Updated: Jan. 18, 2019
In the regular routines and rhythms of a school year as in the real adult world, the month of January holds a unique place in the calendar. January, in my view, is the month of paradox. For many of us, the promise of New Year’s resolutions quickly gives way to the dread of new exercise regimens or diets. Here at school, students arrived on January 8 anticipating the first day of spring semester, but they spent most of the day reviewing exams and grades from the fall.
According to time management firm Franklin Covey, one-third of “resolutioners” fail to make it past the end of January. Franklin Covey also tells us that there are three main reasons why resolutions fail. Resolutions created based on what someone else thinks you need to change is a major reason for “resolution fail.” Second, resolutions often fail because the resolution is too vague. And, third, resolutions fail because we often fail to have a realistic plan for achieving the resolution.
January is a great time for you to do an academic goal-setting check-in with your student. Following Franklin Covey’s advice, I would encourage you to start that conversation by asking your student what academic goals he or she has set for himself or herself. If your student’s goals are too vague, help them to clarify and make a goal that is specific and measurable. And, finally, help guide your student’s goals by working up a set of action steps or benchmarks.
We encourage you to help guide your student through some conversations about academic goals as we begin the new semester. Please don’t hesitate to reach out to teachers, counselors, or administrators if we can help by participating in those conversations. In all that we do, we as a faculty believe that we work best when we partner with you as parents.
Best wishes for the New Year.
Dr. Jonathan Merrill
Upper School Principal
ACT and SAT Prep Opportunities
Junior Parents: There are SAT and ACT prep opportunities at Woodward for your students this spring. These classes will start SOON (late January and early February), so acting now is key. See this attachment.
From the Dean's Desk
Attention Upper School Students and Parents: This is a reminder to be respectful to our neighbors in and around campus. As you are driving around Woodward, please obey ALL stop signs and speed limits. Also, parking on local streets is highly discouraged. College Park police will issue traffic citations to those parked illegally on city streets. Use your designated parking lot and report any issues to the Dean of Students Office or Campus Safety!
Tickets to the Big Chill for Woodward Parents
A limited number of tickets are now available for Woodward parents to attend the annual Big Chill event on Friday, February 22, at 8 p.m. at SunTrust Park!
Join the Woodward Alumni Association for an evening of food, fun, cocktails, and a chance to bid in our silent auction--all in support of need-based financial aid.
Purchase tickets or an event sponsorship today by visiting woodward.edu/bigchill.
Taggart's Drivers Ed Class
Information about Taggart's Drivers Ed classes during the school year here.
Do you have students who are considering serious test prep before spring’s ACT and SAT exams? If so, College Raptor has partnered with Method Test Prep, a leading company that has proven to help students increase their scores. For a limited time, they are offering Woodward Academy students a 50% discount on their Self-Paced Program when promo code RAPTORSP is used at checkout. Share this information quickly as the offer is only valid through January 31, 2019!
Self-Paced Program: Details
Senior Spring Break
To clarify, there is no Woodward Academy Senior Spring Break trip. We are aware of a trip being advertised as the “Woodward Senior Spring Break trip.” However, that trip is not sponsored by, or endorsed by, Woodward Academy. We advise parents to investigate carefully before allowing your senior to participate.
Check Out the Parent Community Website!
Have you had a chance to connect with other Upper School parents? Whether you’re looking to volunteer or wondering when the next Parent Community event is, you can now find it all on the Parent Community website. Please be sure to check it regularly for upcoming opportunities to contribute or volunteer such as the Fall Donut Day and holiday decorating. You also can follow us on Facebook @WAParentCommunity.
Greetings Woodward Academy Community,
It is fantastic to be back on campus with our students for another great semester! I look forward to the many ways students will share special holidays and traditions with one another throughout the year at assemblies, panels, and immersion trips. As many of our religions encourage gratitude and presence, I pray that this year you enjoy each of the little moments life has to offer. In 2019, may each of us dwell in the present, with hearts of gratitude for the present, as if this is the only moment.
Throughout the month of January, students in our community will observe the following:
- January 13 (Sikhism) - Birthday of Guru Gobind Singh Ji (1666-1708) celebrates the birth of the tenth Sikh Guru, who created the Khalsa and the Fellowship of the Pure.
- January 6 (Christianity) - Epiphany is the second festival celebrating Jesus as Christ, the first being the Feast of the Nativity (Christmas). The Western Churches associate Epiphany with the journey of the Magi to the infant Jesus, while the Orthodox Churches look to the baptism of Jesus by John the Baptist.
- January 20 (Baha’i) - World Religion Day is the annual celebration of the teachings of unity found in all religions.
- January 21 - Tu B’Shevat begins at sundown on January 20. It is the New Year’s Day for Trees, and traditionally the first of the year for tithing fruit of trees. It is a day for environmental awareness and is marked by special meals that include the seven fruits of the land.
- January 27 - Holocaust Memorial Day is an international memorial day commemorating the tragedy of the Holocaust and the lives tragically taken.
Please feel free to visit our Interfaith Initiatives page to see the times of all interfaith prayer opportunities or to share a prayer request.
Rev. Katie O. Kilpatrick, Academy Chaplain
Upper School Only Late Start Days
Please note the following as it relates to Late Start days in the Upper School:
1.) Late Start days provide our faculty and staff with an opportunity to collaborate in an effort to further support our student body. As such, faculty members are typically unavailable during this time.
2.) Students arriving to school before 9:45 a.m. on Late Start days may stay in the Student Lounge or the library only.
3.) Parents, please discuss with your student(s) the protocol for Late Start days. We encourage students to remain on campus once they arrive and are present and accounted for at all times.
Now Accepting Sibling Applications
We are now accepting applications for the 2019-2020 school year! Visit the Admissions Getting Started page to apply today. If you have family, friends, or neighbors interested in applying their children, you can send a letter of recommendation to email@example.com to improve their chances for acceptance. Also, please encourage them not to wait for 9th grade to apply as our Upper School is at capacity and will have limited openings. Thank you for entrusting Woodward with the education of your child, and we look forward to helping your family and friends share the Woodward experience!
Tropical Ecology Field Study
The dates for the summer school course Tropical Ecology Field Study in Costa Rica have been set for June 21-July 1, 2019. This course is taught by Chery Gibson (former member of the Woodward Academy faculty and Science Department chair), Elaine Carroll (former biology instructor), and Mark Wainwright (author and naturalist from Costa Rica). For 11 days, students travel throughout Costa Rica exploring and learning about some of the richest ecosystems on earth, some of the fascinating Costa Rican history and culture that surrounds them, and often, the connection between the two.
The ecosystems to be explored include lowland Caribbean rain forest, highland cloud forest, coastal Pacific rain forest, mangroves, and even caves. During the course, the students participate in a reforestation project and as well as activities on an organic sustainable farm. We take every opportunity to get a "taste" of Costa Rica -- from its food (literally), its scenery, its everyday life, its music and dance, and its ocean. Join us this summer.
For more information please contact Elaine Carroll at firstname.lastname@example.org
From the Learning Support Center
Parents, please find helpful information at your student's class page on PowerSchool.Learning. Particularly, this year there is a new page on each class's page, the LEARNING SUPPORT page (bottom of the selection list on the left of the front page). Parents and students can find helpful information about adult tutors, ACT accommodation tests (Classes of 2019 and 2020 only), and student tutors (PeerKonnect–link soon to be activated, Classes of 2021 and 2022 for tutoring; Classes of 2019 and 2020 to volunteer and be vetted as tutors). If you have further questions, please contact Kemberly Edwards (email@example.com).
Upper School Daily Class Schedule
The Upper School daily class schedules may be found here.
Upper School Day Planner
The Upper School student day planner is available in the Campus Store. You also may access an online version of the student day planner here.
Text Notifications - Update Your Info
In order to receive text messages from Woodward Academy, including student transport notifications and weather-related alerts, please make sure your cell phone number is up-to-date by visiting the Parent Portal and clicking on "Update My Contact Information."
Parents, please sign in at your child's school each time you visit and clearly display your visitor badge while you are on campus. Thank you.