Dear SGS Community,
We return from the Martin Luther King Jr. holiday, where we honor and remember Dr. King’s vision for our country. We are grateful for the work Dr. King and countless others have done for equality. This year it feels even more important to think about and appreciate his work as the week ahead has potential for unrest.
This week, the Presidential Inauguration takes place on Wednesday, and there is cause for concern of potential disruption and violence surrounding the proceedings. We know that many of our students, faculty, staff and parents are aware of this potential, and they are worried about what will take place in Washington D.C. and around the country. The attack at the capitol during the electoral college confirmation was horrifying and has been condemned accordingly. We anticipate some students will be watching the inauguration on-line, and some teachers may stream it in their classes, if time and schedules permit. We are prepared to be a resource for students should anything occur.
As an educational institution, we believe in reason, science, and evidence. We also believe in the freedom of thought, freedom of inquiry, freedom of expression and providing a safe learning environment for all students. Today’s climate can make for difficult conversations. We need the strength to talk through issues in a productive and open manner in hopes that we can improve our community. Our students and families of color and members of our LGBTQ+ community are rightfully concerned about their safety in our world. We want to assure them that we value and care for them, that Black lives matter, and that one’s sexual orientation and gender identification are also respected in our community. We will protect these groups, and all students, from hateful speech and action. We strive to be an inclusive community and work diligently to maintain that standard for all community members.
We find ourselves navigating a tumultuous time that will fill pages of history textbooks in the future. We hope that everyone can step back and avoid broad-stroke generalizations to find common ground and understanding around what is good and what is wrong. We are hopeful the vaccine will help us get back to normal lives. We are hopeful that the Inauguration goes without incident, and that our country can become more civil in the days ahead. We are hopeful that we can call upon Dr. King’s vision of non-violence for a more peaceful and just tomorrow. And, we hope you all have a safe week ahead.
The Saint George’s Administrative Team
Jamie Tender, Head of School
Kathy Johnson, Head of Lower School
Joelle Neiwert, Head of Middle School
Francesca Mulazzi, Head of Upper School
Stuart Mermel, Chief Financial Officer
Ryan Peplinski, Athletic Director
Thomas Hurst, Director of Technology
John Carter, Director of Communications
Tami Peplinski, Director of Admissions
Ashley Miller, Director of Development
George Bell, Director of Facilities
Alison Ramsey, Registrar
For the latest news from the Lower, Middle, and Upper Schools during the fall semester, be sure to read the Division Head letters on PowerSchool Learning. Here are links to new letters from Kathy Johnson (Lower School), Joelle Neiwert (Middle School), and Francesca Mulazzi (Upper School) for the week of January 19.
Saint George's School will again host an essay contest celebrating Martin Luther King, Jr.'s life and legacy. The essay prompt is:
Keeping in mind MLK’s statement that “a riot is the language of the unheard,” consider the following: How did the events surrounding this past year’s George Floyd protests affect your own understanding of Dr. King’s purpose and vision?
This contest is open to all members of the Saint George's community - students, faculty, parents, and alumnae. All essays will be judged together. Two essays will win a $50 prize and will be published for the community. Essays must be typed and submitted to Joelle Neiwert via email (firstname.lastname@example.org) by 9 a.m. on Tuesday, January 19, and should be no more than 800 words. Winners will be announced at the next Morning Meeting and will be published in the next issue of the Round Table, the school newspaper, as well as on the school website.
The MLK Day Essay Competition is sponsored by the SGS Writing Center, where student readers can work with Middle and Upper School students to improve some aspect of that student's writing. See the "Writing Center" course on PowerSchool Learning for more information and a link to schedule an appointment with a reader on MS Teams.
Our 2020-2021 Parent Drive is still going strong and increasing each day with 3rd grade still in the lead at 92% parent participation. Just a reminder that if you sign up for a $10.00 monthly donation you will receive a SGS Tumbler and help us reach our goal of over 90% parent participation. Thank you to all the parents who have donated thus far. Make your contribution today at sgs.org/give. Contact Ashley Miller for questions or matching gift information. Go Dragons!
How well do you know the Middle School faculty and staff? Here's your chance to see if you can recognize them from their baby photos! The MS Baby Face contest runs through Friday, Jan. 22 for all MS students -- see the Rules, the Baby Face Photos, the List of Teachers/Staff, and the Answer Sheet. Only MS students can submit answer sheets for prizes, but everyone is welcome to try their luck at identifying these adorable baby faces!
Saint George's School will be closed on Wednesday, January 13 as a result of the high winds, power outages, downed trees, and the inability of enough faculty and staff to get to the school. An Instant Alert message was sent out to the SGS community at about 7:45 a.m. notifying everyone of the closure. We apologize for the late notice; this is a developing situation.
After being closed Wednesday due to downed trees and power outages from the wind storm, Saint George's School will be open for classes on Thursday, January 14.
Thursday and Friday of this week will be the first days when grades 9 through 12 will all be at school for in-person classes this year. Grades K-8 will follow their existing schedules. The Hybrid model for students learning from home also will remain in place.
Thank you for your patience as we ensured that the school could safely open on January 14.
Head of School
The SGS Parent Annual Fund Drive is continuing into 2021. The school's student and faculty SUPERHEROES are hoping your donations will beat last year's goal of 90% parent participation.
In the class competition, the 3rd grade is still in the lead with 92% and only needs one family to be at 100%. 1st grade is a close second at 85% and only needs two families to reach 100%. Make your contribution today at sgs.org/give. Contact Ashley Miller for questions or matching gift information. Go Dragons!
Upper School advisory groups spent time before holiday break decorating the doorways of their teachers. Then six judges weighed in on their favorites and created some thematic names that went into the awards that were placed outside of each door.
Congratulations on the winning designs -- Rachel Hildie's door ("How the Grinch Stole Math Class" - 4th place), Judi Morgan's door ("Picture Perfect Winter" - 3rd place), and Cassey Buchman's & Jamie Billings' doors ("Home for the Holidays - Spanish Land" - 2nd place). The top prize went to David Demand's advisory for their Yeti-themed "Say 'yes' to the Prom" design! See a Photo Gallery of all the door designs, and thanks to everyone who made the Upper School a festive, colorful, and beautiful place for the holidays!
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