Principal's Welcome

School Year 2016-2017

When reflecting on our students over the summer, I’m reminded that our collective, twenty year old vision remains focused. For over 20 years we’ve focused on

Core Knowledge

Core Virtues

Core Excellence

And we’ve done so steadfastly.

To be steadfast is to act with perseverance. Core Knowledge sayings that come to mind are “Where there’s a will there’s a way” and “If at first you don’t succeed, try, try again,” but there is a lesser known story that illustrates this virtue titled The Man Who Made Time Travel. Author Katherine Lasky writes about the life-long efforts of English clockmaker John Harrison who developed the first accurate chronometer to solve the problem of measuring longitude at sea used for navigation and maritime travel. Motivated by a contest when he was young, he developed a series of clocks over his lifetime, finally being awarded the prize money from England’s Board of Longitude in 1773—when he was 79 years old. Despite roadblocks that caused him to doubt whether he belonged in this community, whether his ability and competence would match his efforts, whether he would succeed, or whether the series of clocks had value for maritime travel, he had the academic mindset to persevere.

John Harrison was steadfast.

Research scholar Camille A. Farrington investigated and landed on those beliefs—the ones that Harrison had in himself—as the ones that most help produce the academic outcomes that we, individually, collectively, and as a society, hope for, and at Littleton Academy, we want to support and grow the academic mindset that

  • You belong in this academic community
  • Your ability and competence grow with your effort
  • You can succeed at this
  • This work has value for me

What you are doing each day to build cognitive and non-cognitive skills is both rigorous and meaningful, and is worth staying the course. Be steadfast. Persevere.

Best wishes to each of you for a year of excellence ahead,

Shelly Russell

Shelly Russell
Principal, Littleton Academy