News on the 90th Anniversary of the Founding of Schutz School
The Schutz School was established in September 1924 in its current location in Alexandria, Egypt by the American Mission representing various Protestant denominations working abroad. Having a school in Egypt was to allow missionary families with children of school age to avoid the hardship of being in the U.S. while their parents lived and worked in Egypt, Ethiopia, Sudan and other countries in the region. As he prepared for the opening of the School, Mark S. Roy, the School’s original headmaster, gathered the people brought from the U.S. and from up the Nile to teach and tend to the children to decide what kind of school Schutz was to be. In a personal narrative of her experience as one of the pioneering Schutzites written in 1984, this is how Bernice Warne Hutton, who traveled to Egypt to be a house-mother but was to become a teacher, described it:
“We gathered in the Roys’ living room one afternoon to talk. Dr. Roy asked if we could have a word of prayer, and we felt we needed that. I think Dr. Roy thought we were pretty young to have been given such a task. But I still recall a part of my prayer that day. It was from one that my pastor had used in church when I was a teenager. ‘Lord, we know that you love us and desire that we love you and serve you. Bless us as we seek to serve you here. We know that withholding does not enrich you, that giving does not impoverish you, so we pray for guidance of your Holy Spirit, now and in the years to come.’ And I remember hearing a sort of sigh of relief from Dr. Roy, and he said – ‘Now we can begin!’”
Schutz no longer serves as a home for the family of mission kids of that era of the School’s history, but some of us can remember that place where we were encouraged to share and not withhold, to give and be given in return, as the big family we all were then.
The School is still going strong and still retains its original motto as a place of family. Over half of the students now are Egyptians, most of the teachers still American, and so it remains an important link between our cultures. Next spring there will be a celebration of the 90th anniversary of its founding. Nathan Walker, Head of School, is planning a program for the celebration during commencement week for the graduating seniors, as given below. Schutzites of all ages are encouraged to attend, especially those who may not be up to the travel in ten years (!) to celebrate the 100th commemoration that our alumni foundation are thinking of planning.
Sunday, June 14th
- Campus Tour
- HS and MS assembly with visiting alumni
- Alumni dinner in the Schutz cafeteria
Monday, June 15th
- Small group meetings with HS students
- City tour
- Dinner with Schutz American School Board of Trustees
Tuesday, June 16th
- VIP Tour of the Bibliotheca Alexandrina
- Commencement Exercises at Bibliotheca Alexandrina
The group meeting idea for Monday is to explore what could be of interest to both us former Schutzites and to the Schutz kids today about the School as it was then and as it is now, Egypt as it was then and as it faces its future today. The US-Egypt connection remains important to the future of the country and the region and it is in unique relationships as we have to Schutz and Egypt where the cultural connection can be kept going strong.
Come, all ye Schutzites! Come back to the place we thought of as home.