September 16, 2016 • Volume: 2016-17, Issue 6
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Message from the Head of School

I frequently describe North Cross School as an independent school, distinct from other private schools in the Valley. I am not going to go into the complete details of what differentiates us, as that is likely more information than you want, but suffice it to say, one of the biggest distinctions is the rigorous accreditation process required of all independent schools.
Almost fifty years ago, North Cross was a charter member of the Virginia Association of Independent Schools (VAIS) and we have maintained our accreditation since then. VAIS is chartered by the Commonwealth's legislature as one of the few organizations responsible for the oversight of private schools in the Virginia. In addition, VAIS undergoes a rigorous examination of its accrediting practices by the National Association of Independent Schools and is one of only twelve regional accrediting agencies recognized by the national body. As such, accreditation provides North Cross permission from the Commonwealth to operate a private school, as well as the national accreditation required by colleges and universities who accept our students.

Campus Update

On Campus Tutorial: Communication Settings

To choose which information is seen by different entities of the North Cross Community (faculty vs. other parents, etc.), it's simple to select your preferences using the Settings feature in onCampus.
  1. Go to the upper right corner of your screen after you log in and click "Settings" from the drop down menu.
  2. Once in the Settings window, you'll see a choice of three items on the lefthand sidebar: Login Settings; Notifications; and Privacy.

URGENT: Emergency Contact Form

It is very important that you log in to onCampus and review and complete the Emergency Contact Forms that are waiting for you when you log in. You'll see a notification at the top of the screen (see image). This is the information we will use for our Emergency Alert system, so though you may have completed a written form at the beginning of the year, we ask that you input this information for each child in your family. We apologize for any inconvenience.

Extended Day, Extended Enrichment

Among the many forms parents had to fill out at the beginning of the school year may have included the Extended Day paperwork necessary for us to retain our certification from the Department of Social Services (DSS). But retaining this status requires much more than paperwork. Recently DSS did an on-site review of the North Cross Extended Day program and we are happy to report we passed with flying colors, thanks in large part to Director Daryan Horner and Assistant Director Rhea Rupert and their dedicated and caring staff: William LanghornHollie MartinEmily Beard and Micah Giraudeau, with three substitutes on hand as numbers and absences require. Lower School students, especially those in our Early Childhood Program, have additional options for enrichment through our Opening Doors program.

Pictured Above: Extended Day Staff Member William Langhorn helps 4th-grade student Liam Paxton during the program's homework period.

We Need your Help: Big Flea Workday

Calling parent 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, and thank you in advance for helping make this year's Big Flea a success. 


Early Dismissal Friday, September 23

Due to our meetings with the Virginia Accreditation for Independent Schools committee, school will let out at Noon for ECP-Grade 5 and 12:30 for Middle and Upper Schools on Friday, September 23 (two weeks from today). Please plan accordingly.

Academic Update

“I will not lie. I will not cheat. I will not steal.”

On Tuesday, September 13, the entire school assembled with the Honor Council to take part in what may be North Cross' most influential tradition: The signing of the Honor Code. Representatives from each of the Lower School grades, Middle School and Upper Schools, as well as the Head of School and the Assistant Head of School for Academics put their oath in writing, pledging to themselves and others: "I will not lie. I will not cheat. I will not steal." 

Snapshot: September Service Drive

As part of our September Service Drive, Upper School students heard from five community groups about volunteer opportunities to fulfill their community service requirement. Representatives from the Rescue Mission, Feeding America, Healing Strides, South Roanoke Retirement Home and the SPCA gave brief introductions and met with students afterwards in the Dining Hall. More Service Jamborees will be held as the school year gets underway.

Staff Story: Karen List

Pictured right: Karen with (from left to right) daughters Rosalie ’14 and Natalie ’17, and husband Robert. 

Hometown: Arlington, Texas
Education: B.A., Baylor University; M.B.A., University of Houston
Current Position: Associate Head of School for Finance and Operations
Year Appointed: 2011

What’s your passion here? What motivates you to do what you do? I admire the devotion and commitment from our faculty and staff who work to make NCS such a wonderful place for our students and their families. My motivation comes from my desire to support their efforts and provide an excellent NCS experience for all of us. 

Athletics Update

Athletics Get a Boost

It's been a busy week for the Boosters. In addition to their very successful car wash (see right), which will be held again on September 30 at 4pm, these parent and student volunteers have accomplished a lot in the first weeks of school:
  • Two port-a-johns have been rented for the season and are located near the tennis courts
  • The new Cook Field sound system has been purchased
  • The new Middle School football team and Girls Varsity Volleyball got some new gear
The Boosters would like to offer a special thanks to: The McLaughlin family for donating a window unit AC for Raider Joe’s; Chris Snyder and Ron McGinn for installing the AC; and Tinnell’s Finer Foods for donating a 1/2 of a pallet of water bottles!

Cross Country Rises among Thousands

The Knights Crossing race is the largest cross country invitational in SW Virginia and always provides a high level of competition with nearly 2,000 runners taking part in the event. Despite the absence of some varsity runners, our Boys Varsity team finished 10th overall (out of 18 schools), with Chester Pruitt leading our team in 18:52 for 22nd place overall. We finished ahead of all of the other private schools in the boys' race and a number of the local public schools. Daniel Byrnes was our first finisher in 12:54 in our boys' Middle School 3K race with Tyler Thompson coming in 45 seconds later. Nearly 500 runners competed in the Middle School races, which is pretty amazing.

Although our Girls Varsity team did not have a full squad, Rebecca Benson put in an inspired performance going through the 1st mile in 11th place and finishing in 27th.  Our Girls Middle School team also put in a fine performance finishing in 15th out of 24 teams with Grace Graham finishing in 47th place overall out of 224 runners.

Scoreboard Recap

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

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