The Pathfinder School: Traverse City Community School

Letter from Our Founders

October 1, 2009

To parents and students who are considering Pathfinder School,

Look closely! What we think you will find is continuing excellence and a unique educational experience for your child.

In 1972, having gained the commitment of a group of outstanding teachers from Interlochen, The Leelanau School, and Traverse City public schools, we bought a historic summer estate with beautiful wooded grounds to set up a new independent day school for the Traverse region. With the help of a new parents’ committee, we had the buildings completely refurbished and new ones built. We asked for the guidance and mentoring of the Independent School Association of the Central States and with their approval, we, our six children, and the families of sixty-five venturesome students K-12 undertook the long and demanding journey towards teaching and learning that became Pathfinder.

Its record has been outstanding in the Grand Traverse region: our graduates have attended fine Ivy League and state colleges all over America and are leaders in business, law and medicine and education as well as excellent citizens and parents. Second generation Pathfinder students give us all joy in the learning experience. There is literally no place like Pathfinder and it enriches Traverse City in a hundred ways.

A school is an idea, and the original idea was to establish a school that would combine affection and individual attention for students with unique learning experiences and demanding scholarship. Recently we determined that over 3,000 people (students, teachers, and families) had had their lives changed by the school since 1972. That method of combining rigorous learning with creative self-expression for children works! Going to school in the woods with small classes and superb and caring teachers is so very appealing to children and parents alike that it’s almost irresistible. We hope you will come and join this journey in education.

Arthur and Nancy Baxter
15601 Oak Road
Carmel, IN 46033