What makes a good leader?
That fundamental question lies at the heart of a Pomfret school education. The ability to inspire action in others has cured diseases, but it has also started wars. At Pomfret we are doing more than inspiring the next generation of leaders. We are inspiring the next generation of good leaders.
Organized by the Dean of Students Office, one hundred student leaders, including freshmen, participate an immersive three-day Leadership Institute each year. Over the course of the weekend, students draft vision statements, brainstorm themes for the upcoming school year, discuss ways they can improve the student experience, and engage with young alumni.
Guiding the process are five fundamental practices:
- Challenge the process
- Inspire a shared vision
- Enable others to act
- Model the way
- Always, always, encourage the heart
- Deans' Assistants
- Discipline Committee
- Head Waiters
- School Council
- Key Club Tour Guides
- Team Captains
- Athletic Council
The Deans’ Assistants are students who serve as “interns” for specific faculty members and administrators throughout the school year. Working with a faculty member or administrator, each Deans’ Assistant is responsible for completing a project. In addition, Deans’ Assistants are responsible for providing leadership and leading major school initiatives and events, including assisting with new student orientation, supervising of evening study hours, organizing weekend shuttles as well as overseeing other important school events and activities.
In the spring, the school community elects members of the rising Sixth Form to serve on the next year’s Discipline Committee. Faculty representatives are appointed by the Head of School; the Deans of Students acts as chair. The Discipline Committee convenes to hear the circumstances surrounding major violations.
The School Council is the formal Student Government of Pomfret School. It is composed of a Senate and a House. The Senate is made up of representatives of the various Student forms and the faculty and deals with programming and general School policy. The House is made up of prefects and deals with residential life and leadership development. All together the School Council is the democratic mechanism for involvement in the decision making process of the School. The School Council is supported by the faculty representatives and the Student Life Office.
Prefects embody the ethos and expectations of the School and assist the dorm faculty in running the dormitories (or the day student areas in the case of day student prefects). The role of prefect is a demanding one; a prefect must have the respect of his or her peers in order to enforce the School expectations and be a good counselor and friend when a student needs someone for support. The prefects are appointed by the Dean of Students’ office following a rigorous process of self, peer, and faculty evaluation.
Team captains are expected to provide leadership both in and out of the athletic arena. They are responsible for assisting their coaches with practice organization and in activities such as the Family Fall Weekend pep rally, award assemblies, and team get-togethers. Captains are the core of “team spirit” and should assert themselves in challenging, motivating, and integrating all team members.