September 30, 2016 • Volume: 2016-17, Issue 8
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Head of School Message

More does happen here.

Each year when I welcome new families to North Cross at our new student orientation, I always speak about the numerous opportunities for participation at North Cross and how it is important for each family to take full advantage of them.  Even with the rain, today is a day loaded with opportunity.
You may have noticed a difference in carpool, as there was a lot of pink being worn.  Students are donating $2.00 for the privilege of wearing blue jeans and pink, with the proceeds going toward breast cancer prevention. This money will be presented to Carilion’s Every Woman’s Life program at tonight’s Varsity Volleyball game against Parkway Christian Academy. The Raiders will be playing in pink and we encourage as many parents and students to join us at 6:00. Pack the gym in pink!


Campus Update

… And they Approve this Message 

Walking down the hallways of Ellis or sitting down to lunch in Lemon DIning Hall (parents are always welcome), you may have noticed more decorations than usual. Tuesday afternoon, Lower School students posted their announcements for office in preparation for today's Lower School Student Council Association elections. The posters took all shapes and sizes and at the very least showed what a creative bunch of candidates we have. This morning the candidates gave 1-2 minute speeches in the Cartledge Multipurpose Room in Ellis in support of their candidacies, a vote was held and results were announced at the end of the school day. We can say it was a clean (albeit glittery) campaign.

What to do onCampus for Parents

Learning an application seems to take about two seconds for our digitally native offspring, but for parents, taking on a new online environment can be challenging. To help conquer this apprehension, we've set up a list of "things to do" to help familiarize you with our new academic and communication platform. The tasks are simple, but allow you to personalize your experience and get you acquainted with the navigation.

A special note for Lower School families: While we're exploring the opportunities within onCampus for the uniquely evaluated curriculum and homeroom settings of the Lower School, we thought it easiest to replicate the teacher websites from previous years within the application. So, for now, Lower School students will have necessary class information (such as assignments and notices) posted on their grade's Group page (you'll find this appear under "Groups" in your navigation bar), instead of under each student's profile. We'll update you as we begin to make fuller use of onCampus for each subject.

This Sunday: Big Flea Work Day

Calling parent, faculty, staff and student volunteers! We need all hands on deck for a Big Flea workday on Sunday, October 2 from 1-6 p.m. Students are eligible to receive community service hours for helping.

Because of the generosity of several donors and the hard work of our Big Flea chairs, Elise and Zack DeMoss, our storage shed is packed. By reorganizing and sorting the items we received over the summer now, the entire process will be more efficient going forward—especially as we get closer to the Big Flea. Click to sign-up for the workday or just show up, and thank you in advance for helping make this year's Big Flea a success. 

Academic Update

A Speech on Cutting-edge Science? Genius!

On October 6, this Thursday, 2015 MacArthur Fellow and North Cross alumnus, Dr. William R. Dichtel ’96, will visit us to accept this year's Distinguished Alumnus Award. In addition, as part of the CrossCurrents Speaker and Dialogue Series, Dr. Dichtel will speak on his pioneering work developing porous polymers known as covalent organic frameworks (COFs). His work may one day “lead to batteries that can charge in seconds rather than minutes or hours, materials that rapidly remove pollutants from water, and systems that can detect explosives in the air,” cites a press release from Northwestern University. We invite you to join us for this special presentation beginning at Noon in Fishburn Auditorium.

Arts Update

Artistic Renderings onCampus

If you're a parent, we hope you have experienced how onCampus can help you stay connected with your student's classes and the school (if not, see above), but teachers are making good use of this community tool as well.

This week, Upper School art teacher Amy Jackson had her students submit their opinions of artwork they viewed in the Logan Gallery's show, ArtVisions. In class, she pulled up her class roster to see students' comments for each picture of the artwork they took with their iPads. 

To RYSO, She’s Music to their Ears

After recent auditions, Helen Schmedtje '17 was named the Principal Flutist for the Roanoke Youth Symphony Orchestra (RYSO). From the organization's website: "The RYSO is comprised of 80 student musicians, ages 12-18, who rehearse weekly and perform symphonic repertoire in public concerts throughout the school year."

Snapshot: Giving Back in Time

Echoed in the words above by former parent Kate Worthy, parents are such an integral part of the North Cross community. Together with your children's teachers and coaches, we are nurturing strong minds and character. To further this effort, we ask our parents to help out in any way they can at the school; whether on campus or from home, the opportunities are there. Fill out our Parent Volunteer form and set a great example of service and community for our children.

Staff Story: David Lake

Pictured right: Daughters Campbell ’16 and Katherine ’18, Cris (their exchange student from Spain), David, and Sallie ’76, his wife.

What is your hometown?
I was born in Utica, New York and spent my school years in River Edge, New Jersey, just outside New York City. I truly enjoy the upstate New York region, visiting my alma mater, Colgate, and vacationing there. I consider Roanoke my home—it is a lot like where I grew up—a nice town with friendly people and a community feel, and easy to get around.  

What’s your passion here? What motivates you to do what you do?
My passion is for the students. I see them as bank accounts into which everyone here—parents, faculty, coaches, staff, administration—are making daily significant deposits. Each day, I look forward to being part of a school that makes a daily deposit in each student's account—a gift of love of learning, a gift of what honor means, a gift of the joy of trying your best, and a deposit of the satisfaction of succeeding. Over their time here, those students' accounts have grown significantly in value, and we can all rejoice seeing them cash them in as they achieve things here and go to college prepared for their 4 years and beyond. I believe each of us can make a difference and should. When I see people here I smile—I'm glad to be here and I want students and peers to know how I feel. We have a lot to smile about in this great place—and I have so many examples of the special things that happen here to talk about in our admission visits.

Athletics Update

A ‘Touching’ Gift from the Class of 2016

This week, last year's senior gift was installed by Thomas Field: a touchstone for student athletes to tap for good luck on their way into competition. The class gift was entirely conceived of and funded by money raised by the class of 2016 with the design and guidance of Jeff Kennard and John Turner and with the generosity of Martin Pruitt who handled the construction. Parent Laura Arnold, who helped the students navigate the fundraising process, remarked that the students' intentions were "to start a new tradition for the school," leaving a legacy for the future. The gift will be ready for use on Friday, with a plaque in place by Homecoming Weekend.

Scoreboard Recap

For the complete listing of this week's and past scores, visit the Scoreboard under the News section in onCampus.

Stay Connected on Social Media

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