Why is the J.S. Bryant School being launched? - Teens need support for anxiety and depression and the most under-served teens can also be challenged with understanding their sexual orientation or gender identity. - The founders of the school learned this because they were looking for a school for their own kid. He struggled, and they struggled as parents with him to find a school path that made sense. This experience inspired the founders to launch a school that can help families like themselves. There isn't a therapeutic day or boarding school that can offer what they needed in the Berkshires or even the Northeast.
Why was an historic 300-acre farm chosen for the campus? - This historic 300-acre farm was once owned by the family of William Cullen Bryant, a renowned American nature poet inspired by the land of the Berkshire Foothills. This property is one of the largest farms in the hilltowns of western Massachusetts. It offers a sweeping landscape for students to gain firsthand agricultural experience and explore environmental science. The historic farmhouse and barn honors the generations of famers who raised farm animals, grew orchards, planted nut trees, did maple sugaring, and hayed the fields. - The J.S. Bryant School is named for Julia Sands Bryant the daughter of William Cullen Bryant. Julia was in a committed relationship with a woman yet could not feel comfortable living at the Bryant Homestead, so spent a great deal of her adult life living in Paris, where she felt more accepted in her sexual orientation. In hopes that no person has to leave Massachusetts to find a home that is accepting, affirming, and supportive, the school is named in Julia Sands Bryant’s honor. - The school founders have been connected to this area since 1968, when Ben Bederson’s parents purchased land in a hilltown close by. Ben has grown up enjoying Western Massachusetts over summers, on holidays, and more.
How will the school be structured? - It’s therapeutic - It’s a high school - It focuses on LGBTQ+ kids - Phase one of the school will launch in 2025 as a therapeutic day school for its first 36 students. - Our goal in the next decade: 125 student residential +day therapeutic school
What will students learn at the school? - The J.S. Byrant School will uphold the Massachusetts learning standards that will enable all students to graduate and go on to college or be ready for the workforce. - Creative arts- students will explore the creative arts through teaching artists in a large studio, and the arts will be a part of every student’s curriculum. - Farming entrepreneurship- all students will participate in the farm every day - Picking fruit - Feeding animals - Blazing trails - Making Cheese / Processing Milk (goats / sheep) - Running the farm stand - Climate Innovation / Justice- all students will learn how a farm can be sustainable; they will understand how organic farming is important, they will explore how greywater can be used for farming. - Wellness- It is expected that all students will learn to be resilient & ready for change. - Through therapeutic support- J.S. Bryant School students will become comfortable with being curious, creative, courageous, & community-minded.
When will the doors open to students and the community? - The school is still a few years away from launching in Fall 2025 as a therapeutic day school, but work has begun on the design of the new campus. - In the meantime, there will be public activities in the context of farming education, arts entrepreneurship, and climate innovation. Look out for community walks on the farm, to creative arts festivals. - The school has begun partnering with the LGBTQ+ community, the healthcare community, the business community, the learning community, and the cultural community to develop the school.
How can you get involved? - There will be public activities in the context of farming education, arts entrepreneurship, and climate innovation. - In the next few years the school will be hiring professionals that can support teaching, wellness, farming, food services and facilities. - Is there someone you would like to honor in giving a donation to the building of the school? Use our donate button below to help today.
What is your Non-Profit Tax Information? - The J.S. Bryant School is a 501(c)3 not-for-profit corporation. Donors can deduct contributions they make to us under IRC Section 170. We are listed as a public charity under 170(b)(1)(A)(ii). - Our Employer ID Number is 88-1356246. - If you need our mailing address, please contact us.
J.S. Bryant is a 501(c)3 non-profit charitable organization.
Your donations are tax-deductible.