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Welcoming Gordon's new Middle School Director

Matthew Boyd joins Gordon's Leadership Team

 


Dear Gordon Community,

I am excited to announce the appointment of Matthew Boyd as Gordon's new Middle School Director.

In Matthew, we have found a deeply relational leader with a remarkable track record cultivating spaces of trust and belonging in schools that center the wellbeing of young people—and the adults that care for them—and honor the diversity of identities, perspectives and backgrounds that define an authentic learning community.

This decision is the culmination of a monthslong, multilayered process that allowed the search committee to construct a deep understanding of the candidates, interacting with them in a variety of contexts, reviewing rich feedback from parents, students, faculty, administration and staff, and engaging in detailed conversations with references. At the conclusion of this enlightening journey, Matthew’s authenticity, passion for Gordon’s mission, sense of fun and ease, and, most importantly, his commitment to placing children at the forefront of his work made him the search committee’s unanimous choice to be the next leader of Gordon’s Middle School.

During his two-day visit, Matthew met with students, faculty, staff, parents and trustees, and he was able to connect with, and respond to, each constituency’s vision for Gordon’s future. The feedback from these conversations emphasized Matthew's skills as a responsive listener, an empathic educator and an experienced instructional leader. Again and again, respondents were drawn to the warmth, respect and enthusiasm he was able to display in even the smallest interactions. As one student observed, "I think he will relate well to us because he liked having little moments of connection in the hallway, even when you were just going to fill up your water bottle." 

The search committee heard the spirit of that student’s words reflected in the experience of Gordon graduates who were thrilled by the possibility of Matthew coming to their alma mater and very sad that he could be leaving Wheeler School, where Matthew has been since 2013 and currently serves as the Upper School Dean of Students. 

At Wheeler, he has taken on a range of roles, overseeing advisory and co-curricular programs, teaching history and serving as the history department chair. As dean of students, Matthew led the efforts to incorporate restorative practices, engaging in research and professional development to craft a system that focuses on repairing community harm in ways that reflect and amplify the school's standards and values. These endeavors closely parallel work that Gordon's Middle School has undertaken over the past five years. 

Matthew holds a B.A. in English from Bowdoin College and a Master’s degree in Independent School Leadership from Vanderbilt University, and he has training in restorative practices from Restorative Solutions, Inc, and in RULER, a systemic approach to social and emotional learning developed at the Yale Center for Emotional Intelligence.

Upon news of his appointment, Matthew shared, “I am truly delighted, honored and humbled to have the opportunity to become the next Middle School director at Gordon. While I have had the pleasure of working with many Gordon alumni during my years at Wheeler, I am eager to see firsthand how the progressive values and habits of critical thinking develop, and to contribute to the joyful learning that was so clear during my visit to campus. I look forward to collaborating with the faculty, staff, families and students that make this such a unique and special place.”

While Matthew’s official start date is July 1st, we look forward to welcoming him back to our campus over the next few months, and getting to know his wife Aili and his three children, Wyatt, a rising seventh grader at Wheeler, and his twins, Hattie and Lily, who are in first grade in  Barrington public schools .

I had the honor of serving as co-chair for the search committee along with Irene Horton, who is our seventh and eighth grade dean and a Middle School math teacher as well as a Gordon parent. I want to, again, thank her and our colleagues, listed below, who served alongside us. The work was challenging, and the time, energy, humor and commitment each committee member brought to the table made the search a joyful and inspiring journey. 

Clare Blackmer Executive Assistant to the Head of School
Emilia Carrillo Middle School Spanish faculty, Gordon parent
Greg Carson Fifth and sixth grade dean, Middle School math faculty, Gordon parent
Alethea Dunham-Carson Assistant Head of School for Teaching and Learning
Minna Ham Lower School Director, Gordon parent
Marlon Henry Technology Director, Gordon parent
Kim Mongeon Middle School Assistant and Assistant to the Assistant Head for Teaching and Learning
Olivia Ordoñez School Counselor
Tamar Paull Middle School humanities faculty, Gordon parent

I also want to thank the faculty, staff, parents, caregivers and students who made time to connect with the four finalists for this position. These meetings allowed all of the candidates to get an authentic sense of what makes the Gordon community so special, and I was proud to see our school reflected back at me so beautifully through their experience.

With excitement for the journey ahead,

Noni Thomas López, Ed.D
Head of School

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