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News Archive

2019

  • July

    Image by ThePixelman from Pixabay

    Bird-Dogging Your College Admission Visit

    Brennan Barnard
    Here in New Hampshire, the weather is not the only thing heating up as we head into summer. With the impending first-in-the-nation presidential primary, candidates are storming the state—any given week might bring half a dozen of the long list of presidential hopefuls. For many rising high school seniors, picking a new president pales in comparison to their main focus—finding a college. The realities of admission loom large and as students head out on visits this summer they can learn a great deal from the political process and what is known as “bird-dogging.”
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  • Project Based Learning Grows at Derryfield

    Emanne Khan '19
    A good deal of learning continued to take place within the walls of Derryfield after the last students walked out the doors on June 4. Professionals from the Buck Institute for Education spent three days on campus during the second week of June, collaborating with Derryfield faculty members on how to integrate project based learning into the academic curriculum....
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  • McCaigue Retires as Athletic Director

    Brian Adie '19
    Lenny McCaigue has spent the past 22 years as Derryfield’s Athletic Director, coaching the varsity field hockey team to several state titles and creating bonds with countless members of the Derryfield community. However, all good things must come to an end, and Mr. McCaigue retired from his position as Athletic Director at the end of the school year. He will surely be missed, and it is important to remember everything he did for decades of Derryfield students and athletes....
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  • Image by CandiceP from Pixabay

    College Summer Reading List

    Brennan Barnard
    Director of College Counseling Brennan Barnard's annual summer reading list for the Answer Sheet blog in The Washington Post. The list compiles a summer reading recommendations from college admissions counselors and deans across the country...
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  • June

    Milestone Participation in ISP Program

    Brian Adie '19
    Spring 2019 marked the first year that the entire senior class took part in an Independent Senior Project, setting a significant milestone for the program. When I started at Derryfield, only a handful of seniors took part in an ISP, but the program has slowly gained popularity. Seniors began to notice what participating in an ISP could mean for them not only as students, but as future professionals....
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  • Lahey Hospital Displays Barsi's Work

    Emanne Khan '19
    Visual Arts department chair Becky Barsi may be known around campus as Derryfield’s resident art guru, but now her creations are finding their way off campus as well. This summer, her photographic collage titled “With These Hands” will be installed at Lahey Hospital in Burlington, MA as part of the clinic’s permanent art collection....
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  • David Baroody

    Welcoming New Faculty

    Pete Brandt
    Derryfield is thrilled to announce incoming members of the teaching faculty for the 2019-2020 school year. These teachers will bring a wide range of original perspectives and experiences to Derryfield and are excited to join the community in the fall.
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  • The Early Decision Debate

    Brennan Barnard
    The world of college admission is ruled by competing interests. There is an inherent tension between serving students and maintaining sustainable schools. At the fulcrum of this tension are admission officers and high school counselors, trying to do their jobs, do them ethically, and in ways that both promote justice and engagement....
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  • May

    Filmmaking ISP

    Brian Adie
    There are countless logistical puzzles to be overcome in making a film, but Ian Davis, Matt Michaud, and Mark Rotering are working through these challenges to produce a short film for their ISP
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  • Jewelry Design ISP

    Brian Adie
    There are many creative minds in this year’s graduating class, and Ada Hu is one of the most creative of the lot.
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  • Yash Patel '20 at the Derryfield apiary

    Bees Come to Derryfield

    Emanne Khan '19
    If you have yet to spot the 10,000 new residents of Derryfield’s campus, it’s because they’re well hidden. On April 30, math teacher Mr. Watt shared the news: Derryfield is now home to an apiary, or a place where bees are kept, located just beyond the turf field....
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  • ISP in a Political Office

    Brian Adie
    Politics in America is a very hot topic today, and many more people are becoming involved in the political system and social issues, including Lily Doherty who is spending her ISP working in a political office in Concord
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  • Personal Finance ISP

    Brian Adie
    Although a Derryfield education teaches us many things, personal finance is not typically one of them, so Abi Leonardi, Emmah Nolan, and Lindsey Wagner decided to spend their ISP learning as much as possible about the subject.
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  • Image by Cari Dobbins from Pixabay

    Elite Admission: What Is College Worth?

    Brennan Barnard
    This spring, the country has watched, aghast and astounded, as celebrities, business leaders and other wealthy parents have been charged with scheming to fraudulently secure college acceptances for their children at some of our nation’s most selective institutions. Who knew the lengths that some will go in pursuit of admission, status and the perceived guarantee of success? It also raises an interesting question: Just how much is an elite acceptance worth and how far would you go to attain one for your child?...
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  • Japanese Culture ISP

    Brian Adie
    Living in a foreign country for a month where you do not fully understand the language may seem daunting to most people, but Ash Sullivan was not scared to spend the last six weeks of her senior year in Japan
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  • Induni '21 Honored at Global Health Conference

    Emanne Khan '19
    While many students spend April and May juggling the whirlwind of projects and activities that accompany the end of the school year, Samy Induni ’21 was busy tackling a worldwide issue. Following a lengthy preparation process, she and two teammates took first place in the Rural Health category at the Harvard College Global Health and Leadership Conference in April....
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  • Hu ‘19 Wins Two National Awards

    Emanne Khan '19
    Even if you’ve never met her, you’ve probably seen her artwork. Throughout her four years at Derryfield, the creations of Ada Hu ‘19 have decorated many a wall around campus, from her elaborate sculptures on display in the Lyceum Gallery to her intricate underwater scene hung near the library. Fittingly, she is headed off to the Rhode Island School of Design next fall, and she is picking up a few more accolades along the way....
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  • Rabbit ISP

    Brian Adie
    Today I spent some time with Ethan Kloc and Noah Gonzales to learn about their ISP, which is to restore a 1984 Volkswagen Golf. Because the two are both very interested in cars and drive Volkswagens, the project makes a lot of sense for them to take up.
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  • Project Tiny House

    Brian Adie
    I sat down and spent a little time working with Max Horton, David Doan, and Avry Truex to learn about their ISP. The trio is building a tiny house to donate to a veteran, something that Max has been hoping to do since he was in seventh grade.
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  • FRESH: Young Alumni Artists

    Becky Barsi
    The Derryfield School Lyceum Gallery is pleased to announce the opening of FRESH, a group exhibition of work by recent Derryfield School alumni. The exhibition will feature photographs, drawings, and animation by recent alumni, Crystal Xie '18, Megan Farr '18, and Victoria Imbriano '17....
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  • I Might Be a Helicopter Parent...

    Brennan Barnard
    The college admission scandal marked a new low in the annals of unethical parental behavior. The lying and scheming of the wealthy and well-connected to secure a college acceptance for their child both sickened and appalled. As an educator, counselor and parent, I too felt disbelief and revulsion, but it also gave me pause: in what ways am I over-involved with my own two teenagers? How will I act when they apply to college? Of what excess will I be guilty, intentional or not?...
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  • Finishing Strong

    Ben Dougherty
    Spring brings with it a lot of renewed energy and excitement at Derryfield. There is a tremendous flurry of activity on and off campus, the weather is still unpredictable, and people are coming and going to a plethora of exciting events. We have had athletic and musical performances,Independent Senior Projects began this week, prom is just days away and we have already held our annual Senior Celebration....
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  • April

    Putting New Ideas to Work

    Mark Blaisdell
    As faculty continue to develop their Exploration mini-courses for next year, some faculty have also created opportunities to teach in longer blocks. Sixth grade team members Tracy Blaisdell and Rick Zeller recently combined class periods on consecutive days to create extended class time....
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  • Progress Report: Derryfield's Academic Vision

    Three years ago Derryfield launched a process to examine our teaching, our academic program, and our daily schedule.  As we have shared with you in Cougar Tracks, at Parent Night presentations, Middle and Upper School communications meetings, and through many parent forums, this has been exciting and energizing work, in which we’ve sought to keep the best of what has always worked at Derryfield and add the best of what’s new in the brain-science of teaching and learning....
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  • April Construction Update

    Over March break we embarked on the second project within Phase One of the master facility plan— the renovation of the gym into a Science & Innovation Center. The crew moved quickly to demo the floor (we saved some pieces for projects!) and removed the lockers, bleachers, and more....
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  • Math Team Continues to Add Up Wins

    Derryfield's Math Team continues to thrive and grow, testing their computational skills in state-wide and regional competitions. On the home front, the team won the NH SMASH season for the small division - their main travel competition for a season that extends over five months....
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  • Derryfield Presents "All in the Timing"

    Bill Westenberg
    In what the New York Times has called “a madcap evening of six fast and ferociously funny comedies, spinning hilarity out of words,”  All in the Timing by David Ives will be presented by The Derryfield School Theatre Company on May 17 & 18 at 7:00 p.m. at the Nancy S. Boettiger Theater....
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  • Image by Free-Photos from Pixabay

    The College Admission Scandal: Voices of Reason Part Two

    Brennan Barnard
    Thankfully, most students and parents have responded to the recent college admission scandal with disgust. They are disgusted by the blatant dishonesty, disgusted by the unethical behavior, and disgusted by the influence of money and power in a system that they would hope to be more equitable and just. They share this disgust with the majority of admission officers, school counselors and other constituents who are intimately involved in guiding young people to college...
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  • Running: A Metaphor for Life

    Congratulations to Derryfield senior Matt Michaud, who won a NHADA scholarship for his essay on what high school sports has meant to him. A member of the cross country and track teams, he talks about how running is a metaphor for life....
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  • Parenting, Sabotage, and the College Process

    Director of College Couseling Brennan Barnard was recently quoted in a Washington Post story in the On Parenting blog entitled "When parents are so desperate to get their kids into college that they sabotage other students." He was interviewed through his role as the college admissions program manager for Making Caring Common, a project of the Harvard Graduate School of Education.
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  • The College Admission Scandal: Voices of Reason Part One

    Brennan Barnard
    Unless you have been under a self-imposed media blackout for the past two weeks, you are aware that the world of college admission has been riddled by another scandal—this one with all the makings of a Hollywood movie. The sensationalism of the news trifecta of sports, celebrities, and money in selective college admission has begun to soften and we are processing the initial “shock.” Now, can we please have a discussion about one of the elephants on the quad? Elitism....
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  • March

    Thousands of Miles, One Message

    Emanne Khan '19
    John Broderick is already an established figure across New Hampshire for his work as the former Chief Justice of the state Supreme Court, but these days, he’s undertaking a new mission. Rather than step away from the public eye, Broderick has spent the past several years traveling the region as the face of Dartmouth-Hitchcock’s R.E.A.C.T. awareness campaign....
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  • Scholar Athletes Honored

    Director of Athletics Lenny McCaigue is pleased to announce that 19 Derryfield seniors have met the criteria for the New Hampshire Athletic Director Association/NHIAA Annual Scholar-Athlete Award....
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  • How Helicopter Parenting Hurts Kids

    Amy Joyce
    Director of College Couseling Brennan Barnard was recently quoted in a Washington Post story in the On Parenting blog entitled "The college admissions scandal is more proof that helicopter parenting hurts kids."
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  • Innovation Breakfast Fosters Networking

    Emanne Khan '19
    Throughout the morning of Wednesday, February 20, the Gateway conference room was alive with the buzz and chatter of innovation. A cohort of inventive students gathered with members of the Derryfield community, as well as local professionals and businesspeople, to share ideas in the spirit of entrepreneurship. Dean of Innovation Dr. Masoni envisioned the inaugural Innovation Breakfast as an opportunity for STEM-X students to make valuable connections with adults working in their fields of interest, and it more than lived up to his expectations....
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  • February

    Library Genrefication is a 21st Century Necessity

    Emanne Khan '19
    Throughout the school day, the Milne Library is the central hub of student life, shared by upperclassmen and middle school students alike. At any given time, students can be found calling into an online Malone course in one of the conference rooms, collaborating at the table pods, or lounging on the Hogwarts-themed cushions. Ms. Jipson, our beloved librarian of 40 years, consistently works to keep the space dynamic and diversified, which entails staying on top of trends at the intersection of media and technology....
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  • Roberts '99 Recognized by Union Leader

    Congratulations to Derryfield alumna, Latin teacher, and Director of Security and Crisis Management, Gill Roberts '99, who was chosen for the Union Leader's 2019 Class of 40 Under Forty. The Union Leader’s 40 Under Forty program recognizes some of the state’s brightest young achievers who have a record of professional and volunteer accomplishments in New Hampshire. Those selected were honored at a reception at the Grappone Conference Center in Concord on March 13. Gill was interviewed by the Union Leader about her career and community involvement...
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  • Raff '05 Earns 40 Under 40 Honors

    Congratulations to Derryfield alumnus Alan Raff '04, who was chosen for the Union Leader's 2019 Class of 40 Under Forty. The Union Leader’s 40 Under Forty program recognizes some of the state’s brightest young achievers who have a record of professional and volunteer accomplishments in New Hampshire. Those selected were honored at a reception at the Grappone Conference Center in Concord on March 13. Alan was interviewed by the Union Leader about his experiences and aspitations...
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  • February Construction Update

    Construction is progressing, and in each issue of Cougar Tracks we’ll update you on our progress and share what is coming up next. These will be high level updates; anything that is urgent or will impact students will be shared in Nuts & Bolts (like parking arrangements).
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  • Winter Sports Post-Season Update

    As we move into the end of the winter sports season, many of Derryfield's student athletes are performing on New Hampshire's highest stage for high school sports. Here are recaps of state meet performances for swimming, alpine skiing, and gymnastics, as well as info about the upcoming championships for nordic skiing, ice hockey, and basketball....
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  • Making Room for New Programs and New Choices

    Ben Dougherty
    One of the more innovative parts of our schedule involves the new “8th carrier.” First, let me explain that terminology. We will move from seven blocks to eight blocks with half of them meeting each day, so that each academic block meets every other day. Seven of the new eight carriers will be scheduled as per normal, with each chosen academic course assigned to one of those seven carriers. The additional eighth carrier will be scheduled a bit differently. That one carrier will include multiple experiences....
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  • Xploration Courses Bring Choice to Middle School

    Mark Blaisdell
    It has been exciting to share the structure and features of our upcoming new schedule with students and parents this past month. As a member of the scheduling committee, I welcomed the opportunity to address a number of issues that exist in our current schedule. Some of these issues included the general “pace” of the day, the need for conflict-free regular extra help time, the irregular teaching blocks, and the amount of time demanded for homework each night. The structural changes we made to move to fewer but longer teaching blocks on an every other day rotation will address each of these issues. Another issue that emerged, however, required us thinking about more than structure. That issue is choice - a component of education that is receiving valuable attention in 21st century education....
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  • Derryfield Celebrates the Year of the Pig

    Emanne Khan '19
    In the days leading up to Tuesday, February 5, you may have noticed red paper banners bearing messages written in Chinese characters pop up at the library entrance and outside of classrooms. Hand-crafted by members of Derryfield’s cohort of international students, each message heralded the Chinese New Year, marking the transition from the Year of the Dog to the Year of the Pig....
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  • Making Time for What We Value

    Lindley Shutz
    This month, we shared the new schedule in seven sessions with students and parents. The response has been overwhelmingly one of excitement. The new schedule makes time for what we value: relationships, community, exploration, and excellent teaching and learning. As we worked with our schedule consultants and the DS community, we focused on a number of priorities....
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  • Visual Arts Champions

    Becky Barsi
    Creative Arts Department Co-Chair Becky Barsi has long described the Scholastic Art Award program as the championships of visual art; this year Derryfield had plenty of champions. Since 1923, the Scholastic Art & Writing Awards have recognized the vision, ingenuity, and talent of our nation’s youth, and provided opportunities for creative teens to be celebrated. It is consitered our country's most competitive juried art competition for students in grades 7-12....
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  • Love and College Admission

    Brennan Barnard
    It is mid-February and love is undeniably in the air—as well as the walls, floors, and ceilings of my local supermarket. Remember the simpler days, when a valentine was a note one got from a crush at school? It was that experience of a letter in the mailbox that made one’s heart leap—with the knowledge that the person one loves feels the same. Something similar takes place in college admission. While students and families often think in terms of “because I did such and such, I deserve to get in,” the reality is more like a person who returns your valentine. "I like you and you like me, so let’s make a match....”
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  • FIRST Tech Challenge Recap

    Emanne Khan '19
    Under the guidance of coaches Mr. Young and Dr. Masoni, the Derryfield Upper and Middle School robotics teams tested their mettle at the FIRST Tech Challenge state championship on Saturday, February 2nd at SNHU. NH resident and Segway inventor Dean Kamen founded FIRST (For Inspiration and Recognition of Science and Technology) in 1989 to encourage the spirit of innovation and interest in STEM fields among students across the nation....
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  • The Addams Family: Familiar Family, New Faces

    Emanne Khan '19
    The magnificently macabre, spectacularly eccentric Addams Family, headed by mustachioed patriarch Gomez, has been a staple of American popular culture for nearly sixty years, but Derryfield’s upcoming production of The Addams Family: A New Musical featuring the clan is decidedly fresh-faced....
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  • Dear Admission Dean: What Parents Can Learn From Their College Applicant

    Brennan Barnard
    Everyone has heard that “the apple doesn’t fall far from the tree.” What fatherhood has taught me, however, is that “the tree doesn’t grow far from the apple.” In other words, the lessons I have learned from my two children—as they sow the seeds of untainted virtues—force me to grow in important ways, beyond what years of schooling and life are able to teach. Patience, humility, wonder, playfulness, and optimism are just a few of the many values that I “harvest” from my children....
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  • January

    A Letter to College Applicants

    Brennan Barnard
    It is easy for college applicants and their parents to get caught up in the fear, frustration, and frenzy of the admission experience. Those of us who counsel families through this journey have the benefit of having watched hundreds and thousands of students and their parents as they fumble, fixate and flourish. This breadth of experience, and what we have come to know, can be valuable to current families....
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  • Welcoming Inaugural ASSIST Scholars

    Emanne Khan '19
    Over the past several years, Derryfield has placed a growing emphasis on expanding our small but vibrant community of international students. Thanks to the efforts of Associate Head of School Susan Grodman and Director of Enrollment Kathleen Rutty-Fey, the School has fostered a strong partnership with New Oasis International Education, which has brought a number of students from several cities across China to live with local host families during the school year and engage with all facets of life at an American high school....
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  • More Ways to Improve College Admission in 2019

    Brennan Barnard
    College admission is an imperfect system. It is designed by humans and as such is highly subjective and flawed, while also being complicated by many competing interests. That being said, there are always ways to improve our work and perhaps 2019 is the year that the many constituents in college admission (colleges, high schools, students and parents) will stop pointing fingers and start making changes....
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  • Six Terms to Stop Using in College Admissions

    Brennan Barnard
    It is January again, which means hordes of fresh faces in the gym and long lines for the equipment. While I am happy for their resolve to get fit and eat right, in a month's time I know that the queue to the treadmill will be gone. The crowds will have thinned once again and many of the good intentions to embrace healthy lifestyles will have waned....
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  • A New Year In College Admission

    Brennan Barnard
    My family had a New Year’s tradition that was different than most, one that often led to tears and retribution between me and my brothers. At breakfast on January 1st every year, we gathered around pancakes, and instead of crafting our own New Year’s resolutions, the group would decide what each family member should commit to change or improve in the coming year. Having a spotlight on our shortcomings was no picnic, as you can imagine, but in retrospect, it was a valuable exercise....
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  • Competing at the Next Level

    While establishing a strong foundation for lifelong fitness habits is a core objective of the Derryfield athletic program, coaches are always thrilled to work with talented and committed athletes who aim to compete in their sport at the highest level. Often, this involves committing to a university program as part of the admission process. So far this year, Derryfield has five seniors who have signed letters of intent with university programs.
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< 2019

The Derryfield School

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