News from the St. Mark's Dean of Students, Dean of Academics, and Dean of Faculty
April 9, 2021
COVID-19 Updates

NEW: Fall Return Update
St. Mark’s is in the early stages of planning for a return to in-person school this fall. While there will be some modifications to large gatherings, dining, and other operations, it is our hope and plan to return to a St. Mark’s experience that resembles pre-pandemic life to the greatest extent possible. More details about the fall will be shared in the weeks and months to come.  

NEW: Vaccine Information
As part of our goal to support students and families, St. Mark’s is working to assist our boarding students whose families do not live locally to become vaccinated for COVID-19. Massachusetts eligibility for students ages 16 to 18 begins on April 19, 2021.

For our more distant boarders, it may be impossible to obtain vaccination in their home country or in other states. We think it is important to prioritize these students as we search for available vaccine appointments. We will do this by enrolling them in the Commonwealth’s pre-registration system. We will also prioritize any students with a health condition as listed by Massachusetts guidelines. If an appointment is available in the upcoming weeks, we will provide transportation to and from the vaccine site. We will also require parent/guardian authorization in advance.

Please understand that we have no control over which vaccine may be available as we search for appointments. Currently, Moderna and Johnson & Johnson vaccines can only be administered to individuals 18 years of age and older. If Pfizer vaccine happens to be available, it may be possible to secure appointments for 16 and 17 year olds as well.

As per previous communications, we expect parents of day students and local boarders to plan their vaccination appointments. We will support students by excusing them from classes or other commitments, since we understand that there is little or no choice in the timing of these appointments. We view these vaccine appointments as medical appointments; therefore, local boarders should sign out through Health Services.

We will be in touch with families about next steps for authorizations.

Academics News

NEW: Window Three Grades Will Be Posted on April 12
Faculty will post grades for Window Three, along with a cumulative "year to date" mark, and narrative comments to provide context for each student's work in class. Grades and comments will be posted on the parent portal on Monday, April 12.

REMINDER: Experiential Learning
Our spring Experiential Learning offerings will be starting up for the III, IV, and V Forms on Friday, April 2 in the afternoon experiential blocks. These courses are designed to connect with the core themes for each form as ordinarily presented in St. Mark's Saturdays, and to channel something of the experience that each form would ordinarily have as a part of Lion Term. Experiential course meetings will take place on Fridays throughout the spring: April 2, 9, 16, 30; and May 7, 14, and 21. It is the VI Form's turn for an "off" season from experiential learning; they will be gearing up for the time capsule projects that they will complete during the specially designed VI Form culminating experience that begins on May 17.

2021-2021 Academic Course Catalog
The 2021-2022 Academic Course Catalog is now available to view at this link.

Campus News

NEW: Lion Card Reminder
As a reminder, Lion Card balances for students returning in the fall will remain on the card. There is no need to spend down the balance before the end of this school year. For graduating VI Form students, the business office typically refunds any balances remaining in July after final charges are posted in June.

NEW: Leadership Application Process Underway
Leadership applications for next year's House Prefect, Peer Discussion Leader, Pathways Prefect, Student Discipline Committee, and Monitor have been sent to students. Very exciting as we start to prepare for September. Applicants have received information about this process and the form for all submissions will close on Friday, April 16 at 9:00 p.m. EDT. As we have said and done in the past, there will be no extensions past this deadline. Those rising VI formers who are applying to serve as a Monitor should submit a  Monitor video by Tuesday, April 13 at 9:00 p.m. EDT.

NEW: Quad Game Results from April 5
  • Frozen Tshirt - Phoenix unraveled the Frozen Tshirt first!
  • Oreo Eating - Fearing dunked the competition - Anaya Strong!
  • Sudoku Online - Sarah Lammert for Thayer completes the puzzle in the quickest time
  • Cage Soccer Upperform - Phoenix victorious!
  • Cage Soccer Underform - Large comes up big!
  • Cloisterball Underform - “Action” Jackson Rosenstein leads Phoenix in a sweep
  • R-P-S Upperform - Thayer crushes all in the final round with Erin Murray, Michael Fisher, Hannah MacLeod, and Crawford Wittman as champs!
  • Flag Football - Phoenix wins this new mega-event
  • Trombetta’s Ice Cream - We all win!
 
Standings:
  1. Phoenix
  2. Thayer
  3. Large
  4. Fearing

Admission News

NEW: Important Re-Enrollment Reminders

Parents of Current III, IV, and V Formers:  
Dear Parents of Current III, IV, and V Formers: Student Re-Enrollment Contracts for most returning students for 2021-22 have been issued online over the past several weeks. Contracts should be accessed again via School Forms Online powered by inResonance. Released re-enrollment contracts were sent out online from admission@stmarksschool.org via sendgrid.net (with an invitation link via email). Please make note that the subject line of the email you will be receiving for this is "St. Mark's School: Confirm your email.” These have been sent to both parent email addresses for each household, if applicable. The email addresses utilized are the primary emails listed for each parent currently in our database (unless you share an email in which case these will be sent to only one). If you have not received your contract by now and are unsure as to why or have other questions or concerns, please reach out to Anne Behnke. Thank you for your continued support of St. Mark’s.
 
By April 20 please complete and submit your re-enrollment contracts and deposits. These are due by the end of this business day, unless otherwise specified. 

Athletics News

NEW: Return to Spring Competition & Game Day Visitor Guidelines
A Note from Director of Athletics John Levandowski 
I could not be more excited to announce our return to competition this spring. It's hard to believe that it's been 22 months since our spring teams have last played! 

In conversation and coordination with the ISL athletic directors and heads of school, the following guidelines are in place to provide the safest environment for our student-athletes to compete, and the greatest likelihood for a successful and complete season.

Please refer to the Athletics website’s Upcoming Games page to confirm the game schedule. We plan to compete weekly beginning April 17 and concluding on May 22.
 
Game Day Visitor Guidelines
  • Home games are limited to two family members per player. At this time, family members are NOT allowed to attend away games.
  • Varsity home games will be filmed and made available on YouTube.
  • Spectators must wear masks and maintain social distance at all times.
  • Spectators are not allowed to access campus buildings or bathrooms. Temporary bathrooms will be made available outdoors. 
  • No tailgating or gathering allowed.

Go Lions!


College Counseling News

REMINDER: Class of 2023 Parents/Guardians | Welcome Brian Kirchner and Matthew Pietrafetta of Academic Approach
Please join the College Counseling Office in welcoming Brian Kirchner and Matthew Pietrafetta of Academic Approach (our test prep partner) for an informational meeting via Zoom webinar Thursday, April 22 from 7:00 to 8:30 p.m. EDT. The primary goals of the meeting will be to explore the differences between the SAT and ACT and provide a testing timeline. Time will be reserved for Q & A. Click here for the meeting Zoom Link.

2021 Prize Day 

Save the Dates! 2021 Prize Day
  • Baccalaureate | Saturday, May 29, 8:00 p.m.
  • Class of 2020 Diploma Ceremony | Saturday, May 29, 10:30 a.m.
  • Class of 2021 - 156th Prize Day Ceremony | Sunday, May 30, 10:30 a.m.

For more information, please visit the Schedule page of the 2021 Prize Day website.

Additional information regarding Prize Day was released to VI Form students, parents, and guardians on Thursday, March 25. Select this link to access the email.
Parents' Association News

NEW: Registration Now Open for the April 26 “Parents As Partners: Building a Social Justice Mindset” Event
Colleen Worrell, director of the Center for Innovation for Teaching and Learning, highlights the program she presented during the St. Mark’s Community & Equity Day on February 24. This interactive program will give parents a lens into how and what their children are learning at St. Mark’s. Register here.
 
Parent/Faculty/Staff Book Club - April 14 at 3:00 p.m. EDT
The next book club meeting will take place via Zoom on Wednesday, April 14, from 3:00 to 4:00 p.m. EDT. We will discuss The Storied Life of A.J. Fikry by Gabrielle Zevin.
 
Interested in attending? Please email Laurie Kalapinski (lauriekalapinski@stmarksschool.org) or Joanne Flathers P’15, ’19, ’21 (joanne@flathersfamily.net) to receive the Zoom link the morning of April 14.
 
At the end of this meeting, we’ll choose a book for May’s virtual meeting. 
 
Other book titles mentioned by members, in no particular order, are:
  • The Seven Husbands of Evelyn Hugo by Taylor Jenkins Reid
  • Their Eyes Were Watching God by Zora Neale Hurston
  • Doll-baby by Laura Lane McNeal
  • A Promised Land by Barack Obama
  • The Invisible Life of Addie LaRue by V.E. Schwab
  • The Midnight Library by Matt Haig
 
Recording of Parents Speaker Series Event, Drawing on Science
On March 31, St. Mark’s Senior Teacher Barbara Putnam discussed why it is important to critically observe and how she embeds art into science. See the recording here.

Calendar News:
Weekend Activities - April 10 & 11
April 14 - Parent/Faculty/Staff Book Club
April 19 - No Classes, Patriots' Day
April 20 - Completed Re-Enrollment Contracts and Deposits Due
April 22 - Class of 2023 Parents/Guardians | Welcome Brian Kirchner and Matthew Pietrafetta of Academic Approach
April 26 - Parents as Partners: Building a Social Justice Mindset
May 5 - No Classes, Spring Day Off
May 20 - No Classes, Spring Day Off
May 24-30 - Prize Day Week