The Hospice program was first implemented at the Norman Howard School in 1999 by Bob Kane, who then brought the program to The Harley School in 2002. Kane, who was the head of the Center for Mindfulness and Empathy Education (CMEE), was inspired to create the program based on his years as a per diem hospice nursing assistant. He retired from Harley in 2013, but his vision is carried out in the program to this day.
Hospice is a branch of the Center for Mindfulness and Empathy Education (CMEE). CMEE is a program that was created “in response to the increasing recognition that mindfulness and empathy play an indispensable role in humanizing our education system” (harleyschool.org). Harley is dedicated to educating “the whole person” by helping them to grow in emotional intelligence, along with academic intelligence. As an outworking of this philosophy, CMEE places an emphasis on empathy training by providing students with opportunities to serve their community. Service and empathy are nearly inseparable, as service is a natural and necessary product of true empathy. Harley is dedicated to partnering with local establishments to provide students with opportunities to both serve and hone relationships with those in their community.