mabfan (Michael A. Burstein) (mabfan) wrote,
mabfan (Michael A. Burstein)

Robin Wood, CSW Theatre Teacher, 1944-2009

Yesterday evening, just before going to bed, I learned from a former student of mine that one of my former colleagues had just died.

I taught at the Cambridge School of Weston for six years. I worked with many dedicated and wonderful teachers, and Robin was one of the most dedicated of them all. She was the spark behind the most inspirational and vital school theatre program that I had ever seen.

There are two things I would like to share about Robin.

First of all, CSW is one of the only high schools I know of that has a program in American Sign Language. Not only is there an ASL teacher who teaches at the school, but every year a group of students and community members form the Pocket Players, who perform in both English and ASL at a variety of locations in the Boston area. Robin was instrumental in getting ASL and an appreciation of Deaf culture incorporated into CSW's programs.

Secondly, when I was at the school Robin was the faculty advisor for SALSA, which stood for Students Advocating Life without Substance Abuse. The students in the group made the commitment to avoid alcohol and drugs, and they went around teaching younger students about the dangers that can happen with substance abuse. The group needed other faculty to support them who had made the same commitment to avoiding alcohol and drugs, and I was glad to become a part of it.

I know that many, many other people were more influenced by Robin than I was, and have more reason to mourn than I. But I did feel compelled to share. May her family, friends, and generations of students know peace.

In Memory of Robin BR Wood 1944-2009
Tags: personal, teaching

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