Crush Cans & Carnations
Advisor letters were sent electronically to families on Wednesday, February 12. It is our hope that these letters serve as helpful summaries of a student's growth over the course of the first semester, and useful tools in informing the conversation about their progress in the coming semester. We encourage you to connect with your student's advisor to carry forward this conversation.
If you would like a paper copy of your student's letter, please contact Registrar Claire Messier: firstname.lastname@example.org.
On February 20, we will host our next Gray Colloquium on Civil Discourse speaker, author and food justice activist Ross Gay. His latest book, The Book of Delights, is a series of meditation essays about the joy found in everyday life. His positive message will be heard by the whole school community in an afternoon gathering in the Class of '45 Hall, and Dr. Gay will be meeting with interested faculty and students for lunch. In the evening, he will be sharing dinner and conversation with members of our Poetry Workshop and Environmental Science classes. As always, parents and alumni are welcome to attend the afternoon reading and presentation from 1:00 to 1:40 p.m. Feel free to visit Ross Gay's website to learn more about his education, career, and honors: http://www.rossgay.net/about.
Spring Break Transportation
Friday, March 6: Bus to Logan airport, 6:00 p.m. departure
Saturday, March 7: Bus to New York City, 9:00 a.m. departure
From the St. Mark's Athletic Center: The bus to Connecticut/New York will leave at 9:00 a.m., arriving at the Milford, Conn. highway service area (between exits 41 and 40) at approximately 11:00 a.m. It will then stop at the McDonald's restaurant (Darien, Conn., Exit 10 on Rt. 95S) at approximately 1:00 p.m. It will then continue into New York (2nd Avenue/85th) at approximately 2:45 p.m., then on to Penn Station (front entrance, corner of 31st & 8th) at approximately 3:15 p.m. Minivan to Logan airport at 9:00 a.m. departing from Athletic Center Parking
Monday, March 23: Return to St. Mark's
A bus will leave New York's Penn Station (front entrance, corner of 31st & 8th) at 1:00 p.m., next stopping on 2nd Avenue at 86th Street) at 1:30 p.m., heading to the McDonald's restaurant on Rt. 95N (between Exits 12/13) at approximately 2:45 p.m., then on to the service station in Milford, Conn., (past Exit 41) at approximately 4:00 p.m., returning to St. Mark's at approximately 6:00 p.m.
Minivan pick up from Logan Airport (Arrivals Gate, Terminal B) at 6:00 p.m.
Admission & Dean's Office News
Boarding Spots and Projections
Our offices are in the process of making projections for the 2020-2021 school year. For all parents of day students currently in the III, IV, or V Form, please let us know if you would like your child to be considered for a boarding spot next year. We have a limited number of openings for those who may want to switch from day to boarding. We will gather all requests and review them on both a case-by-case and first-come, first-served basis.
To be considered for one of these spots, please have your family send an email (or letter) to both Anne Behnke and David Vachris. Written requests are due today, Friday, February 14. Please be aware that if your family decides to have a child switch to boarding, they must remain boarding throughout their time at St. Mark's. Thank you.
To all non-graduating families: please stay tuned to the Deans' Weekly in the next few weeks for important information about the annual re-enrollment process. This process will be taking place in the second half of March. More details coming!
Leadership Selection Process
Our leadership selection process has started. As spring approaches, our students will begin to think about their vision for the next academic year. For our current IV and V Form students, this includes thinking about how to contribute to the community through service as a student leader.
Already in February, we have begun the leadership selection process with a mandatory informational meeting where students will hear from current leaders about various opportunities. During this process, it is helpful for students to think critically about their personal goals for the coming year and their motivation for seeking leadership roles. St. Mark's works because our students are dedicated to being leaders with or without being selected for formal leadership roles. Also, formal leadership isn't for everyone. We have a strong cohort of students who create positive space in our community without holding any titles.
As spring break arrives, we encourage you to talk with your child about their vision for next year. Are they interested in formal leadership? How will they make positive contributions to the community? What level of commitment to items outside of the classroom will be in their best interest? If chosen as a House Prefect, Peer Discussion Leader, Monitor, or Pathways leader, will they be able to attend to their personal growth and also support the development of others as required by their role?
Finally, it is important to acknowledge the obvious. Not everyone who applies to be a student leader will be selected. For this reason, we ask you also to explore the following questions connected to our character development learning objectives: courage, confidence, resilience, and adaptability. What might it feel like to apply but not be selected? If not selected, what are the ways you can still be a positive change agent and support for peers? Your child's advisor is also a great resource who can help lead your child through thinking about their options, strengths, development areas, and overall goals for the next academic year.
Dean's Office Reminders
Spring Break Attendance
With spring break around the corner, we have received some exception requests for early departures and missing academic classes. In our efforts to hold meaningful classes, these absence requests are problematic on many levels and are not sustainable in running our academic program. We ask that parents do not take students out of their academic commitments before or after breaks. Your help with this issue is appreciated, and we thank you for your continued support of our programs.
Please be sure to get all Boardingware weekend overnight requests and permissions/confirmations in before Friday at 3:00 p.m.
Delivery & Take-Out Rules
We ask that students use our St. Mark's-friendly vendors when ordering delivery take-out. For safety reasons, students should not be ordering from delivery services such as UberEats, DoorDash, and GrubHub.
Due to a few incidents of disregard to this expectation, we closed all food delivery services to campus for two weeks. While the ordering ban is now over (to much relief of many students), we ask that you support our efforts in using only vendors with whom the school has longstanding relationships. Thank you!
Sunday Study Hall begins at 7:30 p.m.
The beginning of each academic week traditionally starts with study hall on Sunday evenings. Please commit to having boarders who have taken a Saturday overnight back on campus for Sunday study hall before 7:30 p.m. Thank you!
To keep the St. Mark's community informed with the latest information and updates regarding the 2019 Novel Coronavirus (2019-nCoV), we have created a web page that includes all of the latest updates and resources from the School. Please check back for the latest information as this situation continues to evolve.
What's up this weekend? Select this link to view this weekend's campus activities.
New Brantwood Executive Director Visits St. Mark's
On Wednesday, February 12, Douglas Sutherland, the new executive director of Brantwood Camp, visited St. Mark's. He addressed the St. Mark's community at the all-school meeting that morning, and he made himself available for questions and conversation at lunch. [read more]
Winter Music Showcase Highlights Instrumental Talent
On Monday evening, February 10, St. Mark's presented its Winter Music Showcase. James Wallace, director of music and Arts Department head, hosted the annual event on the stage of the Putnam Family Arts Center's Class of 1945 Hall. An impressive lineup of talented performers displayed both skill and artistry over the course of the evening. [read more]
NH Primary Club Attends Klobuchar, Trump Rallies
The St. Mark's New Hampshire Primary Club has continued its activities during the 2020 presidential primary season. [read more]
The club was featured in an article in the MetroWest Daily News on February 10.
Play for Haiti Day Raises Funds for Partner School
Wednesday, February 4, was Play for Haiti Day at St. Mark's. It was a day to raise funds to benefit St. Mark's longtime partner school: Ste. Marguerite's in Haiti, under the auspices of the Haiti Partnership Committee at St. Mark's. [read more]
VI Form Parents: Class Ring Order Form
Interested in ordering a class ring? Select this link to view the class ring order form.
Today, all the different components are coming together on the final drive train. As a whole team, we figured out how to fit all our elements on the robot. As we make mounts for the winch and the battery, we have to adjust the angle of the shooter. This is the most complicated part of build. We need to make sure every part of the robot can work properly without any other component getting in the way. Once we get all the components on the drive train we can start testing again. We are getting prepared for a scrimmage we have with a couple of other teams in the upcoming week as well.
Confirmation at St. Mark's School
Time to sign up for confirmation at St. Mark's School! Classes at the local Roman Catholic church are already underway and it is too late for that this year, but the on-campus classes that lead up to confirmation in Belmont Chapel on April 26 begin just before spring break. Classes will meet on campus over an early dinner. There is no homework, just some good discussion about what it means to choose the Christian faith. Students who wish to be baptized should sign up for this class as well. Contact the Rev. Barbara Talcott to sign up or to learn more: email@example.com, or 508.786.6186.
Parents' Association News
The IV Form Parent Chat was held February 8 to give parents an opportunity to connect with each other, talk informally, and learn more about the student experience in the second half of the year.
- Head of School John C. Warren '74 discussing experiential learning opportunities and showing the Voices of St. Mark's video;
- Jill Coté P'22, IV Form parent and Annual Fund volunteer, providing an overview of the IV Form participation rate to the Annual Fund (43 percent), which puts them in third place for the Lion's Pride Award; and,
- An introduction to the One Day at St. Mark's School video.
Faculty and Staff Appreciation Events
Battle of the Brews
On February 13, the Parents' Association gave away Starbucks, Red Barn, Peet's Coffee, and Dunkin' gift cards to give staff a needed boost as the middle of the term nears. Thank you for this nice treat! What a great idea!
Faculty and Staff Appreciation Day Donations needed by April 24.
On May 5, the Parents' Association will sponsor Faculty and Staff Appreciation Day. It's a perfect way to express our gratitude to St. Mark's faculty and staff members. All faculty and staff members enjoy a homemade brunch, thank-yous, gift cards, and a chance at a grand prize! Currently, we need cash, gift cards, event tickets, gift baskets, volunteers and food items! See more about donations and volunteering.
Parent/Faculty/Staff Book Club
Our book group generally meets the first Wednesday of each month, but there will not be a March meeting.
Our next meeting will be April 8 at St. Mark's in Room 248 of the Center from 1:30 to 2:30 p.m. If you are in the area, please stop by for book discussion, a bit of socializing, and a light snack. We will discuss The Namesake by Jhumpa Lahiri and The Red Lotus by Chris Bohjalian. We'll also talk about any books we read over March break.
Book suggestions are always welcome and can be submitted to Joanne Flathers P'15, '19, '21, '21 at firstname.lastname@example.org or Laurie Kalapinski at email@example.com.
Parent Phonathons: Save the Dates!
- Wednesday, March 25 (the week after spring break)
Thursday, April 16 (Giving Day)
This is a great opportunity to encourage fellow parents to participate in the Annual Fund, which provides financial aid and additional support to our athletic teams, programs, and academic courses. This year we're hoping to have 92 percent of St. Mark's parents contribute to the Annual Fund. For more information, email firstname.lastname@example.org.
April 25 from 9:30 to 11:00 a.m. at St. Mark's
Topic: Parents as Partners: Experiencing Community and Equity at St. Mark's
We are looking for families to host potlucks this spring. If you can host, please contact Michelle Davis at Michelledavis67@gmail.com.
Lives of Consequence Campaign Bay Area Launch
April 29, 2020
Olympic Club, San Francisco, Calif.
Lives of Consequence Campaign Boston Area Launch
May 28, 2020
Wellesley Country Club, Wellesley, Mass.