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Personal & Community Education (PACE)

PACE aims to provide our students with constructive opportunities to learn about themselves and others; reflect on and refine their bearing on social issues; and acquire knowledge and skills that maintain wellness. Three major initiatives will characterize PACE for the 2008-2009 school year.

Junior All-Class Meetings

Four special meetings of the junior class will be conducted over the course of the year. These meetings will focus on acculturation to citizenship and scholarship at Andover. During the fall term, juniors will assemble twice; once to receive peer wisdom form upperclassmen who will answer questions about living and learning at Andover, and a second time to receive advice on how to study successfully. During the winter term, juniors will assemble for a program of their own choosing. This might be a junior talent show, a discussion of life from the day and boarding perspectives, or another topic generated by the junior class. The last junior all-class meeting in the spring term will focus on transition from junior dorms to upperclassmen dorms and to a greater level of freedom and responsibility on campus.

The PACE Seminar for Lowers

As a complement to our terrific academic, athletics, and arts offerings, our tenth-graders will be afforded an opportunity to meet once a week over the fall term with a small number of their peers and adult facilitators to relax, reflect, and dialogue about topics germane to healthy adolescent development.

During either the fall term or winter term lowers will cover topics including understanding oneself and others, values, social identity and social bias, harassment, stress management, mental health and sexuality. Each PACE Seminar classgroup will explore topics in a manner that is most responsive to the particular needs and interests of the members of the group, with flexibility to address personal, campus and world issues that might arise.

Wellness Week

Wellness Week will expand the scope of the programs conducted over the four days traditionally slated for Freedom from Chemical Dependency Week to include health issues such as HIV/AIDS, eating disorders and other matters pertinent to adolescent health and development.

It is hoped that by (1) focusing our community’s attention on specific issues of health and wellness, (2) reducing academic workloads so that students can participate without feeling distracted or overburdened, and (3) providing stimulating and enriching programs, we will achieve an enhanced experience and increased efficiency over past models of health and wellness programs.

Andover’s first Wellness Week will take place over the evenings of Monday November 5th through Thursday November 8th. In addition to grade-specific evening programs, our All-School Meeting during Wellness Week will feature a presentation on the psychology of happiness provided by a member of Harvard University’s department of psychology.

Please feel free to contact Carlos Hoyt, Associate Dean of Students and PACE Coordinator for more information.