The Stony Brook School

From Wikipedia, the free encyclopedia
Jump to: navigation, search
The Stony Brook School
Stony Brook School Seal.jpg
1 Chapman Parkway, Stony Brook, New York, 11790
Type Private, College-prep, Independent, Boarding, Day
Motto Character Before Career
Religious affiliation(s) Christian
Established 1922
Founder Rev. John Fleming Carson
Headmaster Joshua Crane
Faculty 45
Grades 7-12
Enrollment 370
55% Boarding
45% Day
Campus Suburban, 55 acres
Color(s)           Navy Blue & White
Athletics 14 Interscholastic Sports
Mascot Bears
Yearbook Res Gestae

The Stony Brook School (SBS) is a private independent Christian boarding and college preparatory school for boys and girls in grades 7 to 12. It is located in Stony Brook on the north shore of Long Island, New York, it was founded by the Rev. Dr. John F. Carson and fellow members of the Stony Brook Assembly in 1922, its founding headmaster was Frank E. Gaebelein.


In 1906, a group of Presbyterian ministers and laymen began an enterprise to form an annual series of summer Bible conferences in the tri-state area of New York, New Jersey, and Connecticut. These conferences were to be in the tradition of other Bible conferences already established at Chautauqua, New York, Winona Lake, Indiana, and Northfield, Massachusetts.[1] The group was led by the Rev. John Fleming Carson, pastor of the former Central Presbyterian Church in Brooklyn and later Moderator of the Presbyterian General Assembly (1911). After having visited the hamlet of Stony Brook in 1907, Carson and his associates settled on a location directly across from the train station,[2] the first summer conference of the Stony Brook Assembly began on July 3, 1909 and was a success. The Stony Brook Assembly was formally incorporated by the state of New York in 1914.

Portrait of The Stony Brook School, Fall 1922

Carson's vision also included the establishment of a boys' school which could use the Assembly grounds outside of the summer months, as early as 1916, formal plans were being considered for opening the school, but financial constraints and World War I postponed the opening of the school until the fall of 1922. On September 13, The Stony Brook School was inaugurated with 27 boys and 9 faculty. Founding headmaster Frank E. Gaebelein called the new school an "experiment" in Christian education and set the mission for the school as being a rigorous college preparatory school thoroughly rooted in the Christian tradition. Education was not merely an emphasis on strong academics for the education of the mind, but more importantly was an emphasis on building character for the education of the heart - a distinction he linked with an adherence to the gospel;[3] in his report to the Board in November 1937, Gaebelein reaffirmed the purpose of the school stating, “It was never the aim of Dr. Carson and the other founders, however, simply to inaugurate one more college preparatory school. Stony Brook’s prime reason for existence has been to bring its [students] into vital contact with the Christian faith.”[4]

The academic reputation of the school grew in prominence; in May 1923, it was granted a charter by the Board of Regents of the University of the State of New York. In 1928, the school was accredited by the Middle States Association of Colleges and Schools.[5] In 1930, SBS was granted a charter by the Cum Laude Society, placing it among the first sixty schools granted this distinction since 1906;[6] in 1931, the Director of Admissions at Princeton University indicated that the admissions committee was so impressed with the caliber of Bible study at Stony Brook that it would award one Carnegie Unit of preparation for college.[7]

In the fall of 1971, a group of thirty day-student girls entered the school, beginning the school's move toward co-education, the following year, female boarding commenced.

In honor of the school's fiftieth anniversary in 1972, long-time faculty member and writer D. Bruce Lockerbie penned a history of the school entitled, The Way They Should Go.

In the past two decades, new and upgraded facilities which have included three new residence halls, a stadium, an all-weather track, and a baseball field, as well six major renovations all totaling over $10,000,000, have raised the caliber of academics, athletics, and community life - the capstone of which was the completion of a new dining hall and student center.


In the 2016-2017 school year,[8]


Academic rigor combined with an integration of the Christian faith are central to the school's academic tradition, some of the hallmarks of the core curriculum include freshman Critical Reading and Reasoning, the freshman and sophomore Humanities curriculum, junior Bible-English, and the senior Bible capstone course Faith and Culture in the 21st Century. The graduation requirements mirror a traditional liberal arts education composed of 4 years of English and History, 3 years of one Foreign Language, Science, and Mathematics, and 1 quarter credit in the visual arts.

The school offers twenty-one Advanced Placement (AP) courses as well as numerous full-year elective courses in such subjects as the Engineering, Innovation, and Design (STEM), History of Philosophy, Ethics and Politics, Advanced Digital Imaging, and 20th Century Fiction and Creative Writing. Students also have opportunities to take mini-courses interspersed throughout the year in a wide range of electives as well as conduct various internships and research opportunities off-campus at nearby institutions such as Stony Brook University, Brookhaven National Laboratory, and Cold Spring Harbor Laboratory.

Teaching students to write well is one of the hallmarks of the school's curriculum; in the Upper School, students are instructed across disciplines in the art of the analytical and personal essay, with special emphasis placed on the organization and craft of a well-written argument.

Advanced Placement Courses[edit]

Note: AP Latin alternates biennially with College Level Latin.


Stony Brook was one of the original members of the Ivy Preparatory School League, composed of prep schools around the New York City and Long Island area; in 1974, the school joined Section XI of the New York State Public High School Athletic Association. In at least two out of the three seasons, students must participate in an athletics team or an approved alternative extracurricular activity. Approved activities include interscholastic Chess, Robotics, and the Theater Arts Society, all of which are offered in winter.

Interscholastic Sports

The mascot of the school is the Bear, during the 1970s and most of the 1980s the mascot was the Shrike.

Campus Facilities[edit]

  • Carson Auditorium - Erected in 1910, Carson was the first building built on the campus. It was built as an open-air auditorium for Bible conferences, but also served as the gymnasium from 1936-1973. Today it houses the Visual and Performing Arts Departments and is used for assemblies, chapels, plays, concerts, and art exhibitions, the building has been refurbished three times in 1935-1936, 1980, and 2006.
  • John Rogers Hegeman Memorial Chapel (The Chapel) - Built in 1928 from the estate of John Rogers Hegeman, former president of the Metropolitan Life Insurance Company. Frederick H. Ecker, the executor of the estate, was charged with finding "worthy institutions" which could benefit from Mr. Hegeman's philanthropy, the Chapel is the center of prayer and worship during the week and on Sunday mornings.
  • Chapman Parkway - Named in memory of the Rev. John Wilbur Chapman, a principal member of the Stony Brook Assembly, it was given by his widow Mabel and was completed in 1919. The paved parkway is lined with Norway Maples and is the main drive and address of the school.
Frank E. Gaebelein Hall
  • Frank E. Gaebelein Hall - Built in 1982 in honor of founding headmaster Frank E. Gaebelein, it houses the Arno C. Gaebelein Memorial Library, classrooms, science labs, the Academic Office and the Head of School Office.
  • Hopkins Hall - Built in 1915 as a summer hotel, it was the second oldest building on campus. It was financed by Ferdinand T. Hopkins, a board member and New York philanthropist, at various points it housed dormitory rooms, classrooms, labs, a dining hall, and the school library. In 1980, it was demolished to build Gaebelein Hall.
  • The Infirmary - Now more commonly known as the Health Center, it was built in 1930 from the funds of the Carson Campaign.
  • Johnston Hall - Built in 1918 and named in honor of Robert Johnston, board member and vice-president of Scruggs, Vandervoort and Barney department store in St. Louis. The building includes a dining hall, a dormitory, the Business Office, and the Summer Programs Office, the building was refurbished in 1945-1946 and 2011.
  • Kanas Commons - Built in 2013, the building houses a 350-seat dining hall and kitchen, the Hollis Student Center, school store, mailroom, lounge and study areas. The Student Activities Office and Residential Life Office are also located there.
  • Memorial Hall - Built in 1951 in memory of the Rev. John F. Carson and alumni who died in World War II, it houses classrooms, science labs, the English and Foreign Language Departments, and the Admissions, Middle School, and Student Learning Services.

Athletics Facilities[edit]

  • Jeffrey S. Adams Field - Completed in 2007, the baseball field is named in memory faculty member Jeff Adams who died of cancer after serving the School from 1995-2005. The field includes two sunken, brick dugouts and a scoreboard.
  • Buyers' Park - Built in 1997 and named for alumnus John W. A. Buyers '46 and his family, Buyers' Park is an 800-seat, lighted stadium with a team room and press box.
  • Fitch Field - The original football field leveled in 1925 by John Knowles Fitch of the Fitch Publishing Company. His son Jack was an alumnus of the class of 1924.
  • Marvin W. Goldberg Memorial Track - Built in 1997 to replace the old cinder track installed in 1959. Named in memory of the school's third senior master and legendary track and cross country coach Marvin Goldberg.
  • Hartford Tennis Courts - Dedicated in 1988 and named for the Hartford family.
  • Kinney Fieldhouse - Originally built in 1959 and known as the Alumni Fieldhouse, it underwent a renovation in 1976 and was renamed after alumnus and architect Aldon M. Kinney '39; in 2007, a third renovation of the building was completed. The Fieldhouse provides additional practice and training space including an all-purpose gym, wrestling room, aerobics room, locker room, and the Facilities Department.
  • Swanson Gymnasium - Built in 1973 and named for Robert S. Swanson, Sr., owner of the S.B. Thomas baking company. It houses the main gym, weight room, pool, four team locker rooms, a conference room, and the Athletics Department, the building was renovated in 2000 and the pool was renovated in 2015.

Residence Halls[edit]

  • Alexander Hall - Built in 2002 and named for William and Betty Alexander, the parents and grandparents of alumni, it houses 10th-12th grade girls.
  • Barnhouse Hall - Built in 1962 and named in memory of board member and prominent pastor of the Tenth Presbyterian Church in Philadelphia, Donald Grey Barnhouse. Today it houses 7th-9th grade girls.
  • Cleveland Alumni House - Built in 1995 and named for alumnus Bart Cleveland '54, it houses 10th-12th grade girls.
  • John Rogers Hegeman Memorial Hall (Hegeman Hall) - Built in 1925 from the estate of John Rogers Hegeman, Hegeman Hall originally served as both a classroom building and dormitory. It is the only dormitory which has not ever been a female dormitory. Today it houses 7th-9th grade boys, the building was renovated in 2009.
  • Johnston Hall - Built in 1918 as a summer hotel, the second floor houses 10th-12th grade boys. The floor was renovated in 2011.
  • Hugh R. Monro Hall - Built in 1965 and named for the second President of the Board of Trustees and head of the Montclair National Bank. Hugh Monro served for nearly twenty-five years as president and oversaw the school through the Great Depression and World War II. Today it houses 10th-12th grade boys and the Development & Alumni Relations Office. The building was renovated in 2010
  • Simons Hall - Built in 2002 and named in memory of alumnus Paul A. Simons '80, son of James Simons, it houses 10th-12th grade girls, it is a twin dormitory with Alexander Hall.

Faculty Homes[edit]

The school owns twenty-four faculty homes, which line the perimeter of the campus, these homes include:

  • Curtis House - Built in 1929 and named for the school's first senior master Pierson Curtis and his wife Winifred.
  • Goldberg House - Built in 1932 and named for the school's third senior master Marvin W. Goldberg and his wife Dorothie.
  • Grosvenor House - Financed by John Prescott Grosvenor of Watertown, NY, it was built in 1923 and is the home of the headmaster.
  • Johnson House - Built in 1921 and named for the school's second senior master O. Floyd Johnson '32 and his wife Eleanor.
  • Marshall House - Built in 1942, it was purchased by the school and named for long-time faculty member Donald W. Marshall and his wife Esther.
  • Windrift - Built in 1970 and named by Marvin W. Goldberg.

Extracurricular Activities[edit]

Leadership Program[edit]

As part of the School's mission to train leaders of character, a comprehensive leadership program trains students emphasizing servant leadership and provides numerous leadership opportunities in the School community.

Some of the many leadership positions include workjob captains, team captains, class representatives, dining hall maitre d's, committee and council members, and the Prefect Board composed of fifteen seniors.

Honor Code[edit]

The School has adopted an Honor Code which emphasizes honesty and integrity, as well as the virtues of respect, responsibility, and servanthood. Students promise not to lie, intentionally deceive, cheat, or steal. By daily upholding this code, they contribute to an atmosphere of trust among the members of the School community.

The Honor Code reinforces the utmost importance of: respect for one's own person, respect for other people in the community, and respect for the property of the school and the property of others.[9]

Prior to the beginning of every new school year, every student must re-read and sign it, the Honor Code is upheld by the Honor Board composed of five seniors and two juniors. It is led by the Head Prefect and is advised by the Director of Student Life, the members of the Board are elected by their peers and the faculty for their integrity and example of character within the community. If a student is suspected to have violated the Honor Code, he or she is summoned to an Honor Code hearing, where he or she is questioned by the Board, the student may bring an adult advocate who can speak about his or her character. After hearing the case, the Board deliberates and recommends an appropriate disciplinary action to the administration.


  • Chapel is a pillar of Stony Brook that is incorporated into the school day. It is held Wednesday mornings for the school community where worship is led by students and the faculty expound on preach on series from Scripture. Chapel is also held on Sunday evenings for the residential school community.
  • The "Workjob" Program has been a large part of school life since 1942. Because of the labor shortage produced during WWII, the students were given a chore that helped to maintain the running of the campus, ranging from sweeping classrooms and washing dishes to shoveling coal for the furnaces.
  • The second weekend of every new school year and after spring break, the six classes compete against each other in an evening of field games called Class Challenges for the prestige being the top class. Dorm Challenges are also held between dorms, which are paired up into teams and compete for the House Cup.
  • In early November after the end of the fall athletic season, the school community takes part in the Gingerbread Bread Run, a 1.8 mile run, organized by the prefects, which rounds the perimeter of the campus and the athletic field. The reward after the race is a gingerbread bear cookie and hot chocolate.
  • The annual Declamation Contest, in November, is held where twelve finalists compete by performing 4-5 minute pieces in the categories of Oration, Drama, and Humor. Upperclassman are required to select a declamation each October for their English classes and are narrowed down to semi-finalists in November. Cash prizes of $100 are awarded to the winner of each category, the Middle School Declamation Contest is held separately each Spring.
  • Prior to the end of the semester in December, the school community celebrates Christmas with a service of Lessons and Carols, based on the service that originated at Kings College at Cambridge University in England. The service combines the retelling of the redemption story with congregational carols and musical performances by the Concert Choir, Chamber Singers, and Chamber Orchestra, the service is followed by a special Christmas dinner and dessert buffet in the Dining Hall.
  • International week in late January and the International Festival is a favorite highlight for the school community every year. A week of internationally themed meals, chapels, and assemblies concludes with an evening featuring buffets of authentic international cuisines from our diverse student body and a program of dances, skits, and songs sharing their native cultures.
  • Similar to the service of Lessons and Carols, the school has a tenebrae Maundy Thursday service prior to Easter weekend in order to commemorate Christ's death on Good Friday.
  • On the day of Commencement, bagpipers lead a procession of the graduates and all of the faculty up Chapman Parkway and down to Swanson behind bagpipers prior to the ceremony. The commencement luncheon for all guests follows the ceremony.

Notable people[edit]


Former faculty[edit]


  1. ^ "Long Island Church Colony". The New York Times. May 17, 1908. Retrieved December 30, 2012. 
  2. ^ Lockerbie, D. Bruce (1972). The Way They Should Go. New York: Oxford Press. p. 24. 
  3. ^ Gaebelein, Frank E (September 13, 1922). Plan and Scope of The Stony Brook School (Speech). Stony Brook, NY. 
  4. ^ "The Stony Brook School Head of School Profile". Carter Baldwin Executive Search. Retrieved 2013-02-02. 
  5. ^ "The Stony Brook School Profile". Middle States Association of Colleges and Schools Commissions on Elementary and Secondary Schools. Retrieved 2012-12-25. 
  6. ^ "Cum Laude Society Chapters" (PDF). The Cum Laude Society. Retrieved 2012-12-25. 
  7. ^ Lockerbie, D. Bruce (1972). The Way They Should Go. New York: Oxford Press. p. 77. 
  8. ^ "School Review Quick Facts (2016-2017 School Year)". The Stony Brook School. Retrieved 2017-04-05. 
  9. ^ "Honor Code". The Stony Brook School. Retrieved 2012-11-15. 
  10. ^ "James Boice Biography". Tenth Presbyterian Church. Retrieved 2012-12-25. 
  11. ^ "The legendary Cuban American Pianist Jorge Bolet". Retrieved 2017-07-11. 
  12. ^ Lars Brownworth article
  13. ^ a b c SBS 90 in Ninety Brochure
  14. ^ Sarah Drew fun facts
  15. ^ Exeter Bulletin
  16. ^ "Biography". Retrieved 2017-07-11. 
  17. ^ "Walter Martin Biography". Retrieved 2012-12-25. 
  18. ^ "Spencer Christian Bio". ABC KGO-TV. Retrieved 2013-02-08. 

External links[edit]

Coordinates: 40°55′22″N 73°7′51″W / 40.92278°N 73.13083°W / 40.92278; -73.13083