The results of the Boston Globe Scholarship Art Awards are in and once again Vineyard students did very well. This year was in fact the best ever as thirty-three Island students were honored for a total of forty-one awards. The acknowledgment spanned nearly all art mediums imaginable including photography, drawing, writing, painting, ceramics and jewelry.
Examples of these awards can be seen on the Commentary Page in today’s edition.
The regional high school literary magazine Seabreezes also just received the highest award possible by the National Council of Teachers of English. Seabreezes has earned an award for excellence each of the past four years. This year they reached the pinnacle — superior achievement.
In an era of education cutbacks usually leading to budget slashing of all programs not deemed academically essential, it is refreshing to see the Martha’s Vineyard Regional High School’s continued commitment to the arts. The popular saying about reading, writing and arithmetic does not do justice to the entirety of the scholastic experience. Young minds also need room to expand and creative expression helps them see both themselves and the world around them in new and exciting ways.
As drawing and painting teacher Janice Frame said, “It’s the joy of seeing kids grow through school — optimal word grow — visually with thought and care and almost addiction for arts in all mediums.”
The students of course deserve high marks for their success and we congratulate them. But without committed teachers and advisors the honors would be much more elusive. Congratulations also go to Janice Frame, Paul Brissette, the art, design and technology department chairman, art teacher Chris Baer and English teacher Bill McCarthy who with Mrs. Frame oversees the work of Seabreezes.
The awards are a perfect coda to the careers of Mrs. Frame and Mr. Brissette who are both retiring at the end of this year. Their commitment to the arts and their students has been superior, to use award terminology, and they will be widely missed.
Speaking about the awards, Mr. Brissette said: “It’s a reflection of the community. These students come in with a certain sensibility from their families, the galleries and the Island.”
The Vineyard does embrace the arts and this plays an important factor in the character of the Island and its students. But in the end it always comes down to the teachers.
We wish Mrs. Frame and Mr. Brissette well and take comfort in knowing the programs they have shepherded throughout the years have deep roots and will continue to blossom.