Tabor Academy is a coeducational, college preparatory boarding and day school located in Marion, Massachusetts. Tabor enrolls students demonstrating academic ability, strong motivation, sound character, emotional stability, and a willingness to participate fully in the school community. Tabor is founded on the belief that a healthy school community finds common ground while embracing differences and, therefore, accepts a racially, ethnically, religiously, economically, and internationally diverse student body. Tabor students are expected to respect one another and to care for their school.
Tabor's academic, artistic, athletic, and community programs provide distinctive opportunities for students to achieve genuine understanding and significant skills and to identify and pursue personal goals. As the "school by the sea," Tabor sustains a unique maritime heritage that embodies, in all its programs, the qualities a seagoing life requires: thoughtful preparation for and awareness of the wider world, perseverance, courage, good humor, a sense of direction, and humility.
Tabor's faculty commit themselves to balancing high demands with genuine affection for their students and to fostering relationships founded on the compassion, personal integrity, and trust that anchor Tabor's community.
Tabor Academy’s core values from our mission statement guide the intellectual life of the school.
- To inspire a life-long love of learning
- To instill a passion for the highest standards of achievement
- To encourage personal responsibility
- To foster care for others and committed citizenship
The school encourages all students to explore their interests and develop their passions, to stretch their capabilities and hone their skills. Tabor wants its students to learn to be capable self-advocates, skillful communicators, collaborative team members, and discerning critical thinkers. The Tabor community values intellectual curiosity, open-minded debate, the spirit of inquiry, and integrity in all areas of our school lives, but particularly in our academic pursuits.
Living At Tabor
Tabor’s small dormitories form the foundation of our boarding community. Our largest dormitory has just thirty-two students; the smallest has five. At least four adults serve as houseparents in each dormitory, mentoring, supervising, and supporting the students in their dormitories. Selected and trained by the Deans, student proctors in each dorm help with check-ins and dorm activities, but most importantly serve as role models and sounding boards for their peers. A community of small dorms, in which both students and faculty know each other well, creates the richness that is the boarding experience at Tabor.
Tabor’s boarding tradition reaches back to its founding in 1876. Since then, the dormitories have both honored and updated traditions: One dorm is famous for its fireside chats at ten o’clock, even though the fireplace itself no longer exists; another enjoys houseparent-led dorm walks to see the stars—and, once, to watch the launch of the Minotaur I from Virginia; still another dorm likes karaoke, holding sing-offs in its common room after study hall and before bedtime; every dorm loves to celebrate birthdays—and each does so uniquely, some with cake, some with s’mores, all with singing.
Dorm living provides students the opportunity to live with peers from all over the country and from all over the world. Having both roommates and dorm mates to live and grow with helps students to understand new perspectives, a habit that is invaluable to any student.
Tabor believes the arts encourage students to think creatively, express themselves fully in different media, and develop confidence in their ideas.
To ensure that all its students stretch to express themselves in ways other than those in a typical classroom, Tabor asks that students fulfill our arts requirement. While some artistic expression is individual, many of our students work collaboratively through music, dance, drama, publishing or video production. The challenge of bringing one’s vision to life through others comes with the rewards of learning communication, coordination, and leadership skills. As students push together toward the limits of their time and talents, they practice responsibility, empathy, patience, and care for others. Our students’ effort and commitment create engaging experiences in all disciplines that enhance our community in immeasurable ways. It is always wonderful to experience the talents of our students and to witness the support they receive from their faculty and classmates.
To meet our requirement, students accumulate “Arts Units” in a wide array of opportunities ranging from co-curricular offerings to coursework. Students may study acting or drawing, write for our student newspaper, help produce our literary magazine or yearbook, or pursue private music instruction.
School By The Sea
It is exciting to consider the expanse of academic, service, and citizenship possibilities the bounty of our ocean home provides.
It is just about impossible to imagine Tabor anywhere but where it sits today, on the shores of Sippican Harbor. Our school is nearly 137 years old, having been founded in 1876, but we have “only” been here, so close to the sea, for the last 100 years. It was Headmaster Walter Lillard's vision, in 1916, to begin the process of moving Tabor (physically and programmatically) closer to the water. What foresight, and how important to the spirit and character of the school that he had it!
The phrase, "School by the Sea," certainly suggests our proximity to the sea, but also holds the possibility of the broadest possible expression of the idea of school and of schooling in proximity to the sea. We are just about singular in our relationship to the ocean, but the notion of school – of being educated – is broader and more powerful. It transcends the noun, school, in ways that evoke what we hope to do here: to allow students to be educated, not just near the sea, but by the lessons it might offer, within a context that matters and is reinforced by the relationship. It is not just a school that is going on here, but schooling – in personal and transformative ways.
From the hands on, experiential learning that occurs across our marine and nautical science electives, to the globally engaged citizens we strive to awaken, to the many ways the sea demands we exercise care for others, personal responsibility and leadership, think of all that comes from considering this phrase, "School by the Sea." A metaphor of education that prepares students for what is to come; for venturing out and horizons; for courses to be set, and provisioning for the adventure to come; for clear days and open water; for shallows and unseen reefs; for changing winds and changing sails. Tabor is perfectly situated for a place of learning, and this almost-motto – School by the Sea – paints the picture so well.