The Broad Potential of All-School Meetings

CJ Bukowski '23, Staff Writer

By now, we’ve all settled into our school year—having gone through our first cycle of tests (for both COVID-19 and classes), performances, advisor meetings, and class meetings. Yet, a new addition to these weekly obligations is the All-School Meeting.
While the program may be young, All-School meetings could potentially become an integral part of Loomis’ schedule and, consequently, our traditions. As such, these meetings should be recognized for the expansive potential they possess.
Above all, the most obvious and accessible benefit of All-School Meetings lies in their capacity to craft school spirit—and you don’t have to take my word for it. “Every school I’ve worked at has had at least one weekly All-School Meeting,” Dean of PGs and Student Life & Wellness Jessica Matzkin said.
The reason for this unanimous implementation is that All-School Meetings are the only form of routine engagement that involves the entire school community. Nowhere else can we gather everyone together for an hour consistently, or build a sense of normalcy with the entirety of our school. By promoting personal engagement within our broad community, All-School Meetings play an important role in knitting a cohesive Loomis’ identity.
And what better way to define school identity than distinct campus traditions? Recently, Loomis has been building its school spirit with the addition of events such as the Pelican Games, and should strive to continue this momentum via All-School Meetings. In doing so, these meetings solve the crux of Loomis’ tradition-forming difficulty: getting some 800 total Loomis community members to come together and stay together.
By overcoming such an obstacle, Loomis is able to reap the immense benefit of a wide-ranging creative domain within these loosely scheduled meetings. The content of these meetings could range from something as impactful as having the Student Council act as the main manager of the meetings to something far simpler. “Even just [having] seniors [leave] first.” Matzkin said.
Furthermore, All-School Meetings uniquely provide valuable extracurricular opportunities to the students of Loomis.
“I look at it as a great opportunity for students to make an announcement in front of the whole school, share campus-wide club activities that wouldn’t get attention otherwise, and even to highlight certain students and faculty that we otherwise wouldn’t be able to.” Matzkin said.
These opportunities touch on diverse areas like professional skills in public speaking to the identity building of club publicity and community spotlights. Better yet, student and faculty spotlights in general boast another benefit by creating familiarity between students, faculty, and the administration—relationships that are otherwise difficult to cultivate almost anywhere else.
Now with an awareness of the school spirit, potential traditions, and student opportunities that All-School Meetings can deliver, it is up to us to put them into action. We have a chance to create a truly remarkable experience in which All-School Meetings become native to many different generations of Loomis students and faculty.