The Saint Andrew’s School community gathered to celebrate and honor its tenth Head of School, Ethan Shapiro during a Head of School Installation Ceremony on campus.
Trustees, Administrators, and honored guests joined the Right Reverend Peter Eaton, Bishop of Southeast Florida on Tuesday, January 29 at 10:15 am, as he officiated this special event in the life of the school.
In his remarks following the opening prayers and lessons of the installation ceremony, Bishop Eaton enlightened the students, faculty, trustees, and guests as to the larger purpose of an installation ceremony. He posited that the installation not only honors the individual leader of the school but also celebrates the entire school community.
Bishop Eaton went on to recognize the indelible mark that students make our the Saint Andrew’s community. “We exist to enable you to become the fully human beings that God has created you to be,” he said.
The Bishop then asked for Dr. Steve Shapiro, Head of the Board of Trustees, to address the congregation on behalf of the Board of Trustees. Dr. Shapiro enthusiastically provided the Board’s approval and acknowledgment of Ethan Shapiro as Head of School.
With the Board’s blessing, the Bishop asked Ethan to pledge himself in service to the community. “Ethan, do you, in the presence of this school community, commit yourself to this new trust and responsibility?” the Bishop asked.
“I do,” Mr. Shapiro responded.
The Bishop then turned to the congregation and asked all who witnessed this new beginning to support and uphold Ethan in this calling - to which the crowd responded a resounding, “We will.”
As attendees stood, pledging their support to Mr. Shapiro, he was then commissioned by the Bishop as Head of Saint Andrew’s School.
The highlight of the installation was the address given by Ethan Shapiro reflecting on how the unique history of Saint Andrew’s School, dating back to its founding in 1963, demonstrates the values that Saint Andrew’s holds dear today.
Ethan spoke about how Saint Andrew’s School was built out of the vision and hope of one man nearly 60 years ago - Saint Andrew’s School’s first Headmaster, The Rev. Hunter Wyatt-Brown, an Episcopal priest.
Brown had plans to build not just any school, but an Episcopal school. “Episcopal Schools have always been considered among the very best independent schools in the country because of their commitment to mind, body, spirit, quality education, inclusion, and diversity,” said Ethan.
Ethan painted a picture of the humble beginnings of Brown’s Saint Andrew’s School - dirt roads, open swampland, and scrub forests. “All he had was this vision, he didn’t have anything else,” mused Ethan.
But with time and the generous gifts of land from the Henderson family, Arvida Corporation, and the Butts family, Saint Andrew’s School began to take shape.
As a lover of history and a passion for SA, Ethan led the crowd in a riveting moment of inquiry. “Where are we now? What would Hunter Wyatt-Brown think if he could visit campus today and see Saint Andrew’s School?” he asked.
With pride and enthusiasm, Ethan Shapiro offered his insight about what Hunter Wyatt-Brown would think. “I think [Hunter Wyatt-Brown] would be amazed, impressed, and awed by how his vision has continued on.”
In addition to rousing orations and thoughtful messages about the school, the congregation enjoyed performances of Commando March by the Symphonic Band and Exsultate Cantamos Festivo by the Chorus during the ceremony.
Symbolically, the installation is meant to be a moment of affirmation for the larger Saint Andrew’s community. At this pivot point for the school with the installation of its new Head Master, members of the community have greater insight and appreciation as to the shared vision of both Hunter Wyatt-Brown and Ethan Shapiro - to honor the diversity and success of all people.
With honor and integrity for the distinguished past of Saint Andrew’s School, the community respectfully celebrates Ethan Shapiro on his day of installation, as he takes his oath as its tenth Head of School.