Coming Full Circle for Seniors at the Brick School


Emily Vinson, Writer

It is the end of an era for some of the FHS Seniors who are the last graduating class of kids who went to the Brick School in Franklin for Kindergarten. The Brick School is one of the oldest one-room school houses in the country, being built in 1833. Kindergarteners in 

the Davis Thayer school district were given a choice on whether they wanted to go to Davis Thayer for Kindergarten or the small, one-room, red brick schoolhouse, located at the fork between Lincoln Street and Maple Street. I am grateful I got the unique opportunity to attend the Brick School before it closed after 175 years of being operational and our beloved teacher retired. A t-shirt that was signed by all of the members of my class still resides in the Franklin HIstorical Museum. 

What made the Brick School special was not just the building, it was our teacher and classmates. Our Brick School Kindergarten teacher, Mrs. Cindy Douglas, made the class a community. It was a place where learning was celebrated and engagement was infectious. Her passion for both educating and inspiring her students was apparent to anyone who walked through the door. We took weekly field trips to the library, walking as a group down the street to pick out a new book. Our learning was interactive and experiential beyond the classroom walls as we enjoyed fresh air in our own playground steps outside the building. She recognized that playing is learning. There were reading contests to inspire us to engage in literature and we benefited from hearing our favorite stories from guest readers. I also remember learning science by seeing a sand volcano made from our sandbox explode with mentos and Coke. She helped us develop a sense of family within our small, one-ro

om class. We celebrated each other’s successes and supported each other through challenges. Her kindness was contagious and we becam

e a tight-knit group with a new sense of confidence and community. 

Mrs. Douglas continues to impact student learning as she serves on the Franklin School Committee. I was hoping she would hand out diplomas at our FHS graduation to the approximately dozen Seniors from our 2007-2008 Kindergarten class. I, along with my other Brick School graduates, would have loved to come full circle, remembering how she inspired us all to work hard, help others, and make a difference. While graduation is still unknown because of the current conditions, I know Mrs. Douglas would be proud of her Brick School graduates.