Absent the Theater Project, there’s still lots to do


To the Editor:

I am a Tisbury School parent, and I am writing in the wake of the loss of the Fourth Grade Theater Project. I know nothing about the decision to end the project — how and why it was made, or how it was communicated to the members of the theater — beyond the information published in The Times, and I do not mean to comment on those issues. I am writing, instead, simply to share some of the amazing arts and extracurricular activities that are being offered at the Tisbury School. My guess is that parents from each of our schools has a similar list to share.

My son is participating in this year’s fourth grade play project, and he is absolutely loving it. While students will not take part in all aspects of putting on a play, they are having a ball and will remember the experience, I would imagine, for the rest of their lives. They will also participate in the annual puppet show, in which they will write the story, make the puppets and sets, choreograph dance numbers, and perform and show it all to their families and peers.

These are just two of many examples. Our school offers clubs for gardening, cooking, chess, debate, and yearbook. We have a literary magazine written entirely by students. We have the seventh and eighth grade play and a daily news program, shown to the entire school, which is written, performed, filmed, and directed by students. All of this is in addition to music, band, orchestra, art, home economics, shop, and computer science, and two full-time and terrific librarians, who offer assistance and guidance in finding books, researching projects, and exploring all aspects of a library and its offerings. This is all continuing, in spite of the cutbacks and reductions seen elsewhere in our country.

While the loss of the Theater Project is a tremendous one, and I am saddened about any negative impact to the people who tirelessly participated and made it possible for many years, our kids still have a tremendous depth and breadth of activities from which to choose, designed to enrich their lives, broaden and nurture their artistic and creative expression, and keep them thoroughly engaged and excited by their education and lives at school. This is an amazing gift, for which I, for one, feel extraordinarily grateful.

Karen Burke