Member News

St. Catherine’s Student was a UN Sustainable Development Summit Guest Speaker

10/21/15 – UNICEF has launched a digital initiative, Voices of Youth, where messages from children around the world can be shared and heard. Two students were selected to be the first to share their message as part of the UN Sustainable Development Summit 2015. Noor Samee, a junior at St. Catherine’s, was one of the students. Samee spoke about issues children across the world face today and introduced UNICEF Goodwill Ambassador David Beckham.

“I’m just a kid,” said Samee. She went on to discuss the hardships children face such as poverty, inequality, and violence. She asked the audience, “Can you even hear me?” This haunting question is the central focus of the campaign – hearing and protecting children’s voices.

Click to see a video of the event, including Samee’s speech.

Dr. Jane Goodall Promoted Environmental Stewardship at Agnes Irwin School

10/19/15 — The Agnes Irwin School (AIS) recently hosted primatologist and conservationist Dr. Jane Goodall. During her lecture, “Sowing the Seeds of Hope,” Dr. Goodall shared with the audience her experiences and hopes for the future. She addressed the issues of the past before focusing on the future that awaits AIS students. Tough decisions will need to be made and “everybody … makes an impact,” she told the students. The speech inspired the students to look to the future and be better stewards of the earth.

Click here to read the full story.

Roland Park Country School Received LEED Silver Certification

10/15/15 — The existing Roland Park Country School (RPCS) building has been certified LEED Silver by the U.S. Green Building Council. Leadership in Energy and Environmental Design (LEED) is a rating system that measures the design, construction, and operation of buildings. In 2008, the RPCS Athletic Complex was awarded LEED Gold status. These awards show Roland Park’s dedication to environmental sustainability.

Chattanooga Girls Leadership Academy Receives New Laptops Thanks to UNUM Grant

10/14/15 — Chattanooga Girls Leadership Academy (CGLA) was awarded a grant from UNUM, which allowed the school to purchase 40 new laptops. The Young Women’s Leadership Academy Foundation, the fundraising arm for CGLA, recognized a critical need to upgrade the computers for school employees who were working on devices that were six years old.

“The outdated laptops posed challenges for teachers in interfacing with PowerSchool — the district system for tracking attendance, grades, and other academic indicators,” said Dr. Elaine Swafford, CGLA Executive Director. “The older devices also challenged support of CGLA’s STEAM-based (science, technology, engineering, arts, math) environment.”

The partnership with UNUM has played an instrumental role in CGLA’s success by supporting the creation of a Community Innovation Lab, which serves as a hub of activity for classes, faculty workshops, parent meetings, and community events.

U.S. Secretary of Education Inspires Girls Prep Bronx Principal with Surprise Call

10/13/15 — Principal Josie Carbone of Girls Prep Bronx Elementary School received a phone call from Arne Duncan, the U.S. Secretary of Education, where he commended Carbone’s dedication to the neighborhood. This was one of only six personal phone calls the Secretary of Education made to principals around the nation.

Secretary Duncan encouraged Carbone to apply for the Principal Ambassador Fellowship. This position would allow her to join the national dialogue about public education.

Head of Girls Preparatory School Joins #SheBelieves Campaign

10/12/15 — Dr. Autumn Graves, head of Girls Preparatory School joined the U.S. Women’s National Soccer Team’s #SheBelieves campaign. This campaign, according to a USWNT player, “encourages [girls] to set high goals and strive to reach them no matter what the obstacles.”

Heather O’Reilly, midfielder of the USWNT, met with Dr. Graves for a Q&A. The two both shared the positive impacts they have seen sports and all-girl education have on students.

Click here to read the full story.

Foxcroft Presented Screening of “Most Likely to Succeed”

9/30/15 — Nearly 200 people recently gathered at the Middleburg Community Center for Foxcroft School’s presentation of the new documentary Most Likely to Succeed, followed by a post-screening discussion. “I was thrilled to see the turnout and interest from the community,” said Foxcroft Head of School Cathy McGehee, “and to bring our faculty together with other teachers, parents and community leaders to share ideas about how we can genuinely engage our students in learning that is relevant and prepares them for their futures.” The film, which was a 2015 Sundance Film Festival selection, observes that our current educational model was created at the dawn of the Industrial Revolution and no longer meets students’ needs in the fast-moving 21st century. Focusing in large part on High Tech High School in San Diego, CA, it presents a very different project-based, cross-disciplinary, student-centered approach. Following the screening, a panel of six educators from five area schools kicked off a stimulating conversation.

Educators Attend 5th Annual EdCamp CT at Ethel Walker

9/29/15 — Last month, teachers from throughout New England participated in EdCamp CT 2015 at The Ethel Walker School. EdCamps are based on the unconference model, where participating teachers post what workshops they would like to teach as well as posting requests for workshops they would like to attend. Within an hour, the day’s sessions, including classes such as “How to Best Use Google Classroom” and “Using Digital Tools to Enhance Reading Comprehension,” were designed by the participants. This was the fifth consecutive year that Walker’s organized and hosted the event. EdCamp successes have recently received a lot of attention. In August, the EdCamp Foundation received a $2 million grant from The Bill & Melinda Gates Foundation. “Nobody knows teaching like teachers,” said Carina Wong, a deputy director of the Gates Foundation. “EdCamp is a promising model, and we’re thrilled to see them take the work to the next level.”

Roland Park Country School Honored with $1M Gift

8/24/15 — Jean Waller Brune, head of Roland Park Country School (RPCS), announced today that the Charles T. Bauer Charitable Foundation granted RPCS an endowment gift of $1M. “I am deeply grateful to the Charles T. Bauer Charitable Foundation,” said Brune, “for their unwavering commitment to the school, its philosophy and program, and for its steadfast support of our students.”

The Evelyn R. Zink Emergency Assistance Endowment will provide emergency financial assistance to students whose families experience an unexpected financial need that impacts their ability to pay school expenses. This fund honors the exemplary service of Evelyn R. Zink, Director of Development at Roland Park Country School from 1989 through 2015.

“I am profoundly honored and humbled by this gift to the school I dearly love. As the mother of three RPCS alumnae, I will always hold a special place in my heart for RPCS,” said Zink.

Zink has worked closely with the Charles T. Bauer Charitable Foundation since 2009. The foundation has provided annual grants of $50,000 to make it possible for Jean Waller Brune to provide “last minute” funding to families who undergo unexpected and often heartrending financial reversals during the course of the academic year. In 2014-2015, the foundation granted RPCS the endowment gift so these needs could be met in perpetuity. The Bauer family is pleased to present this award to RPCS and to publicly honor a woman who has served in an extraordinary manner on behalf of the school she has loved since 1989.

Julia Morgan School for Girls’ Students Petition for Equal Rights Amendment

7/13/15 — Julia Morgan School’s “Girls in Government, Leadership, and Service” (GGLS) class launched a petition on asking for signatures to support the passage of the Equal Rights Amendment. What they did not expect was to have Patricia Arquette, Ben Jealous, and the Ms. Foundation tweet about it! Nor did they ever imagine they would have the opportunity to meet Patricia Arquette, who invited the girls to meet with her and hear her speak at the Equal Rights Advocates’ Annual Luncheon where Ms. Arquette was the keynote speaker.

GGLS is a group of grade 6-8 girls who voluntarily meet before school one day a week. After studying about the gender disparity of wages in the U.S. and learning that the Equal Rights Amendment (ERA) had not yet passed, they decided to use, along with the help of a social media campaign, to try to make a difference.

To gain support for their cause, the students embarked on a one-day “road trip” in May, talking about their petition and the issues. The girls first meet with Ellen Ginsberg, Legislative Assistant to Congresswoman Jackie Speier (CA), who along with Senator Ben Cardin (MD) recently offered a joint resolution to remove the deadline for the ratification of the Equal Rights Amendment. Outside their offices in San Mateo, Ms. Ginsberg and two other staffers jumped on the girls’ school bus to tell the them how important their work is and that the Congresswoman thanked them for “starting a movement.”

From there the GGLS girls headed to San Francisco to met with Noreen Farrell, Executive Director of Equal Rights Advocates, followed by a meeting with Cathy Corcoran, President of the San Francisco Chapter of AAUW. The girls concluded their road-trip by speaking with students at three high schools and one middle school about ERA issues, and asking for the students’ support in signing their petition and spreading the word.

The GGLS class will continue this project through the upcoming school year, including the recent 8th grade graduates.

Julia Morgan School for Girls invites other schools to join in this project. For more information, please contact Head of School Sandra Luna.

Chattanooga Girls Leadership Academy Partners with SunTrust Bank to Promote Financial Literacy

6/8/15 — Chattanooga Girls Leadership Academy (CGLA) has partnered with SunTrust Bank to promote financial literacy at the school. This partnership began in 2010 with the launch of a YouthBank, a deposit-only SunTrust mini-branch at the school where students could open savings accounts to be matched dollar-for-dollar by the bank. Due to a generous grant received from the SunTrust Foundation, CGLA has expanded the program to include a financial literacy workshop for students and families to learn the skills needed to manage personal finances for college and beyond. CGLA also incorporated a financial literacy component into its mentorship program.

Award-Winning Photographer Diana Walker Inspires Foxcroft Students at Commencement

6/1/15 — Award-winning photographer Diana Walker spoke at Foxcroft School’s commencement this May. Walker, who graduated from Foxcroft 56 years ago, shared insights and advice gained from 20 years of covering politics and the presidencies of Ronald Reagan, George H.W. Bush, and Bill Clinton for Time. She focused on the future possibilities for the confident, young women receiving diplomas and encouraged the graduates to take risks. “Believe in yourself—be true to yourself,” Walker said. “Don’t ever give up on yourself, ever. And don’t forget to enjoy every day.”