July 1, 2022

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Public education creates vital connections in our communities

7 min read


The following graduation deal with was specified to the Exeter Higher University Class of 2022 on June 11.

Graduates, mother and father, people, teachers, directors and distinguished attendees:

Thank you to Exeter Substantial School’s 2022 senior course for inviting me to give a keynote speech. It is the two an honor and humbling, as perfectly as overwhelming to discover acceptable phrases for these kinds of an important event in your lives. And I am painfully informed that if I go on for much too long, I am delaying your long-awaited graduation and the great ensuing celebration.

As a nearby business owner and energetic local community member, my continual concentration is on “building local community.” As Principal Monahan described, our mission at Water Street Bookstore is “To construct a diverse and vivid local community all around the prepared word.” Hence, to communicate about your position in creating group really should obviously be my matter. But supplying advice is usually a slippery slope. I believe it would be improved to explain to a couple tales, one particular from just one of my readings about the pure globe, and a single from correct listed here in our seacoast communities, and then finish with some hopes and needs for all of you graduating seniors.

Dan Chartrand

Exeter Significant University graduation: Class of 2022 urged to be their ‘best version’

All in five (or so) minutes.

If that seems superior, enable me continue.

There have been numerous textbooks in the earlier number of yrs that have motivated the way I believe about group. One of the most effective I have study, is “The Concealed Everyday living of Trees” by Peter Wohlleben. Right here is a minimal story tailored by me from that book:

In an previous advancement forest, the roots of personal trees are interconnected from developing alongside one another (about many yrs) instantly or frequently indirectly by fungal networks in between the root methods of person trees. These immediate and oblique connections produce nutrients from 1 tree to yet another. It is incredible to comprehend that all the personal trees in a wholesome doing the job forest are really a single big tremendous organism. Each individual individual tree offers and gets nutrients among by themselves in accordance to which tree is somewhat healthy or additional challenged, and therefore all the trees are holding each and every other and the whole forest more essential and alive. All these trees connected by an underground root system are a enormous corporation of progress and connection and passion.

So a lot taking place that we could not see, but the vital to a crucial forest just the identical.

When I believe about neighborhood communities I normally feel of that outdated-progress forest from my reading. All the thousands of people who make up our neighborhood communities are linked, but how do all those connections type and mature and take shape? How do the roots grow? There are our households of study course. There are also work areas, and retail retailers, and community spots. There are our neighborhoods. All these are vital for generating local community in our six towns of Brentwood, East Kingston, Exeter, Kensington, Newfields, and Stratham. But it turns out that a person of the finest sources for building these connections are our community faculty techniques.

Additional: Exeter Substantial School Graduation 2022

You graduating seniors are the beneficiaries of this instructional method, but by means of your schooling you are all in a incredibly real way the suggests by which we make a additional vital community. So, I want to thank you all for putting up with our neighborhood constructing exercising even though you have been finding educated. It wasn’t normally uncomplicated, particularly through the Covid pandemic. You may possibly say we pressure analyzed our neighborhood building skills about the previous handful of years.

Once more, don’t get me improper, the objective of these schools is to offer you universal accessibility to a public school education for just about every youngster in these 6 communities. But an amazing ancillary byproduct of these colleges is the development of a tremendous-organism of community. That is appropriate, the 6 elementary educational facilities in our six distinct communities, as very well as the Cooperative Center Faculty, and our Exeter Large College are a large firm of advancement and relationship and passion.  Just like that aged-growth forest.

So allow me tell you yet another story – this one particular from one particular of our nearby universities that illustrates just how that is effective:

There is a trainer retiring from Kensington Elementary University this month who has taught 2nd quality there for 39 several years. Her title is Wendy Lawler. Not only has Wendy taught there for all that time, she also attended quality college there and she graduated from Exeter Superior Faculty in 1976. In addition to that prolonged-standing link and passion for KES, Wendy’s father Richard Drew served on the Kensington School Board for 31 years and was acknowledged by former Gov. John Sununu for support to the city. He also served on the joint school board for Faculty Administrative Unit 16 the forerunner of the Cooperative College Board.

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So, between one particular father and one particular daughter that is 70 a long time of assistance to the city of Kensington. But it is not just the duration of the company, but the quality of Wendy’s service. She was an early adoptee of the “Kindness Circle” in her classroom. Numerous mornings her learners would gather in a circle and apply good community developing via the apply of expressing variety matters to every other. Wendy was an specialist at instructing second-graders to examine. She was passionate about all her students leaving her second-grade class with a basis for a lifestyle-extended love of looking at. Wendy or Mrs. Lawler to her pupils is a single of those academics who is extended remembered by her learners!

Now acquire that tale of Mrs. Lawler and her household in Kensington and multiply basically hundreds if not hundreds of instances more than the decades. How a lot of academics, and dad and mom, and volunteers, and administrators, and citizen/taxpayers (never forget the local taxpayers for goodness sakes) have developed how considerably growth and relationship and passion that we call local community? It is just spectacular how substantially neighborhood is created by our shared endeavor of public education. Breathtaking and extraordinary. Just like that outdated-development forest.

Only amazing.

Now, let’s go back again to that outdated expansion forest a single previous time.

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Sometimes in that previous-development forest there is a tree that is so essential in the net of connection of the entire tremendous-organism that even immediately after that tree dies off, the forest simply cannot give up that lifeless tree’s area in the root process. So that tree’s stump proceeds to stay. Nutrition are pumped to the trunk of that lifeless tree so the root method may be retained alive. That stump virtually can not be allowed to die. Devoid of that tree’s certain root system, the larger forest superorganism just simply cannot prosper. Decades after the death of this most critical tree you will discover a stump continue to environmentally friendly and rising. The forest refuses to give up on this stump and its root technique because basically the degree of link – or even far better – the degree of affection is so large.

So, what does this have to do with all of you graduating seniors? In this article is the point of my stories. Right here are my hopes and needs for you:

Very first, I would would like and hope for you to choose a minute correct now to try to remember people lecturers who impacted your existence in a profoundly favourable way over the past 13 or so a long time. Silently, let’s make it possible for your excellent ideas and superior needs towards them to be created manifest. I want you to send out nutrition to your still eco-friendly and growing memory of all those most important teachers and your link with them.

And finally, as you all graduate today I desire that you may perhaps all have terrific adventures. I hope you roam considerably and huge and see so substantially of this terrific good environment. But when you discover the put you will call property, I hope you will come across your put in the terrific typical endeavor we call community instruction. Whether it be as a father or mother, or a teacher, or a volunteer, or even as a supportive tax-payer, I would like you all to obtain a put in a secure local community in which the internet of connection and community through community schooling is potent, and vivid, and just. You all ought to have the blessing and gain of living in critical, educated communities. It truly is one of the most beneficial points in the globe.

Thank you for the opportunity to communicate with you nowadays!

Dan Chartrand is the operator of the Drinking water Road Bookstore in Exeter.

This write-up originally appeared on Portsmouth Herald: Commentary: Public schooling generates vital connections in communities



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