Dear Upper School Parents,
The incident on Reisterstown Road on Friday afternoon was a sobering reminder of the importance of our safety procedures here at school. While unsettling, the event also showed us that the plans we have in place work – and I hope that as you talk with your daughters, you can remind them of that fact. Their safety is our first concern, every day, and knowing that the rules we follow and the procedures we practice on campus do keep them safe will, I know, reassure them and you.
Saturday’s O’Town concert was a reminder of another sort – of the power of community in our school and the power of music in our school. As we celebrate Peter’s legacy at GFS, we also celebrate the community he has stewarded. What better way to acknowledge both than with the joyful Motown music that he loves. Thank you for joining us!
This is also a week of important holidays for many of our families. We wish all those celebrating Passover and Easter wonderful holidays.
Here are this week’s announcements:
VOICES FROM THE FOREST: The new posts on Voices from the Forest will give you even more motivation to read and value the power of words. The piece from Head of School Peter O'Neill will inspire you to reconnect with literature from your own past so be sure to respond and tell him about the books that changed your life. Or maybe you have favorites in common!
COURSE SELECTION 2014: The course selection process continues this week, as students meet again with their advisors to shape their programs for next year. Your daughter will soon bring home her course selection worksheet for you to review and sign. If you have questions about her selections, please don’t hesitate to contact her advisor.
RE-ENROLLMENT CONTRACTS: Enrollment contracts are now past due. Please log into your parent portal to complete the electronic agreement and submit the online enrollment deposit. If you have any questions about enrollment, please contact Stacy Mohn at 410-559-3142.
UPCOMING HOLIDAYS: Passover and Easter celebrations begin this week. We know that many families will be celebrating; this time together is so important. In order for the girls to have more time to enjoy these celebrations, there will be no homework, tests, quizzes or projects due on the day after Passover (Tuesday, April 15) and the day after Easter (Monday, April 21). Teachers will make accommodations on Wednesday, April 16, for those celebrating the second night of Passover.
UPPER SCHOOL APPLIED MUSIC RECITAL: You are cordially invited to the Upper School applied music recital on Wednesday, April 23, at 7:30 PM in the Recital Hall of the Hathaway Fine and Performing Arts Center. Please join us for an evening of lovely music!
DAY OF SILENCE: On Friday, April 25, the Upper School will observe the Day of Silence. This day is set aside to acknowledge the silence in which many GLBTQ students are forced to live to avoid discrimination and bullying. All students may choose whether to participate, and there are several ways to show support, ranging from complete silence during the academic day to wearing a sticker which expresses support. This day is an example of education in the hallways as well as in the classroom: In keeping with our Statement of Respect, we seek to provide a variety of opportunities throughout the year to educate students about the various forms that discrimination can take.
POST-PROM VOLUNTEERS: Interested in volunteering on the Post-Prom Committee? Parent volunteers are needed on Friday, April 25, Saturday, April 26 and Sunday, April 27 to set-up and break-down the Post-Prom event held in the Searle Athletic Center. If you are interested in volunteering, please contact Christy DiPietro at email@example.com. Thank you!
DOCUMENTARY FILM DISCUSSION: On the evening of April 25, Khalid Ali will present and discuss his documentary film, Kung Fu Lesson in Garland Theatre at 7 p.m. KHALID ALI, the creative young filmmaker, photographer and educator, is based in Baltimore, Maryland and is the founder and director of Alifilms. Kung Fu Lesson follows three American brothers, seeking to study Chinese martial arts, from Beijing to Shaolin Monastery; their journey acquaints them with "martial artists from all walks of life." Ali's film was successful at the Asian Film Festival in November and was an official selection at the Hoboken International Film Festival. Middle and Upper School students interested in kung fu, film, China should come. A reception will follow the film and discussion. Some other local schools have been invited; GFS students may bring friends and family. This event is sponsored by the Confucius Classroom at Garrison Forest School; it is free but requires an RSVP. Click here to learn more and to register.
UPPER SCHOOL DANCE CONCERT: The Upper School Dance program proudly presents the annual Spring Dance Concert on Thursday and Friday, May 1 and 2, at 7:30 PM in the Garland Theater. The concert features a mix of jazz, lyrical, and contemporary dance styles performed by our Beginner, Intermediate, and Advanced dance students. Also featured are a number of student-choreographed dances, including some outstanding solo work. You don't want to miss this show! Tickets are $5 for general admission and can be purchased online here, at the Dance office, or at the door. For more information, please call Amie Bell, Middle and Upper School Dance Teacher, at 410-559-3480.
SAVE THE DATE: Every year the Athletic Department hosts the Athletic Awards Banquet to honor the achievements of our student athletes and teams for the school year. Please be sure to mark your calendars for this year's banquet featuring guest speaker: JoAnne Russell, Wimbledon Ladies' Doubles Champion, on Wednesday, May 14 at 6PM in Alumnae Hall. Tickets are $25 for parents, guests and fans. Student-Athletes and children under 10 years of age are FREE. Registration will open on Monday, April 14.
FALL SPORTS TRY OUTS DATES: Fall sports try outs (excluding riding/polo) will start on Wednesday, August 20. This includes cross country, field hockey, soccer and tennis. Please mark your calendars!
ADVANCED PLACEMENT EXAMS AND COLLEGE BOARD EXAM REGULATIONS: AP exams for juniors and seniors in Advanced Placement classes will run from May 5-16 this year. Please note that the College Board has strict regulations about the administration of these exams. No electronic devices (cell phones included) are permitted in the examination room: students in possession of a device must be reported to the College Board and their scores and the scores of all students present in the exam may be cancelled as a result of this malpractice. The only exception to this rule is the use of a calculator on portions of the Chemistry and Calculus exams. Students have been informed of these regulations by their teachers and will be reminded again by proctors. Please help us administer our AP exams and ensure that all our students receive their scores by reminding your daughters of these rules. Thank you for your help!
IMPORTANT INFORMATION ON NEW IMMUNIZATION REGULATIONS: Immunization regulations, determined by the Maryland Department of Health and Mental Hygiene, have been updated for the 2014-15 school year. All Preschool – 11th Grade parents have received a detailed email explaining these regulations from GFS nurse Luanne Keirsey. A copy of the letter is here. Please read it carefully to review what is required of GFS parents prior to the 2014-15 year, particularly if your daughter is entering Kindergarten or 7th Grade. Questions? Contact Luanne Keirsey, R.N., in the GFS Health Center, 410-559-3200 or firstname.lastname@example.org.