Each Middle and Upper School student is a member of a cross-graded advisory group called C&C, which stands for community and conversation.
C&C provides a place and time for students to build a relationship with at least one Middle School adult who serves as guide, advisor, and advocate for all three years a student is in the Middle School.
Advisory increases students’ sense of community, satisfies their need to belong to a group during crucial development years, provides a forum for talking about important topics, improves communication between the school and home, and helps prepare students for academic success by discussing study skills, organization, and time management as appropriate. Further, students and parents have one person to serve as a supporter and facilitator over the course of three years, allowing for a meaningful relationship to flourish.
This cross-graded group of students, ranging in size from eight to 16, becomes a school “family.” C&Cs have one or two advisors, each a faculty member, who manage the C&C and serve as the students’ advisor. C&Cs have two major roles in the lives of students.
Each C&C has its own personality. Students meet in their C&Cs four or five days each week for 10–15 minutes after their first period class. During that time the group will share thoughts, food, and stories. Often the advisor(s) will organize a brief activity to help the students explore new ideas or wrestle with important questions. Many C&Cs will have meals together away from school, perform community service as a group, and plan other events.
The C&C leader serves as the student’s advisor. For many students the four-year relationship with the advisor is the main constant during their Upper School career. Interests may come and go, but the advisor is always there for the student. The advisor works individually with the student to help him or her plan their course. Of equal importance is the role the advisor takes in helping the student manage the many and inevitable challenges of the teenage years. Advisors are trained in the role of advising. Should students’ issues become more serious, the advisor will refer them to the Upper School counselor.
Advisors work closely with parents in developing a quality experience for their students during their tenure in the Upper School. Parents are encouraged to use the advisor as the main point of contact in working with the Upper School on their student's activities.