Tag Archives: high school admissions

Reason #26: Sarah gets to inspire TEEP students through her love of literature

My favorite role at Trinity Church these days is “Latin tutor” and writing instructor at the TEEP program.  I get to come to Trinity after teaching Art classes near Harrison Ave/Boston Medical Center, and the No. 9 bus drops me right off near the Church’s doors. There’s always lively bustling energy at 4:00pm around Copley Square and in Trinity’s vestibule:  the students start arriving, full of energy and ready to tackle those “tougher” subjects like Chemistry, SAT Math, and of course LATIN.  Choristers can be heard on the floors singing.  And yes, it is warm! Inside those massive doors….lo, there is Ken, Front Desk Central, with special greetings for all! Truly the place to be.

Tuesdays I am often helping a TEEP student with writing or vocabulary, or sometimes a few sticky arithmetic problems.  Maybe it’s a special day: pasta dinner and conversation about 8th grade admissions essays.  Wednesdays, I can be found with TEEP juniors and seniors reviewing their writing as they wrestle with the themes of Virgil’s AENEID.

All those literary memories come rushing back to mind: oh Queen Dido!  so in love with Aeneas that her Capital Campaign fundraising has halted and “the cranes stand idle” in building her Carthage stronghold.  But what of Aeneas’ destiny to found Rome? “Tell him to SAIL!” says mighty Jupiter.

It is a joy to find a way to share my enthusiasm for literature and writing, whether it is  investigating a puzzling text,  wrestling for the “exact” words,  for “look it up!” energy, or just listening to students organizing their thoughts for the “admissions essay” due at the end of term.

Each week I am reminded that I am part of a church that is IN the City of Boston.  Right in the midst of it. And yet thankfully, I have a sanctuary and quiet spot to sit and focus on writing with my students.

Thanks for all the support that makes it possible ….

Sara “Latin Teacher” Hamlen


Reason #7: Getting to the Right High School Makes All the Difference

Tonight was the final night of TEEP’s High School Admissions course, a 12-week program that guides students and parents through the process of applying to and choosing the best possible high school. In the 11 years of TEEP, we have come to realize that the right high school is essential for keeping our students on track for college.

But the process of applying to high school can be bewildering, especially to parents for whom English is not their first language. Each different type of public high school (public exam, public pilot, public charter, and district high schools) have a separate application process and admission requirements. Then there are parochial and independent schools to consider as well as the terrific program, Beacon Academy, which offers students an opportunity for an extra year of academic and cultural preparation for the rigors of an independent school.

Over the course of 12 weeks, TEEP educates our 8th grade students and parents about their options and application process while working to make sure all students end up in the right place. Experienced volunteers are also matched with families as mentors through the entire process.

Students apply to 7-10 schools and last night, at the close of the last class, students and parents walked together with their mentors to drop all of their applications in the mailbox on Boylston Street. Says TEEP’s Founding Director Paul Bowen,  “This is our favorite moment of the course.”

Will you celebrate the accomplishments of our 8th graders by making a gift today? Thank you!