We offer an ideal setting for educational enrichment, and students take full advantage of our pastoral ninety-acre campus. They may know that one of the best spots to read and write is under an ancient oak tree; or that the local Virginia countryside provides a stunning panorama to photograph, paint, or draw; or that there are grassy expanses for launching rockets in physics class.
Hard work is expected during school hours, but when the clock hits 3:20 and the academic day is done, students can create many wonderful ways to unwind; for example, a jazz or rap session at the piano in the foyer, an impromptu pick-up game on the soccer field, or a hard fought ping-pong competition in the Student Commons.
Speak to an upperclassman or a recent Middleburg Academy graduate and you will quickly sense their appreciation of the school’s atmosphere.
Yet community doesn’t just happen. Meetings, assemblies, clubs, and advisories play an important role in sustaining the sense of connectedness that is cherished by members of the school community. In addition to their daily classes, students and faculty come together in a variety of small group and all-school gatherings. Every morning begins with an advisory period that serves as the daily information sharing for the community.
Advisories are small (8-10 students), and meet every day with their faculty advisors. Advisories have become a second family for many students. They offer another avenue for young people to develop a connection with an adult mentor/advocate, outside the student-teacher relationship. Students can express themselves openly, build new bonds, and become further oriented within the school and its priorities. It is also a chance for the faculty and staff to gain a greater understanding of each student, in all his or her strengths and weaknesses. These also have a programmatic element focused on topics relevant to maturing young adults. The themes explored might include: Organization, Time Management, and Study Skills; Developing Healthy Relationships; Financial Literacy; Philanthropy; Introduction to Public Speaking; College Planning; Goal Setting; Finding the Leader Within; Social Media; and a variety of health issues including eating disorders and addictions. First and foremost, the advisories have become a spot where students and faculty get to know each other and have some fun together.