Head of Middle School Jen Schuckman Welcomes Students

Jen Schuckman, Head of Middle School, was thrilled to have a full MS assembly in Eliot Chapel for the first time since the pandemic began. It was the perfect way to welcome all the students back for the start of the 2022-2023 school year. Here are her remarks.

Good morning and welcome to MICDS, to the Middle School, and to the 2022-2023 school year. I have to tell you that this opening moment is always so special, but today is especially joyous to me as it has been such a long time since we have been able to launch our new school year together in this beautiful, sacred space. It is so amazing to see this room full of your happy smiles and to feel the palpable anticipation of all the greatness that lies ahead. And I hope that you can take in the energy that fills this chapel when we gather as a community. You should always walk into this space with a deep sense of pride, a comforting feeling of belonging, and the highest order of respect as we acknowledge the history of the generations before us and celebrate who we are as the MICDS middle school today.

So despite our dreary weather, the first day of school can never feel gloomy. We hold great hope and excitement as we embark on this new year together. And what excites us today? What brings us joy as we anticipate the year?

Is it…

The sound of our alarm clock and waking up early?

The delight of doing homework every night?

The excitement of taking assessments?



Seeing old friends and making new friends?

Meeting your teachers and advisor?

Taking a new world language?

Learning code?

Trying out watercolors?

Playing tchoukball for the first time?

Enjoying camps and field trips?

Finding a fantastic new book series in the library?

Having delicious lunches together?

Starting a fall sport or joining a club?

For me, I love the noise…the rumble of feet up and down the stairs, the clanking of the locker doors, the cheerful “thank yous” as classes are dismissed, the squeaky sounds of new instruments in band, the joyful giggles in the hallways,…all the sounds of middle school life as we know and love. We are a community that works hard but finds the joy in the everyday. There is no place I would rather spend my days!

I want to thank you all for honoring our space today here in the chapel. And I look forward to seeing you apply that same level of respect to each and every corner of this campus. There has been an extraordinary amount of work and care invested into making sure our buildings, our technology, our grounds, our food, and all of our systems are ready for you today. And now that you are here, it is all of our responsibility to be sure we take good care of our MICDS home.

So let’s all do the right thing…