May 27, 2013
No School - Memorial Day
May 30, 2013 09:00 - 12:30
Last Day of School - Half Day
May 30, 2013 11:30 - 02:00
End-of-Year Celebration and Potluck
June 1, 2013 - June 2, 2013
June 3, 2013 - June 6, 2013
June 17, 2013 - June 21, 2013
June 24, 2013 - June 28, 2013
Old Time Radio Show Camp
July 8, 2013 - July 19, 2013
November 17, 2013
December 25, 2013
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After words of welcome and a moment of silence, Shelly shared this note sent by Todd Scholl.
Thanks again for allowing me to come and be a part of your school and community for a couple of days. You should all be proud of the culture you have built at Blue Mountain. Your friendliness and hospitality were very much appreciated.
Thanks for being a shining light in an all too often darkening educational landscape. My hope is that one day all students will be able to experience the freedom, compassion, and creativity exemplified by your wonderful school.
Todd works for South Carolina’s Center for Educator Recruitment, Retention, and Advancement, and he visited the school last month to learn about how we do things here at BMS. This year we’ve made many new friends as folks come to learn more about what we do here. Our most recent visitors are from the Davidson Green School, which is opening in the fall in North Carolina. It’s been fun to watch our school grow to a place where we are now able to serve as a model for others, and we look forward to continuing to build new relationships next year.
Next on the agenda were some brief announcements and calendar reminders:
Shelly introduced Board president, Kristan Morrison. Kristan reminded everyone that it’s time to vote for Board members. An email was sent out last week with the ballot, but if you need a new ballot contact Carol. In general, said Kristan, the Board is doing well, and in particular the financial status of the school is making good progress.
Kristan announced that Ezekiel Fugate has been hired as Administrative Manager/HS Teacher, and he’ll be starting July 1. In addition to teaching at the high school, Ezekiel will be working on administrative projects like accreditation. Towards accreditation, representatives from the Virginia Association of Independent Schools visited the school recently.
During a quick overview of the Board committees, Kristan announced a donation by CERC and shared that a group of Radford University graduate students will be working at Vintage Virginia Wine Festival to help raise money for our school. She also talked about the Advisory Board being developed to help connect more community members with the school. Finally, Kristan mentioned that all the Board committees are looking for more participation, and if you are interested, please contact her or any Board member.
Shelly took the floor again to update everyone on plans for the 2013-14 school year for the elementary school, and shared the calendar. Next year, there will be five classes, and we’ve hired Jenni Heartway to teach the new lower elementary class. Hari Berzins will be teaching the kindergarten class, and Ashley Morales will be the new teaching assistant in the early childhood class. Information about these teachers and their experiences in these areas are available in the office. No changes are planned for the middle elementary class, and the upper elementary class will be taught by Jonathan Vandergrift, Inge Terrill, and Corey Avellar. The scheduling and location for the upper elementary class are still being discussed.
Scholarship forms for the 2013-14 school year are now available on the forms page of the website and in the main office. This form is for the high school and the elementary school.
Please note that the scholarship form will only apply to the household who submits the application. If more than one household is responsible for a child's tuition, only the household applying will receive the award. For example, if a child's tuition is being paid by Household A and Household B, and Household A submits an application for scholarship, only Household A will receive the award. If Household B also wishes to apply for scholarship, it would also need to submit a completed application.
The deadline for submission is June 1. Forms received after that date will be taken on a first-come, first-serve basis and awarded as funds allow.
Summer is almost here, so register now to save your spot at summer camp! This summer, BMS is offering three sessions of day camp for kids ages 3 and up. We have lots of great activities planned, and you won't want to miss the fun!
Each session runs Monday through Friday from 9:00 am to 3:00 pm. The fee is $195 per week (Circus Camp is two weeks), and children must bring their own lunch. There is a 15% discount for additional children in a family, and scholarships are available. Payment is due in full by the first day of the camp session.
Mystery Camp: June 17-21
You and your detective team will solve small mysteries all week, leading up to solving a big mystery at the end of the week. They will participate in making footprint molds, fingerprinting, fiber analysis, evidence collection, informant interviewing, and intelligence analysis.
Old-Time Radio Camp: June 24-28
Students will explore local history and traditional crafts and skills, music, and storytelling, learning to express themselves in creative ways all week. They will also participate in developing and putting on a live ‘radio show’ at the end of the week.
Circus Camp: July 8-19
Students will have the opportunity to try all sorts of circus-related games and skills like juggling, clowning, and costume making, and will put on a real circus at the end of the session. For returning circus campers, this is a great chance to learn new skills or refine skills you worked on last summer.
We have two money saving options for BMS families for next year:
1. Tuition Futures - introduced last year, tuition futures allow families to save on future tuition while giving the school advance funds to plan ahead for the school year! (Currently this program is only available to elementary school students.)
2. Referral Bonus - any family that refers a new BMS family that enrolls their child for the 2013-14 school year will receive a $250 tuition credit for their child for the 2013-14 school year! The referring family will receive the credit in May 2014 if the new family stays enrolled for the entire school year and is in good financial standing, and the new family cannot have had their child enrolled at BMS anytime before the 2009 school year. The new family must not have enrolled for the upcoming school year at this point and time, and must be enrolled no later than Sept 1.
Please contact the office if you want to take advantage of either of these programs!
Last school year, Miranda and her students welcomed a graduate student from Radford University into their science class. Susan Slate, who was working on her masters' degree in curriculum and instruction in secondary science education, had some great questions about alternative schools. With the help of Blue Mountain School teachers, students, and staff, Susan's questions were answered, and she wrote an article, State Science Standards in a Progressive School.
The article was recently published in Encounter: Education for Meeting and Social Justice, a "journal of educational research and perspective featuring articles about returning balance to education by embedding teaching in a framework that enhances students’ personal growth as humane beings and cultivates in them a genuine commitment to social justice and an awareness that we are all but a part of a larger natural world — while insisting on genuine achievement in learning and skill acquisition."
Susan enjoyed working with Blue Mountain School so much, she joined our Board of Trustees last fall.
The Board of Trustees is calling for nominations for the upcoming Board election.
There's definitely a buzz in the air this morning as the Unknowns and Hari make the final preparations for the first TEDxFloyd event! If you'd like to attend, there are still a few seats available. To reserve one, hop over to the TEDxFloyd facebook page and follow the directions. You can also follow along with the event on the live webcast, and the information for that is also on the TEDxFloyd face book page.
For a sneak peek at the line up, check out the TEDxFloyd Program.