Welcome from the Head of School
Urban School believes there is a better way to educate high school students.”
In an uncertain world, schools, like families, find strength in their core values – the things that truly matter to them, that define them. As Urban has responded to the shifting realities of the pandemic and a national reckoning with racism, we have looked to our guiding principles to both sustain and motivate us.
Urban has never believed that institutional or individual success should be measured or understood through lofty SAT scores, flashy college acceptances, athletic championships or impressive GPAs – though all are abundantly manifest at the school today. We believe that a truly aspirational education also cultivates more intangible and enduring qualities of mind and character: empathy, optimism, determination, open-mindedness, creativity, analytical acuity, and, in a way that is surely more urgent than ever, an authentic investment in making our world a better place.
Easier said than done, of course. But, as you dig into the Urban website, note the commitment to sustained dialogue about complex topics; curricular freedom to ignite and honor student interest; myriad arenas for collaboration and innovation; and an authentic commitment to community engagement, equity and social justice. Most of all, sense if you can, the unique alchemy of the Urban culture – the joyful, purposefully engaged community of learners proud to be part of a singular institution ever restless to improve.
Ultimately, of course, I hope your interest in Urban can go beyond the virtual – that you’ll talk to current students and parents/guardians, ask alumni how their Urban lessons became life lessons, and – let’s hope before too, too long – visit us in person. Until then, I wish you good health and continued energy to confront the challenges of the day.
Head of School
Head of School
Before joining Urban School in July 2019, Dan completed a year as Interim Head of School at Crystal Springs Uplands School in Hillsborough. Prior to that from 2003-2017, he was Head at the Wheeler School, an 825-student, PreK-12th grade independent school in Providence, RI. Before his headship at Wheeler, Dan was Head of Upper School and Assistant Head at Kent Denver School in Colorado, Dean of Students at Riverdale Country School in the Bronx, NY, and a teacher and coach at St. Ann’s School in Brooklyn, NY. He earned his BA from Amherst College, and both an MA in History and a PhD in the History of American Civilization from Harvard University.