Groton School celebrated the graduating Form of 2020 on May 31 with a virtual ceremony full of tradition as well as a few surprises.
While most of the event—from the opening invocation and bagpiper to speeches, prizes, and the headmaster's final "Go well!"—mirrored an on-campus Prize Day, a unique portion came during the awarding of diplomas. The school had sent the traditional boater hats worn on Prize Day to each of the eighty-four graduates around the world, asking them to submit videos of themselves as if they had just received their diplomas. continued
Finding Inspiration, Guidance in the Words of Dr. King
Groton School Headmaster Temba Maqubela expressed hope that, amidst uprisings in American cities following the tragic death of George Floyd, people will listen to the words that Dr. Martin Luther King Jr. delivered at Groton School in 1963.
"Use the inspiration of Martin Luther King to get through," Mr. Maqubela advised, recalling how the words of Nelson Mandela provided him with strength while he was exiled from South Africa for his anti-apartheid activities.... continued
Watch the Form of 2020 Celebration
The graduates' very unique diploma "acceptances" begin at 1:09:04.
Graduates asked for "fan faces," and they got them! A video at the end of the Saturday awards ceremony presented the large photos-on-a-stick, one for each Sixth Former, attached to the students' actual Lower School study hall seats in the Schoolroom, to pews in the Chapel, and in the form of "2020" on the Circle. Watch the fun.
Can't Stop the Music: Two Concerts Go Virtual
Distance didn't stop the music—Groton School's musicians produced two virtual concerts during spring term, reminding the community of the joy of campus concerts and open mic nights. continued
Where Are They Now? Brian W. Ford English Faculty, 1981–88
What aspects of working at Groton stand out to you now?
The two things I loved best about my time at Groton were teaching with my wife's office a few steps away from my classroom and seeing my older son, Win, around campus—in the Chapel, in the Schoolroom, on the basketball court, on the river—during his Second and Third Form years (after which we left, Burch and my boys for Milton, I for Noble and Greenough). For me, a family closeness some might have found claustrophobic felt right. Perhaps having lived in Senegal for two years in the Peace Corps had given me a taste for an older way of living. continued