Dare to be True
|Milton, Massachusetts, USA|
|Type||Independent School, boarding and day|
|Head of School||Theodorick Bowden Bland|
|Faculty||127 (Upper School)|
|Grades||9-12 (Upper School)
K-8 (Lower School)
|Enrollment||675 (Upper School)
50% boarding, 50% day
287 (Lower School)
|Average class size||14 students (Upper School)|
|Student to teacher ratio||5:1 (Upper School)|
|Campus||Suburban, 125 acres (0.506 km2)|
|Color(s)||Blue and Orange
|Athletics||25 Interscholastic sports|
|Average SAT scores||2065 (2007)|
|Annual tuition||Upper School
Milton Academy (also known as Milton, The Acad, or MA) is a coeducational, independent preparatory, boarding and day school in Milton, Massachusetts consisting of a grade 9–12 Upper School and a grade K–8 Lower School. Boarding is offered starting in 9th grade. Milton is noted for its prestige and strong academic programs, having produced many notable alumni, including a Nobel Laureate, several members of the United States Congress, a governor (Deval Patrick of Massachusetts), and a Medal of Honor recipient. In late 2007, the Wall Street Journal identified Milton Academy as one of the world's top 25 schools for its success in preparing students to enter top American universities. Milton is a member of the Independent School League (ISL).
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The original Milton Academy was founded by a Massachusetts bill granting a charter in 1798 but operations ceased decades later with the opening of the public Milton High School; the institution was re-established in 1884 by John Murray Forbes and other progressive philanthropists. Up until 1980, the school was split into boys and girls schools. The school has historically been a feeder school for Harvard University. The school was established in 1798, as shown below the book in the school crest. However, the number given in roman numerals along the outside of the crest reads 1898, marking the school's centennial.
Students and faculty
There are 670 Upper School students at Milton, half of whom live on campus. There are 127 faculty members in the Upper School, 78% of whom have postgraduate degrees, and 9% holding doctorates. It has an average class size of 14, and a female-to-male ratio of 50–50. There are 305 students in the Lower School (Kindergarten-Grade 8). The Middle School (Grade 6-8) and Lower School (Kindergarten-Grade 5) have 25 and 28 faculty members respectively.
Milton offers several off-campus programs. Some students take a school year abroad in France, Italy, Spain or China; others go on semester programs such as Chewonki Semester School, The Mountain School, or CITYTerm. For the last few weeks of school, seniors often do "Senior Projects" instead of taking classes. Past senior projects have included: recording an album, writing a play, designing a golf course, constructing a sailboat by hand, engineering go-carts, directing a film, intensively studying a culture/language, designing/stitching custom needlepoint belts, and performing a Shakespearean play.
Clubs and organizations
There are over 10 different publications on campus, from news to literary magazines. There are several music groups, including the Chamber Singers, Miltones, Chamber Orchestra, jazz combos and four respectable a cappella groups—two all-female groups (Epic and Octet), an all-male group (Miltones), and a co-educational group (3FU), which have performed throughout the United States, as well as Europe, Asia, and Africa. Milton Academy is also home to a large jazz program, focused on small combos, that tours South Africa every other year. Beatnik Café, an independently run exhibition of student performances (such as jazz, improvisational skits, poetry readings, and singing), occurs three times a year. In addition to this wide offering of musical groups, theatrical productions provide another outlet for performance with about ten plays being put on each year. The smaller plays produced at the school are referred to as "1212 plays", and are held in Wigg Hall. Also, two student choreographed Dance Concerts are put up each year, the larger one occurring in the winter.
Milton Academy has a number of student activity clubs. Cultural clubs at Milton include GASP (Gay And Straight People), Onyx (black student group), the Asian Society, Latino Association, JSU (Jewish-Student Union), and Caribbean Student Association. Students at the academy can start their own clubs if they have a faculty sponsor. The Tibet Club - formerly the Milton Academy chapter of the Students for a Free Tibet - currently sponsors two Tibetan refugee children as part of a five-year commitment and has donated over three hundred dollars in school supplies to Tibetan Schools. Another club, Invisible Hand, is Milton's Capitalist Club. In addition to sponsoring weekly discussions pertaining to Capitalism and Economics, Invisible Hand has taken trips to Harvard Business School and lent $500 worth of microloans via Kiva.org. Combining a love for masticating and the culinary arts with an appreciation of chess strategy, the co-heads of the Milton Academy Chess Club have tried to make chess an important part of community life for over three years. Milton’s newest organization, Entrepreneurship Club, brings in guest speakers to help facilitate discussions that teach students about creating, growing and managing non-for-profit and for-profit businesses.
In addition, Milton Academy has a large and highly successful speech and debate team that competes in the Massachusetts Forensic League (MFL), National Catholic Forensic League (CFL or NCFL), and National Forensic League (NFL).
The school also has many political groups, including the Young Republicans and F.L.A.G. (Forward-looking Liberal Action Group).
Milton offers 15 interscholastic sports for both boys and girls each, as well as nine intramural teams. Milton is a member of both the Independent School League and the New England Schools Sailing Association division of the Interscholastic Sailing Association. Since 1886, Milton's traditional rival has been the Noble and Greenough School of Dedham. Recently, the ultimate team was ranked seventh in the nation and the varsity football team "entered the 2005 season with the best ten-year record of all ISL prep programs". In the past five years, Milton has won 17 ISL Championships and most recently the boys' tennis team won New England's. The boys' tennis team has won four New England titles in a row. The coed sailing team has won multiple national championships. Milton's boys' hockey team has had several players go on to successful professional careers, most notably 12-year NHLer Marty McInnis and current Boston Bruin Josh Hennessy. In 2011, Milton's boys hockey team won the NEPSAC championship, winning what is widely considered the most prestigious championship in American high school hockey. The team featured two NHL draft picks: Patrick McNally and Rob O'Gara. In 2012, the Boy's Cross Country team placed 2nd in the ISL, earning the team's highest finish in 25 years.
Milton Academy maintains several publications using school facilities. The Milton Measure, the oldest and official twice-monthly publication of the school, is entering its 113th year. The Milton Paper, the school's independent newspaper, operates on donations but is still subject to minor school oversight. The Milton Paper has been operating for over thirty years and publishes issues weekly, combating student apathy by providing a forum for discussion. La Voz ("The Voice"), the school's Spanish language student newspaper, is published quarterly and allows students to write in Spanish about issues that involve the Spanish-speaking community. MagusMabus (colloquially: The Magus) is the school's art & literary magazine. It publishes two full issues a year as well as one smaller "maguette" which contains only poetry. In addition, the Magus hosts open mic nights called Beatnik Cafes. Milton students also publish "Helix," a science magazine which is released seasonally. A recent addition to Milton's publications is "Gaia", the official environmental magazine, which publishes about 3 times a year.
Academic and student life facilities
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Straus Library — In the 1950s, Straus was the Academy's main library. Today it serves as a familiar and beloved gathering space for formal and informal events. Straus is also home to Milton's college counseling office.
Apthorp Chapel — Constructed in 1921, Apthorp Chapel hosts the non-denominational chapel program for boarding students every Sunday evening during the school year. The program often includes guests, students and faculty reflecting on issues affecting the School community, the nation and the world.
Kellner Performing Arts Center — Opened in 1992, Kellner is a teaching center for the performing arts and music departments. It includes a large dance studio; classrooms for speech and debate training; classrooms and practice rooms for work in chorus, orchestra and jazz; a "black box" studio theater; fully equipped scene construction and costume shops; Pieh Commons, where student art work is often exhibited; and the Ruth King Theatre.
Ruth King Theatre — A gift of novelist Stephen King, in memory of his mother, King Theatre is equipped with a stage adaptable to thrust or apron configurations and is a 20th century adaptation of Shakespeare's Globe Theatre.
William Coburn Cox Library — Given by William Coburn Cox '24 and his wife, Jessie Bancroft Cox, the library's resources serve students, faculty and staff. Its collection includes 46,000 volumes. Library staff members help students learn research strategies, using the cataloguing system and online resources. In the basement of the library, Milton students are entitled to extra academic help in the Academic Skills Center. Health and Counseling Center — Registered nurses, school physicians and counselors at the Health Center help students who need physical or emotional care. The Health Center also provides overnight accommodations for students requiring additional attention while not feeling well. The Health Center staff also manages programs that involve students in promoting healthy lifestyles and in responding to those with emotional or physical needs. The Health Center is housed in Faulkner House, on East Campus.
Ayer Observatory — Astronomy students use the Ayer Observatory to observe and study celestial objects. The observatory's 12-foot dome houses a five-inch Clark refractor for general classroom use; its smaller dome houses a nine-inch Takahashi reflector. The observatory is open to all students on the first Friday of every month and for any unique celestial occurrences.
Schwarz Student Center — The Schwarz Student Center offers a single space that is part of daily campus life for all students and adults at Milton, enhancing opportunities to build relationships. The center includes a common area for students to gather outside of class; a snack bar and recreation area with ping-pong and foosball tables; a school bookstore with a wide array of necessities; student activities offices; a computer center; and spaces for faculty-student meetings. It links Warren Hall and Wigglesworth Hall for easy travel between the three.
Ware Hall — Originally built as the Girls' School schoolhouse, Ware Hall is now home to classical language, modern language and mathematics classrooms; a language laboratory; and Milton's Middle School offices and classrooms.
Warren Hall — Built in 1885 and renovated in 2002, Warren Hall includes the English department, deans' offices and the Office of Admission in a building sensitively restored to provide state-of-the-art teaching areas within an environment that honors its early role as "the old schoolhouse."
Wigglesworth Hall — Affectionately known as Wigg Hall, this building is home to the history department where students and faculty gather around oval Harkness tables that promote stimulating discussion in an environment where everyone — including the teacher — is an equal and important participant.
Athletic and Convocation Center — Opened in 1998, the "ACC" includes two field houses that provide opportunities for student athletes of different skill levels to participate in a wide range of sports. The south field house, also the Fitzgibbons Convocation Center (FCC), includes three basketball courts, convocation capacity for the School, and an indoor track. The north field house includes a hockey rink, which, when de-iced, becomes four tennis courts or space for indoor practice of field sports. The second floor of the ACC features the Esther and Herbert G. Stokinger '24 Fitness Center, coaches offices, and training rooms.
Caroline Saltonstall Building — The Caroline Saltonstall Building includes the business office, the K–8 Office of Admission, the alumni and development office and one gymnasium. The building stands on the original Milton Girls' School campus.
Robert Saltonstall Gymnasium — Once the major boys' gymnasium at Milton, the Robert Saltonstall Gym now houses the H. Adams Carter '32 Climbing Wall where students can learn to rock climb. Art students studying sculpture, ceramics and woodworking learn and practice here as well. The "RSG" also houses Milton's two wrestling mats.
Pritzker Science Center — Milton's new science center opened in September 2010. The state-of-the-art building features common lab space for each of the four disciplines in science (physics, chemistry, biology and environmental), in addition to integrated classroom-lab space, creating an environment that allows students to work collaboratively and move seamlessly between discussion and hands-on lab work. The Pritzker Science Center was designed with sustainability in mind, to meet silver LEED specifications.
Art and Media Center — Milton's new visual arts center, completed for the fall of 2011, is being designed in the footprint of the Old Science Building. The new space will feature state-of-the-art studios for 2D art and 3D art, including specialized areas such as photography, architecture and woodwork. This building also features the Academy's acclaimed Nesto Gallery, where several famous Boston-area and national artists have displayed their works. In addition, this is a popular spot for students wanting to show affection to other students.
Approximately half of the Upper School student body consists of boarders. Each of Milton's eight, single-sex residential "houses" has unique traditions, such as holiday caroling, pumpkin carving, picnics, "pottery night" (mug painting for the dorm), Rain Soccer on East Campus before dinner on rainy days, barbecues, dodgeball, and dorm bowling to help foster friendship and support within the house. House sizes range from 31 to 48 students and students live in the same house for their entire time at Milton.
- Algernon Sidney Badger, government official in New Orleans
- Edward Larrabee Barnes, architect
- Emily and Julia Bruskin of the Claremont Trio
- H. Adams Carter (1932)
- Lucien B. Caswell, U.S. Representative
- Ian Cheney, film writer and film producer
- Tze Chun
- Carson Cistulli, poet and journalist.
- Linwood Clark, U.S. Representative
- Bertha Coombs, general assignment reporter for CNBC
- Caroline Cornish, Newsanchor for WCSH
- T. S. Eliot, Anglo-American poet and playwright. Nobel Prize for Literature "for his outstanding, pioneer contribution to present-day poetry" (Stockholm, 1948)
- Buckminster Fuller
- Aaron Goldberg (1991)
- Austan Goolsbee, economic adviser to United States President Barack Obama
- Frances Hamerstrom, writer and naturalist
- Robert F. Kennedy (1944), former U.S. Attorney General and U.S. Senator from New York, member of the Kennedy political family
- Ted Kennedy (1950), former U.S. Senator from Massachusetts, member of the Kennedy political family
- Alexandra Kerry (1992), film producer and daughter of U.S. Senator John Kerry of Massachusetts
- Reif Larsen (1998), American author best known for his work The Selected Works of T.S. Spivet.
- David Lindsay-Abaire, Pulitzer Prize-winning playwright
- William Lobkowicz
- Hanford MacNider
- Claire Messud
- Peter B. Moore
- Farah Pandith (1986), Special Representative to Muslim Communities for the United States Department of State
- Deval Patrick (1974), current Governor of Massachusetts
- James H. Perkins, former Chairman of Citigroup
- Richard C. Perry (1973), hedge fund investor in Perry Capital which owns Barneys New York
- Elliot Richardson, former U.S. Attorney General
- Rob Sheffield
- Robert E. Sherwood
- Sherrod E. Skinner, Jr., Medal of Honor Recipient
- Jenny Slate, former comedian on Saturday Night Live
- Sarah Sze
- Touré (1989), American novelist, music journalist, cultural critic
- William Robert Ware, prominent American architect
- Richard B. Wigglesworth, U.S. Representative
In 2005, the school expelled five members of the boys varsity hockey team for receiving oral sex from a 15-year-old female student in a school locker room. After an investigation, two of the students who were 16 at the time of the alleged incidents were charged with statutory rape. Both accepted plea deals and received no jail time.
- Milton Academy Official Website
- The Association of Boarding Schools profile
- Boarding School Review
- School Year Abroad
- Chewonki Semester School
- The Mountain School