Contributions to the Country School community and individual and collective excellence were honored during the 2018 Prize Day celebration. Head of School John Fixx prefaced the award ceremony by saying that while prizes are nice to receive, sometimes the accomplishments that give you the most satisfaction will be ones that no one notices and for which you never win a trophy or book. It might be that you studied harder than you ever have before or that you sacrificed an entire Sunday to write a paper that really engaged you. "How you feel inside after working your hardest matters a whole lot more than a cup or certificate handed out in front of others," he said.
Mr. Fixx admitted that there are two schools of thought on the awarding of prizes, and Country School faculty members are talking about the role of prizes and recognition on campus and considering both sides. Some believe that life is filled with moments where you won't "win" the prize or be hired for the job you want or accepted to a certain school, he said. "You'll have to grind it out, show resilience and move on." Others say we're "a close community, a community of cooperation, and it's hard to have a minority of students receive something the day before graduation and the majority not," he continued.
"The important part, as I say to students, is that how you've achieved is more important than whether you get a ribbon or a bowl or a book or a cup," he said. "What you've earned in your heart is what matters. Do take satisfaction in the way you've grown. We talk about that as a faculty—watching your academic and social progress, seeing how you've grown, from 4th Grade to 5th Grade to now. Take great satisfaction in that."
After thanking members of the student leadership team, teachers marking anniversary years at school, the PTA, and those departing from the community, the faculty then presented the awards. The following prizes were awarded to members of the Class of 2018:
Art Prize: Kayla U.
Band Prize: Ava C. and Kayla U.
Chorus Award: Lila S. and Wiley J.
Musical Theater Award: John A.
Sarah Barber Performing Arts Award: Claire L.
Helena Fountain Music Prize: Ava C.
Lifers Award: Charlie B., Ava C., Maggie C., Viraj D., TJ G., Wiley J., Alex S., Lila S., Meryl S., Gavin W.
Sandboxers: Maria C., Emily G., Phineas S.
Ruth Lee Sherwood Memorial Prize for Excellence in English: Ava H.
David T. MacLane Creative Writing Prize: Maggie C.
Gene Scott Connor French Prize: Catherine A., Charlie B., John D., Will D., TJ G., Ava H., Kristia K., Kayla U., Ryan W.
Harmon Latin Prize: Charlie B. and Ava H.
Spanish Prize: Viraj D. and Lila S.
Jane Shaw History Prize: Celia D.
Mathematics Prize: Ava H.
Science Prize: Catherine A.
Technology Prize: John A.
Interscholastic Athletic Award: Lila S. and Phin S.
Physical Education Prize: Viraj D.
Cox Bowl: Catherine A., Maggie C., Gavin W., Ryan W.
Community Service Award: John A.
David Bennett Outdoor Education Award: Lila S. and Allen L.
Most Improved Award: Maggie C.
Steve Danenberg Spirit and Passion Award: Christopher M. and Ryan W.
Edward Blatchford Award for Integrity: Ava H.lett
Headmaster's Bowl: Global Language Team
Faculty Prize: Meryl S.
In addition, the following younger students received awards:
MacLane Poetry winners: 3rd Place: William M., 2nd Place: Christopher C., 1st Place: Alexander B.
Community Service: Kami B., 7th Grade:
Robinson Scholar Award: Joseph M., 7th Grade
Finally, all members of the class of 2018 were presented with specially inscribed journals and invited to the front of the stage to receive applause from their audience. Well done, class of 2018!