Crossroads News

Bard College President Visits Crossroads

Leon Botstein tours School, discusses progressive education.
On April 8, Crossroads hosted Leon Botstein, a national leader of progressive education, the principal conductor of the American Symphony Orchestra and Bard College’s president of 40 years. While visiting the area, Botstein made it a point to stop at Crossroads to meet some of the educators who have inspired dozens of Crossroads students to continue their learning at Bard. He visited Mary Ann Cummins’ Music Theory class and witnessed EMMI conservatory students sight-reading “St. Matthew Passion” by Bach. He also toured the site of the new Science Education & Research Facility and applauded its design and curricular goals.
Botstein’s trip to Crossroads coincided with the School’s Juvenile Justice Forum Day, organized by Upper School English teacher and current Bard parent Nika Cavat.
Before leaving, President Botstein spoke with Crossroads Upper School faculty about what it means to be at the forefront of progressive education. Upper School Assistant Director and Dean of Students Tom Nolan called Botstein’s talk “inspirational, funny, provocative, and affirming.” Tom continued, “I loved hearing about all of the radical innovations Bard has been responsible for. Botstein said they were all grounded in the school’s poverty, that if Bard were rich, they never would have been as inventive and innovative. That really impressed me.”