Our New Mission Statement and All for One

Our New Mission Statement and All for One —- The Power of Common Language


On January 15th, we announced Jackson Academy’s new mission statement to our school community. While I had the honor of presenting it, the new mission statement was developed collaboratively through a yearlong process by twenty members of the Mission Statement Task Force. At the same event, Lisa Jordan with the firm Mindpower revealed our school’s new branding identity. Some have asked, “Why is this important?”  Personalizing the question, some may ask, “What does it mean for me? For my children? For my role as a faculty member, a staff member?”  One of the things we heard leading up to the announcement was that many people did not know our previous mission statement. In fact, our two student members of the Mission Statement Task Force informed the task force in the very first meeting that they did not know our mission statement or that the school even had a mission statement. Though the previous mission statement was prominently placed in the Parent/Student Handbook and displayed in the halls of our classroom buildings, the mission statement was not part of our regular conversations and everyday discourse.

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Conversations with JA Sophomores Prove Rewarding and Informative

Cliffs-Blog-Photo-webPresident Kling’s first meeting with (from left): Jack White, Logan Anderson, Zach Brister, and Jacob Touchstone.

During a visit last year with a head of school in another state, my colleague shared that he meets with all of his school’s seniors in small groups. I decided then that I would create a similar practice at Jackson Academy. I look forward to meeting with our seniors to ask for their reflections on the total Jackson Academy experience as they begin to transition from students to alumni. As I thought more about meeting with seniors, I felt it would be a lost opportunity to meet with our students for the first time in the spring of their senior year just as they are about to graduate and leave campus. So I decided to meet in the fall with our sophomores to strengthen my relationships with them – relationships that will continue to be nurtured over the next two-and-a-half years. And when those same students come to my office for the meeting in their senior year, they will be returning to a familiar place with the knowledge that their opinions and thoughts matter not only as “almost” alumni, but also during their Upper School years.

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A Student for a Day at Jackson Academy

Click here to view all of the photos from President Kling’s experience as a student on Facebook.

This past Thursday, I experienced one of the best days I have ever had at Jackson Academy in the 14-plus years I have served the school.  I had the wonderful privilege of being a student for the day. I shadowed junior Ben McDowell beginning at 7:55 a.m. in first period A.P. U.S. History and concluding with basketball practice that ended at 4:15 p.m. I fully participated in all of Ben’s activities including a pre-calculus test and Coach Ball’s legendary basketball conditioning. I am grateful to Ben for being such an incredible host and a great sport.

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