Maclay School is an independent, non-sectarian college preparatory school located on 100 beautiful acres in northern Tallahassee, Florida, about ten miles north of the state capitol building. It seeks to provide a liberal arts education, enabling each student to develop their inherent ability to the fullest extent with a balance of discipline and freedom. The 2018-19 school year will be the 51st year for Maclay, now under the leadership of James Milford who is in his fifth year as Head of School.
We know that our graduates are entering a world that is continuously changing. Our next generation must learn on its feet, be comfortable with rapid change, embrace uncertainty, and not be afraid to solve and lead. We aim to provide students with the tools and skills essential for success in this new century. We start with the student who is supported by well-trained faculty. Aside from academics, we embrace a culture of philanthropy that supports the higher purpose of Maclay School - to build great learners and prepare great leaders.
Our Mission and Philosphy
Our Mission Statement: Maclay School is an independent, non-sectarian college preparatory school dedicated to providing a liberal arts education and enabling each student to develop their inherent ability to the fullest extent with a balance of discipline and freedom.
Our Philosophy Statement: The philosophy has been in existence since the beginning of the school in 1968. Maclay School supports its students in fulfilling their potential academically, emotionally, physically, and artistically. Its purpose is:
to establish and maintain a curriculum designed to teach the liberal arts creatively.
to create a civilized community of learning guided by a dedicated faculty of superior qualifications.
to provide patient and understanding ways to challenge each student.
to engender by teaching and example self-discipline, hard work, integrity, and persistence at school and home.
to stimulate each student to inquire, learn, recognize obligations, develop self-respect, and understand others.
to build a meaningful spirit among students, parents, faculty, and community by faithful fulfillment of the Maclay School Mission and Philosophy.
to prepare well-balanced students able to meet the future challenges of higher education, service to others, and life, with wisdom and fortitude.
Our Core Values: The Honor Code
The Honor Code
In 2000, a group of student leaders came up with the idea of creating an Honor Code for Maclay. After meeting with faculty and administration and researching Honor Codes from other schools and colleges, the Maclay Honor Code was instituted into the Upper School which students wrote at the end of each test declaring their work was honest and complete.
In 2015, a group of students and faculty revised the Honor Code to carry a more straightforward meaning that all students, K-12, could understand and follow. Each September, the traditional formal ceremony for Upper School students is held, and all new students and new teachers sign a roll book to indicate their participation in the Maclay Honor Code system. The Honor Code Book has become a part of Maclay's tradition and is displayed in our library for future generations to see.
Statement of Community
As a member of the Maclay School community, I will maintain my honor and integrity at all times by creating and upholding an atmosphere of trust, respect, kindness, and consideration for all members of the school and the wider community. All constituencies that make up our community - trustees, administrators, faculty, staff, students, parents, and alumni - should respect, support, defend, cooperate with, speak well of each other and Maclay School, and place the best interests of the institution first.
Our History and Traditions
Maclay School was founded in 1968 by a group of parents who wished to provide their children with educational resources that would enable each student to develop to the fullest- academically, morally, emotionally, and physically. The school was named in honor of Alfred Barmore Maclay, Jr., a World War II veteran who died of polio in 1953. His mother, Mrs. Alfred B. Maclay, Sr., was a benefactor and loyal friend of the school. Over the years, family members, Mr. and Mrs. John W. Mettler, generously donated the land upon which the school now sits. During Maclay's first year, a nine-member faculty taught grades 1-8. Each year following, one grade level was added until the first class graduated in 1972. Our Kindergarten opened in 1975, and Pre-K began in 1989. Today, Maclay has a student body of about 1,000 students and 100 faculty members. At the end of our 50th year in 2018, our 3000th graduate walked across the commencement stage.
The Mace: The shaft of the mace is crafted from the wood of a 100-year old cherry tree that fell on Welaunee Plantation, a plantation owned by the Mettler family, one of Maclay’s founding families that donated the 100 acres Maclay stands on today. The base of the mace is a silver acorn symbolizing the genesis of education and Maclay’s precious oak tree. The cuff features the name of the school and the founding date 1968. The gemstones that decorate the shaft come from the two class ring companies. The school seal is enameled in our school colors and sits surrounded by palms made of sterling silver to represent the Florida landscape. The silver was donated by founding families, the Langfords, the Subers, the Lines, and the Davenports.
Alma Mater: Maclay student Terry Simpson wrote the Alma Mater in 1975.
Senior Walk: On awards day during the last week of class, the seniors wear their college shirts and parade through the Pre-K and Lower School hallway.
Maclay Crest: The crest represents the history and values of the school. It contains four quadrants, each signifying an important aspect of Maclay. The first quadrant shows the Spanish Conquistador Helmet, which represents the heritage of the land the school sits on today and its families. The second quadrant shows three pillars, which represent the three main points of the school's mission: Each student, healthy Balance, and a Liberal Arts education. The third quadrant shows the Flour-de-Lis, which represents our legacy through alumni. The fourth quadrant shows another three pillars, which represent the core values of the Honor Code: Honor, Respect, and Accountability.
Homecoming Parade: The clubs, sports teams, homecoming court, and alumni join in for the traditional parade on Friday of Homecoming. It begins in front of the Lower School and ends at Webster Gym for the Pep Rally.
Spirit Day Fridays: Students wear their Maclay shirts and sports team jerseys on Fridays.
Rowdy ‘Rauder: This is the name of the mascot for Maclay School.
Convocation: This is the opening day ceremony to officially kick-off the school year. Seniors escort 1st and 2nd graders and sit together in front of the stage.
Honor Code: The Honor Code was created in 2000 by a group of Upper School students and updated in 2015 by student leaders to represent a one school philosophy. The Honor Code reads: I will respect all people and property, I will be honest in all matters and take responsibility for my actions.
Honor Signing: This is a ceremony held in the fall where new Upper School students and faculty members, including all freshman, sign the Honor Code Book. The tradition began in 2000.
One School One Community: This is Maclay School’s One School student-Centered approach to a vertical alignment in philosophy, service, and curriculum.
Countdown Dinner: The Countdown Dinner is held each year approximately 100 days before graduation. At the event, the seniors enjoy a walk down memory lane that includes visits and stories from current and former faculty members.
Founders Day: Founders Day is a day to pause and celebrate the Founding Families who had the vision and talents to create our independent day school in 1968. Usually held in November, Founders Day includes on-campus ceremonies and alumni events all over the country.