April 30, 2018


Dear Middle School Families,


This morning, I had the opportunity to meet with the Middle School faculty for the first time since being named Interim Head of Middle School. It was a time for them to ask questions, talk about the transition to ensure stability in teaching and learning, and come together in the spirit of community. I am honored to join this faculty and staff who truly believe in the transformative power of education. Their dedication to Middle School students and devotion to their craft is a joy to see.


On Friday, faculty and staff learned that Libby Conder, Assistant Head of Middle School, will not return to ESD next year. Mike Jenkins noted, "For the last five years Libby has served the MS, its teachers, students, and parents, with care, compassion, and understanding. I have rarely come into contact with anyone who pours as much into what they do as she does. Her energy and desire in getting things done have allowed the Middle School to move forward and accomplish many goals over the past years. My appreciation for what she has done to help so many of us cannot be overstated."


The search for a new Assistant Head of Middle School has begun internally, as ESD's Middle School has qualified educators who would bring invaluable knowledge and experience in ESD culture to the position. The Reverend Amy Heller, Ruth Burke, and teachers Davis Felder '06 and Ruth Howell have agreed to serve on the hiring team with me as we begin this process of discernment. As noted in the job description, "The successful Assistant Head of Middle School is approachable and welcoming while maintaining a high degree of confidentiality, providing a source of calm and poise in the face of conflict and high-stress situations. The role requires the ability to balance working as a mentor, coach, and advocate for the students and as a disciplinarian to support the school culture. A core responsibility is to ensure that student life outside of the formal classroom setting is rich, rewarding, fun, and consistent with the School's overall values and mission." We are confident that we will find the ideal candidate for this important position.


I am looking forward to seeing many of you at the coffee on Thursday, May 10!



Chelle Wabrek
Head of Lower School
Interim Head of Middle School Designate


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