Security Drills and The Harding Art Show

Dear Faculty and Staff,

I wanted to give you all an update as we continue to assess our security measures and evaluate events on campus. As you all know, during the 3-day event of The Harding Art Show, campus is open to the general public beginning Thursday evening through Saturday afternoon. The safety of our students, faculty, and staff remains our top priority. Since we would be unable to apply our safety measures for our students and faculty while also hosting an event that is open to the public, we will have a school holiday on Friday, May 5, 2023. The following message will be shared in my Weekly Review this afternoon. I know there are certain people who have to be on campus for specific reasons, so please discuss those with your division director. This change applies only to this school year and is not setting a precedent for years to come. Our goal is that, with advanced planning, we can find a happy medium between the business of school and The Harding Art Show. We simply did not have the luxury of time for such planning this year.

Dave Skeen

Dear Harding Learning Community,

As we continue to evaluate our security measures, as well as the emotional toll that the past few weeks have taken on us all, I wanted to send an update on a couple of security adjustments we are making to ensure the safety and well-being of our students, faculty, and staff remain our top priority.

First, we have two remaining drills this school year. One is a fire drill and one is a red lockdown drill. Both are critical drills to conduct regularly as they provide clear expectations and muscle memory for our community in the event of an emergency. Previously, our red lockdown drill was scheduled for Thursday, April 20 at 9:00 AM, and our fire drill was to be held on Tuesday, May 16 at 1:30 PM. Because we feel our community needs more time to process the events of March 27, we have decided to switch those two drills and have a fire drill on Thursday, April 20 at 9:00 AM and a red lockdown drill on Tuesday, May 16 at 1:30 PM. We understand that a drill of any kind at this time might be triggering for our students, so if you feel that your child does not need to be here for either or both of those drills, you may bring your child to school after 9:15 AM on April 20 or pick your child up by 1:15 PM on May 16. Our counselors will be working with teachers and staff to help them prepare their classes for and respond to the drills following a developmentally appropriate trauma-informed approach. This information will also be shared with families prior to the drills so families can be informed on how we prepare your child(ren) for these drills. 

Additionally, The Harding Art Show has grown exponentially over the past several years, and, while we are incredibly grateful for the time and effort that goes into making this event a success, having our students on campus while also opening campus up to the general public presents some significant challenges. As we work to determine how this looks for subsequent Harding Art Shows, we have decided that in the best interest of our students, faculty, and staff that we will have a school holiday on Friday, May 5, 2023. Campus will remain open for The Harding Art Show but students, faculty, and staff will not report to school that day.

We are deeply grateful for the support we have received over the past few weeks as we navigate the physical and emotional impact felt across the Nashville community. As always, should you have questions or concerns, please feel free to reach out to me directly.

Dave Skeen
Head of School
Inspiring The Mind  •  Nurturing The Spirit