At Roxbury Latin, we care, most of all, what kind of person a boy is
Founded in 1645, the Roxbury Latin School is the oldest school in continuous existence in North America. We are a small, independent boys' school by tradition and by conviction. The Rev. John Eliot founded the school "to fit [students] for public service in Church and Commonwealth." Today, Roxbury Latin remains true to the original mission set forth by its founder -- to prepare students intellectually, morally, and spiritually for service in the world.
In defining a distinctive mission and designing a vital program, Roxbury Latin asserts its independence -- remaining alert to what is best and most effective in educating boys, but daring to define what is in their best interest as well, even if at times that is countercultural.
Although Roxbury Latin has no formal religious affiliation, the motive of John Eliot and his fellow founders was religious; Eliot entrusted the school to seven "feoffees" -- trustees who defined the schoolmaster's duties as follows: "To use his best skill and endeavors, both by precept and example, to instruct students in all scholastical, moral, and theological discipline." The school was conceived primarily, said Thomas Weld, one of the school's original feoffees, "for the glory of God." The religious beliefs of applicants have never been a factor in admission, but members of the school community have always been expected to respect the school's Judeo-Christian heritage, including certain spiritual exercises in all-school assemblies.
We believe these modest exercises help students to consider and address the question of the meaning of their existence. Boys are thereby exposed to a worldview articulating that each of their individual lives has purpose and significance. When they rise for prayers they are reminded that their lives are short, that they are called to a higher purpose, that life has meaning and is worth living. Members of the school are free to accept this perspective or not, but all agree to respect that it underlies the school's program and values. Parents have told us that they send their children here because the school values religious faith, and because it recognizes the spiritual dimension of life.
We seek to help our students identify and address life's deepest questions. We seek to help them find out who they are and what they hope to do with their lives. The faculty believes that in helping our students find the meaning and purpose of their existence, we are fulfilling our core mission: to form men of integrity who want to develop and use their talents to the fullest. We want our boys to become men of character: knowing right from wrong, having the courage to stand -- alone if necessary -- for what they believe is right, and willing to use their influence for the good of others. We expect our boys to aspire to this goal, and we advance it vigorously.
Character education has remained our central mission since the school's founding. We remind our students frequently that earning good grades is not an aim in and of itself, that glittering accomplishments in a moral vacuum are hollow and do not impress us. Concern for character is our highest commitment.
Every boy in the school knows that we care most of all what kind of person he is. It is our principal tenet, and we recall it regularly as the marker by which everything else at school is measured. Our overarching goal is to infuse our students with a commitment to a life characterized by honesty, simplicity, respect, and concern for others. We insist that those who choose to come here own the school's ideals and standards and live by its rules. To a remarkable degree, our students do live by the school's values.
The Roxbury Latin School seeks bright boys who have already demonstrated intellectual curiosity, self-motivation, and a capacity for hard work. A boys' school by conviction, Roxbury Latin is committed to the ethical formation and rigorous academic training of each boy entrusted to us -- through our small size; our passionate, talented, and dedicated faculty; and our mission to instill in students a desire to live intentional lives of purpose, characterized by concern for others. Since 1645, the Roxbury Latin School has offered able and aspiring boys of Greater Boston a distinctive education. We are looking for the boy who wants to do something meaningful -- even great -- with his life.
ERIN BERG IS THE DIRECTOR OF EXTERNAL RELATIONS FOR THE ROXBURY LATIN SCHOOL -- AN INDEPENDENT DAY SCHOOL FOR BOYS IN GRADES SEVEN THROUGH 12, SERVING 312 BOYS FROM IN AND AROUND GREATER BOSTON. ROXBURY LATIN OFFERS NEED-BLIND ADMISSION AND ENROLLMENT AND AMPLE FINANCIAL AID. THERE IS NO APPLICATION FEE. LEARN MORE AT WWW.ROXBURYLATIN.ORG.