Deerfield resident named new head of school at Bement


Staff Writer
Published: 11/27/2020 5:55:02 PM

DEERFIELD — The Bement School has named Michael Schloat as its new head of school.

A Deerfield resident, Schloat has held the role of interim head of school since June, following the departure of Christopher Wilson. He is the coed day and boarding school’s 10th head of school.

“I’m thrilled,” Schloat said. “My family and I, we’ve lived in Deerfield for 13 years, and I’m so excited I can continue my career and keep my family in this village. I couldn’t be more excited for the future of Bement.”

“In his time as interim head of school, Mike has proven himself to be a thoughtful, capable and compassionate leader,” said Kwame Harrison, president of The Bement School’s board of trustees. “In five months, he has skillfully led Bement through the opening of the school year amidst a global pandemic, while instilling confidence with clear and transparent communication with faculty and staff.”

In a letter to the school community, Harrison and Bob Howe, treasurer of the board of trustees and chair of the Head of School Search Committee, wrote that the nationwide search for a new head of school began in June with the help of RG175, a head of school search firm.

In a message to the community earlier this fall, Howe wrote that a candidate pool of several hundred candidates was narrowed down to 13 “highly qualified people,” whose resumes and cover letters were reviewed by a 10-person search committee. Nine of those candidates were selected to move onto the next round.

By Oct. 30, the nine candidates had been narrowed down to three finalists. The school community — teachers, students and parents — had the opportunity to meet those candidates either in person or via Zoom during the first two weeks of November.

After reviewing feedback from those meetings, the Head of School Search Committee voted unanimously this week to select Schloat.

Prior to joining Bement as interim head of school, Schloat served as assistant dean of faculty at Deerfield Academy. Before that, he taught English at Deerfield Academy and served as chair of the English Department.

Schloat has also taught at schools in New York and New Jersey. He graduated from Williams College with a bachelor’s degree in English and holds a master’s degree in education leadership from the Klingenstein Center at Columbia University’s Teachers College in New York.

Schloat said the school has had an “awesome” fall term, with no cases of COVID-19 in the school community.

“I think that puts us in a position to finish the year on a really good note,” he said.

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