Fulton School News

High School Travels

At The Fulton School at St. Albans (TFS), travel is believed to be an incredible opportunity for students to build confidence, to shape their identity, to develop executive functioning skills and to appreciate the diversity of life and the security of home. Traditionally, TFS high schoolers could join international trips coordinated by educational travel companies, but that came with a significant price tag. This year, TFS focused on creating domestic and international trips at more affordable prices by utilizing faculty and parent connections across the globe.

In the fall, 15 students took a 10-day adventure to China, where they visited four cities, four Chinese TFS families, a school and, of course, major tourist attractions. Photo album here.

In April, students went on a two-day trip to Memphis to learn about The Blues, BBQ and civil rights. Photo album here.

And, this past January, a group packed up and headed for the nation’s capital [photo album here], keeping costs down by staying at the home of a past TFS parent who lived just outside of D.C. On a frigid Saturday night in January, 18 high school students from The Fulton School hit the road bound for Washington D.C. with two staff chaperons, Diane Loyd (TFS Director of Admissions) and Dr. John Austin (Upper School History and English teacher at TFS).

“Eighteen students in two vans crossed the mountains in difficult weather and filled five days in the capital with excursions to nine museums, four monuments, the Capitol building, including the House and Senate chambers, Arlington Cemetery, and Thomas Jefferson's plantation at Monticello,” said Dr. Austin. “Depending on whose FitBit you read, we walked between 25 and 35 miles over the five days.” “Many felt that watching a bill from proposal to passage by a roll call vote was the great highlight of the trip -- actual governance happening right before our eyes. Others felt that the wrenching Holocaust Museum or the delightful Spy Museum was the best,” explained Dr. Austin, “but it's likely that each traveler would tell a different tale.”

11th grader Annemarie Loyd said, “I think what made the biggest impression on me was the Vietnam Memorial. To see 59,000 names of soldiers and to think they were someone's son or daughter, mother or father, brother or sister was really sad. You can't even imagine how big 59,000 is, but when you see all those names on the wall and see how long the wall is, it is pretty powerful.”

Dr. Austin continued, “The week was filled with superb meals as well (when will St Louis get the Mediterranean fast food on practically every corner that so many of us enjoyed multiple times?), including a white linen, fancy-dress dinner at the Army-Navy Club on Wednesday night, courtesy of a generous benefactor.” “And, of course, there was the ‘little’ event of Friday [the Inauguration]: the peaceful transfer of power that sets our nation apart from almost all other modern nations, to which we bore witness in great solemnity,” concluded Dr. Austin. “We all agreed that one week was not nearly enough, and look hopefully ahead to retracing our steps in a year or two (or four).”

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