by Regina Egan and Isha Lele
It seems that a growing number of former HB Trail Blazers have defected to Old Trail School. After several startling revelations and first-hand insights, we’ve decided to share with you a comprehensive guide to the Machiavellian maneuvers and devious schemes of this K-8 independent day school located in Bath, Ohio.
Part I. The Mastermind: Sarah Johnston
Sarah Johnston’s surprising departure from HB two years ago was one nobody could have expected. The Blazer community bid her farewell with hugs and kisses as she left for what seemed like a great job opportunity: the new Head of School at Old Trail in Akron, Ohio. Little did we know that her departure was just the beginning of her involvement at HB.
Johnston, head of Enrollment Management for 17 years, knew the Shaker Heights girls school from the inside and out. She understood that the school’s elite status as “Ohio’s #1 Private School” only held because of its renowned teachers and their constant innovation. Consequently, it is no surprise that Johnston has recently secured her first target: Mr. Joe “I love to hear myself talk” Vogel.
Vogel, a Virginia farm boy, first found his footing at HB as a middle school teacher. Power-hungry and restless, he knew he could do more. A few years later, with the help of beloved Mr. Bill Christ, Vogel began the Center for Global Citizenship where girls would sit in on lectures (given by Joe of course) and have opportunities to travel to dozens of countries on school-sanctioned trips. The program was the first of its kind and has been used as a model by schools across the world.
The obvious success of the program labels Vogel as a “hot demand” and who better to lure him in than an old friend? Johnston’s friendly smile and perfectly placed pearls have deceived the entire HB community for far too long. One inside source who chose to remain anonymous claims that “Johnston’s ultimate goal is to recruit her ‘clique’ to work at Old Trail, which includes Vogel, Scott Parsons, Kathleen Osborne, and Hallie Godshall in the hopes of creating an Institute for 22nd-Century Learning.”
Who is Johnston’s next target? Is Spano’s sudden announcement to leave for WRA a cover for a different school… perhaps, Old Trail? And who is next? French teacher, Madame Calabrese? Was that a maternity leave or was she secretly settling contracts over at Old Trail? History teacher, Kevin Purpura? Was he “sick” during the Indians’ postseason last year or was he trying to score at the Akron school?
Part II. Alumnae Donations Mistakenly Sent to Old Trail
After the news spread that beloved Joe Vogel and Sarah Johnston were leaving Hathaway Brown for Old Trail, alumnae donations followed suit. However, unlike Vogel and Johnston, this time it was on accident.
An inside source in the Alumnae Affairs Office who chose to remain anonymous reportedly received a call from an official working in the Old Trail Alumnae Office who claimed to have received dozens of Hathaway Brown Annual Fund envelopes addressed to the Old Trail middle school.
“When I heard this, I was absolutely dumbstruck,” says the inside source. “We really impress upon our seniors the importance of donating to the Annual Fund, but I guess we just didn’t tell them which school to send their envelopes!” Several of Hathaway Brown’s brilliantly educated women were reportedly “confused that two people who seemed to be the faces of HB were moving to Old Trail.”
One alumna who graduated in 1997 stated that she has always made an annual contribution to her beloved alma mater, but when she heard last week that Vogel was going to Old Trail, she assumed the entire school was going to Old Trail as well. “I just thought it seemed much more likely that the campus was moving to Bath, Ohio than the notion that Vogel, who is such an integral part of the HB community, was leaving.
Another alumna who mistakenly sent her Annual Fund donation to Old Trail explained, “I was trying to remember HB’s address, so I went online and googled ‘Hathaway Brown School address’, and the first thing that popped up was the Old Trail website, so I just sent my check there!”
Legally, these donations cannot be returned to the Hathaway Brown Annual Fund, so the Global Scholars and Business and Finance Centers will be terminated in the 2018-2019 school year due to a lack of funding.