Student Policy Post World War II

 

As World War II concluded, Loomis students could have reveled in their efforts during the war, but instead decided to continue aiding their community and steadfastly holding their beliefs.  One writer implored students, “Probably some who have worked during the war-time summers think they deserve a rest… With food as scarce as it is… Get a job on a farm this summer.  Help to feed your family and the rest of the world next winter” [1].  The end of the war did not portend the end of community aid and service in Windsor.

The fall of 1945 marked the first peacetime school year at Loomis since 1941. At the time, most students had only known a frantic and hectic wartime experience at Loomis. When this year began, students were excited to create positive change in the world instead of struggling to keep their lives and their community functioning. Students could not wait to experience the Loomis they had heard about from their predecessors, with interscholastic sports instead of military drills or emergency war jobs.

UntitledThe Loomis baseball team resumed play in the spring of 1946, captained by its star shortstop Ed Alger. [1a]

Additionally, Loomis students railed against post-war mandates regarding the draft and war service.  Editors of the March Log issue, Grinnell, Wachsmann, Rooney, Edwards, and Barter, expressed the school’s strong opinions regarding post-war service in the military.  One writer explained, “We have weighed the evidence on both sides and are convinced that such a program… is not only inadvisable, but dangerous… Peacetime military conscription offers a great threat to international security”[2].  The writers described that the whole school debated the issue, and decided that the country would be best served rejecting the proposal.  Never in the article did the writer mention that students did not want to be forced into this; rather, they felt that the country as a whole would be best served denying this proposal.  The writers continue to support their position in incredible detail, suggesting that this required service would send a bad message to the world, one predicated upon mistrust.  Even when the war no longer existed on the battlefield,  Loomis students were still advocating and fighting for justice.  The fate of the school changed forever because of their efforts.  

As previously mentioned, the school, did not “take it easy”. Learning from wartime experience, a Log writer stated, “We learned that when faced with a big job that has to be done we have a lot more energy than we think…, we found time for potato picking, work in the Hartford Hospital, and several other wartime jobs.”[3] Students continued helping out in their community, providing work for as many projects as they did during the war. Loomis boys did settlement work at the Union Settlement and the Mitchell House, worked at the Hartford Hospital as medical aides, and participated in the broadcasting of “The Junior Town Meeting of the Air”, a local radio program.[4] The continued hard work of the students displays the positive effects of the war on their lives. They learned the importance of helping in their community, and the powerful change teenagers can bring if they all work together.

 

[1] The Loomis Chaffee Log, February 16, 1945

[1a] The Loomis Chaffee Log, April, 1946

[2] The Loomis Chaffee Log, March 2, 1945

[3] The Loomis Chaffee Log, September 22, 1945

[4] The Loomis Chaffee Log,

 

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