To the Editor,
When our son, Myles, was in 8th grade he voiced interest in Lab School and we were immediately supportive. Myles would do well in school but held an ambivalent opinion about school. We hoped Lab School would provide a unique learning environment where Myles could grow to love learning, learn to voice his opinion, and become a valuable member of his classroom community.
What occurred after the completion of his freshman year at Lab School was none other than phenomenal. The ambivalence he had towards school had vaporized. Myles indeed takes more initiative, verbalizes more mature opinions, and thinks critically about scenarios. With his experiences and education from Lab School, Myles has developed the drive to not only succeed but help others with his ideas. He has gained not only the book knowledge necessary for a life in our culture but most of all, he has gained the ability to be a productive, mature member of our society.
I know that Myles is not alone in his path throughout Lab School as I have seen this growth in his Lab School peers and heard their parents echo my same sentiments. I have complete confidence that the Bethlehem Lab School teachers and community have provided him with the resources he needs to become a strong, young member of our Bethlehem community.
Bethlehem Central High School is known for their advanced placement courses, pre-college courses, and other advanced coursework. In my opinion, Lab School is the equivalent advanced track but instead of focusing on one advanced subject, Lab School creates a path where kids can flourish into well-rounded, creative, knowledgeable, and confident young adults in a manner that is far advanced to their non-Lab School peers. In other words, instead of focusing on one advanced subject, Lab School provides an organized pathway for young adults to become advanced in becoming better, knowledgeable members of our society. For Myles, this aspect of Lab School will forever have changed him and help him to be all that he can be.
Myles is a sophomore in Lab School so he will continue through graduation based on Superintendent Monroe’s Lab School cancellation plan. I am voicing my opinion to halt her plan for all the future children who benefit from a unique research-based learning environment. At least halt her cancellation plan until parents, staff and alumni can rally the program numbers in this post-COVID era and in light of scheduling challenges noted by last year’s incoming class.
In a world of apathy, sadness and struggle, I see the children as our future for a brighter community and society. If I could ask for anything for those growing children to have, it would be teachers and a community like Lab School to help them become more self-assured, mature, confident, knowledgeable adults. Advanced placement courses are wonderful but what truly makes a young adult a successful, well-rounded human is so much more than that.
This letter appeared on page 6 of the February 7, 2024 print edition of The Spotlight.