5 Cs of School Culture

It’s hard to argue that the culture of our country impacts that culture of our schools. As we quickly approach a new school year, leaders must be intentional at creating the conditions to have a positive school culture; a culture that is inviting, energetic, engaging, and empowering:

Inviting– all are welcome, and all means all; all-inclusive.
Energetic– full of positive emotions and actions that are contagious.
Engaging– encourages conversation, critical thinking, involvement, and activity.
Empowering– all have a voice, choice, and the freedom to be authentic.

http://inservice.ascd.org/four-ways-to-create-a-positive-school-culture/

To create such a school culture takes some intentionality by every adult in the schoolhouse, starting with building leadership. Following are what I call the 5 Cs of School Culture that I derived from the work of Jostens Renaissance (@J_Renaissance), Dr. Brene Brown, Focus 3 (@Focus3_Team), and Leadership Coach Jack Slavinski (@JackSlav). When each component is incorporated into the mission, vision, beliefs, and behaviors of adults and students, the impact on school culture will be dynamic!
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Courage– “To speak one’s mind by telling all one’s heart.” -Dr. Brene Brown
Compassion– “To suffer with.” -Dr. Brene Brown
Connection– “The energy that exists between people when they feel seen, heard, and valued; when they can give and receive without judgement; and when they derive sustenance and strength from the relationship.” -Dr. Brene Brown

This connection can begin the moment students take their first step into school. In fact, “when teachers started class by welcoming students at the door, academic engagement increased by 20 percentage points, and disruptive behavior decreased by 9 percentage points (Edutopia, 2018).

Character– “Ethical trust; being a person of your word, following through on your commitment and intentions, and being responsive to others.” -Jack Slavinski
Competence– “Technical trust, which is established by the experience we create for others in our care. It’s built by solving problems with and for others.” -Jack Slavinski

To navigate and balance the 5 Cs, we have to imagine the type of learning environment we want to create and implement processes to make it happen. While it’s true we have to have a compelling vision and effectively communicate it, we must also consistently model the behaviors we want to see. This is the challenge. Here are some ways to shape the 5 Cs:

Courage– Spend a few minutes each day talking with your staff or students about life; share stories of trials and triumphs; be honest about you feel about your school successes and shortcomings.
Compassion– Begin each staff meeting with a centering activity that gives people time to reflect on their week, their day, or their year and to share a meaningful experience. Then use a process called “Around the Room and Back Again” to create multiple opportunities for dialogue.
Connection– In addition to what is stated above, greet students and staff by using a process called “Four at the Door,” which was created by Tom Cody (@TjdsbTom)
Name to Name- Learn and use your students and staff names when talking with
them.
Eye to Eye- Look students in the eye.
Hand to Hand- Offer a handshake, high five, hug, or fist pump (or whatever
physical touch is appropriate and comfortable).
Heart to Heart- Say something that connects to others hearts, such as
compliment them, ask about an activity they were a part of, or ask about their
family. The possibilities are endless!

Character– Under promise and over-deliver. When asked a question and you don’t have the answer, research it to find the answer and get back to the person who asked you. It makes a huge difference and builds credibility!
Competence– Learn something every day by listening to a podcast, reading, journaling, and sharing what you learn with others. I choose to listen to a podcast every day when doing daily chores, and I make it a goal to read something related to my work or leadership daily. Also, make a note of what problems have been solved so you can update staff and students, and celebrate success! This can be shared in a weekly staff newsletter, blog post, or leader update.

The key is just to be human. Be real. Be present. Care. Creating a positive school culture is simple, but not easy. Take care of yourself and take care of the people whom you serve, and the learning environment will be what you envision it to be!

Be Great,

Dwight

Three Ways Administrators Can Support Staff Learning

When I began teaching in the mid-90s, professional development was something I

https://www.edx.org/course/applied-deep-learning-capstone-project
expected should come from my district, and it did. I worked with some outstanding building and district administrators who planned evidence-based and relevant professional learning opportunities for us. I can’t say with certainty that I took advantage of every opportunity offered, but I got my fair share.

When I was trained as a Critical Friends Group facilitator in 1998, I had a shift in thinking: I started to take ownership of my professional growth. I recognized that not all teachers I worked with were given the same opportunities as I. was asked to facilitate meetings, lead a session during an in-service day, or participate on a building level committee. I was able to take input from my CFG and create meeting agendas based on our needs rather than some prescribed, one-size fits all, professional development. I appreciated the autonomy my group was given to engage in learning that was relevant to us.

Five years into my principalship, I had another shift in thinking as I became a connected educator. I expanded my PLN to include others outside my district, I started blogging, I participated in and facilitated Twitter chats and book studies on Voxer, I listened to webinars, and I asked more reflective questions. I shared what I learned with my staff in a variety of different ways.

I strived to create a professional learning culture and adopted three strategies to support staff learning that I gleaned from some outstanding principals like Cheri Dunlap and Mark White (@MarkWhite55):

1. Empower teachers to attend and present at local, state, and national conferences. When I observed an innovative idea or outstanding teaching and learning, I invited the teachers to share their experience with others at a local, state, or national conference. I encouraged them to submit a proposal because I was proud of their work and wanted to reward them with a trip to a conference where they could share their expertise and connect with other like-minded professionals.

2. Identify those who are modeling best/next practices and create space for them to share with the staff. What better way to build capacity around instructional practices than to create the conditions for staff to hear from their peers? Use a process to allow for reflection, feedback, and for discussions about next steps.

3. Identify and pay relevant speakers to help ignite or support professional learning. Sometimes it’s a good thing for teachers to hear another voice; another expert in the field who has successfully modeled or thoroughly researched different ways to accomplish a task. Making this investment shows your level of commitment, support for your staff, and reinforces expectations.

As you bring this school year to a close, start thinking about how you will support learning in the fall. Consider trying one of the strategies mentioned above and be sure to explain to your staff what you hope to accomplish. I guarantee you’ll have a great deal of support!

Be Great,

Dwight

The Worst Mistake I Made As Principal

Being a school principal is equally challenging and rewarding. It’s challenging because of the number of leadership and management decisions that must be made daily, shifting expectations and demands, and the relentless amount of information that is taken in and requested at such a rapid pace. These are just signs of hyper-change and the new normal.

The principalship is rewarding because of the countless opportunities to impact the lives of so many people on a daily, monthly, and annual basis. I’ve been reminded of this quite a bit the last couple of months in the form of seeing former students who share a memorable story or a kind word I may have spoken to them in passing. Or, from invitations to their graduation parties and other life moments such as weddings (Yes, I am at the stage in my life where I attend weddings of former students).

When I was a principal, I immersed myself in the work. I looked forward to attending sporting events, concerts, plays, awards ceremonies, and the like. However, when I became a father, I struggled internally with wanting to be at the multiple school events and being home with my daughter. I never really found the proper balance… What an ugly feeling.

I enjoyed preparing for parent and community events, staff meetings, and professional learning opportunities. I enjoyed discussing the work with my administrative team during our weekly team meetings, or during informal conversations throughout the day (and night). I especially enjoyed visiting classrooms and still regret not creating opportunities to get into classrooms more. It’s a demanding job and one that requires a great deal of emotional, mental, and physical stamina.

Being a principal is also a public position, and in today’s world of total transparency and desire for immediate information, nearly every decision is scrutinized, discussed, debated, and analyzed.

Professionally, my wife is also somewhat of a public figure. Over the years, she’s had several clients and coworkers who had children in the schools where I was the principal. Often times, she would be approached by a client or a coworker and asked about something that may have occurred at school or why I made a particular decision. I was always aware of this possibility and didn’t want to put her in a tough position where she had to respond to such questions. To protect her from such scrutiny, I decided that I would not talk to her about most things that happened at school. I’d either talk to a principal friend in another state, talk to my team about it, or simply not talk about it at all. My philosophy was ignorance is bliss.

For the most part, this strategy seemed to work. However, after being away from the principalship for a year and learning more about myself, I realize that the worst mistake I made as a principal is that I DIDN’T share my work with her; the good, the bad, the beautiful, or the ugly. I simply just didn’t talk about it, and I thought I was doing it to guard her against others who clambered for “insider” information, but it prevented us from connecting about an essential part of my life: my role as a principal. Since then, I’ve learned three key lessons about the importance of talking about the principalship with your spouse or significant other:

1. It creates opportunities connection. Studies show that, on average, we spend about a third of our lives at work. That’s A LOT of time creating shared experiences, celebrations, going through trials and disappointments, and making an impact. This world should be shared with your spouse or significant other.

2. It creates opportunities for compassion. The feeling of walking through a situation with someone creates closeness, understanding, and empathy.

3. It improves communication. The opportunity to share a significant part of your life without judgement, ridicule, and complaint can be comforting and is much needed. It reminds me of the video, It’s Not About the Nail. While funny, there is so much truth in the message.

I encourage you to share your work with your spouse or significant other. Be transparent about the exciting ideas or projects you’re working on, challenges you may be facing, or opportunities for growth that are on the horizon. You’ll be a better leader and spouse because of it. You need that, and they need it as well.

Feel free to share your thoughts, ideas, suggestions, and celebrations in the comment section. Thanks!

Be Great,

Dwight

Cope, Adjust, and Transform (#CopeAdjustTransform)

I had the pleasure of co-authoring a book with Mark White (@MarkWhite55) titled, Leading Schools in Disruptive Times: How to Survive Hyper-change. In it, Mark White and I introduce a solving framework we call, CAT: Cope, Adjust, and Transform. CAT helps school leaders to successfully deal with change in the 21st century, especially the sudden disruptive events that often are sprung on schools without warning. In the CAT framework, school leaders do the following:

1. Recognize the disruptive event and cope with it immediately. When a crisis occurs, the goal is to peacefully resolve it as quickly as possible, usually within hours or days of its inception.

2. Adjust school policies and operating procedures in the days and weeks after the incident to prevent its reoccurrence or to handle it and other disruptions more efficiently.

3. Continue to transform their philosophies and school cultures through study and reflection in the months after the incident so that their thought processes and adaptive strategies will be deepened in the future.

https://supplychainbeyond.com/disruption-or-digital-transformation/
You would be hard pressed to talk to a teacher, secretary, or school administrator who would say we are not experiencing some disruptive times in education. Since 2008, public perception of educators, in general, has been less than favorable. One might say we face one disruption after another, yet we continue to find ways to meet the needs of our students, engage parents, respond to community desires, and do what is best for all stakeholders.

We explore seven disruptions educators face today and describe how to apply the CAT framework to each one. The disruptions are as follows:

1. The emphasis on student safety, including the fear of school shootings, the laser-like focus on social/emotional development, and efforts to combat high-stress levels in today’s students and families.

2. Accelerating technology advances that change how students learn and how schools operate, including the influx of smartphones, wearable technology, and the impact of social media.

3. A system of reform efforts such as A Nation at Risk, No Child Left Behind, Common Core State Standards, and the Every Student Succeeds Act that has resulted in complex school accountability ratings that drive instruction, learning, hiring practices and budgeting.

4. The generational challenges that occur when baby boomers, Gen Xers, Gen Yers, and millennials work together in the teaching force, and the demands of Gen Z that are leading to new types of teaching methods and spaces.

5. The explosion of knowledge and getting students global ready, including the challenge of teaching global skills in a rigid, test-driven curriculum and attempting to answer the question, “What does it mean to be educated in the 21st century?”

6. Dealing with increasingly complex diversity issues, including racial tension, ethnic differences, political polarization, and LGBTQ issues.

7. The growing demand for transparency by parents who want access to school information, including 24-hour access to student grades; their need for prompt responses from educators to their questions and demands; and their constant examination of the school’s curriculum, clubs, and overall grades.

In the book, we share stories from 21st school leaders and educators who have faced one or more of these disruptions,

https://feedingmissouri.org/seeing-hope/
we highlight what they learned, and emphasize what they would do differently in the future. Through their stories, the reader can reflect on their daily work using the guided questions and CAT Framework activities at the end of each chapter.

I not only encourage you to use the CAT framework as a guide to handling disruptions at your school but to share how you are embracing these disruptions on social media by using the hashtag, #CopeAdjustTransform. We need each other, and one or the best ways to learn from shared experiences is to connect with your PLN through #CopeAdjustTransform. I look forward to celebrating with you as guide your students and staff through these disruptive times!

Be Great,

Dwight

Parting Words of Wisdom to New Albany and the Class of 2018

Mr. Sawyers, the Board of Education, parents, staff, and faculty, THANK YOU for embracing my vision to create a school where every student has a sense of belonging, a belief in their abilities, and a desire to grow. Thank you for standing by us as we navigated the waves of change and overcame unforeseen obstacles. Thank you for welcoming and embracing me into this school community!

Graduates, THANK YOU for allowing me to play a small role in the most important years of your lives thus far. Thank you for your perseverance, for using your voice to promote change, and your determination to take advantage of everything New Albany High School has to offer. You will forever be a part of my life!

I have asked a great deal of you the last four years and I cannot let you go without making one more request.

For the next two minutes, pretend you are sitting in your first period class and the 8:00 am bell rings to signal the start of the school day. Imagine hearing the “chime” of the public announcement system and your ears perk up as you await the all-too-familiar greeting you heard for nearly 725 days:

Good morning, New Albany High School Class of 2018. This is Mr. Carter with a few parting Words of Wisdom.

As you embark on a new chapter in life, ask yourself the following questions:
Am I giving or taking?
Sustaining or draining?
Contributing or withholding?
Connecting or conniving?
Uniting or dividing?
Whatever you decide, it’s up to you!
– Jon Gordon

With so much information coming at you each day, “take time to put silence between your conversations. You may even start remembering what you said and discovering what you can learn from others. “ -Melody Beattie

“When things aren’t adding up in your life, start subtracting.” -Anonymous

If you want to change your life, change your daily habits.

“Time is more valuable than money. You can get more money, but you cannot get more time.” So, don’t wish away what is NOW by focusing so much on what’s NEXT. -John Rohn

“You’re less of who you could be when you’re trying to be someone you’re not. Therefore, get to know, accept, and embrace the real you.” -Melody Beattie

In your pursuit of happiness, “be happy not because everything is good, but because you can see the good side of everything.” -David Roads

“Allow yourself to be a beginner. No one starts off being excellent.”
-Simple and Inspired

In a society that is so contentious, remember that “It’s impossible to argue when one person refuses to fight and instead responds only with peace. Be the person that responds with peace.” -Melody Beattie

“Be the person who smiles politely when people look at you. Be the person that says the positive thing when everyone else is complaining. Be the person that gives advice from the heart. Be the person that tips generously. Be that person.” -Anonymous

“Life and the people sent to us– the people we love– are gifts. Love people for who they are. Let yourself be you. Feel whatever you feel. Do the work for the sake of work instead of for the results you hope to get.” -Melody Beattie

“A good boundary to establish for yourself is to talk about a person the same way you talk to a person.” -Melody Beattie

“Let your words be like wind chimes. Communication is more than what we say; it’s how we say it and how we sound.” -Melody Beattie

Be careful with technology. What is supposed to liberate us can actually enslave us. Every aspect of your life doesn’t have to be shared on Twitter, YouTube, Instagram, SnapChat or any other form of social media. Please Pause Before You Post.

“As long as you are fighting for what is right instead of who is right, you can never lose!” – Rory Vaden

“Enthusiasm is free and it is contagious-but so is negativity! Choose wisely!” -Amber Teamann

At times our emotions run high. Never make a permanent decision based on temporary feelings.

“Don’t worry about what people say behind your back. They are the people who are finding faults in your life instead of fixing their own.” -Anonymous

Finally, in the words of AP Psychology and Humanities teacher Mr. Daryl Sycher, “Be brave, be bold, and care for each other.”

With something to think about, this is Mr. Carter. Make it a great life… or not. The choice is yours. Thank you!

Be Great,

Dwight Carter, Principal
New Albany High School

“Why am I smart?”

The last couple of weeks, I’ve been invited to talk with our freshman Humanities classes about perspective. They are reading The Other Wes Moore for their unit on perspective and as part of the experience, the teachers invite several guest speakers to spend some time with their students.

I’ve enjoyed my conversations with our bright-eyed and eager scholars because it’s given me a chance to reflect on my life, the experiences that have shaped my perspective, and examine why I am where I am today. After sharing my perspective with two classes, which included stories about my childhood and people who have impacted my life, I thought about my mom. I sent her the following text message, “Why am I smart?”

After about 10 minutes, she responded, “Because you work hard.” I appreciate her answer, but she was wrong…

I replied, “No. I am smart because you told me I was smart. I work hard because you showed me how to work hard. I am successful because you believed I would be successful.”

My life, which includes my perspective and success, is a self-fulfilled prophecy that began when I was but a small child. My mom’s words shaped my thinking and my perspective on life. For that, I am forever grateful. Thank you, Charmel M Carter!

Be Great,

Dwight

“What is the Meaning of the Renaissance Cheer, Mr. Carter?”

I introduced a new cheer to our students during our fall State of the Eagles Address and then again at our Homecoming Pep Rally. The students really got into it, which was demonstrated by members of our student body who led the cheer at some of our sporting events! When I included it our Homecoming Pep Rally class competition, many left wondering, “What is the meaning of the Renaissance cheer?”

Jostens Renaissance is a research-based school climate and culture framework that focuses on recognizing, respecting, rewarding, and reinforcing positive behaviors, such as academics, attendance, character, and student and staff engagement. It is proven that when positive behaviors are respected, recognized, rewarded, and reinforced, positives results continue.

Through Renaissance, pep rallies focus on public recognition of what I call the 7 A’s of successful schools: academics, attendance, attitude (behavior), the arts, athletics, acts of service, and activities. Traditional pep rallies primarily recognize athletes.

Based on the results of the PRIDE Factor survey we conducted last spring, there is a need to provide more opportunities to privately and publicly recognize individuals and groups for positive behavior and performance. Instead of stating, “We are now going to have a Jostens Renaissance program”, I decided to ease it into what we do as a school so that it’s not viewed as “one more thing we have to do.”

We are slowly creating our Renaissance recognition criteria that will be based on students’ progress and achievement, behavior, and attendance. The cheer is something that a number of Renaissance schools do as a unifying cheer. I thought it would be good for NAHS to use the Renaissance cheer to proudly come together and celebrate what we have always been and will continue to be about: student achievement, student growth, and student well-being.

By definition, renaissance means rebirth, and with the cheer, there is a rebirth in our school spirit and pride that comes from celebrating our successes, recognizing our continuous improvement, and creating a sense of belong for all students and staff. At the same time, it’s important to understand that school spirit doesn’t primarily come from wearing school colors or loud cheers. According to Mark White (@MarkWhite55), school spirit comes from a sense of belonging. I couldn’t agree more.

Be Great,

Dwight

Parting Words of Wisdom to the NAHS Class of 2016

Dwight Carter TEDxNewAlbanySeniors, for nearly every school day the last two years, we began with the daily Words of Wisdom. It’s been a pleasure to serve as your principal these last two years and to show my appreciation, I cannot let you go before you hear this all too familiar phrase one last time:

Good morning, New Albany High School Class of 2016. This is Mr. Carter with a few parting words of wisdom.

• Don’t worry so much about what could happen, who likes you or not, and what you have to do. Focus on being present in the moment.

• It is impossible to be envious and happy at the same time.

One of the greatest lessons in life is learning to be happy without the things we cannot or should not have.

• Remember the three H’s each time you greet others: a handshake, high five, or a hug.

• Instead of making a “to-do” list, make a “to-be” list and then become it.

• Make every effort to not talk about others behind their backs.

• Remember to think on your feet, respond and not react, and perform under pressure.

• Experience life beyond the screen of your phone, laptop, or computer.

Understand that life is not fair.

• Present yourself in appearance, word, and deed how you want others to treat you.

A person makes a name, not the name a person.

• Consistency is far greater than perfection.

• You really don’t have to post, tag, tweet, snap chat, record, ping, or Kik every aspect of your life. Make time to disconnect in order to reconnect.

With something to think about, this is Mr. Carter. Make it a great life… or not. The choice is yours.

Be Great,

Dwight

*Italicized statements taken from 8,789 Words of Wisdom by Barbara Ann Kipfer, Matthew Wawiorka

Student Guest Blog Post: Steven Kish, Executive Director of TEDxNewAlbany

Steven KishMy name is Steven Kish and I am a junior at New Albany High School. On April 2, an exceptional team of students that I am lucky to be surrounded by hosted New Albany’s third annual TEDx event, which has evolved from TEDxYouth@NAHS to–this year–TEDxNewAlbany. We made the jump to TEDxNewAlbany this past year in order to move our focus away from a school-only focused event to a true community event, still completely organized by NAHS students. Read on to find out more about TEDxNewAlbany 2016 as well as the speakers and the team that brings it all together.

TED, TEDx, TEDxNewAlbany, and the Difference

TED is a global organization which stands for Technology, Entertainment, and Design. There are 2-3 TED Conferences per year, one of which is always in Vancouver, and TED is the parent organization of TEDx events around the world.

TEDx events are community based, locally organized events that feature speakers on a range of topics. Talks are not quite speeches nor are they presentations, so to speak, but they are passionate, intimate, talks where speakers have up to 18 minutes to share their ideas.

TEDxNewAlbany is New Albany’s own TEDx event!
TEDxNewAlbany

Our Speakers

On April 2, TEDxNewAlbany featured 13 speakers–each talk was astoundingly thought-provoking, and they will all be available on YouTube soon. If you want to watch one, simply search “TEDxNewAlbany” in YouTube and a TEDx Talks playlist will appear. Three NAHS students, Claire Klodell, Izzy Vendetti, and Aaron Westbrook, as well as two staff members, David Mitchell and Dwight Carter gave talks! Here’s the full list of speakers and topics:

Juan Alvarez – This Life Purpose Thing
Danny Barren – Think For Yourself
Doug Brennan – What’s Your “For Good?”
Dwight Carter – I Quit
Jodi Collins – Living In The Field
Brad Griffith – How Open-Source Software Can Shape Our Lives
Claire Klodell – Dear My Teenage Self
Jim Mahoney – Learning Without Limits
David Mitchell – The Bigger Picture In Our Kids’ Activities
Kerri Mollard – Ah, You Are So Rich
Izzy Vendetti – Owning Your Perspective
Aaron Westbrook – Change: It’s Not Out Of Your Hands
Shaun Young – Hidden Secrets Of The Uninsured

Our Team

Our organizing team is completely made up of NAHS students and is split into three different committees.

Our speakers committee (Kate Golian, Lauren Horton, Olivia Koller, Ila Lahooti, Miles Waytes, and Olivia Wootton), led by seniors and Co-Directors of Speakers Jessie Bernard and Sam Malik, trains new speaker coaches, and selects and trains all speakers up through event day. Each speaker receives personal, professional training on their talk from a student speaker coach, and it is truly amazing to see the talks that come out of this hard work each year–TEDxNewAlbany 2016 was no exception.
TEDxNewAlbany Group Shot

Our marketing committee (Linder Bozeman, Noah Bressler, Kennedi McDonald, and Jessica von Zastrow), led by junior and Director of Marketing Redd Ingram, is responsible for filling the McCoy Center on event day by using social media, interviews, magazine advertisements, our website, promotional videos, and much more to sell tickets.

Our logistics committee (Ellee Edman, Sujan Kakumanu, Sammi Kappes, and Akshar Patel), led by junior and Director of Logistics Prapti Dalal, organizes performers, coordinates vendors, and does–well–everything else! The logistics committee is home to our most detail-oriented student-organizers, and is vital to making sure that everything runs smoothly at TEDxNewAlbany.

While they aren’t technically part of a committee, I would be remiss not to recognize our Treasurer, Alexis Rudy, and our Ticketing Manager, Zach Furterer.

Thank you,

Steven Kish
Executive Director, TEDxNewAlbany

Weeks 31 and 32 at New Albany High School!

Character is revealed, not developed during challenging times. Needless to say, we’ve faced some challenging events that past few weeks, but I’m proud of the way we’ve embraced them as a school community.

These are formative years in the lives of students and I appreciate the opportunity to be part of our team. Let’s remember to not count down the days of school we have left, but to count up the number of days we still have to positively change lives and impact futures. Thank you for staying the course and remembering why we are here: to do what is best for kids.

A Day Will Come
Poet: Julie Hebert, © 2012

A day will come in every life,
When appreciation is rendered.
And this should be taken seriously,
And given with love and tender.

Anyone who deserves appreciation,
Must have done something great.
So share with them the way you feel,
And always treat them right.

But keep in mind that appreciation,
Should be given again and again.
If you truly appreciate,
You’ll remind them how great they’ve been.

Do something special to thank the ones,
Who’ve made a difference to you.
But don’t forget to thank them again,
For everything they do.

Team NAHS, THANK YOU for everything you do! #NAHSCommUNITY

Staff News
CongratulationsCongratulations to Concord Counselor Mrs. Brandy Smith and her husband on the birth of their first child! They welcomed Cohen Jameson Smith on April 11th! He is 6 lbs. 4 oz. 18 inches long.

Congratulations to Speech and Language Pathologist Mrs. Alicia Buren and her husband as they are expecting their second child! The baby is due to arrive in September!

Thanks to Prom Committee Chairperson Ms. Ashley Langenderfer, the students on Prom Committee, and a host of staff chaperones who attended Prom on Friday, April 15th!

Students As Learners

The Chamber Orchestra has finished a rehearsal series of Holberg Suite by Grieg and Lullaby by Hofeldt and submitted a recording to the National Orchestra Festival Competition taking place next March in Pittsburgh Pa. We won’t know the results until mid May, but the students showed an enormous amount of determination and perseverance in preparation for this opportunity.

On Thursday this week the New Albany High School and Middle School track teams put on a Track Meet for the community. This was headed by Coach Cricket Anderson and was assisted by Amy Glenn, Greg Flecher, Jenny Sage and countless other community members. Included among the participants were our Special Olympic athletes. It was tremendous to see our student athletes, teachers, and parents interact with all those involved. I am always impressed with our students who are willing to get involved and give up their time. It is truly a testament to the parents, as well as their coaches, who encourage our students to give back to our community.

circuitsIn Mrs. Jessica Whitehead’s Physics class, students are determining what factors affect the period of a simple pendulum by testing amplitude, mass, and length. They are also looking for a huge grant to see if they can also determine if changing gravity will make a difference. In Physical Science, many students made extremely creative circuit diagrams to see if their peers could determine what loads in the circuit would work and which would no longer work based on how the circuit was diagrammed. They also spent a lot of time pondering a very difficult question: Based on a graph of data for two light bulbs, determine if they are wired in series or in parallel.

Our Science Olympiad Team continues to be a shining light for the New Albany Community! They recently competed in the Science Olympiad state competition and brought home the 6th place trophy! Coach Sudha Ganesan says, “The long hours your students put in studying/building/practicing for their events certainly paid off.”

Science Olympiad L. Love story

Congratulations to the following students on their outstanding Science Olympiad performance:
Shankar Pattabhiraman (1st- – Experimental Design, 2nd – Cell Biology, 5th – Protein Modeling, 6th – Anatomy and Physiology)
Bhagee Ganesan (1st – Experimental Design, 2nd – Cell Biology, 6th – Anatomy and Physiology)
Nikhil Pramod (5th – Chemistry Lab, 5th – Protein Modeling)
Nishant Chittari ( 2nd place – Wright Stuff, 7th place – Air Trajectory, 7th place – Wind Power)
Gunnar Wielinski (2nd place – Wright Stuff, 7th place – Air Trajectory, 9th place – Bridge Building)
Aditya Mistry (5th place – Protein Modeling, 7th place – Wind Power)
Jovitha Nelson (1st place – Experimental Design)
David Tan (5th place – Chemistry Lab)
Olivia Samson (10th place – Fossils)
Wilson Wu (10th place – Fossils)

Our sophomore and juniors had the unique opportunity to engage in a conversation with three-time cancer survivor and CEO of Pelotonia Mr. Doug Ulman! Mr. Ulman was the guest at the annual Wexner Leadership Series event, which is organized by Mr. and Mrs. Tuckermann and features Mr. Les Wexner.
Screenshot 2016-04-24 16.25.30

Upcoming Events
• Monday, April 25th- 4th quarter Interim Project Reports; Board of Education Meeting at 6:30 pm in The Jefferson Room
• Wednesday, April 27th- Administrative Assistant Appreciation Day; Staff Meeting
• Friday, April 29th- Staff Meeting Senior Environmental Science Research Presentations; MacBeth at 7:00 PM at the Mershad
• Saturday, April 30th- MacBeth at 7:00 pm at the Mershad
• Sunday, May 1st- MacBeth at 2:00 pm at The Mershad

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Be Great,

Dwight