This school is built around the idea of community, and having a good, strong community is really important. If you don’t have one, it affects every other part of the school experience.”


First class: Glass 1

I’m pretty sure St. Paul’s is the only high school in New Hampshire — probably in New England, actually — that has a glassblowing studio. If you go to St. Paul’s and you don’t take glass at least once, you’re missing out. Mr. Soderberg is really cool, really laid back, and he can answer any question you have about glass.

Jack Bretl in glassblowing class
Hot Glass furnace
Hot Glass Class

C block means Calculus

C block period is calculus with Mr. Heitmiller. As you get into the higher math classes here, there’s less time spent on homework and more just jumping into a lesson and working on problems. I’m in class with a few friends from my dorm, Foster. There are lots of options for upper-level math classes — honors calc, multivariable, linear algebra. I’m still figuring out how far I want to go with that.

Jack Bretl at LInC luncheon meeting

Lunchtime LinC Meeting

I’m not a huge grab n’ go guy, so lunch for me usually means going to the Upper — the dining hall in Coit — with some of my friends. Today, though, I have a LinC meeting during lunch. I’m one of the Fifth Form LinC leaders, and we meet regularly with our adviser, Mr. Arndt, to talk about programming and upcoming LinC days. I think the LinC program, which stands for “living in community,” is one of the most important aspects of life at SPS … it’s all about acknowledging and appreciating our differences and building a respectful space for everyone at SPS

Humanities class

I have Hum Five after lunch, with Dr. Dowell. The Humanities program is pretty different from what you’d find at a typical high school — it brings history, English and religion together to take on a particular subject from all of those perspectives. Right now, we’re learning about the Industrial Revolution and discussing how what happened corresponds to historians’ and philosophers’ ideas of what will happen in the future. It really works on your brain … in a good way. 

Jack Bretl at football practice

Football practice

I’ve played football since sixth grade and really love everything about it — there’s just something about being on a football team. Right now I’m playing center, and I snap for field goals. My roommate is the kicker and another good friend is our punter. We practice for about two hours, and then most of us will hit the gym for a bit — you can lift, you can go for a run, maybe hop on a bike for half an hour. Definitely stretch.

Downtown downtime

Mondays and Fridays are long days for me, but Wednesdays and the weekends give you a lot more flexibility. When I’m not busy here, I’m a big fan of going downtown with my friends — you can take an Uber or a taxi from Lindsay during the week, and on Saturdays and Sundays the School runs a shuttle. I love the campus, but it’s nice sometimes to get out for a bit and see what’s going on. St. Paul’s really is kind of the best of both worlds that way.

Jack Bretl wiffle ball tournament
Downtown Concord