Update from the Head of School
October 2019
Monthly theme: Cooperation

What a great first month of school. Students are helping each other in their respective classrooms, in early rehearsals of the all-school play, and on Outdoor Ed; parents are modeling that same positive behavior with volunteering in and out of school; and teachers have established routines and cooperation, bringing enthusiasm and academic excellence to their classrooms. Students, parents, teachers: It is these three important constituencies who make up the ACDS community, and it is community that is central to who we are. I feel great pride witnessing the magic that occurs every day! 
As I think about all that has happened over these four weeks, it all starts with welcoming. At the September all-school assembly, we acknowledged new adults and new students with a round of applause, and as I looked out at them, they seemed to be smiling with pride. The PIE Welcoming Committee has been there by each family's side, and parent coffees and potlucks are in full swing. A terrific community event is our Playdate by the Ponds. Thank you to all the volunteers! It was a beautiful day, and many visitors enjoyed our amazing campus.

The fall Outdoor Ed season is underway, and ACDS was fortunate to have Katie Baum Mettenbrink from the National Outdoor Leadership School on campus for several days. Katie leads NOLS Risk Services, which is conducting a thorough assessment of our program. We will be studying her findings over the next couple months and were excited to hear her initial positive impressions of our program. I want to applaud Paige, Collette, and Brian for their leadership with Outdoor Ed and all of the systems and protocols we have in place. There is such dedication and pride with this pillar of the school, and it is often the area of the school that our alumni and former parents rave about.

Also in September we had our annual Parent Nights, with teachers presenting the program to parents, and parents seeing how powerful great teachers can be. The connection that ACDS teachers have with students is extraordinary, and the learning that happens in every classroom is deep and engaging. As a school we celebrate rigor and hard work without intensity and stress. Balance remains central to all that we do.

Lastly, I want to celebrate the social activism that our Seventh Graders brought to the climate conversations on September 20th. Led by Katie-Maeve Hicks and Avery Lieb, the class put on a thoughtful assembly, and then many joined youth and citizens in town to make their voices heard. In addition, Aspen Country Day students who wrote letters to the editor saw their work in print in local papers.

Fall is in the air, winter is around the corner, and school is thriving. Thank you for your trust and partnership. Enjoy the fall!
Best wishes,
October Events for your Calendar
Friday, October 18, 3:15 pm
Q&A panel with representatives of five boarding schools
Saturday, October 19, 1-3 pm
Sixth Annual Boarding School Fair
Thursday, October 24
No school for PreK (valleywide preschool teacher professional development day)
Friday, October 25
No school, fall break
Thursday, October 31
Halloween, afternoon festivities, more details soon