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Directors' Notes

Upper School Director's Note: August 12, 2019
Sarah Webster, Upper School Director
Dear Upper School Parents,
The countdown to the 2019-20 school year is almost over and we are ready to welcome our students back tomorrow morning. I know there has been and continue to be a lot of information sent regarding the school year. As we begin the year, I want to draw your attention to a few items.
Unless they have a sibling in a different division, Upper School students should be dropped off in the Upper Gym lot, located off of 71st street. Students need to check into advisory by 8 a.m. We ask that students are picked up in the same lot at the end of the day. Don’t forget about our late starts on Wednesdays at 9 a.m. Dismissal each day is at 3:15. Should students need to remain in the Upper School after that time, supervision is provided in the library until 6 p.m.
Renovations to the Upper School
As you likely know, the Upper School has undergone renovations this summer. This includes lighting, ceilings, carpet, paint, and furniture. While the renovations are complete, we are still working to put the Upper School back together! Over the next few weeks, we will settle into the space and continue to create a physical environment which is engaging and inspiring for students.
Allergy management
Each year we review our procedures and policies around allergy management for students. As noted in the handbook, our campus is “peanut/tree-nut controlled” and we take steps to reduce the possibility of interaction with allergens. That said, we cannot guarantee a peanut/tree-nut free environment. As is age-appropriate, Upper School students should take responsibility for avoiding food allergies. For example, students should not assume that unlabeled items, except for those served in our cafeteria, which is also a nut-controlled environment, is safe to eat. We ask that no homemade or unlabeled food items are brought in to the school. Upper School students may bring in food to share for advisory, but it must remain in its original packaging. For more information regarding the policies and procedures for managing allergies and anaphylaxis, please refer to page 16 of the handbook.
Student Support
Partnership between school and family is essential to the success of our students. We want our students to feel empowered to extend their learning outside the classroom. This most often comes in the form of students reaching out to teachers to schedule appointments during free periods or before/after school. In addition to the support of a classroom teacher, we have a robust student support team. JR Shelt, Assistant Upper School Director, leads a team that includes Lisa Mercurio, US psychologist; Cassie Craig, US counselor; and Scott McDougall, Academic Coach. Our student support team is highly responsive to the individual needs of students in a variety of circumstances. Should you have questions about student support, please contact JR Shelt at
Back-to-School Night
We welcome the opportunity for you to get to know your child’s schedule and teachers during Upper School Back-to-School Night on Tuesday, August 27. The PTPA will provide hors d'oeuvres and refreshments beginning at 6 p.m. in the Wood Room. Please join us in the Wood Room throughout the night as well to reconnect with other parents during your child’s “free periods.”
We begin our schedule rotation at 6:30 in advisory groups and will spend ten minutes in each class. The evening will conclude by 8:45. We will rotate through a Red-Monday schedule, as it provides the best opportunity for parents to see our fine arts courses. 
This year, in order to reduce our paper footprint, we will not print each child’s schedule. Please consult Veracross to see the courses to attend on Red-Mondays. The schedule for the evening is below. It may be helpful to print the schedule and write your child’s teachers/room numbers next to the times.
Time / Period
6:30 - 6:40 / Homeroom/Advisory
6:45 - 6:55 / 1st
7:00 - 7:10 / 2nd
7:15 - 7:25 / 3rd
7:30 - 7:40 / 4th
7:45 - 7:55 / 5th
8:00 - 8:10 / 6th (regardless of lunch time)
8:15 - 8:25 / 7th
8:30 - 8:40 / 8th
Important Dates for Quarter 1:
  • 8/19: School Picture Day – Visit to preorder photo packages using Park Tudor’s Picture Day ID: EVTQ3BXMP
  • 8/23: All-school cookout and football game
  • 8/27: Upper School Back-to-School Night
  • 8/30: All-school cookout and football game
  • 9/2: Labor Day, no school
  • 9/6: All-school cookout and football game
  • 9/27: US Parents Morning 7:55 – 11:25 a.m.
  • 9/27: Homecoming cookout and football game
  • 9/28: Homecoming dance 8 p.m. – 10 p.m.
We look forward to seeing you on campus soon!
Sarah Webster
Upper School Director