The Student News Site of Boston Latin School

Ms. Shipley

After 14 years of teaching orchestra, Ms. Susan Shipley is retiring from Boston Latin School to enter a new phase of her life. 

When Ms. Shipley first came to BLS, the orchestra program was much smaller than it is now, with her teaching all string classes. Now, there are seven orchestras and part-time teachers to help out. 

“I’m personally ready. I’ve reached the age. I’m over the age, and it’s a stressful job, and it needs somebody younger than me. I’ve been thinking about it for a while, but it just felt like the right time,” Ms. Shipley explains about her retirement.

Ms. Shipley came to BLS after being a freelancer and teaching at different schools on a day-by-day basis. She also taught students privately starting in college, making a late career change to BLS. Her career ends on a high note as she received the Crystal Apple Award for Excellence in Teaching this year, the first Visual and Performing Arts teacher to do so in almost a decade. 

She reflects on the impact she’s made on her students, “Very few students have gone on to have careers in music, but I know that [all of them] are going to include music in their lives.”

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