Life at JTD
Student Voice

Shira Levin '09

When I first came to The John Thomas Dye School, I soon realized that life was a race. It was a race, where I thought I had to be the first to finish. Throughout my years at JTD I have come to understand that life is not about the race itself, it is about how you choose to swim it. It is about noticing the little things in life and the small actions that put a smile on your face. It is seeing your friends Monday morning with open arms for you to run into. It is about looking down at the tiny marsh-mellow in your hand during the Candle Lighting Ceremony and seeing that bright little flame, knowing that you have never held anything more delicate and powerful. Or the feeling of apprehension and excitement before receiving back a graded math test, confident you will obtain a high mark. The special feeling of coming to school on your birthday and noticing that your locker has been decorated, knowing that your friends truly love and care about you. The tingly warmth at the pit of your stomach when you look to see where your basketball game will take place and it says home, because it truly is home. On Carols, the toasty way you feel in the arms of your friends standing by the warm flickering fire. It is giggling to yourself as you see the little first grade boy run across the field each morning during the Salutation of the Dawn. I have fallen in love with this school. Everything about it is unbelievable, but a school is not about its outer picture: it is the people in it that make it magnificent.
Life at JTD is about experiencing new things and learning who I really am as a person. Throughout my years here, I have been looking for my place in this world, doing whatever it takes to be appreciative and cared about. I have learned that my friends here at JTD love me for me, and put aside our differences since being different is what makes you, you. The friends that I have made here have been the most beautiful and amazing people I have ever met. I have laughed with them, cried with them, I have had my heart broken and mended with them. There is just one thing I have never done and will do very soon. I have never left them.

As we are now counting down the days until graduation, I have become more emotional about JTD then I ever have before. On my first day of school I had this same feeling, losing the comfort of my own home and moving on to a new place. Fortunately, it pays off. For if I had not gotten past my fear seven years ago, I would have never been here, in my home, with my family that loves me. So now I am back up on my diving board, taking my mark to leave. I have not done this for seven years. I have a feeling of nervousness in my stomach. I do not know if the water will be too hot or too cold or maybe, if I am lucky, just right. I do not know which way my life will turn. But I do know that I will be okay because most importantly, The John Thomas Dye School has taught me how to jump.

The John Thomas Dye School

11414 Chalon Road
Los Angeles, CA 90049
Phone: (310) 476-2811
The John Thomas Dye School admits students of any race, color, religion, sexual orientation, or national and ethnic origin to all the rights, privileges, programs, and activities generally accorded or made available to students at the School. It does not discriminate on the basis of race, color, religion, sexual orientation, or national and ethnic origin in the administration of its educational policies, admission policies, scholarship and loan programs, and athletic or other school-administered programs.

Located In Los Angeles, CA, John Thomas Dye is an independent school for grades K-6. Students benefit from a challenging academic program, fine arts, competitive athletics, and a wide selection of extracurricular activities.