Upper School Newsletter - September 15, 2021
Message From Division Director
As we enter the third week of the school year, I am reminded of a conversation that I have had with hundreds of teenagers throughout my career. Teenagers are great at living in the moment, and they will devote formidable energy toward the needs of that moment. However, teenagers often need a great deal of help when it comes to living for the future. Much of the student assistance that we provide in the classroom, advisory and college counseling centers around helping students plan for the future, but step one is simply to get teenagers to think about the future.
So why does the third week of school bring this thought to my mind? It comes from the natural rhythm of an Upper School academic and athletic calendar. When the school year starts, there are very few assessments, little homework and very few athletic contests. During those first few days, everyone is focused on practice and preparation. Yet it always seems to be the third week when students see an increase in the number of assessments, homework and athletic contests. At first, time feels like it is a bountiful commodity, but by the third week, time feels scarce and precious. As the year progresses, we often see this three-week pattern repeat itself. In other words, students report that there are weeks when it feels there isn’t much to do juxtaposed with weeks when it feels there is too much to do.
Students often come to my office saying, “Paige, I am bored.” I tend to respond, “Is there something you could do for 10 minutes right now that could save you time next week?” In that moment, I try to get the student to think about the future in a way that will smooth out the rhythm of the year. I try to make the hectic times a little less hectic (and the boring times a little less boring). This is a great tool for parents to utilize over the course of the year as well. When your child says, “I don’t have any work to do,” try and respond with, “Is there something you could work on for 10 minutes that will save you time tomorrow or next week?”
One student that I worked with a great deal over their four-year upper school career once said to me during their senior year, “Paige, I finally learned that not having any work due is very different than not having anything to do.” I can’t think of a better way of putting it.
Director of the Upper School
Head of School Candidate #1 Visiting Next Week
Our three campus finalists will each be spending two busy days on campus. Candidate #1 is visiting September 19-21. During the visit, we are hosting a virtual community meeting on Tuesday, September 21, 5-5:45 p.m., so parents and alumni can hear from each finalist. This will be a webinar-style virtual presentation where the host, Liza Renner, chair of the Search Committee and member of the Board of Trustees, will present predetermined questions to the candidate. Participants will have an opportunity to share feedback with the Search Committee via a survey, available for 24 hours following each webinar. Thank you for your participation and support of this important process.
Click on the Head of School Candidate Visits tile on the Resource Board for links to the candidate’s bio, webinar and feedback survey.
Lunch Service at the Upper School
We appreciate everyone’s patience as we bring back lunch service to the Upper School after pausing the program. The program has had some hurdles this year. We are working on an efficient system to make sure we check-in the students who purchased the program. We are also training the ninth and tenth graders who have never gone through the lunch system at Flint Hill, so they can get their lunches efficiently. Lunch lines, like carpool lines, are always slowest the first week and become more efficient as everyone becomes more familiar with the system. Please know that we are working hard to alleviate the length of the lines and feel confident that the system will be demonstrably more effective each day.
Our student technology program works very hard to provide quick help desk assistance while also maintaining strong internet security. To meet those goals, we ask that only Flint Hill issued devices be used by teachers and students on campus. This is a reminder for families: students may not use personal devices on campus; they should use their Flint Hill issued devices.
Middle and Upper School Athletic Games
As one school with two campuses and three divisions, we value the times we are able to come together as a community. Typically, families across divisions enjoy attending Middle and Upper School athletic games.
For the health of our Lower School students, our outdoor mask policy is different on our campuses. They are required on the Lower School campus and encouraged, but optional, on the Middle and Upper School campus. For games on the Peterson Family Field, Lower School families whose students are using the playground have been encouraged to sit in the stands near the playground so parents can actively supervise students. Other community members in this vicinity might consider wearing a mask to protect our Lower School students.
Early Admission Process for Siblings
As members of our Husky family, we are offering an early start to the admission process for siblings who do not currently attend Flint Hill and are interested in applying for the 2022-23 school year.
If you have a child who is not currently enrolled at Flint Hill and you are interested in the application process for the 2022-23 school year, please complete this interest form no later than October 1. Alternatively, you can simply begin by completing the admission application. The application deadline is November 1 for completed applications, to receive an admission notification at the end of January. For more information, please schedule a 15-minute admission consultation with Jennifer Webb, director of enrollment management and financial aid, here, or Dawn Hopke, associate director of admission, here.
To help protect the integrity and privacy of virtual events, we have placed all the links to Google Meet virtual events in Husky Hub via the All-School Calendar.
Grade 12 Parent Social Hosted by the Parent Association
Sunday, September 19, 5-7 p.m.
Upper School Virtual Back-to-School Night
Thursday, September 23, 7-8:30 p.m.
Grade 10 Parent Social hosted by the Parents’ Association
Sunday, September 26, 5-7 p.m.
Join Us for Miller House Monday Next Week!
An informal social for JK-12 parents hosted by the Advancement office and Parents' Association President.
You don’t have to be a parent of a Lower School student to visit this special campus. Join Parents’ Association President Sibel Unsal P ’22 at the next Miller House Monday, taking place on Monday, September 20, 8:30-10 a.m. After carpool dropoff, come by the Lower School and meet on the porch of the Miller House — the historic home located on the left upon entering the Lower School Campus. Please park in any of the visitor spaces next to Miller House or Hazel Lower School. If those are filled, use the empty spaces in the parking lot behind the Activity Center or by the basketball courts. Please don’t park in the Miller House circle. All JK-12 parents and guardians are invited to attend. We hope to see you there!
Looking to Volunteer?
The Den, our newest concession stand, located on the Peterson Middle School terrace, is opening soon. Come join us!
Order Pick Up
Beginning Monday, September 20, free shipping will end. To avoid shipping costs, there will be an option to pick up your order. This year, if you select the pick-up option, your order will be delivered to your student’s division office and will be sent home with them.
Restocking and New Inventory
Thank you for your patience and understanding while we continue working with our vendors to stock and restock the School Store. More inventory has been ordered and is on the way. Please continue to check the New Stock and Restock Alert tabs on the website.
Not sure what size to purchase? Purchase the size your student currently wears. If these items do not work for your student, please contact Adrienne Robinson to start the return/exchange process.
How Do I Make an Exchange or Return?
Please email Adrienne Robinson within 30 days of your original purchase. Include your order number, the item(s) that didn’t work, and if you would like to return your items or exchange them. Exchanges may be made for the same item in a different size or for an item of equal value. We are happy to issue a refund for items that did not work for you.