Picture Perfect First Day

Summer heat was still in full force yesterday, but the high temperatures were surpassed by the enthusiasm of Poly students and faculty on both campuses returning to school for the 2023-2024 year.

At Dyker Heights, Director of Student Life Jared Winston, welcomed Middle and Upper School students with a program assembled on our new baseball field. In the Lower School, students were greeted with bubbles and music.

Interim Head of School John Rankin, who is starting his 40th year at Poly, asked students to “believe in all possibilities for themselves.” He continued by reflecting on the year ahead, saying the day marked “a chance to start anew, to build on what we have learned and done, with an eye toward starting afresh. We are a learning community, where everyone develops individually in their best ways and collectively as members of a great civic education project.”

Upper School Spirit Captains and Upper School President Luke Farris ’24 had the students cheering, not only for the Poly T-shirts that were tossed their way, but also for the great year we all look forward to having together. The program concluded with the traditional Grade 12 singing the Poly Song to Grade 5 students.

Throughout the day’s activities, there was plenty of laughter and catching up with friends, along with icy treats before the buses arrived.

In Park Slope, the excitement was equally lively. “The Lower School was all joy and energy,” said Dr. Francis Yasharian P’36. “It was such a treat to visit classrooms to see how much our students grew over the summer and to preview some of the fun plans each grade will enjoy this year! From studying bridges and learning how to read, to painting special stools and eating in the cafeteria for the first time or being the leaders of the school, everyone had something to cheer about!”

“I am also looking forward to what we will accomplish together as a community this year,” said Rankin. “Seeing the joy that our students have in being back together, I know we will build on that and make this a special year.”