the process.
What’s so special about Friday’s one o’clock bell in the Middle School? Mini courses, of course! These half-hour sessions focus on letting the students take control to explore new hobbies, grow their passions, and learn about themselves in the process. Read more about mini courses in the Middle School.
Dr. Piltch reflects fondly on time shared with two dear colleagues who recently passed in this month's letter. "Coach and Graham were birds of a feather. Although I do not think either one of them would have identified himself as a role model or mentor, they both used their roles as educators to impact people beyond the level that anyone could expect or anticipate."
Elise Dadourian ’16 had always been cast as the “innocent ingénue” in Shipley’s musical productions, until she was given the role of the provocative, Mae-West-inspired character in Godspell. “I was unquestionably out of my comfort zone. In order to master the character, I had to work hard,” she admits. Her extensive research, practice, dedication to the process, and self-discipline allowed her to successfully depict the character. “I learned to push myself beyond my insecurities, which is a lesson that I will apply to my non-theatrical pursuits in the future.” Read more about Elise and how Shipley has prepared her for the future.
Sophia Korfmann ’16 was pleasantly surprised by her fellow students’ motivation and excitement to learn when she first arrived at Shipley as a seventh grader. She found that the relationships she formed with her teachers and peers amplified her own learning. Sophia was particularly engaged by her interdisciplinary courses, which forced her to examine questions from multiple perspectives and gave her a greater understanding of different subjects. Learn more about Sophia and how Shipley helped prepare her for the future.
Nicholas Ragaglia ’16 feels well prepared for college and life, thanks to Shipley’s focus on academic freedom and support for individuality. “Growing up in the Shipley community, I have always been given room to do what I need to do to succeed. It is this philosophy that I think best prepared me for college,” he says. Learn more about Nicholas and how Shipley prepared him for the future.
McKinley Lovett ’16 recognizes the fact that while Shipley has prepared her well for academic and professional success in the future, she has more importantly learned how to be a good person in her 11 years as a student here. “I have learned the importance of kindness, friendship, integrity, and giving back to the community,” says the future Harvard graduate. Learn more about McKinley and how Shipley has prepared her for the future.
When Maya Overton ’16 came to Shipley as a freshman from her local public school, she never dreamed that she’d one day be Shipley’s All School President. As a STEM-oriented student, she never dreamed that she’d find interests in the humanities. In Shipley’s intimate community, she was challenged to venture outside of her comfort zone, where she felt supported by her teachers and peers and excelled. Read more about Maya and how Shipley has prepared her for the future.
Are K-12 Schools Ready For The Shift In College Admissions? Clearly, most of the work involved, to transition to the type of admissions process recommended in the report, is in the hands of educators at the elementary and high school level. Steve Piltch is Head of School at The Shipley School, a pre-K through 12 independent, coeducational day school in Bryn Mawr, Pennsylvania. Shipley promotes an environment that promotes creativity and curiosity, values intellectual effort, and encourages moral integrity and concern for the community.
The Shipley School is a private, coeducational day school for pre-kindergarten through 12th grade students, located in Bryn Mawr, PA. Through our commitment to educational excellence, we develop within each student a love of learning and a desire for compassionate participation in the world.