February 21, 2018
Dear Members of the St. John's Community,
For the past eight years, I have had the distinct privilege of serving as the head of St. John's Episcopal School. Without a doubt, it has been the most rewarding honor of my career. During that time, the St. John's community--student students, faculty and staff, families, alumni, and friends--have pulled together to advance the school and its mission in key ways. We have built on a rich past, and we are poised for a very bright future. Upon reflecting on this exciting transitional point in St. John's continuing evolution, I have decided the 2018-2019 school year will mark the end of my tenure as head of school.

Throughout my time at St. John's, I have emphasized the idea of a modern education: one that retains core elements from the past but looks optimistically towards the future. To that end, together we have achieved a great amount. We have made great leaps in our academic, athletic, and arts programs. This includes exemplary technology, project-based, and service-learning programs, which other schools visit to study. We've added key staff positions. More and more of our students enroll at a greater range of top high schools. We have enhanced many aspects of our campus inside and out. The board operates under best-governance practices and enjoys an improved relationship with the church. Diversity has increased. A master site plan has been developed in preparation for a campus expansion and capital campaign. Annual fundraising has doubled. Our recent marketing work has made St. John's much better known throughout Dallas; we're no longer the best-kept secret. In fact, on all measures, St. John's is in an exemplary position and poised for even greater success moving forward.

Of course, St. John's is ultimately about the people here. I am truly grateful for the exceptional employees who have always put the needs of our students and the school first. The members of the board of trustees give tremendously of themselves out of love and hopes for St. John's, and I have benefited greatly from the wisdom of strong board presidents. I strongly value my partnership with Fr. Houk and the School's relationship with the church. The Parents Association and Crusader Club supercharge the community spirit. I also never take for granted the parents who trust us enough to help raise their children. Education works best when it's a partnership--something I've always felt at St. John's.

The decision to leave a place like St. John's is not easy. It comes only after extensive deliberation and conversation with trusted advisors. For both personal and professional reasons, the timing is right.

While this announcement far precedes my departure date, the board and I know attracting new leadership worthy of the school requires time and deliberation. That is the primary reason for making this announcement now. We also know the position will attract many strong candidates drawn to the special qualities of St. John's Episcopal School. I want to help ensure St. John's finds the best possible next head of school and assist however I can with that transition.

Looking ahead, I am excited to explore new opportunities in supporting and serving independent schools. Meanwhile, I remain totally committed to leading St. John's forward, building even further on the amazing work done here each and every day. As I do so, I expect to feel even more profound gratitude for the entire St. John's community, appreciation for this opportunity, and boundless optimism for the future of this great institution.
Mark Crotty
Head of School

Dear St. John's Community,  

I have worked closely with Mark Crotty and witnessed firsthand his commitment to St. John's and to its students. I am enormously saddened by today's announcement that his service as our head of school will be coming to an end in June of 2019. 

Looking back over Mark's tenure since 2010, there is no denying that he has elevated St. John's educational environment while charting an aggressive and exciting course for our school. More personally, I find Mark to be exceedingly generous of spirit, fair-minded and open to new ideas. He is and will remain at his core an engaged and enthusiastic teacher who also happens to be a master problem-solver. In some ways, many of us have witnessed Mark grow into his role as head of school and our community is benefiting greatly from his time here at St. John's.

So, what's next? Beginning immediately, the board of trustees will actively and aggressively initiate a search for the new head of school. By providing us with substantial notice, Mark enables us to work towards a very smooth transition.

The board of trustees will form a special committee to lead the search for a new head of school. Details on the committee structure, its charge and the expected timeline will be shared with you in the near future. 

I want to assure you of the following:
  • Mark is committed to "running through the finish line," and giving us his all over the next year and a half. There is still more he wants to accomplish. 
  • Mark feels strongly about maintaining St. John's upward trajectory and will be a tremendous asset to the board in our search for his successor.
  • I have met with the faculty and staff and their top priority remains to nurture and educate our students.
  • Mark has put into place an outstanding team of administrators and staff who will continue to provide continuity as a bridge between Mark's tenure and that of his successor. 
  • The board of trustees is committed to communicating frequently and openly about this process and we welcome your questions.  
  • We've considered the best way to communicate this news to students. We believe it's important to minimize potential disruption, and because of the long lead-time afforded to us, we don't see the need to hold an immediate announcement event. Instead, we feel it might be most appropriate for you to tell your child when you think the time is right. Our upper and lower school heads and all of our teachers will be prepared to answer any follow-up questions your students might have.

After twelve years at St. John's, I still never cease to be uplifted by the spirit and nurturing environment of our community. We are supportive while never shying away from any challenge or opportunity, especially in times of change. It is that strong sense of community that defines St. John's and I am confident that it will serve us well as we enter an exciting period of growth and change.


With warm regards,

Mike Androvett
President, Board of Trustees
St. John's Episcopal School