Gus Lee, in his book Courage: The Backbone of Leadership, defines courage as the “mental and moral strength to venture, persevere, and withstand danger, fear or difficulty.” Lee goes on to say that courage comes from the Latin word for heart, and he calls courage “the tip of the spear of integrity.”
I love watching our students walk into the school in the morning. Standing outside, I see students from different backgrounds, cultures, religions, and cities; all unpretentiously dressed in Lands End school uniform clothing, carrying book bags and computers—and I am inspired by their remarkable courage.
Our students arrive to school in minutes from nearby towns like Brecksville, Hudson, and Macedonia, and in hours from as far away as Oberlin, Concord, and Doylestown. They step with courage and confidence into our environment despite struggles and even failure in other schools. They trust that we all - students and staff - will have another chance to make this journey successfully together.
They range in age from six to sixteen. Some barely reach four feet - and others stand over six feet tall. They study everything from CodeBreakers to Calculus, using a range of technologies from pencils, paper, and chalk boards, to computers and electronic notebooks. But one commonality they all share is the existence of a learning difference that may impede the acquisition of language skills or challenge their ability to plan and manage time.
As our students and parents can attest, school in the past has been a place where failure, frustration and even rejection have been the norm. Our students face the real fear that failure could happen again, and still they gather their courage and come to school anyway. They persevere. Each works hard to study and grasp something difficult, figure it out—only to lose it when the time comes to put it on the test—and then still they gather their courage and go at it again.
Lawrence students pursue their hopes and destiny with a kind of courage and commitment that many of their peers—indeed, many of us— simply can’t understand. And when they are educated in an environment that honors their individual learning style, they succeed—even excel—and go on to successful experiences in schools, colleges and careers.
The challenge that we understand so well at Lawrence is and has been the same for every school in every era: to create a learning community where growth is the norm for teachers and students, where education is personal, and where taking a risk to try something new and difficult is protected, honored and celebrated.
Welcome to the Pride! Welcome to Lawrence School— where differences are not disabilities, and where great minds don’t think alike!
Head of School
Head of School
Prior to joining Lawrence School in July of 2007, Lou served for 11 years as the Head of School at ASSETS School for Gifted, Dyslexic and Gifted-Dyslexic students in Honolulu, Hawaii.
Lou met his wife Dell, a committed social activist, when they were in the 10th grade and the two married when they were in college. In 1973, both began careers in education teaching at the Parkway Program in Philadelphia, an exciting alternative high school they found profiled in Charles Silberman’s classic book: Crisis in the Classroom.
Since then, Lou served in several positions over thirteen years at the Landmark School, a private school for students with dyslexia; earned a Master’s degree in Reading and Language at Harvard University Graduate School of Education (1980); and was Vice Principal at the Hamilton Wenham Regional High School (1988-1996).
Lou currently serves as a Trustee for the National Association of Independent Schools (NAIS) in Washington, D.C., and was recently appointed to the Harvard Principals’ Center Advisory Board for 2007/08. He also served as President of the Hawaii Association of Independent Schools (2002-2007) and is Past President of the Learning Disabilities Network in Hingham, Massachusetts (1990-1996). Lou also served on the Board at the Glen Urquhart School (1983-1986) and was educational consultant to the School Function Program at Boston’s Children’s Hospital, Department of Ambulatory Pediatrics (1981-1983).
Lou and Dell have two grown daughters, now married and living in NYC and Washington, D.C. When the girls were in their teens, they traveled as a family to the Soviet Union (1989) with Educators for Social Responsibility, to Nicaragua (1991) with Habitat for Humanity, to Israel (1993) with I*EARN, and to San Salvador (1994) as international observers of the presidential elections. Even though their daughters joked that they only vacationed in war zones, these experiences outside the First World challenged their North American sensibilities regarding peace and justice, and enlarged their understanding of the problems facing the planet.
Who We Are... Beyond Lawrence
|Lawrence students come from 70 communities in 10 counties, including Akron, Beachwood, Brecksville, Broadview Heights, Chagrin Falls, Cleveland, Cleveland Heights, Hudson, Medina, Richfield, Shaker Heights, Solon, Strongsville, Westlake, and many more!|