Academy news & updates
2020-21 | Issue 8
Celebrating the Academy Experience
Black History Month Celebration
Yesterday our MOSAIC parent group hosted a celebration of Black History Month via Zoom. The initial half-hour, geared toward younger students and their families, was hosted by 7th-grader Brian Ankamah and featured 13-year-old entrepreneur Te'Lario Watkins II of Tiger Mushroom Farms. Then, upper-schoolers Olivia Pierre-Louis and EJ Jenkins led a conversation with four successful entrepreneurs: Ryan Williams '08, Gale Hill, Jonathan Moody and Elizabeth Blount McCormick. Coverage will be shared on school social media in the coming days. In the meantime, check out pre-recorded interviews with panelists and others in our community at
Chinese New Year Videos
In celebration of the 2021 Chinese New Year, upper-schoolers in Dr. Jing Yan's and Dr. Hsiao-Ching Yang's Chinese classes were tasked with creating videos demonstrating the significance of this annual festivity. From recipes for yummy dishes of food to dance routines and musical renditions, along with hands-on paper activities and even some Chinese yo-yo skills on display, this group of upper-schoolers created a playlist for our entire community to enjoy by clicking here!
Summer Experience Registration
The opening of registration for our 2021 Summer Experience in mid-February was highly anticipated, so many of the camps filled up quickly. Spots are still open, however, and staff members in our Special Programs Department are constantly working with those on waitlists for the camps that did fill up as positions become available. To learn more and view this year's summer brochure, please click here.
Middle School Theatre Production
This year’s middle school theatre production, presented completely online via Zoom, was incredibly unique and well done! Bravo to the entire cast and crew for “staging” two highly entertaining and humorous shows (view gallery of screenshots). Unfortunately, copyright restrictions prevent us from sharing any of the actual footage, but watch the message from director Whitney Eads at the end of the final performance, including her tribute to the 10 eighth-graders involved, at
Speech & Debate State Qualifiers
Congratulations to the 12 students from our Speech and Debate team who qualified for this year's state competition on March 5th and 6th: Rehya Satish, Aleeza Yakoob, Sam Braveman, Alex Nanda, Yashu Tanneru, Ethan Kim, Alexis Cunningham, Lindsey Butler, Cory Wu, Ceci Reitter, Jaswanth Vandrasi and Tara Hoffmann! Read coverage by The Academy Life at and view more information about the state competition by clicking here.
Geography Bee National Runner-Up
As a third-grader competing against sixth-graders last year, Landon Fisher earned national runner-up honors in the 2020 International Geography Bee! Shown here with his plaque in Mrs. Bring's fourth grade classroom, Landon has already qualified for this year's regional competition after missing only one question on his qualification exam. He is the son of Matthew and Stephy Fisher of Gahanna.
Glimpses of Daily Life on Campus
As a part of Columbus Academy’s Valentine's Day festivities, our Service Board made cards that were delivered to residents at Sunrise of Gahanna, an assisted living and memory care facility located just a little over a mile from campus. In that same spirit, our lower-schoolers lovingly made Valentine’s cards for their friends at Kensington Place, a retirement home they regularly visited prior to the pandemic. And all three divisions were able to enjoy chocolate-covered pretzel rods handmade by our dining hall staff on Thursday! “Some had sprinkles that were allergen-free (nut-free as well),” said food service director Stephanie Campbell. “We made gluten-free pretzels as well as gluten-free, dairy-free and just dairy-free ones so all students were able to participate in this treat.” It was also the upper-schoolers’ and middle-schooler’s turn to enjoy delicious hot chocolate on a cold day. Our lower-schoolers, who celebrated Hot Chocolate Day in January, had more treats in store throughout the afternoon as they exchanged cards, ate special snacks and participated in craft activities (view photos). For more community life news, click on the following links:
Arts and Music Scene
We're excited to recognize our Regional Scholastic Fine Arts and Writing Award Winners! This year 11 of our fine arts students were honored including four Gold Keys (automatically considered for national awards), two Silver Keys and seven Honorable Mentions, along with a pair of American Visions Nominees which, according to upper school art teacher Crystal Tursich, have to be for "work that centers around a specific issue affecting Americans today." On the writing side, our students collected one Gold Key, four Silver Keys and a trio of Honorable Mentions. Congrats to all of these students on well-earned honors for their creative works!
Spotlight on Service and Wellness
In late January, first-graders in Beth Klug's and Lisa Spolter's classes walked to the nearby Sunrise Senior Living in Gahanna to deliver gifts they made for the residents. Our students dropped the gifts off outside the residents' windows and greeted them with waves and smiles from afar. The group was glad to continue the tradition of bringing some warmth and kindness by during the winter months!
AquaVikes Excel at State Meet
With just five competitors, our girls swimming team placed 11th in the state last weekend by placing 5th in the 200 medley relay (Mary Kate Prall, Emma Yakam, Lauren Klinefelter & Alexandra Butnariu) with a season-best time of 1:49.39, 10th in the 200 IM (Klinefelter 2:11.88), 6th in the 100 butterfly (Klinefelter in season-best 57.36) and 13th in the 400 freestyle relay (Butnariu, Ella Lowrie, Prall & Klinefelter in season-best 3:43.41). And as the 24th seed, our boys 200 free relay placed 16th in the state with a season-best time of 1:31.11. According to Coach Craig Yakscoe, all four AquaVikes – Gavin Lewis (22.44), Cy Richardson (23.16), Alek Balaloski (22.73) and Drake Bellisari (22.78) – achieved personal records for their individual splits in the race. Click on the links below for more sports news:
Highlighting our Faculty & Staff
A new full-time position of Assistant Director of Athletics for Youth Sports is being created to manage and expand our athletic opportunities for young Vikings! Read the full description for that role and other current openings within our school at Also, Director of Athletics Jason Singleton is looking to hire two more coaches for our budding girls golf program next fall: head coaches for new middle school and JV teams! Anyone interested should contact Jason at Click on the following links for news about Academy's outstanding educators: