Dimensions Family School was featured in Ed. Magazine’s summer issue.  This post is a behind-the-scenes look at how the article was written!

It all starts with our school founder, Charlotte Dungan, attending school at the Harvard Graduate School of Education. She befriended Matt Weber, Director of Communications Strategy, while filming for her Ed Talk and participating in DoubleTake as a featured speaker.  Matt gave Charlotte tips on digital marketing and strategy and generally supported all students in clear communication strategies.  He also introduced Charlotte to the editor of Ed Magazine in the spring of 2016, Lorry Hough. What was supposed to be a ten minute meeting turned into an hour as they discussed the broader educational vision that was DFS.  Since Charlotte was still in school and DFS didn’t yet exist except in the minds of the board members, Lorry vowed to stay in touch but nothing was set in stone.

Fall of 2016, Dimensions Family School opened its doors.  Shortly afterward, Charlotte was contacted by Ed Magazine.  Rather than the little blurb she was expecting, a full story was planned and a local journalist was assigned to write the story, Barry Yeoman.  Charlotte and Barry hit it off instantly, and she gave him full access to students and parents, as well as several exclusive interviews over coffee at Francesca’s and at the school.  Barry brought focus and clarity to what was happening in the formative months, and he decided to write the story as a narrative arc rather than a single glimpse.  Ed Magazine gave him several extensions in both timing and story length as time went on.  Challenges that existed in October were being resolved by February, which you can read about in the article.  What isn’t captured is the special relationship between the author and our fledgling school.  Barry became very special to many of us at Dimensions as he saw our work and was able to meaningfully reflect on it.  We gave him honesty and he responded in kind.  He is a part of Durham as much as we are, and it was an honor to work with him on our story.  Thank you Barry!

A photographer came in the spring, and we rounded up as many kids as we could for photographing, though many of our middle and high schoolers opted out. Those are the portraits you see in the article.  We were disappointed that our school diversity is not fully reflected in these photos, but which students are in school depends on which day you visit due to our flexible schedule!  Charlotte recently had shoulder surgery so one challenge was taking her picture where her arm could be supported (she was able to take off her sling just for the pictures).  They turned out well, and the photographers captured the student displays in our classrooms as well.

Watching.  Waiting.  Editing.  Saying goodbye to our first class of seniors.  And then…  the magazine arrived!  Oh happy day!  You can read the full text in our school lobby, where it is on display, or view it online.