My monthly letter for February is a little early, but close enough.
Reflections by Founding Head Pat Young, Stanwich's second Head of School Paul Geise, and Katrina Black, GCDS and Stanwich graduate (2014) and current senior at Holy Cross distinguished last Friday's Charter Day Assembly. Katrina received this year's Charter Day gift of books and school supplies to support her charity supporting the educational efforts of the Cove School in Jamaica. Adam Rohdie represented the GCDS community in extending their congratulations on the occasion. We are all proud of Katrina's efforts to make God's world a better place.
At some point in the near future, students will bring home two notices from the state, which required their hard copy distribution. The forms indicate that a previous test of our well water reflected no lead, but some copper from the old pipes. Since that test we have addressed the problem with a new water treatment system. Although no problem now exists and moreover we all drink bottled water, the State requires us to provide the information to all our families nonetheless. We continue to test our water monthly and will inform parents further as necessary.
Last Thursday, the Greenwich Public Schools Board of Education unanimously approved the implementation of the youth surveys for grades 7-12 in the Greenwich Public Schools. To ensure substantive data, Stanwich and the other local independent schools have agreed to participate. This first of its kind community-wide youth survey assesses risks for students in Greenwich. The survey results will enable the town to determine priorities and secure additional funding to meet the needs of our youth and decrease risky behaviors. We anticipate surveying Stanwich in Grades 7-12 the second week in February. The survey will take approximately 30 minutes to administer. For statistical purposes we hope that all Stanwich students will participate; however, parents can opt-out if they choose. Please look for a separate communication regarding more details on the survey from Gary Dunn.
Resurrecting an old Stanwich tradition, thanks to all the cooks and foodies who attended the Charter Day Chili Cook-off. Congratulations to chefs who received the following recognitions:
Commitment Award: (Uniquely creative): The Zelenz Family
Compassion Award (Uncomplicated and tasty): The Hughes Family
Wisdom Award (Best vegetarian): The Ashman/Roberts Family
Courage Award (Holy smokes, spicy): The Tar Family
Honesty Award (Organic, sustainably sourced chili): The Hochman Family
Forgiveness (Best store-bought): The Benincasa Family--with a humorous entry from the Benincasa children
Joy (Sweet and enjoyable for the whole family): The Bodas Family
Awarded by popular vote, the People's Choice Award went to the Tar Family with close runner-ups being the Bodas Family and the Zelenz Family. Judges Vernon Schwartz, Danny Combatti and I awarded our favorites: the Giametta Family, the Richard Family, and the Fitts Family. Winners received engraved wooden cooking spoons. Most importantly we all ate well in celebration of Stanwich's 20th Anniversary Charter Day. Thanks to all those who contributed to the fun event, especially the stellar Chili Cook-off committee chaired by Alexandra Hochman.
Attached here is Adam Rohdie's recent communication to GCDS parents with information concerning the transition committees and the master plan for the high school. The master plan drawing will look familiar to those Stanwich folks involved in the planning and permitting processes over the years. We are excited as we approach lift-off.