Head of School Message

Dear FA Families,
This past week the Visiting Team from the Southern Association of Independent Schools (SAIS) came to the FA campus for three days to activate the final phase of the school’s reaccreditation process. The five-person team consisted of educators representing schools from Greensboro, N.C., and Chattanooga, TN, along with three schools in Georgia. To avoid the suspense of a delayed headline, at the end of their visit the unanimous recommendation from the team was for FA to receive full reaccreditation status. SAIS officials will codify a formal reaccreditation decision once it reviews the committee’s final report, but we are optimistic given the visiting team’s recommendation and preliminary findings.
We have been working on our reaccreditation now for almost two years, as there are three distinct phases to the process. The first is the most laborious and requires us to meet and document extensively dozens of specific indicators among five broad standards related to every conceivable facet of school life. Literally, every member of the faculty and staff worked in committee for months to produce this Standards and Indicators section, which also included a narrative snapshot. The second section is a lengthy School Report where members of the Leadership Team wrote a narrative about the present status of the school and identified areas of growth that we anticipated dedicating time and resources to addressing in the coming years. Most of these areas of growth came from previously identified topics in our current Strategic Plan. The third and final phase involved the visit, where there was a ”boots on the ground” inventory of whether we were effectively putting into practice all that we were describing in our written submissions.
The purpose of the accreditation process is twofold. First, it is to validate and verify through a third-party collection of educators that the services and experiences that we are delivering every day to our children and our families are congruent with who we advertise ourselves to be. Second, it is to improve as a school, and to do that we solicit scrutiny by the team and specifically identify three areas that we would like additional support and focus. In this accreditation cycle, FA selected our interscholastic sports program, technology, and the professional development of our teachers as our three growth areas of attention.
In summary, the observations from the Visiting Team have been categorized into Commendations and Recommendations, and, truthfully, there were no surprises or disappointments in either category. I think that we have come to know our strengths and shortcomings well, and we will continue to build on the former and address the latter as we can. In summary, our strength is our people … teachers and staff, students, parents, leadership at the governance and operational level, and alumni. That came through strongly at every meeting that the committee attended and was the first comment made to me at my final exit conversation. As an aside from my perspective, it is so easy and fulfilling to drive the bus when it is readily apparent that all the right and essential people are on that bus. Our SAIS team affirmed what many of us already believed … that at FA we do have the right people on the bus and that we are heading out of the station in the intended direction.
There were a series of global commendations directed to certain attitudes or to our cultural ethos, i.e., fostering a school environment in which every student is known and respected, nurturing the whole child by creating a culture of kindness, and creating and sustaining a physically and emotionally safe campus and school experience during a prolonged, challenging-on-multiple-fronts pandemic. There were special commendations to certain programs as well, i.e. college counseling, admissions, the emerging and dynamic fine arts program, fundraising, the AP program, and our competitive sports teams. And there was a smattering of commendations related to the Leadership Team, to our delivering an academic program that intentionally builds challenge for each and every student, for creating small-group student and teacher interactions, for the abundance of grade-level bonding experiences that we offer, and for developing a sense of trust and community through our decision-making, communication, and stakeholder strategies and actions.
The recommendation section of the report was spot on and accurately corroborated most of the areas that we acknowledge that we can improve on or study additionally as a school. I would categorize these areas identified to work on either by us or the visiting team into four lists: those that require additional manpower and resources or better allocation of those resources; those that demand more time or a better allocation of that time; those that require more collaboration across divisions or departments; and those that require more and/or better long-range planning. In every area of the school, literally every area, there is the push and pull of competing interests and an intersection of time and resources. That is certainly a fair and accurate characterization.
Take interscholastic athletics, for example, and consider only a few of the myriad issues involved in athletics just to illustrate my point. The SAIS team’s primary recommendation is for us to build a multi-year strategic roadmap/plan for athletics, which is centered on the mission of the school with defined impact areas, prioritized improvement strategies, desired outcomes, and success indicators. That is a very valid suggestion, one that we will act on, and one that will include at the very least study and consideration of the following points: How many sports teams should FA offer and when do we form and support so many teams that we begin to dilute the limited talent pool in a small school? How do we balance and reconcile creating competitive athletic teams with our no-cut, participation-emphasized program? How do we best support programs when they are led primarily or exclusively by off-campus community coaches? What does a successful Middle School athletic program that engenders an enthusiasm for participating in athletics and ultimately strengthens our varsity programs look like? Is there a way to consolidate travel or revisit scheduling so that our student-athletes and coaches do not spend so much time and the school spends so much money on buses during the various sports seasons?
The report also contains similar kinds of questions and recommendations for us to consider both in technology and professional development.
This accreditation is valid for five years. At the two-and-a-half-year mark, it is incumbent on the school to respond in writing to the recommendations. In the meantime, we look forward to enjoying our full accreditation status, once formalized, and continuing our work to improve the school. Special thanks go to Leigh Toomey and Melanie Howell who orchestrated this effort from the school’s side and everyone else who participated in the important process, either live on-campus or via a Zoom meeting. Congratulations to all. Needless to say, the SAIS chair’s report to the entire faculty and staff Wednesday afternoon was a well-deserved and satisfying moment for all.
Scott L. Hutchinson
Head of School
This Week at FA


Monday @ 10:00 AM
Upper School Advisory

Monday @ 4:00 PM
Middle School Faculty Meeting
Hamilton Hall

Monday @ 4:30 PM
Middle School Baseball
@ First Presbyterian in Hinesville
Dismissal @ 2:25 PM

Tuesday at 10:00 AM
Middle School Assembly

Tuesday @ 3:00 PM
Varsity Tennis @ Trinity-Christian
Dismissal @ 10:30 AM

Tuesday Afternoon
Middle School Golf
Dismissal @ 1:30 PM

Tuesday @ 5:30 PM
Middle School Baseball @ Home
vs. First Presbyterian

Varsity Soccer @ Home
vs. Brunswick High
Girls @ 5:00 PM
Boys @ 7:00 PM

Wednesday @ 10:00 AM
Fifth Grade Move-Up
Benefield Hall

Wednesday @ 10:00 AM
Upper School Virtual Assembly

Wednesday @ 11:00 AM
Fourth Grade Field Trip
Epworth Tabby Cabins

Wednesday @ 4:30 PM
Middle School Track Meet
@ Brunswick High School
Dismissal @ 3:20 PM

Wednesday @ 6:00 PM
Varsity Baseball
@ St. Andrew's in Savannah
Dismissal @ 2:25 PM

Wednesday @ 6:00 PM
MS Carpe Vitam Parent Nights
Sixth Grade - Hamilton Hall
Seventh Grade - MS Academic Center
Eighth Grade - Gymnasium

Thursday - Saturday
Varsity Golf
@ Palmetto HS Championships
Myrtle Beach

Thursday @ 10:30 AM
First Grade Easter Party
Sea Island Green

Thursday @ 1:00 PM
US Student Council Meeting
Mr. Jobe's Classroom

Thursday @ 3:30 PM
Varsity Track @ Glynn Middle

Varsity Baseball Tournament @ FA
Valwood vs. Covenant @ 4:00 PM
FA vs. Calvary @ 7:00 PM

Good Friday
First Day of Spring Break

Varsity Baseball Tournament @ FA
Valwood JV vs. Calvary JV @ 1:00 PM
Valwood vs. Calvary @ 4:00 PM
FA vs. Covenant @ 7:00 PM

Varsity Baseball Tournament @ FA
Calvary vs. Valwood @ 10:30 AM
Calvary JV vs. Valwood JV @ 1:00 PM
FA vs. Covenant @ 4:00 PM
Knights Table Menus
Derby Day Merchandise Deadline
Carpe Vitam Parent Night
First Grade Easter Party
APRIL 2-11
Spring Break
PPE Night (Grades 4-11)
All rising 5th through 12th grade students need to have a Pre-Participation Physical Evaluation (PPE) for each new school year. This is required due to the rigorous activity expected by our physical education, athletic, and field trip programs.
As a school service, the FA Athletic Department and Southeast Georgia Health System conduct on-campus PPE's for current students in grades 4 through 11 during the month of April each year. Once completed, each student will be covered to participate in physical education classes and all athletics for the entire upcoming school year. We are very fortunate to have community volunteers provide this service for a $10 donation to the FA Booster Club, which will be charged to your school account.

PPE Night for the 2021-2022 school year will be held in the gym on April 28, 2021, from 5:00 p.m. - 7:00 p.m.
Parents, if you would like your student to have the exam done at school, please click HERE to print the packet of forms. Parents should complete pages 1-6 and return the entire packet to school. Completed forms can be submitted to Adam Norman, Nurse Pope, or Coach Zimmermann no later than April 19.
We will conduct pre-screening sessions during PE (Grades 4-8) and lunch (Grades 9-11) for students who have submitted their forms between April 12-23. Turning in forms early allows us to do pre-screening (Height and weight, vision screenings, etc.), which helps make the PPE Night run much more smoothly.

If you prefer to have the exam done by your family physician, please click HERE for a form packet. Complete pages 1-6 before taking the entire packet to your doctor and returning it to school when the exam is completed.
Youth Leadership Glynn
The Youth Leadership Glynn program is in its 22nd year of sponsorship by the Brunswick-Golden Isles Chamber of Commerce. This program is designed to prepare and educate emerging young leaders on community issues while furthering their knowledge of Brunswick and Glynn County.

The program is offered to select high school students with strong leadership potential and is designed to:

  • Present in-depth programs that will acquaint students with community needs and resources and provide interaction with community leaders and decision makers. 
  • Develop an understanding of leadership qualities, team building skills, and community service.
  • Provide opportunities for students to develop a level of mutual respect and trust.

Program Requirements:
  • Student must be a high school sophomore or junior in the 2021-2022 school year.
  • Student must have reliable transportation to and from the scheduled activities.
  • Student must be able to attend one half-day per month with a schedule that will be given out at orientation.
  • Student is only allowed to miss TWO sessions during the year and may not leave sessions early. 

Program Qualifications:
  • 3.0 GPA or higher
  • Less than 5 unexcused absences from school
  • No behavioral problems on record

A committee has been formed by the Chamber of Commerce and will interview the students in groups. The committee will then meet to select the next Youth Leadership Glynn class. Students will be notified if they have been accepted into the program by the end of the 2020-2021 school year.

*Applications are due to Mrs. Nevins by Wednesday, April 7th!*

Please note that Frederica Academy will be on Spring Break the week applications are due. Students may email their application to Mrs. Nevins. The deadline was set by the Chamber of Commerce.
2021 FA May Court
Congratulations to the following Middle School and Upper School students who were chosen by their grade-level classmates to represent them on this year's May Court.

The May Queen will be crowned at Frederica Academy's May Day Ceremony on Friday, May 14.
US Science Fair
Congratulations to the following Upper School Science Fair Overall and First Place Science Fair winners:

Astronomy First Place - Cammie Pope
AP Biology First Place - Madison Morgan
Biology First Place - Mary Wallace + Carley Blogg
Biology Honors First Place - Hannah Huber
Chemistry First Place - Case Harrison
Chemistry First Place - Sam Norris
Physics First Place - Jacob Triplett
Physics First Place - Cason Cavalier
MS Science Fair
Congratulations to the following Middle School Science Fair winners:

Earth Science
Luke Sarzier - Second Place
Libby Certain - Third Place

Life Science
Amelia McGlaughlin - Second Place
David Beimler - Third Place

Physical Science
Aubre Smith - Second Place
Robert Stephens - Third Place

Mr. Willis '86, the Science Department Chair, described this year's Middle School science projects as the best ever. This is quite a statement given that Mr. Willis has been involved with the school as a student or teacher in every decade since the school opened in 1970.
Little Women, The Broadway Musical
Congratulations to the cast and crew of Little Women, the Musical, proudly presented by Thespian Troupe #8989!
Venezuela Clothing Drive
The World Language and Culture Club recently held a clothing/toy/shoe drive for the children in Venezuela who are living in poverty. The effort was spearheaded by junior, David Garcia, who became aware of the problem through family members in Venezuela. After sharing some of their stories, the club decided to help. Thank you to everyone who made donations. The club members are grateful for your generosity!
MS Model UN Awards
On Friday, we received the final individual results from the recent online Georgia Southern University Middle School Model UN competition, where our delegation finished as the second-runner-up team.

We are pleased to announce that Gemma Johnston was our highest ranked student and was awarded Distinguished Delegate.

The following FA students were awarded Honorable Mention awards for their outstanding performance in the competition. Congratulation to all of the FA delegates!
Lower School Story Walk
Frederica Academy's StoryWalk® Program officially opened last week. A StoryWalk® allows individuals to explore books in an outside setting. A book is dismantled and placed in display cases along an outside path. These walks are typically located at libraries and parks. A StoryWalk®, like many outdoor learning experiences, has numerous benefits for children. Outdoor learning:

  • supports intellectual, emotional, and behavioral development;
  • increases academic engagement;
  • creates excitement about learning;
  • helps students become invested in the community, which leads to developing stronger community connections; and
  • engages the school community, families, and community at-large.

Frederica is one of the first schools in our area to install a permanent StoryWalk®. This investment reflects the school's commitment to instilling a love for reading in fun and creative ways for our youngest learners. We are excited for teachers and students across all three divisions to engage in the StoryWalk® Program. We are equally excited for Frederica families to explore the stories that will be featured in the StoryWalk® each month. The StoryWalk® starts near the entrance of the Been Library and the path goes through the Lower School section of campus near the Terry Thomas Playground.

This is the first student program coordinated by our new Diversity, Equity, Inclusion, and Social Justice initiative. The walk will feature books that celebrate or capture the spirit of diversity and inclusion. The first book featured in the StoryWalk®, in recognition of Women's History Month, is Leaders & Dreamers: A Collection of Prints, by Vashti Harrison.

Students can further explore StoryWalk® books and additional books by all authors by visiting the Been Library. The StoryWalk® will feature the next title after Spring Break. If you have any questions about the StoryWalk® Program, please contact Dr. Monica Miller-Smith at monicamillersmith@fredericaacademy.org.

The StoryWalk® Project was created by Anne Ferguson of Montpelier, VT, and developed in collaboration with the Kellogg-Hubbard Library. StoryWalk® is a registered service mark owned by Ms. Ferguson.
Fifth Grade Ebenezer Trip
The Fifth Grade students enjoyed their trip to “Ebenezer Live” at the New Ebenezer Retreat Center. It was a delightful mix of learning and team building. Outdoor survival skills, dance lessons, history lessons, and time with friends were all part of this fun learning experience.

Special thanks to Marty Fitzjurls and Jeff Rentz who accompanied Ms. Myles and Mrs. Smith as chaperones for the trip.
Fourth Grade Voyage
Fourth Grade students enjoyed a voyage and an outdoor lesson aboard the Tall Ship Lynx on Friday.
Third Grade Radishes
Third Grade students had a great time harvesting the radishes they planted as a part of their studies on survival. Each student was able to try a radish, and all of them thought they were “spicy.
April Events

April 2
Good Friday - No School

April 5-9
Spring Break

April 12-16
LS Rocking + Reading Week

April 13 @ 8:00 AM
Second Grade Dad Breakfast
Sea Island Green Tent

April 13
Junior Class Meeting
Sea Island Green Tent

April 14 (9:00 AM - 2:00 PM)
FA Employee
Second COVID-19 Vaccination

April 14
Auburn University Virtual Visit
College Counseling Center

April 14 @ 3:30 PM
All-School Faculty Meeting
FA Gymnasium

April 15
Rotary Student of the Month

April 17
ACT Exam at FA

April 17
FA Junior-Senior Prom
8:00 PM - 11:00 PM
Senior Walk-Out @ 10:00 PM
Sea Island Green Tent

April 19
Q4 Progress Reports Posted

April 19 @ 9:00 AM
Second Grade Bee Visit

April 20
Fourth Grade
Archaeological Dig
Fort Frederica

April 20
Varsity Region Tennis Tournament
Coastal College of Georgia

April 21
Bongang Visiting Artists
Panel Installations

April 21 @ 6:30 PM
MS + US Spring Concert
Sea Island Green

April 21
Varsity Region Track Meet
@ Bulloch in Statesboro

April 22
FA Parent Association
Teacher "Grab + Go" Breakfast
Gym Lobby

April 22 @ 6:00 PM
BOV + Trustee Emeriti + BOT Reception

April 23 @ 8:10 AM
Lower School Morning Meeting
Sea Island Green
Mrs. Smith's Class

April 26
Varsity State Tennis
Individual Tournament in Macon

April 26
Varsity State Golf Tournament
Brunswick Country Club

April 27
Middle School Golf Championship
Savannah Golf Club

April 28
Senior College T-Shirt Day
Senior Honors Virtual Ceremony

April 28 @ 5:00 PM
PPE Night (Grades 4-11)
Gym Lobby

April 29-30; May 1
Varsity State Track Meet
@ Bulloch

April 30 @ 8:10 AM
Lower School Morning Meeting
Sea Island Green
Ms. Myles' Class

April 30
Fourth Grade Field Trip

April 30
Red Cross Blood Drive
FA Gymnasium

May 1 (5:00 PM - 8:00 PM)
Derby Day
Sea Island Retreat Clubhouse
Spring Athletic Schedules
2021 Summer Programs
Derby Day 2021
FA Social Media
FA Quick Links