The Clements Family Nurtures PD’s Future
Providence Day is a place where teachers deftly balance the task of challenging and nurturing students on a daily basis. Creating the best possible learning environment for each individual child takes skill, understanding, and a willingness to step outside the established norm. It also takes a lot of work.
When Grace Clements ’16 was in third grade, she was scoring consistently high on the regular spelling tests administered to the class. Her teacher — wanting to both challenge Grace and nurture her talent — took the time to identify words Grace had misspelled in other projects and test her on those instead. By taking the time to create a different spelling test and then leveraging that work to improve writing skills, the teacher solidified one parent’s decision about choosing Providence Day as the right fit for their family.
“I remember thinking ‘We’re in the right place,’” explained Suzanne Clements. “The amount of work that would take to identify [the misspelled words], and the catering to one child’s individual needs really impressed me…”
This story exemplifies the individualized instruction and level of engagement with each student’s learning that is the hallmark of a Providence Day classroom.
Aidan Clements ’19 experienced a similar level of support and encouragement since finding his passion in the theatre arts. He really “blossomed” after a lesson on public speaking and a role as a knife in Beauty and the Beast. Faculty are credited with nurturing talents and passions that challenge our students to grow in their knowledge and skills.
“The quality of performance that the theater department brings out in those kids is amazing,” said Thad Clements. “Knowing these kids for years and years and seeing them shine…it’s incredible to watch.”
Acknowledging the positive environment at Providence Day helped Suzanne and Thad frame the decision to continue to re-enroll their children each year. They consider whether their kids are happy and enjoy going to school. According to Suzanne, “It’s always been an easy yes.”
The same consideration was given to supporting the CHARGING forward campaign, which Thad and Suzanne did with a thoughtful $25,000 commitment. They equate their family’s experiences at school with the campaign.
“I think giving [students] a learning environment that matches the quality of the teaching and the experiences that are happening in the classroom is really important,” explained Suzanne.
Thad is also excited to see the school get a “new face to present to the community,” with the development of the Campus Gateway building to welcome visitors and alumni. And both fully understand and appreciate the endowment element of the campaign, recognizing the importance of sustainability and citing the myriad reasons for needing a stable financial base upon which to grow.
With its bold goal of $27 million — the largest fundraising initiative in school history — and three investment priorities (Capital, Endowment, Annual Fund), the CHARGING forward comprehensive campaign will challenge and nurture the entire Providence Day community — just as it challenges and nurtures each of its students.
Suzanne and Thad are the proud parents of Grace ’16 and Aidan ’19.