February 22, 2019
Alumni News! – 3.4.19
March 4, 2019
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Dear Parents:

It was wonderful this morning to hear our 2nd graders share their own colorful poems on stage! We’d already been graced in the past month with Shakespearean sonnets from our 8th graders and classic poems from our upper school students. Rest assured – the next generation of gifted bards is already in the making!

I did notice this morning that approximately 30 students showed up after 7:50am. We know that things occasionally come up, but please make every possible effort to have your children arrive on time. To minimize disruptions to Friday Gathering going forward, we will have children arriving late (N-Grade 8) simply sit in one of the chairs in the last two rows of the pavilion, then join their classmates upon dismissal. Thank you for your understanding and help with punctuality.

In the meantime, for grades 7-12, we are just one week away from Mini-Gusto! This is the highlight of the year for many students, who engage in a wide range of classes, activities, and internships (on and off-island) thanks to the coordination and outreach of Ms. Nancy Thatcher and Mr. Stewart Shelley. Bravo! And thank you to our faculty, parents, and other members of our school community who are helping provide these meaningful experiences for our students.

Lastly, I’m pleased to report that this morning we completed our school’s first full earthquake drill in at least two decades. Once the evacuation alarm sounded, our faculty and students did an excellent job of exiting the buildings to higher ground quickly, quietly, and orderly. Hats off to Ms. Clarissa Cooper, Ms. Laurie Dunton, Ms. Alma Castro-Nieves, and Mr. Stewart Shelley for their work as part of the Emergency Committee.

Have a wonderful weekend!



Story – Middle School Community Service

Over the past month, middle school students have continued volunteering their time at lunch at the animal shelter (Mondays) and the Herbert Grigg Center for the Aged (Wednesdays). At the animal shelter location next to Food Town, students typically take turns walking two dogs each in a fenced in area. Even though these outings are brief, the dogs are elated to have free-time outside. Perhaps the most difficult part for the students is when they have the responsibility of donning plastic bag gloves to clean up any “gifts” the dogs may leave while outside. Wonderful character building!

At the Herbert Grigg Center for the Aged, middle school students have recited sonnets, sung songs, and even performed dialogues (most recently, the memorable “nose insult” scene from Cyrano de Bergerac). They have done these brief performances for small groups as well as bed-ridden individuals, including a 108-year-old woman! For many of these students, it is their first experience in a nursing home environment – and it is always eye-opening. With each visit, they improve their performance skills, but most importantly, they connect in a meaningful way with another part of our world and our island.

Bravo to the middle school team for helping provide these experiences!


Head of School Transition Team Update

Dear GHCDS Parents,

As we prepare to welcome Bill and Sally Bugg to campus (March 6-12) for a week long immersion in our community, I wanted to take the time to update you on the Head of School transition.

First, Kari Loya has drawn consistent praise for his continued hard work and dedication to Good Hope Country Day School.  Bill has been particularly impressed by Kari’s selfless commitment to the faculty, students, and staff of GHCDS during this transition.

Second,  Bill and Trustee Jed JohnHope are leading a Transition Team which is divided into key areas with a facilitator for each.  The Team’s singular goal is to set Bill up for success and support his family’s relocation to St. Croix. To make this happen, Bill needs to learn as much about what makes St. Croix unique and our forward challenges at GHCDS.  If you would like to get involved with any of the transition activities, please reach out to welcomebill@ghcds.org.

Finally, here are answers to a few anticipated questions:

What is planned for Bill and Sally’s March visit?

Bill has scheduled over 75 meetings primarily with Faculty and Staff, with an emphasis on listening and learning.  Throughout the week Bill will meet with faculty, parents, students, trustees, and current leadership.

When can I meet with Bill during his visit? 

There are numerous planned activities during Bill’s week-long visit, culminating with an all-community forum on March 12, 5:30-6:30 PM on Campus.  If you have any questions please contact Mr. Stewart Shelley (sshelley@ghcds.org).

How often should we expect to hear from the Transition Team?

Expect to see monthly updates from the Transition Team, and more from Bill over the coming months.

Whom should I contact with questions regarding my student or concerns about the 2018-19 academic year? 

Kari remains fully engaged and it should be no surprise that his drive to improve GHCDS has not diminished.  Please do not contact Bill with student-specific issues and continue to reach out directly to Kari for feedback on current school operations.

We are excited for Bill and Sally’s arrival, and we hope you are too!  As always, if you have any questions, please feel free to contact me directly (jcroney@ghcds.org).

Best Regards,

Joe Croney

Chair, GHCDS Board of Trustees



Employment Opportunities

GHCDS Job Opening – Middle School English-Social Studies 2019-20 (1)

GHCDS Job Opening – Upper School Social Sciences Teacher 2019-20 (1)


Talent Showcase Cancelled

The Talent Showcase, originally listed on the calendar for Saturday, March 2, has been cancelled.  Unfortunately, we only had 7 acts and need 12 – 14 acts to make is a 1 hour show.  We will try again in the fall.


Save the Date!

Interested in advertising in the show playbill?  GHCDS Ad Order Form – Mamma Mia!

We need your help to make this production a huge success! Donation Form


¡Gracias, Merci, Thank you!

Friday Gathering

Thank you 2nd Graders for leading a wonderful Friday gathering this morning! Your insight on poetry and your original compositions were very much enjoyed – Snaps for 2nd grade!

Earthquake Drill

A special thanks to Nurse Cooper for executing a wonderful earthquake with subsequent tsunami drill on Friday morning!


Around Campus

Heart Health for All

Ms. Lake accompanied the Kindergarten class to the Upper School Biology Lab as part of Heart Health Week.  At the beginning of the school year, the Kindergarten students were buddied with an Upper School Forensic student. The “little ones” look so forward to their monthly Biology Lab field trip, almost as much as the “big ones”.


Look Who Stopped By?

Sophie Dean, GHCDS ’18, reads Dr. Seuss to Ms. Lake’s Pre-K class!


Negative Feedback Loops

Biology students create Negative Feedback Loops to illustrate the relationship between two Endocrine Glands as part of their investigation into the human body.


Znamenskaya Square

Role-Playing the Four Options
On Thursday, the GHCDS library was transformed  into Znamenskaya Square, Petrograd circa April 1917, where Upper School students and staff attended an informative and spirited role-playing simulation hosted by Mr. Fletcher’s World Revolutions class, whereas four option groups actively worked to present and defend their distinct visions for the future of Russia. Drawing on primary source material researched over the past week, students worked cooperatively to advocate for one of the four options Russians debated at the time. A fifth group played fictional undecided citizens, who asked important questions of the groups in order to evaluate the options. Adapted from a project designed by Brown University’s The Choices Program, the event proved to be a lively, reflective and convivial affair.


Parents’ Association:

Dear GHCDS Parents,

I wanted to update you on some exciting news from the Parents’ Association.  As you probably know, the Lower and Middle School Fun Run last November was successful in raising funds to be used directly on our school. Since last fall, we have surveyed both faculty and parents about where the funds should be spent. We analyzed those results and presented them at the Parents’ Association meeting in January. There were dozens of ideas of where the money should be spent, but the overwhelming winner was to update the playground slab. We are currently in the process of developing a plan, getting quotes and putting together a timeline of when the work could be completed. It is our intent to do the work during the summer as to not disrupt school days.

It is important that we spend this money as soon as possible and in a way that benefits all of the children who helped to raise it. This was truly a community effort and I would like for the project we select to reflect that.

Although most of the funds will be spent on the slab, it is important to us to show our gratitude to the faculty who supported this fundraiser. Not only did they support this effort, but they do an amazing job of supporting our children everyday. We recognize that each teacher has insightful thoughts on where to spend some money for the benefit of their class/classrooms.

As approved in the PA meeting, we have set aside $200 for each of our lower and middle school teachers to spend as they see fit for their classroom.  Additionally, we have set up a group fund for the Upper School to use as they like.

Thank you to all that made this fundraiser so successful.

Robyn Falconer

Tuesday, March 26th 8:00AM in the Pavilion. Along with other subjects, we will be discussing plans for the playground slab resurfacing.  

Thursday, May 16th at 8:00AM in the Pavilion and 6:30PM in the Library. During these meetings, we will be having elections. Nominations will be collected prior to this meeting and voting will take place at both meetings.  Please plan to attend one of the meetings.


This Week in Sports:

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