Middle School Director
This fall, Ms. Laurie Piette joined the Pingry community as the new Middle School Director. In addition, she will be playing many other roles, such as teaching the new Form II Leadership course with Mr. Gerry Vanasse.
Ms. Piette attended Wellesley College where she received degrees in English and classical civilization. She has an M.A. in creative writing from The City College of New York as well as an M.Ed. in private school leadership from Columbia University. When asked if her interests were limited to humanities, she responded, “I wouldn’t say I am a scientist, but I can help a science teacher and plan out science lessons and concepts.”
She went on, “I’m very interested in brain research and mental cognition. I just finished my M.Ed. at Columbia and we did a lot of work on the various ways you can produce deeper learning in students, and that fascinates me.”
Regarding her other interests, Ms. Piette said, “I love to read, I love history, I love the story of history, and I love the fact that you can interpret history from your own perspective, while acknowledging there can be multiple perspectives on one part of history—in fact, there have to be.”
Ms. Piette has vast experience in the field of education. When asked about her background in teaching, she said, “I’ve taught English, history, creative writing, and Latin for grades four through twelve.” Her position at Pingry is not her first as a director for middle school students. She commented, “In my last position, I was in charge of the curriculum for a nursery-to-eighth-grade school, so I really learned how curriculum is put together there.”
In terms of her goals for the year, Ms. Piette said, “My goals for the year are to fully implement the schedule and to tweak it so that it’s even more effective moving forward.” She also looks to encourage risk-taking in the classroom.
When asked about her thoughts on Pingry so far, she said, “I absolutely love it. Pingry has such a talented group of faculty, administration, and parents who are really invested in their children doing well.” She finds Pingry students to be “amazing, intelligent, and articulate. They walk the walk: they really represent the honor code and take it seriously.”
Ms. Piette is ecstatic to be Pingry’s new Middle School Director. She would like the community to know, “I’m just so excited to be here. I hit the ground running in July first, and it’s been just a wonderful experience so far and I’m looking forward to the rest of the year.”