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Marlborough creates a new community pledge

Over the last year, Marlborough administration has come together to create the Community Pledge. Director of  Upper School Laura Hotchkiss, Director of Equity and Inclusion Jenn Wells, Science Department Head Lisa Ellis, Director of Middle School Sean Fitts, Middle School Psychologist Morgan Duggan, Director of Educational Counseling Services Marissa Crandall, Dean of College Counseling Brian K Smith, 10th grade Dean Sandra Battiata, mathematics instructor Lisette Valladares, History Instructor Mabel Wong, Dean of Faculty Helen Mendoza and Health and Wellness Instructor Nicole Beck joined the Honor and Disciplinary Committee.

The Committee reviewed the school’s Honor Code, the Understanding, which is the expectation and responsibility of the community to uphold the school’s values, and lastly the process used for any violations. After each school year, the Honor Code is re-examined;this year, however, the Honor Code has much larger changes than it has in the past, as it transforms into the Community Pledge.

Staff Illustrator Ruby ’23

The goal of the Community Pledge is to outline principles and expectations for all members of the community and tie them to Marlborough’s core values. These core values were outlined for students, parents and faculty over the summer: Stand with others, Champion inclusion, Aim high, Trust in myself, Act with Integrity, Be kind, Cultivate purpose.
Research began in the fall of 2019 as the committee looked at schools similar to Marlborough across America. The committee researched those schools’ honor codes and how the honor codes were implemented into each school’s respective environment. Hotchkiss led the committee in their research of honor codes nationwide.

“We wanted to know what else was happening in schools like Marlborough to find out how they committed to honor and community values,” Hotchkiss said.

Students also played a role in the creation of the new Community Pledge. Affinity groups, Student Academic Advisory Committee (SAAC) and the Honor Forum were all instrumental in the formation of the Community Pledge.
The Community Pledge will be presented to students and other faculty members at an All-School Meeting, previously called the Honor Assembly. Due to the changes to the Honor Code, the meeting will be renamed as the Community Pledge Assembly.

Another person who contributed to the creation of the Community Pledge was Beck. The main goal of the creation of the Community Pledge is to make the expectations of students and teachers clear and straightforward.
“We felt strongly that the community pledge made the values livable and in line with behavioral expectations of the Marlborough community,” Beck said. “It is worded positively, meaning it says what we expect of everyone, instead of what we do not.”

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