Head of School Jeff Burroughs helping coach the triple jump during track practice on April 5, 2021

This afternoon I had a chance to coach some athletes learning to triple jump. I have always enjoyed coaching, and working with teenagers puts a smile on my face. I came to track and field through a connection with my father. I remember countless Saturday afternoons with him at the old Gutterson Fieldhouse on the UVM campus in Burlington, Vermont. When I got old enough to help him as he officiated the triple and long jumps at collegiate track meets, I had the important task of raking the pit. I’ll leave it to the reader to imagine how level the pit had to be to pass my father’s standards, but rest assured, they were exacting, and he was always patient enough to help me meet them. I think we made a pretty good team.

Today was just the first of what I hope to be many chances to work with a group of aspiring triple jumpers. Getting outside, even on a gray spring day, and interacting with athletes, masks and all, brightened my mood and lifted my spirits. I heard laughter as jumpers advanced from clumsy to coordinated. I saw smiles behind masks as they experienced moments of success. I witnessed the beginning of what is sure to be a team of athletes entering a spring season with a great deal of hope.

I share their hope. Athletics were an important part of my high school and college experiences, and I hope that all of our students–athletes, performing artists, and the rest of us who will have the opportunity to spectate at games, matches, concerts, and plays for the first time in a year–can celebrate the resilience of our community this spring.

Thanks for all that you have done and continue to do to keep our students safe and in school.

Be well and stay safe.

Jeffrey Burroughs