6/9/20—Aida Martinez, a 2020 graduate of Young Women’s Leadership Academy in Fort Worth, was overwhelmed with gratitude when she received a new laptop computer donated by the Dallas Mavericks along with hundreds of dollars in gift cards provided by the community and $200 in cash from Chime, a leader in mobile banking services.
Martinez is just one among the 124 recent graduates from three schools located in North Texas: Irma Lerma Rangel Young Women’s Leadership School, Young Women’s Leadership Academy Fort Worth, and Young Women’s Leadership Academy at Bill Arnold Grand Prairie. Dallas Mavs CEO Cynt Marshall and Chime CMO Melissa Alvarado announced the arrival of the donated gift baskets during a virtual graduation ceremony for the young women.
Many of the girls, like Martinez, will become first-generation college students. Although the COVID-19 pandemic altered graduation plans, the students were thankful to receive so much love from the Mavericks, Chime, and the community.
5/28/20—During the COVID-19 school closures, Casey Sherriffs, the Entrepreneurial Lead at Miss Edgar’s & Miss Cramp’s School (ECS) helped her 5th grade students carry out their class project in a reimagined and more generous way.
“We had purchased all the supplies in February and stored them in the science lab, and after March break the girls were going to produce their own bars of soap and had set up an online store to sell it to the ECS community online,” she explained. Since campus never reopened, the class decided to still make the soap but donate it instead.
Sherriffs assembled soap-making kits for students and staff, and everyone worked hard making 250 bars of soap to donate to area shelters.
In addition to their reconfigured soap project, Grades 1 and 2 students had planned an initiative that transformed into a way of giving to those less fortunate. The students were originally planning to do a toy swap shop where they could borrow from each other a new toy and bring it home on a biweekly basis. “The idea came from them trying to encourage people to stop buying so many plastic toys,” Sherriffs explained. With all the toys sitting unused at the school, the class made the decision to donate them to families in need.
These students have made a remarkable difference during an unprecedented time.
5/26/20—An essay written by Saint Joseph Academy senior Tatiana L. has been selected as one of ten finalists for the Stop the Hate Youth Speak Out contest. The dynamic article, entitled Injustice Causes Girls to Lose Part of Themselves, was inspired by her experiences as a girl who loves STEM.
“I believe that by sharing my enthusiasm for technology I help support other girls in several important ways: I inspire interest and encourage participation in STEM activities, leverage leadership roles to ensure all voices and ideas are heard, and by my own achievements demonstrate real possibilities,” wrote Tatiana.
Her essay focuses on the need to break down social stigmas surrounding girls’ interest in STEM subjects and involvement in the science and mathematics fields. She used her experiences at a girls’ school to leverage confidence and calls for others to join in the fight for bringing STEM opportunities to girls everywhere.
5/20/20—Two students at The Young Women’s Leadership School of Astoria are making a positive impact during the COVID-19 pandemic. Nicole S. and Mya A. are determined high school juniors who have convinced the New York City Department of Education to distribute menstrual products at school food-distribution sites during the coronavirus crisis.
About a month ago, the girls launched their “Femstrate” campaign, working tirelessly to achieve action and make a change. Logistical hurdles and bureaucratic delays stalled their efforts from getting much traction until local Assemblywoman Catherine Nolan stepped up to assist the girls with moving their project forward.
An inventory of feminine hygiene products is now available at information tables set up at 211 school sites hosting meal hubs around the city.
Nicole and Mya started the “Femstrate” campaign as part of an assignment for a Global Exchange class, which introduced the girls to the United Nations Sustainable Development Goals. The students were asked to come up with a project to improve health and education, reduce inequality, or address climate change. As girls’ school students, Nicole and Mya chose to address period poverty, which is an important issue to them both.
Read the full story as it appeared in The City.
5/11/20—Maryvale Preparatory School art students represented the school at the annual Timonium Optimists Young Artists Showcase. While both the in-person art show and awards ceremony had to be canceled due to the COVID-19 pandemic, a virtual showcase was presented online.
The Timonium Optimist Club each year recognizes and encourages talented young artists through an exhibit/competition that crosses school districts. Original, two-dimensional works of art are submitted by high school students—public, parochial, and independent—in Baltimore City and Baltimore County.
Congratulations to the three Maryvale students for having their outstanding artwork selected for the exhibition.
5/1/20—At St. Margaret’s School, Middle Years art teacher Miss Kao is providing a way for students—and parents—to relax, reduce stress, get creative, and practice their artistic skills.. While students are at home seeking activities, Miss K, as she is affectionately known, has launched Doodle Time with Miss K, a live creative session of doodling and drawing hosted on Facebook every morning.
Each session is structured similar to an in-person art class starting with an art game or creativity exercise, followed by a doodle-a-long with a combination of pointers, step-by-step tips and encouragement, and finishing with a challenge to work on for the rest of the day.
“This is something I wanted to do because there seem to be a lot of bored people out there, and I’m hoping they can utilize this time at home to tap into their creativity and have some fun,” said Miss Kao.
4/30/20—Linden Hall’s Head of School, Michael E. Waylett, has announced he will retire effective June 30, 2020. Dedicating nearly 40 years of service to education, he led Linden Hall for the past five years guiding the school “in a steady and meticulous manner,” according to Linden Hall’s Board Chair Heather A. Wilson, ’85.
Waylett will leave a lasting imprint on the school as it continues to foster and promote the core belief that Linden Hall is a place where girls are valued and known. He shepherded the collaboration of faculty, parents, alumnae, and leadership to create a strategic plan that will continue fostering a high-powered learning environment where girls will be prepared to lead the change they want to see in the world.
Linden Hall looks forward to an exciting new chapter in its 274-year history in which the school will experience new leadership, continued growth, and advancement.
4/22/20—During the COVID-19 pandemic, The Annie Wright Schools (AWS) community is supporting its local physicians and nurses, first responders, essential service providers, and many others who devote themselves to continually working under perilous and stressful conditions.
AWS families are supporting these community members by securing Protective Personal Equipment (PPE). Families of Chinese students attending AWS have organized sending 40,000 surgical masks, including the much-needed N-95 masks, to local hospitals in the greater Tacoma, Washington area. A current parent, who is an executive for an outdoor clothing and equipment manufacturer, is using a Seattle based factory to produce medical masks, pledging 200,000 daily by June. A group of parents organized to purchase over 100,000 surgical disposable gloves, and a parent-owned restaurant has been discounting and delivering donated meals to local hospitals for healthcare providers.
4/20/20—The Hamlin School has connected with Bay Area Makers to print 3D Protective Personal Equipment (PPE) face shield visors for local health personnel working on the frontlines fighting COVID-19. As many shields as possible are needed, and the Hamlin community is rising to the challenge.
To support the school’s efforts, a Hamlin parent started a GoFundMe campaign that raised enough funds to purchase additional 3D printers allowing for a ramp up in production and enough PLA filament to print the visors for many months to come. Currently, the school is able to produce nine visors a day, which have been approved and accepted by a trauma surgeon at UCSF Zuckerberg San Francisco General Hospital and Trauma Center. The first batch of 50 completed face shields was delivered recently to the hospital’s emergency room.
4/15/20— NCGS member Saint Gertrude High School is joining campuses with its all-boys brother school, Benedictine College Preparatory. They will remain two single-gender schools on one campus now known as The Benedictine Schools of Richmond, Inc.
The schools’ boards proudly announce the appointment of Jesse A. Grapes as the new president of The Benedictine Schools of Richmond, Inc.
Most recently, Grapes has served a decade-long tenure as Benedictine College Preparatory’s head of school. Under his leadership, he initiated a study for innovative program options comprised of diverse stakeholders to meet the challenges facing Catholic single-gender schools, resulting in the development of a model for separate coordinate programs for boys and girls on the same campus.
“We at Saint Gertrude have respect for Jesse’s leadership and trust that he will lead both of our communities into a successful future together,” said Saint Gertrude Head of School Sister Cecilia Dwyer.
4/14/20—The Saint Joseph Academy Board of Directors announced Kathryn Purcell as the next President, effective July 1, 2020.
Currently the Associate Head of School at Laurel School, where she has served for 24 years, Purcell has a crucial role in both the daily operations and the strategic vision of the school. For her entire career, she has been involved at both the administrative and faculty levels, with the creation of transformative programs for young women along with designing systems to support those programs.
Eager to join the Saint Joseph Academy community, Purcell shared, “In addition to the strong and innovative academic program, Saint Joseph Academy’s commitment to faith, service, character development, and community is particularly compelling to me. We want young women to feel empowered, confident, and comfortable with people like and unlike themselves. We want them to ask questions and to stand up for what they believe. The Saint Joseph Academy community is organized to help deliver this mission in a faith-filled setting, and I feel inspired to serve as its new leader.”
4/9/20—Nancy Hoover, the art teacher at The Girls’ School of Austin, has been selected as the recipient of the 2019 People’s Choice Art Award, City of Austin, for her painting/mixed media on canvas, titled “Giving Directions”.
Hoover’s work was chosen from the 140 pieces, selected from over 1,200 submissions, that were on display in Austin City Hall’s People’s Gallery last year. Visitors to the gallery voted on their favorite artwork throughout the year and Ms. Hoover’s piece received the most votes, making her the overall winner of the People’s Choice Award. Her art has been purchased by the City of Austin and will hang in the permanent collection at City Hall.
Hoover designed and has guided the art program at The Girls’ School of Austin since its founding in 2002. She is known for bringing out the artist in every student and believes art should be out in the world, not confined to the refrigerator door. This is why every student from kindergarten through 8th grade takes art as a core part of the school’s curriculum.