There isn’t one of us — students, parents, or teachers — who doesn’t feel weighed down at times by our current circumstances. COVID-19 has forced us to restructure how we live, work and play. But let’s remember, too: we are weathering a storm, and with care, responsibility, problem solving and optimism, our days can be fulfilling; we will solve the problem, and we will get through the storm.
Adults have the advantage of age and experience, and knowing that things will always get better. What’s hard for adults, though, especially parents, is feeling powerless over the disruption and restrictions on students. Sure, as parents we can be controlling and downright restrictive (I’ve fallen into that mold many times), but we know that growing up is about experiences to be had and lots of figuring out to be done. It’s about living and learning, with the end-goal being good judgment, independence, self-worth, and happiness. We’re worried that COVID is stunting that natural process and growth.
I have to say, though, that I’ve been so impressed by the adaptability and patient perseverance of young adults these past several months. It’s hard for them not to feel detached at times, but I’m hearing great things from the teachers, and I’m seeing students participating, learning and growing.
I have to applaud and thank the students here. You continue to enrich our classes by your presence and participation, and you’ve been very much the composed adults while we, your parents and teachers, have fretted over your continued education and happiness. You keep The New School healthy and strong. We’re kind of in awe of you.
30th Anniversary Announcement
The 30th Anniversary Celebration is going virtual this February!
When we postponed the 30th Anniversary Celebration from June 2020 to June 2021, we had every hope that the large in person gathering we envisioned would be able to be safely held by that time. As time has gone on and we’ve learned more about COVID-19 and the safety measures it requires, it’s become clear that large in person celebrations will be one of the last things that return once the country starts to return to more normal day-to-day living.
Instead of continuing to postpone the 30th until we could hold it safely in person, we’ve decided to come together and celebrate now, virtually. This will be a chance for The New School community to spend time together, catch up with old friends and teachers, and support one another during this time when we all could use some human connection. You’ll even have the chance to see one another “face-to-face.”
Please save the NEW date for the Virtual 30th Anniversary Celebration: Saturday, February 27, 2021.
Tickets will go on sale in January, with all ticket sales supporting teachers and students through The New School Fund.
Stay tuned for more information in the coming months.
We can’t wait to see you!
In Exciting College News…
College season is gearing up, and busy seniors have a lot on their plates between senior exhibitions, regular classes and college applications. This year they also have to present their Junior Portfolios, which were canceled in the spring when we closed the campus due to Covid-19.
The seniors and I met virtually last week to go over the nuts and bolts of applying to college, particularly the steps required to get their transcripts and letters of recommendations sent out on time. They are in the process of requesting letters from teachers that know them well, and preparing “brag sheets” to share with those teachers and with Steve Roushakes, who writes a comprehensive, thoughtful letter for every senior as their official counselor.
Most years, counselors from several colleges visit The New School to meet with our students. This year I’m encouraging students to attend online college fairs, including the NACAC fair, which will host hundreds of colleges, and the Colleges that Change Lives fair, which hosts fewer than 50 colleges, many of which we consider a good fit for New School students.
There’s a lot of good information about the college process on our website, including a list of frequently asked questions. In the spring we’ll publish a list of college acceptances in this newsletter. Our doors are always open to students seeking advice or help with their applications, and parents are encouraged to direct their questions to Joan Goodman at email@example.com.
Celebrating Forensic Science Week
September 20th-26th was Forensic Science Week, a recognition of the important role that proper forensic science plays in the investigation of crimes throughout the nation. We celebrated by taking a look back at Forensic Sciences classes at The New School from 2017-2019.
Each year, New School students get opportunities to learn from and work with experts, both inside and outside of the classroom. These experiences help them make connections to the real-world implications of what they’ve learned and gain hands-on experiences.
One expert who has shared her knowledge with New School Forensic Science students is Dr. Frances Scott, a Physical Scientist at the Department of Justice. She shared these thoughts about working with New School students.:
“I have been fortunate to participate with The New School on two occasions – once as a judge for the Science Fair and once as a volunteer in the classroom, assisting students with an assignment in their forensic science class. I think it’s wonderful for both the community and the students for The New School to extend student engagement beyond the walls of the school. It was rewarding for me to give constructive critical feedback to students in both instances – asking questions to help them understand the limits of their knowledge or design.
I also am impressed that The New School has science offerings beyond the usual curriculum. Working with students at such a young age to introduce them to the forensic sciences, and how they are underpinned by traditional sciences like chemistry, biology, and physics is an excellent way to expand their vision of what a science career could be. The assignment I assisted with, in which students designed their own forensic mystery, complete with “evidence” was a very creative method for involving students in a hands-in learning experience, without the difficulties of the full-fledged laboratory experiments that would have been necessary to create the same types of results.
I hope to be invited to participate in New School activities, both under the current conditions and once we return to the physical classroom. My exposure thus far makes me confident that New School staff will continue to innovate learning experiences for their students even under difficult circumstances.”
Students will have the chance to take Forensic Science during the fourth quarter this year. We’re excited to see more creative and thought-provoking interactions.
We are excited to introduce the 2020-2021 Development & Marketing team of interns! Sarosh, Erika, Taylor, Will, Danish, Sadie, Natalie, and Ivy will be working with Noelle, our Director of Development & Community Engagement, throughout the year gaining hands on, professional experience in writing, graphic design, event planning, and photography. They are a mix of Sophomores, Juniors, and Seniors, and their work will be integral to the school’s development, marketing, and community engagement efforts. We can’t wait to share what they can do.
Welcome, New Teachers!
Please help us give a warm welcome to the newest additions to The New School teaching staff! Taryn, Nataliya, and Julie, we are so happy you’ve joined us and we’re looking forward to getting to know you better.
English, Social Studies, and History Teacher
I am a fourth year teacher (first full time year at NSNVA!), a mom to three rambunctious boys, and I consume books like they’re oxygen. I studied Psychology and Literary Arts at Brown University, and before that spent my grade school years overseas, which gave me a great appreciation for the study of history and other cultures.
Hello, my name is Nataliya Gurshman and I am a professional artist and a teacher with over 25 years of experience teaching teens and adults. I have been teaching at NOVA Community College for over 15 years now (that’s how long we have lived in the Northern VA area). I am excited to be a part of The New School Community and already enjoying my first week of school. Teaching is my passion. Additionally, I am well versed in the design industry as I held several graphic design/art director positions in NYC and Boston over the years. Outside of my artwork and teaching, I have two daughters –– one in college, another one is homeschooled of middle school age, and of course, cannot forget about our lovable golden doodle, named Frankie.
I grew up in New York City and attended a French immersion school from Kindergarten through the completion of the Baccalauréat. I graduated with a Master’s degree in French from Tufts University. I have a JD degree from Indiana University and a MS in Industrial and Labor Relations from Cornell. I am a lifelong learner. Most recently I completed a certificate in environmental sustainability through the University of Vermont online. I came to teaching as a career switcher, having previously practiced law and assumed many roles in the business world. I have traveled in France, Switzerland, Dominique, and French-speaking Canada. I had the honor of teaching at the Governor’s School French Academy in the summer of 2019. Teaching French is the best job by far!
Hispanic Heritage Month & Mexican Independence Day
On Mexican Independence Day, El Dieciséis de Septiembre (September 16th), Alan, our Lower School Coordinator, shared a message about Hispanic Heritage Month and the importance of valuing your heritage.
Wednesday Enrichment Fun
New School Bonus Programs
The New School participates in bonus programs that generate donations for the school when you do your everyday shopping online. They are easy to sign up for, and can have a big impact for students and teachers.
Here are four easy ways to support The New School while you shop:
1. AmazonSmile works with your existing Prime account and donates 0.5% of the price of eligible purchases when you select The New School as your charity: https://smile.amazon.com/ch/82-1288652
2. Through CauseNetwork, some of your favorite online stores will donate a portion of every purchase you make to The New School. You can sign up at: https://newschoolva.causenetwork.com/
3. Download the BoxTops app to start scanning your grocery store receipts to automatically find and add products to our earnings online. This video shows you how to scan and submit your receipts.
If you do your grocery shopping online, you can submit your email receipts from select retailers. All you have to do is create a BoxTops account and forward your email receipt to firstname.lastname@example.org. Visit this site to learn more.
Traditional Box Tops clips may continue to be found on many products. You can still clip them and send them to the school until they expire.
4. Through Harris Teeter’s “Together in Education” program, when you buy HT brand items, a percentage of those purchase dollars goes back to The New School. This includes purchases made at HT pharmacies.
Go to www.harristeeter.com to link your VIC card today. VIC cards need to be relinked each school year.
New School TIE Code: 5713
Thank you for your support!
If you have any questions about these programs, contact our Director of Development & Community Engagement, Noelle Andreano, at email@example.com
One of the distinguishing features of our school is our sense of community. This newsletter is one more way to build and maintain that community among our current students, parents, faculty, and alumni. We hope you like it!