Head of School Transition

 

Note to Parents from Darryl Byrd:

Dear Keystone Parents,

Spring at Keystone is always a stimulating and productive time for the students and teachers, and the growth and learning that we see in our students is phenomenal and inspiring. Spring is also a time of transition as the students and the adults working with them wrap-up this school year and prepare for the next. As Chair of the Board of Trustees, I write to share news about one of these important transitions. It is one that is both exciting and emotion-filled.

Our Head of School, Brian Yager, has informed the Board of Trustees that he will be stepping down from his position at the end of June. Brian has been recruited to take on the Head of School role at the Harker School in San Jose, California, and, as he mentioned when we spoke about his decision, “it is an opportunity that I cannot pass up. Like Keystone, it is a fantastic school, but with a larger student body, and it offers a continued opportunity to challenge myself and to make a difference in the lives of tomorrow’s leaders. Also, it takes us back to our family in California at a time when we feel especially compelled to be closer to them.”

While we wish that Brian and his family would stay at Keystone, we are happy and excited for him, and understand the reasons he has accepted this opportunity to advance his career. We are also glad that Keystone is thriving, and that our people, programs, and culture are all well positioned for a successful transition to new leadership; we believe we are well prepared for Brian’s departure.

The Board of Trustees has appointed Jim Lindsey to serve as Interim Head of School for the coming year. Many of you know Jim, who currently serves as Assistant Head of School and Business Manager. Jim has been with Keystone for almost 19 years and has previously led our school during a period of transition. We are also excited that Jim has asked Theresa Powers, the Head of the Middle School to serve as Interim Assistant Head of School. Ms. Powers will retain her responsibilities as Head of Middle School.

This spring we will initiate a national search to take place over the coming summer and fall, with the intent of identifying Keystone’s next permanent Head of School. He or she would begin their tenure in July of 2018. We will share additional information about the search process later this spring, which will certainly include input from parents, faculty/staff, alumni, and of course, our students.

Keystone’s financial health and culture of learning and academic achievement are stronger than ever. The exceptional teaching and student outcomes that happen each day in the classrooms will continue during this period, and I am very excited for what is ahead. We will have an opportunity in the coming months to share our best wishes for Brian and his family. At the same time, Brian and the Board will continue to provide the leadership that allows Keystone and all of our students, both present and future, to thrive. If you have questions during this time of transition and new beginnings, please email them to hossearch@keystoneschool.org.

Wishing you well, I am

 

Sincerely yours,

 

Darryl Byrd

Chair, Keystone School Board of Trustees

 

 

Note from Brian Yager to staff:

​Throughout this year, I have been incredibly impressed by the quality of the education our students have been receiving.  Spring marks the time when many Keystone student accomplishments delightfully overwhelm our bandwidth for processing them.  Over spring break, I had the chance to check-in with alumni in New York and Los Angeles.  It was inspiring and affirming to hear their stories of how Keystone molded them in significant ways, and how they are doing things that are changing this world – their own and ours – for the better.

​While meeting with these graduates, the sublime sense of gratitude I felt was tempered by the news that I had to withhold from them, and which I share with you now: It is with an extremely heavy heart that I share that this will be my last year as Head of School at Keystone. 

​Since I arrived here in July of 2010, I have felt a profound connection to the Keystone culture and family.  I love this place, the people here, and the work we do, and I cannot adequately express in words how grateful I am to have been part of it all.  At the same time, my other family has been on my mind, increasingly so as my parents and Megan’s parents get older.  Consequently, when I was approached about a head of school position at The Harker School in California, I felt that I should examine it.  Things moved quickly, and I was offered the position right before spring break.  In assessing the opportunity with both my head and my heart, I realized – with a great deal of sadness – that this is an opportunity I cannot pass up.  The position affords my nuclear family an opportunity to be near our extended family at a time in which it is increasingly important for us to do so.  And, while it will be very hard to feel as fulfilled as I have been during our time together here, The Harker School offers a similarly unique and impactful environment, which gives me some hope of obtaining the professional engagement that I have here.

​While I feel a great deal of sadness about leaving Keystone, my emotion is tempered by fact that the School is in an extremely good place right now, with great people in all positions, including on the Board of Trustees.  It is this group who will oversee the process of identifying the next Head of School for Keystone.

​I will remain here at Keystone, fully engaged in the role, until the end of June.  We have much work to do this spring.  Of highest priority for me will be the effort to optimize the future of this place – both in the short and the long-term.  I don’t tend to shed tears often, but know that they will be there, bottled up.  

With much respect and appreciation, I am

 

Yours truly,

 

Brian Yager