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Lower School Weekly Update

Week of May 23 – 27

Monday, May 23: Parent University: Strong is the New Pretty with Kate Parker
9:00 – 10:00 am 
Upper School, Learning Stairs
Kate T. Parker, a professional photographer with two daughters at MV, was fed up with the media’s prevailing imagery of girls as demure and overly feminine. “I wanted to show my girls that beauty isn’t about being a certain size or having your hair done (or even brushed, in their cases), or wearing a fancy outfit. I wanted to combat the messages the media sends to women every day. I wanted my girls to know that being themselves is beautiful and that being beautiful is about being strong.” But what about boys? Kate soon realized that their voices needed to be heard as well – not just fearless and confident and wild but also curious and kind and vulnerable. The Heart of A Boy, published in 2019, was a New York Times bestseller and shows the richness and diversity of boyhood from all across the country. “It’s time to discuss how to raise our sons to become good people and to talk about defining masculinity in a way that is less narrow and limiting.” 

Wednesday, May 25: Final Chapel
8:05 – 8:30 am
Lower Campus Courtyard
We will gather as a full community one last time before we head into summer. All students PK3-Grade 5 will join in singing and receive a summer blessing. We invite parents to be a part of our final chapel on the Lower Campus Courtyard after morning carpool.

Wednesday, May 25: Grade 5 Celebration
8:45 – 9:45 am
Lower Campus Sanctuary
We will celebrate the Class of 2029 with a bridging ceremony. There will be a brief reception on the patio to follow. Families are welcome to attend.

Thursday, May 26: Last Day of School, End of Year Celebrations & No Extended Play 
11:15 am dismissal PK3 – G1 plus G2 – G5 siblings
11:30 am dismissal G2 – G5

 

SAVE THESE DATES

Week of June 6: Summer ePacket Information
Be on the lookout for an email with links to important information including summer learning, uniform requirements, medical forms and summer workouts.

Mid- Late July: 22/23 ePacket Information
Be on the lookout for an email with links to orientation information and other back to school information.

 

A WORD FROM YOUR DIRECTOR OF LOWER SCHOOL

Yet again, we find ourselves processing the news of traumatizing events that are happening in our own country and paying careful attention to our Lower Schoolers who may have seen or heard of the tragic shootings. I am grateful to be part of a faith-based community who will pause and pray through these times. We don’t have all the answers, but we are here to partner with you and your family.

Last week, fifth graders led our chapel service asking, “What does it mean to be strong?” and unpacking Phillipians 4:13 which says, “I can do all things through Christ who strengthens me.” We are so proud of all of our students this year, and we are especially grateful for the fifth graders’ leadership through Kindness Crew, Play Patrol, and most recently our worship leaders.

There is more fun to come next week with our final chapel, pep rally, and class parties. We look forward to celebrating this year and hope you will join us on campus.

Kind regards,
Molly Hudson

Director of Lower School
Shelley Searcy
Head of Lower Campus

Communication Archive

May 16, 2022

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Wednesday, May 18, Parents are welcome to join Lower School Chapel
8:10 – 8:30 am Preschool – Grade 1
8:45 – 9:10 am Grade 2 – G5
Sanctuary Building

Thursday, May 19: Walk and Talk with Molly Hudson and the IDEA Team
9:15 – 9:45 am
Fellowship Hall
Join Molly Hudson, Stacey Lee, Elisse Hayes, and Taryn Rumph as we discuss what IDEA means at the Lower School level. We will take a walk together around the Lower School hallways and classrooms to see IDEA in action. Then we will come back together to discuss what we observed and the science behind belonging in the classroom.

Thursday, May 19: Upper Campus Spring Instrumental Concert
4:30 – 5:30 pm
US Cafe
MS Music Department (strings, band, and drums) will be performing their final concert for the 2021-2022 school year in the US Cafe beginning at 4:30 pm. Families and friends are invited to join us to enjoy the continued work of our young musicians.

SAVE THESE DATES

Monday, May 23: Parent University: Strong is the New Pretty with Kate Parker
9:00 – 10:00 am
Upper School, Learning Stairs
Kate T. Parker, a professional photographer with two daughters at MV, was fed up with the media’s prevailing imagery of girls as demure and overly feminine. “I wanted to show my girls that beauty isn’t about being a certain size or having your hair done (or even brushed, in their cases), or wearing a fancy outfit. I wanted to combat the messages the media sends to women every day. I wanted my girls to know that being themselves is beautiful and that being beautiful is about being strong.” But what about boys? Kate soon realized that their voices needed to be heard as well – not just fearless and confident and wild but also curious and kind and vulnerable. The Heart of A Boy, published in 2019, was a New York Times bestseller and shows the richness and diversity of boyhood from all across the country. “It’s time to discuss how to raise our sons to become good people and to talk about defining masculinity in a way that is less narrow and limiting.” 

Wednesday, May 25: Final Chapel
8:05 – 8:30 am
Lower Campus Courtyard
We will gather as a full community one last time before we head into summer. All students PK3-Grade 5 will join in singing and receive a summer blessing. We invite parents to join.

Wednesday, May 25: Grade 5 Celebration
8:45 – 9:45 am
Fellowship Hall
We will celebrate the Class of 2029 with a bridging ceremony. There will be a brief reception on the patio to follow. Families are welcome to attend.

Thursday, May 26: Last Day of School, No Extended Play & End of Year Celebrations

A WORD FROM YOUR DIRECTOR OF LOWER SCHOOL

It was a blessing to have so many parents join us for chapel. Please come again this week to see our grade 5 students take over chapel! In both services, grade 5 students will plan, prepare, and deliver all parts of our chapel service. We are excited to see their leadership! If you are available as well as our final chapel of the year on May 25 at the Lower Campus courtyard; this is an outdoor tradition we enjoy to close our the school year.

Lower School is intentional about designing fun experiences to celebrate all the successes of this school year, so please pay careful attention to your grade-level events as we celebrate our learning and friendships in these final days.

Kind regards,
Molly Hudson
Director of Lower School

Shelley Searcy
Head of Lower Campus

May 9, 2022

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Wednesday, May 11: Parents are welcome to join for Chapel
Wednesday morning chapel services are a long-standing tradition at Mount Vernon. We are excited to be able to invite parents back to join us again for our short service where we focus on praise, worship, and Bible study as we learn how to live a life grounded in Christian values. Preschool-G1 chapel begins at 8:10 and G2-G5 chapel begins at 8:45 in the Sanctuary Building.

Friday, May 13: Yearbook Distribution

SAVE THESE DATES

Wednesday, May 18, Parents are welcome to join Lower School Chapel
8:10-8:30 Preschool-Grade 1
8:45-9:10 Grade 2-G5
Sanctuary Building

Thursday, May 19: Upper Campus Spring Instrumental Concert
4:30 – 5:30 pm
US Cafe
MS Music Department (strings, band, and drums) will be performing their final concert for the 2021-2022 school year in the US Cafe beginning at 4:30 pm. Families and friends are invited to join us to enjoy the continued work of our young musicians.

Monday, May 23: Parent University: Strong is the New Pretty with Kate Parker
9:00 – 10:00 am
Upper School, Learning Stairs
Kate T. Parker, a professional photographer with two daughters at MV, was fed up with the media’s prevailing imagery of girls as demure and overly feminine. “I wanted to show my girls that beauty isn’t about being a certain size or having your hair done (or even brushed, in their cases), or wearing a fancy outfit. I wanted to combat the messages the media sends to women every day. I wanted my girls to know that being themselves is beautiful and that being beautiful is about being strong.” But what about boys? Kate soon realized that their voices needed to be heard as well – not just fearless and confident and wild but also curious and kind and vulnerable. The Heart of A Boy, published in 2019, was a New York Times bestseller and shows the richness and diversity of boyhood from all across the country. “It’s time to discuss how to raise our sons to become good people and to talk about defining masculinity in a way that is less narrow and limiting.” 

Wednesday, May 25 Final Chapel
8:05-8:30
Lower Campus Courtyard
We will gather as a full community one last time before we head into summer. All students PK3-Grade 5 will join in singing and receive a summer blessing. We invite parents to join.

Wednesday, May 25: Grade 5 Celebration
Lower School Grade 5 Celebration
We will celebrate the Class of 2029 with a bridging ceremony on Wednesday, May 25. The ceremony will take place from 8:45-9:45 am in Fellowship Hall. There will be a brief reception on the patio to follow. Families are welcome to attend.

Thursday, May 26: Last Day of School, No Extended Play & End of Year Celebrations

A WORD FROM YOUR DIRECTOR OF LOWER SCHOOL

Thank you to all of our parents who were able to attend the Rise Up Parent meetings. It was great to see new relationships forming through the simple act of a selfie. We enjoyed letting you peek into your child’s future classrooms, hear from the teachers, and interact with students. We hope you share in our excitement as we move forward with a new school year.

Before we get too far ahead of ourselves, however, please take careful note of the opportunities we have for celebration and fun this May. Take advantage of the opportunities listed above and check your class Veracross pages for homeroom-specific events.

Kind regards,
Molly Hudson
Director of Lower School

Shelley Searcy
Head of Lower Campus

May 2, 2022

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Monday, May 2: Middle School Rise Up! Parent Meetings
Rising Grade 6: 10:00 am – 11:00 am
Middle School Lightbox (Basement floor outside of the gym)
The MS Leadership Team will host Rise Up meetings to provide an overview of the Middle School program including curricular, social-emotional, and operational details. They will be joined by members of the Collaborative Care, Visual and Performing Arts, and Athletics teams. We will host the Rise Up meetings in person.

Monday, May 2 – Saturday, May 7: MV Allstars Presents: The Spongebob Musical
All are invited to join Spongebob and all his friends in this musical phenomenon! With five chances to catch the show, you don’t want to miss out! Reserve your tickets here.

Tuesday, May 3: Rising Kindergarten and Grade 1 Rise Up! Parent Meeting
8:15 – 9:00 am
Fellowship Hall
Come explore what next year will look like for your rising Kindergartener or First Grader! We want to design this experience around your wonders. Let’s meet in Fellowship Hall with a Q&A based on your specific questions about next year. Afterward, we will show you the experience by letting you peek into some classrooms. We will close out by sharing our observations and reflections.

At 9:00, new families are invited back to Fellowship Hall for a brief overview of all things logistical for next year like carpool, uniforms, school-wide events, and more.

Wednesday, May 4: Rising Grade 2 and Grade 3 Rise Up! Parent Meeting
8:15 – 9:00 am
Fellowship Hall
Come explore what next year will look like for your rising Second or Third Grader! We want to design this experience around your wonders. Let’s meet in Fellowship Hall with a Q&A based on your specific questions about next year. Afterward, we will show you the experience by letting you peek into some classrooms. We will close out by sharing our observations and reflections.

At 9:00, new families are invited back to Fellowship Hall for a brief overview of all things logistical for next year like carpool, uniforms, school-wide events, and more.

Thursday, May 5: Rising Grade 4 and Grade 5 Rise Up! Parent Meeting
8:15 – 9:00 am
Fellowship Hall
Come explore what next year will look like for your rising Fourth or Fifth Grader! We want to design this experience around your wonders. Let’s meet in Fellowship Hall with a Q&A based on your specific questions about next year. Afterward, we will show you the experience by letting you peek into some classrooms. We will close out by sharing our observations and reflections.

At 9:00, new families are invited back to Fellowship Hall for a brief overview of all things logistical for next year like carpool, uniforms, school-wide events, and more.

SAVE THESE DATES

Friday, May 13: Yearbook Distribution

Thursday, May 19: Upper Campus Spring Instrumental Concert
4:30 – 5:30 pm
US Cafe
MS Music Department (strings, band, and drums) will be performing their final concert for the 2021-2022 school year in the US Cafe beginning at 4:30 pm. Families and friends are invited to join us to enjoy the continued work of our young musicians.

Monday, May 23: Parent University with Kate Parker
9:00 – 10:00 am
Lower Campus, Fellowship Hall Quad B
Kate T. Parker, a professional photographer with two daughters at MV, was fed up with the media’s prevailing imagery of girls as demure and overly feminine. “I wanted to show my girls that beauty isn’t about being a certain size or having your hair done (or even brushed, in their cases), or wearing a fancy outfit. I wanted to combat the messages the media sends to women every day. I wanted my girls to know that being themselves is beautiful and that being beautiful is about being strong.” But what about boys? Kate soon realized that their voices needed to be heard as well – not just fearless and confident and wild but also curious and kind and vulnerable. THE HEART OF A BOY, published in 2019, was a New York Times bestseller and shows the richness and diversity of boyhood from all across the country. “It’s time to discuss how to raise our sons to become good people and to talk about defining masculinity in a way that is less narrow and limiting.” 

A WORD FROM YOUR DIRECTOR OF LOWER SCHOOL

We came, we saw, we Rallied! What a fun day we had on Friday! Whether this was your child’s first Mustang Rally or they remember the pre-pandemic fun, it was great to be back together as a community having fun. We are proud of our Lower Schoolers’ sportsmanship and the way they cheered for each other during the field races. We hope you all enjoyed the family picnic and carnival games. It was great to bring back this long standing Mount Vernon tradition.

The Rally was not the only fun enjoyed last week. Our fourth graders were off campus all day on Thursday as they expeditioned to Ocmulgee Park to discover the efforts taking place to start Georgia’s first National Park. Kindergarten students continue to build and design animal habitats as they prepare to host parents for their learning showcase in May. Speaking of animals, after their expedition to the aquarium, our second graders have become “penpals” with their zoo animal friends, and the friendly letters are impressive and oh, so sweet.

As we welcome May next week, please be on the lookout for invitations to come to campus. We have several opportunities for you to be a part of the learning and celebrations of a great year, and we want you here.

Kind regards,
Molly Hudson
Director of Lower School

Shelley Searcy
Head of Lower Campus

April 25, 2022

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Monday, April 25 – Thursday, April 28: Spring PlayMaker Makeup Class Week
If your students’ PlayMaker class requires a makeup, it will take place at its regularly scheduled time during this week. The PlayMaker teacher or a member of our PlayMaker staff will let you know if your students’ class will take place during makeup week.

Wednesday, April 27: All-School Late Start
9:10 am Carpool begins
9:30 am School begins
*Childcare is not available before school begins

Wednesday, April 27: Mustang Rally T-Shirt Swaps and Sale
9:10 – 10:10 am
Lower Campus Courtyard
If you received a Mustang Rally shirt and need to exchange it for another size, you may do so during this time. Additionally, if you did not purchase a shirt, all extras will be on sale for $20.00 per shirt.

Friday, April 29: Mustang Rally
Check out the Rally schedule, fun facts, and frequently asked questions here. Let’s get ready to Rally!!!

SAVE THESE DATES

Monday, May 2: Middle School Rise Up! Parent Meetings
Rising Grade 6: 10:00 am – 11:00 am
Middle School Lightbox
The MS Leadership Team will host Rise Up meetings to provide an overview of the Middle School program including curricular, social-emotional, and operational details. They will be joined by members of the Collaborative Care, Visual and Performing Arts, and Athletics teams. We will host the Rise Up meetings in person.

Monday, May 2 – Saturday, May 7: MV Allstars Presents: The Spongebob Musical
All are invited to join Spongebob and all his Bikini Bottom friends in this musical phenomenon! With five chances to catch the show, you don’t want to miss out! Reserve your tickets here.

Tuesday, May 3: Rising Kindergarten and Grade 1 Rise Up! Parent Meeting
8:15 – 9:00 am
Fellowship Hall
Come explore what next year will look like for your rising Kindergartener or First Grader! We want to design this experience around your wonders. Let’s meet in Fellowship Hall with a Q&A based on your specific questions about next year. Afterward, we will show you the experience by letting you peek into some classrooms. We will close out by sharing our observations and reflections.

At 9:00, new families are invited back to Fellowship Hall for a brief overview of all things logistical for next year like carpool, uniforms, school-wide events, and more.

Wednesday, May 4: Rising Grade 2 and Grade 3 Rise Up! Parent Meeting
8:15 – 9:00 am
Fellowship Hall
Come explore what next year will look like for your rising Second or Third Grader! We want to design this experience around your wonders. Let’s meet in Fellowship Hall with a Q&A based on your specific questions about next year. Afterward, we will show you the experience by letting you peek into some classrooms. We will close out by sharing our observations and reflections.

At 9:00, new families are invited back to Fellowship Hall for a brief overview of all things logistical for next year like carpool, uniforms, school-wide events, and more.

Thursday, May 5: Rising Grade 4 and Grade 5 Rise Up! Parent Meeting
8:15 – 9:00 am
Fellowship Hall
Come explore what next year will look like for your rising Fourth or Fifth Grader! We want to design this experience around your wonders. Let’s meet in Fellowship Hall with a Q&A based on your specific questions about next year. Afterward, we will show you the experience by letting you peek into some classrooms. We will close out by sharing our observations and reflections.

At 9:00, new families are invited back to Fellowship Hall for a brief overview of all things logistical for next year like carpool, uniforms, school-wide events, and more.

Pending New Date in Late May: Parent University with Kate Parker
9:00 – 10:00 am
Lower Campus, Fellowship Hall Quad B
Kate T. Parker, a professional photographer with two daughters at MV, was fed up with the media’s prevailing imagery of girls as demure and overly feminine. “I wanted to show my girls that beauty isn’t about being a certain size or having your hair done (or even brushed, in their cases), or wearing a fancy outfit. I wanted to combat the messages the media sends to women every day. I wanted my girls to know that being themselves is beautiful and that being beautiful is about being strong.” But what about boys? Kate soon realized that their voices needed to be heard as well – not just fearless and confident and wild but also curious and kind and vulnerable. THE HEART OF A BOY, published in 2019, was a New York Times bestseller and shows the richness and diversity of boyhood from all across the country. “It’s time to discuss how to raise our sons to become good people and to talk about defining masculinity in a way that is less narrow and limiting.” 

A WORD FROM YOUR DIRECTOR OF LOWER SCHOOL

What a great week it has been in Lower School. On Friday, our students experienced a full day of Art in Action. Designed by our amazing arts team, students visited all parts of campus to experience a variety of forms of art. Students had the opportunity to interact with external experts like a professional artist, African dance teacher, and acting coach. They enjoyed experiences like a costume building challenge, a drum circle, mural making on the frontier, dancing, and a Yayoi Kusama interactive art exhibit (be sure to ask your child about their “dots’ ‘!). Overhead in the Maker Space by a grade 1 student: “This is going to be the best day ever!” Thank to to our parent volunteers who helped to make this day a success.

Kind regards,
Molly Hudson
Director of Lower School

Shelley Searcy
Head of Lower Campus

April 18, 2022

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Monday, April 18: No School for Students and Faculty

Wednesday, April 20 – 21: ERB Testing
Grade 4 and Grade 5 students will participate in spring ERB standardized testing on the mornings of April 20 – 21. Students will test in reading comprehension and math. Students who qualify for accommodations will receive them accordingly. Please reach out to Angie Bush if you have any questions.

Thursday, April 21: New Family Coffee
7:45 – 9:00 am
Upper Campus Green
MVPN’s New Family Chairs Amanda Woodall and Amanda Richmond invite new families who joined MV for the 2020-21 and 2021-22 school years to the Upper Campus Green to build community among our newest Mustangs. Come as you are, bring your morning caffeine or grab a cup from the Ground Floor coffee shop in the US Cafe. We can’t wait to see you! RSVP here.

Friday, April 22: MV Cares: MV Parent Prayer Group
8:00 – 9:00 am
Upper Campus, Upper School Patio
All are welcome to attend the last Prayer Group gathering of the school year. We will be meeting on the Upper School Patio and take a walk around the football field as we pray for our School, students, and faculty. If the weather does not allow for an outdoor gathering, we will meet in the Church Sessions Room on Lower Campus. Prayer requests may be made here.

Friday, April 22: Final Day of Spring PlayMaker Classes

Saturday, April 23: Lower Campus PlayMaker Dance Recital
3:00 pm
Upper Campus Gym
Come support dancers from the PlayMaker program as they showcase their talents in the annual Dance Recital. Admission is free and all ages are welcome to attend. This year, dancers will be celebrating the past 50 years of music, performing to songs from the 70’s, 80’s, 90’s, 2000’s, and now.

SAVE THESE DATES

Monday, April 25 – Thursday, April 28: Spring PlayMaker Makeup Class Week
If your students’ PlayMaker class requires a makeup, it will take place at its regularly scheduled time during this week. The PlayMaker teacher or a member of our PlayMaker staff will let you know if your students’ class will take place during makeup week.

Wednesday, April 27: All-School Late Start
9:10 am Carpool begins
9:30 am School begins
*Childcare is not available before school begins

Wednesday, April 27: Mustang Rally T-Shirt Swaps and Sale
9:10 – 10:10 am
Lower Campus Courtyard
If you received a Mustang Rally shirt and need to exchange it for another size, you may do so during this time. Additionally, if you did not purchase a shirt, all extras will be on sale for $20.00 per shirt.

Friday, April 29: Mustang Rally
Check out the Rally schedule, fun facts, and frequently asked questions here. Let’s get ready to Rally!!!

Monday, May 2: Middle School Rise Up! Parent Meetings
Rising Grade 6: 10:00 am – 11:00 am
Middle School Lightbox
The MS Leadership Team will host Rise Up meetings to provide an overview of the Middle School program including curricular, social-emotional, and operational details. They will be joined by members of the Collaborative Care, Visual and Performing Arts, and Athletics teams. We will host the Rise Up meetings in person.

Tuesday, May 2 – Saturday, May 7: MV Allstars Presents: The Spongebob Musical
All are invited to join Spongebob and all his Bikini Bottom friends in this musical phenomenon! With five chances to catch the show, you don’t want to miss out! Reserve your tickets here.

Tuesday, May 3: Rising Kindergarten and Grade 1 Rise Up! Parent Meeting
8:15 – 9:00 am
Fellowship Hall
Come explore what next year will look like for your rising Kindergartener or First Grader! We want to design this experience around your wonders. Let’s meet in Fellowship Hall with a Q&A based on your specific questions about next year. Afterward, we will show you the experience by letting you peek into some classrooms. We will close out by sharing our observations and reflections.

At 9:00, new families are invited back to Fellowship Hall for a brief overview of all things logistical for next year like carpool, uniforms, school-wide events, and more.

Wednesday, May 4: Rising Grade 2 and Grade 3 Rise Up! Parent Meeting
8:15 – 9:00 am
Fellowship Hall
Come explore what next year will look like for your rising Second or Third Grader! We want to design this experience around your wonders. Let’s meet in Fellowship Hall with a Q&A based on your specific questions about next year. Afterward, we will show you the experience by letting you peek into some classrooms. We will close out by sharing our observations and reflections.

At 9:00, new families are invited back to Fellowship Hall for a brief overview of all things logistical for next year like carpool, uniforms, school-wide events, and more.

Thursday, May 5: Rising Grade 4 and Grade 5 Rise Up! Parent Meeting
8:15 – 9:00 am
Fellowship Hall
Come explore what next year will look like for your rising Fourth or Fifth Grader! We want to design this experience around your wonders. Let’s meet in Fellowship Hall with a Q&A based on your specific questions about next year. Afterward, we will show you the experience by letting you peek into some classrooms. We will close out by sharing our observations and reflections.

At 9:00, new families are invited back to Fellowship Hall for a brief overview of all things logistical for next year like carpool, uniforms, school-wide events, and more.

Friday, May 6: Parent University with Kate Parker
9:00 – 10:00 am
Lower Campus, Fellowship Hall Quad B
Kate T. Parker, a professional photographer with two daughters at MV, was fed up with the media’s prevailing imagery of girls as demure and overly feminine. “I wanted to show my girls that beauty isn’t about being a certain size or having your hair done (or even brushed, in their cases), or wearing a fancy outfit. I wanted to combat the messages the media sends to women every day. I wanted my girls to know that being themselves is beautiful and that being beautiful is about being strong.” But what about boys? Kate soon realized that their voices needed to be heard as well – not just fearless and confident and wild but also curious and kind and vulnerable. THE HEART OF A BOY, published in 2019, was a New York Times bestseller and shows the richness and diversity of boyhood from all across the country. “It’s time to discuss how to raise our sons to become good people and to talk about defining masculinity in a way that is less narrow and limiting.” 

A WORD FROM YOUR DIRECTOR OF LOWER SCHOOL

Lower Schoolers continue to go out into the world to observe, explore and make an impact. Kinders are in the middle of their animal habitat unit and visited Zoo Atlanta last week. First graders visited Tellus Science Museum and the Upper Campus Virtual Reality lab. During an expedition to Formetco, third grade students applied their math skills to real-world advertising challenges. Fifth graders recently visited the Atlanta History Center to learn more about their unit on voting rights.

Everyone was on campus on Wednesday morning for our special Easter chapel though. We were blessed by the MV Dance performance, engaged in praise and worship music, and learned what the Bible teaches us about God’s love in the Easter story. We hope everyone enjoys the long weekend. Happy Easter!

Kind regards,
Molly Hudson
Director of Lower School

Shelley Searcy
Head of Lower Campus

April 11, 2022

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WEEK OF APRIL 11 – 15
Wednesday, April 13: Deadline to Purchase Mustang Rally Chick-fil-A Lunch
The deadline has passed for Mustang Rally t-shirts, but there’s still time to order your Chick-fil-A lunches and pre-sale carnival tickets. With just three weeks to go until this highly anticipated event, be sure to place your orders by Wednesday at noon. Parent volunteers are still needed to make Rally a success – learn more and sign up here.

Thursday, April 14: Lower School Talk and Walk with Molly Hudson
9:30 – 10:00 am
This April our Talk and Walk will focus on the importance of movement. Come hear the brain science behind its use in the classroom and how we incorporate movement through your student’s day. Then we will take a learning walk through our hallways and some classrooms to observe how we use movement to activate our brains in the Lower School. As requested, we will also discuss ways to incorporate movement in your home learning routine.

Thursday, April 14: Parent University with Essential Partners Part 2: Dialoguing Across Difference
8:30 – 9:30 am
Virtual: https://us02web.zoom.us/j/87140045705?pwd=SmQ3VTVLTkUyemNIb2h4U0ZvR2JSUT09
Meeting ID: 871 4004 5705
Passcode: D8nghL
Essential Partners returns in conjunction with Mount Vernon faculty/staff and students to share ways in which our community has absorbed and implemented learning connected to dialogue and effective communication. With the support of faculty facilitators, students will have had the opportunity to engage in the practice of dialogue through Upper School Advisory and Middle School Community gatherings to learn more about themselves and one another. This work reflects our belief that we are #bettertogether and directly supports the advancement of IDEA. Join us to hear stories of growth and curiosity as we share moments and ways in which we’ve achieved deeper understanding across differences.

Friday, April 15 – Monday, April 18: No School for Students and Faculty

SAVE THESE DATES

April 20 – 21: ERB Testing
Grade 4 and Grade 5 students will participate in spring ERB standardized testing on the mornings of April 20 – 21. Students will test in reading comprehension and math. Students who qualify for accommodations will receive them accordingly. Please reach out to Angie Bush if you have any questions.

Thursday, April 21: New Family Coffee
7:45 – 9:00 am
Upper Campus Green
MVPN’s New Family Chairs Amanda Woodall and Amanda Richmond invite new families who joined MV for the 2020-21 and 2021-22 school years to the Upper Campus Green to build community among our newest Mustangs. Come as you are, bring your morning caffeine or grab a cup from the Ground Floor coffee shop in the US Cafe. We can’t wait to see you! RSVP here.

Friday, April 22: MV Cares: MV Parent Prayer Group
8:00 – 9:00 am
Gailey Hall on Lower Campus
MV parents and grandparents are invited to lift up our Mount Vernon community in prayer. Prayer requests

Saturday, April 23: Lower Campus PlayMaker Dance Recital
3:00 pm
Upper Campus Gym
Come support dancers from the PlayMaker program as they showcase their talents in the annual Dance Recital. Admission is free and all ages are welcome to attend. This year, dancers will be celebrating the past 50 years of music, performing to songs from the 70’s, 80’s, 90’s, 2000’s, and now.

Wednesday, April 27: All-School Late Start
9:10 am Carpool begins
9:30 am School begins
*Childcare is not available before school begins

Friday, April 29: Mustang Rally
Check out the Rally schedule, fun facts, and frequently asked questions here. Let’s get ready to Rally!!!

A WORD FROM YOUR DIRECTOR OF LOWER SCHOOL

Did you see some fun characters in carpool last week? Harry Potter, Snow White, Woody, “Cloudy with a Chance of Meatballs,” and a unicorn all joined the Lower School to promote reading and the Book Fair! It was great to see so many children and parents at our on-campus Book Fair. We want to offer a special thanks to all of the volunteers who made this happen.

During our chapel this week, Alison Douglas, from our MV Prayer Group, opened up the service by talking about how Mount Vernon families pray for our students by name. Then, she opened the service in prayer. A Lower School student shared the importance of Passover for their family, and Molly Hudson used a cardboard donkey, construction paper palm branches, and echoing “Hosanna’s” to tell the story of Palm Sunday. We are looking forward to our Easter Chapel next week as we learn about Christ’s journey to the cross.

Kind regards,
Molly Hudson
Director of Lower School

Shelley Searcy
Head of Lower Campus

WEEK OF APRIL 11 – 15
Wednesday, April 13: Deadline to Purchase Mustang Rally Chick-fil-A Lunch
The deadline has passed for Mustang Rally t-shirts, but there’s still time to order your Chick-fil-A lunches and pre-sale carnival tickets. With just three weeks to go until this highly anticipated event, be sure to place your orders by Wednesday at noon. Parent volunteers are still needed to make Rally a success – learn more and sign up here.

Thursday, April 14: Lower School Talk and Walk with Molly Hudson
9:30 – 10:00 am
This April our Talk and Walk will focus on the importance of movement. Come hear the brain science behind its use in the classroom and how we incorporate movement through your student’s day. Then we will take a learning walk through our hallways and some classrooms to observe how we use movement to activate our brains in the Lower School. As requested, we will also discuss ways to incorporate movement in your home learning routine.

Thursday, April 14: Parent University with Essential Partners Part 2: Dialoguing Across Difference
8:30 – 9:30 am
Virtual: https://us02web.zoom.us/j/87140045705?pwd=SmQ3VTVLTkUyemNIb2h4U0ZvR2JSUT09
Meeting ID: 871 4004 5705
Passcode: D8nghL
Essential Partners returns in conjunction with Mount Vernon faculty/staff and students to share ways in which our community has absorbed and implemented learning connected to dialogue and effective communication. With the support of faculty facilitators, students will have had the opportunity to engage in the practice of dialogue through Upper School Advisory and Middle School Community gatherings to learn more about themselves and one another. This work reflects our belief that we are #bettertogether and directly supports the advancement of IDEA. Join us to hear stories of growth and curiosity as we share moments and ways in which we’ve achieved deeper understanding across differences.

Friday, April 15 – Monday, April 18: No School for Students and Faculty

SAVE THESE DATES

April 20 – 21: ERB Testing
Grade 4 and Grade 5 students will participate in spring ERB standardized testing on the mornings of April 20 – 21. Students will test in reading comprehension and math. Students who qualify for accommodations will receive them accordingly. Please reach out to Angie Bush if you have any questions.

Thursday, April 21: New Family Coffee
7:45 – 9:00 am
Upper Campus Green
MVPN’s New Family Chairs Amanda Woodall and Amanda Richmond invite new families who joined MV for the 2020-21 and 2021-22 school years to the Upper Campus Green to build community among our newest Mustangs. Come as you are, bring your morning caffeine or grab a cup from the Ground Floor coffee shop in the US Cafe. We can’t wait to see you! RSVP here.

Friday, April 22: MV Cares: MV Parent Prayer Group
8:00 – 9:00 am
Gailey Hall on Lower Campus
MV parents and grandparents are invited to lift up our Mount Vernon community in prayer. Prayer requests

Saturday, April 23: Lower Campus PlayMaker Dance Recital
3:00 pm
Upper Campus Gym
Come support dancers from the PlayMaker program as they showcase their talents in the annual Dance Recital. Admission is free and all ages are welcome to attend. This year, dancers will be celebrating the past 50 years of music, performing to songs from the 70’s, 80’s, 90’s, 2000’s, and now.

Wednesday, April 27: All-School Late Start
9:10 am Carpool begins
9:30 am School begins
*Childcare is not available before school begins

Friday, April 29: Mustang Rally
Check out the Rally schedule, fun facts, and frequently asked questions here. Let’s get ready to Rally!!!

A WORD FROM YOUR DIRECTOR OF LOWER SCHOOL

Did you see some fun characters in carpool last week? Harry Potter, Snow White, Woody, “Cloudy with a Chance of Meatballs,” and a unicorn all joined the Lower School to promote reading and the Book Fair! It was great to see so many children and parents at our on-campus Book Fair. We want to offer a special thanks to all of the volunteers who made this happen.

During our chapel this week, Alison Douglas, from our MV Prayer Group, opened up the service by talking about how Mount Vernon families pray for our students by name. Then, she opened the service in prayer. A Lower School student shared the importance of Passover for their family, and Molly Hudson used a cardboard donkey, construction paper palm branches, and echoing “Hosanna’s” to tell the story of Palm Sunday. We are looking forward to our Easter Chapel next week as we learn about Christ’s journey to the cross.

Kind regards,
Molly Hudson
Director of Lower School

Shelley Searcy
Head of Lower Campus

April 4, 2022

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Monday, April 4 – Friday, April 8: Lower Campus Book Fair
7:30 am – 3:30 pm, daily
Lower Campus, Fellowship Hall
The Book Fair is back! Come foster your student’s love of reading with some new exciting titles. We will be celebrating their love of reading all week with administrators dressing up as their favorite book characters, mystery readers, and additional reading time. Classes will have opportunities to visit the book fair during the week to make purchases through ewallet. Parents are also welcome to stop by the fair from 7:30 – 3:30 during this week to make purchases. Please visit our Book Fair homepage for more information.

Monday, April 4: Grandparent Reception & Tour
4:00 – 6:00 pm, Upper School Cafe Patio
Encourage your child’s grandparents to attend a reception and tour of the Upper Campus, led by incoming Head of School Kristy Lundstrom. Light refreshments will be served. Grandparents can RSVP here.

Tuesday, April 5: Last Uniform Resale of the Year
7:30 – 9:00 am
Administration Building 2, Upper Campus
Stop by for the last Uniform Resale of the year to purchase gently used uniform and spirit wear items: shirts/$5, bottoms/$10, sweatshirts, jackets, sweaters/$10. To donate gently used items, please drop off at the Administration Building on Upper Campus.

Friday, April 8: Grade 3 – Grade 5 Spring Soiree
5:30 – 7:30 pm, Lower Campus
Invite one parent, grandparent, or special friend for a Glow Party on Lower Campus. Wear your neon and join us for dinner, glow dancing, cosmic dodgeball, laser tag, and more! RSVP here.

SAVE THESE DATES

Tuesday, April 12: All-School Open Mount Vernon Parent Network (MVPN) Meeting
The purpose of the MVPN is to build community through engagement and volunteerism, amplifying Mustang pride. The newest of the 15 committees, MV Connection, will focus on the full-circle relationships built at Mount Vernon School. Join us at either meet up to learn more about engaging in one or more of the 100+ opportunities and hear from Chief of Community Development Anne Katz and her special guest, Mustang Alum Alex Alba, Class of 2015.

Join us in person or via Zoom to learn more about the 15 committees that make up the MVPN.
In-person: 9:00 – 10:00 am, Lower Campus Fellowship Hall
Virtual: 7:00 – 8:00 pm, Zoom Link, ID: 89197797205, Passcode: Rxhcc8

Thursday, April 14: Lower School Talk and Walk with Molly Hudson
9:30 – 10:00 am
This April our Talk and Walk will focus on the importance of movement. Come hear the brain science behind its use in the classroom and how we incorporate movement through your student’s day. Then we will take a learning walk through our hallways and some classrooms to observe how we use movement to activate our brains in the Lower School. As requested, we will also discuss ways to incorporate movement in your home learning routine.

Thursday, April 14: Parent University with Essential Partners Part 2: Dialoguing Across Differenc
8:30 – 9:30 am
Virtual: https://us02web.zoom.us/j/87140045705?pwd=SmQ3VTVLTkUyemNIb2h4U0ZvR2JSUT09
Meeting ID: 871 4004 5705
Passcode: D8nghL
Essential Partners returns in conjunction with Mount Vernon faculty/staff and students to share ways in which our community has absorbed and implemented learning connected to dialogue and effective communication. With the support of faculty facilitators, students will have had the opportunity to engage in the practice of dialogue through Upper School Advisory and Middle School Community gatherings to learn more about themselves and one another. This work reflects our belief that we are #bettertogether and directly supports the advancement of IDEA. Join us to hear stories of growth and curiosity as we share moments and ways in which we’ve achieved deeper understanding across differences.

Friday, April 15 – Monday, April 18: No School for Students and Faculty

April 20 – 21: ERB Testing
Grade 4 and Grade 5 students will participate in spring ERB standardized testing on the mornings of April 20 – 21. Students will test in reading comprehension and math. Students who qualify for accommodations will receive them accordingly. Please reach out to Angie Bush if you have any questions.

A WORD FROM YOUR DIRECTOR OF LOWER SCHOOL

Thank you, thank you, thank you to all of our parent volunteers this week. From the special snacks at the faculty meeting to the festive teacher appreciation luncheon, you all did so much.

We want to highlight our Kindergarten this week! Their spring project is focused on animals and habitats. Early last week, one student was particularly curious about the trees on campus. When he asked his teacher what type of tree shaded his favorite spot on the Frontier, they went together to ask an expert. By Friday, the Kindergarten teachers, Mr. Kirkwood, Mrs. Fennelly, and a new team of “tree club” members are making observational drawings of trees, researching, and identifying our various trees. If you are curious about trees, just look for the wooden plaque that our students are designing which are on display via a tree necklace – all made in our own Studio (i).

Additionally, the whole grade level ventured on an expedition to the Atlanta Zoo so they could make observations, ask questions, and generate ideas about what animals need to survive and thrive.

Finally, our chapel message last week continued to focus on the fruit of the spirit of patience and the verse from Colossians 3:12 Since God chose you to be the holy people He loves, you must clothe yourselves with tenderhearted mercy, kindness, humility, gentleness, and patience. As we await Easter Sunday, we are learning about God’s love and His gift.

Kind regards,
Molly Hudson
Director of Lower School

Shelley Searcy
Head of Lower Campus

March 28, 2022

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Monday, March 28 – Friday, April 1: Teacher Appreciation Week
MV’s Appreciation Committee has a baseball-themed week of events planned, culminating in a tailgate luncheon on Thursday, March 31. Please sign up to provide class coverage and monitor the Lower School lunchroom during the luncheon. There are also volunteer spots to help with luncheon set up, tear down, and serving lunch to the teachers.

Sign-up to help cover K-G5 classes during the luncheon
Sign-up to help set, serve, and breakdown

Room Parents will be detailing how your individual classroom will celebrate your teacher during the week, in conjunction with the school-wide events.

March 31: Deadline to Purchase Mustang Rally T-Shirts
*Sponsors Do Not Need to Order
T-shirts for Rally are now available for purchase. Additionally, Chick-fil-A lunches and carnival tickets are now available for purchase until Wednesday, April 13. Submit your Mustang Rally order here.

Friday, April 1: Kindergarten – Grade 2 Spring Soiree
5:30 – 7:30 pm, Lower Campus
Polish your cowboy boots and mosey on over to the Spring Soiree! Saddle up for a night of food, games, tractor rides, and dancing. Pick one partner and plan to join us! RSVP here.

SAVE THESE DATES

Monday, April 4 – Friday, April 8: Lower Campus Book Fair
7:30 am – 3:30 pm, daily
Lower Campus, Fellowship Hall
The bookfair is back! Come foster your student’s love of reading with some new exciting titles. We will be celebrating their love of reading all week with administrators dressing up as their favorite book characters, mystery readers, and additional reading time. Classes will have opportunities to visit the book fair during the week to make purchases through ewallet. Parents are also welcome to stop by the fair from 7:30 – 3:30 during this week to make purchases. Please visit our Book Fair homepage for more information.

Monday, April 4: Grandparent Reception & Tour
4:00 – 6:00 pm, Upper School Cafe Patio
Encourage your child’s grandparents to attend a reception and tour of the Upper Campus, led by incoming Head of School Kristy Lundstrom. Light refreshments will be served. Grandparents can RSVP here.

Tuesday, April 5: Last Uniform Resale of the Year
7:30 – 9:00 am
Administration Building 2, Upper Campus
Stop by for the last Uniform Resale of the year to purchase gently used uniform and spirit wear items: Shirts/$5, Bottoms/$10, Sweatshirts, jackets, sweaters/$10. To donate gently used items, please drop off at the Administration Building on Upper Campus.

Friday, April 8: Grade 3 – Grade 5 Spring Soiree
5:30 – 7:30 pm, Lower Campus
Invite one parent, grandparent, or special friend for a Glow Party on Lower Campus. Wear your neon and join us for dinner, glow dancing, cosmic dodgeball, laser tag, and more! RSVP here.

Tuesday, April 12: All-School Open Mount Vernon Parent Network (MVPN) Meeting
The purpose of the MVPN is to build community through engagement and volunteerism, amplifying Mustang pride. MVPN leads the charge to support learning, innovation, creativity, and fun for our entire community. From Special Events and MVXperts to Campus Engagement and MV Cares, there are 100+ ways for MV parents and grandparents to get involved at the School.

Join us in person or via Zoom to get a peek into next year and learn more about the 15 committees that make up the MVPN.
In-person: 9:00 – 10:00 am, Lower Campus Fellowship Hall
Virtual: 7:00 – 8:00 pm, Zoom Link, ID: 89197797205, Passcode: Rxhcc8

Thursday, April 14: Lower School Talk and Walk with Molly Hudson
9:15 – 9:45 am
This April our Talk and Walk will focus on the importance of movement. Come hear the brain science behind its use in the classroom and how we incorporate movement through your student’s day. Then we will take a learning walk through our hallways and some classrooms to observe how we use movement to activate our brains in the Lower School. As requested, we will also discuss ways to incorporate movement in your home learning routine.

Friday, April 15 – Monday, April 18: No School for Students and Faculty

April 20 – 21: ERB Testing
Grade 4 and Grade 5 students will participate in spring ERB standardized testing on the mornings of April 20 – 21. Students will test in reading comprehension and math. Students who qualify for accommodations will receive them accordingly. Please reach out to Angie Bush if you have any questions.

A WORD FROM YOUR DIRECTOR OF LOWER SCHOOL

It was great to see so many parents on campus for Parent-Teacher conferences last week. The teachers worked hard to prepare a summary of your child’s progress including stories and work samples. We are grateful for your collaboration and excited about the goals that have been set to keep each child engaged and learning this spring.

Next week is Teacher Appreciation week, and we have the most wonderful teachers in the business. In addition to the incredible luncheon you all are planning, let’s do all we can to show our Lower School teachers how much we value them this week. Happy emails, hugs, and thank-you’s mean so much to the incredible men and women that pour into your children each day.

Kind regards,
Molly Hudson
Director of Lower School

Shelley Searcy
Head of Lower Campus

March 21, 2022

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Monday, March 21 – Friday, March 25: MV Serves Solidarity Pantry Food Drive
MV’s spring athletes will be at carpool this week to collect items for Solidarity Pantry. Lower Campus specific collection: pineapple, corn, mixed vegetables, canned tuna, canned chicken, and jelly. Sign up to help at carpool.

Tuesday, March 22: Deadline to Sponsor Mustang Rally
Mustang Rally (April 29) is a free family event, but there are extra perks for family/corporate sponsorships (unlimited wristbands, lunch, tshirts). Pre-sale of t-shirts, Chick-fil-A lunch tickets, and carnival tickets, will begin on March 23. Learn more here.

Wednesday, March 23: Lower School Conference Day, No School for Lower School Students
We invite parents to come to school, sit in your child’s classroom, and see the work displayed in the hallway at our Spring Parent Conference. There is no school for students on this day. If you have not already signed up, please refer to your class’s Veracross page for the sign-up genius. We are committed to beginning and ending each conference on time to ensure all families have an opportunity to connect with the teacher.

Friday, March 25: MV Cares: MV Parent Prayer Group
8:00 – 9:00 am in Gailey Hall on Lower Campus
MV parents and grandparents are invited to lift up our Mount Vernon community in prayer. Prayer requests

Saturday, March 26: 1972 Society Appreciation Party
More than 200 Mount Vernon families and organizations have contributed to the 1972 Society in honor of the School’s founding year. Every family that makes an initial gift, or increases their gift, to the $1,972 level or above is invited to attend.

SAVE THESE DATES

Monday, March 28 – Friday, April 1: Teacher Appreciation Week
MV’s Appreciation Committee has a baseball-themed week of events planned, culminating in a tailgate luncheon on Thursday, March 31. Please sign up to provide class coverage and monitor the Lower School lunchroom during the luncheon. There are also volunteer spots to help with luncheon set up, tear down, and serving lunch to the teachers.

Sign-up to help cover K-G5 classes during the luncheon
Sign-up to help set, serve, and breakdown

Room Parents will be detailing how your individual classroom will celebrate your teacher during the week, in conjunction with the school-wide events.

Friday, April 1: Kindergarten – Grade 2 Spring Soiree
5:30 – 7:30 pm, Lower Campus
Polish your cowboy boots and mosey on over to the Spring Soiree! Saddle up for a night of food, games, tractor rides, and dancing. Pick one partner and plan to join us! RSVP here.

Monday, April 4: Grandparent Reception & Tour
4:00 – 6:00 pm, Upper School Cafe Patio
Encourage your child’s grandparents to attend a reception and tour of the Upper Campus, led by incoming Head of School Kristy Lundstrom. Light refreshments will be served. Grandparents can RSVP here.

Friday, April 8: Grade 3 – Grade 5 Spring Soiree
5:30 – 7:30 pm, Lower Campus
Invite one parent, grandparent, or special friend for a Glow Party on Lower Campus. Wear your neon and join us for dinner, glow dancing, cosmic dodgeball, laser tag, and more! RSVP here.

Tuesday, April 12: All-School Open Mount Vernon Parent Network Meeting
Connect with fellow MV Parents during our next All-School Open MVPN Meeting. We look forward to seeing you at one of the meetings.

In-person: 9:00 – 10:00 am, Lower Campus Fellowship Hall
Virtual: 7:00 – 8:00 pm, Zoom Link, ID: 89197797205, Passcode: Rxhcc8

April 20 – 21: ERB Testing
Grade 4 and Grade 5 students will participate in spring ERB standardized testing on the mornings of April 20 – 21. Students will test in reading comprehension and math. Students who qualify for accommodations will receive them accordingly. Please reach out to Angie Bush if you have any questions.

A WORD FROM YOUR DIRECTOR OF LOWER SCHOOL

Our return from Spring Break has been filled with new experiences to excite children about returning to school. I am thrilled to announce that our Inquiry Zone is back open for book checkout, research, and story time with Mrs. Rowe. Also, we have some challenging math problems posted on the chalkboards in each hallway. Our interactive and flexible spaces are promoting mixed-age level collaboration and higher level thinking skills. Students are enjoying the challenges and building on others’ thinking to solve the problems. Ask your child if they tried any of the math problems last week.

We engaged with lots of experts on campus this week. Our first grade students Zoomed with real astronauts to learn more about Virgin Galactic, while third graders interviewed scientists to discover how germs spread and die. Second graders began their unit on algebraic thinking and now know how to utilize letters in math! Parents served as MV Experts to help our students learn about HOLI in Kindergarten and others serviced as Entrepreneur Panel Experts in fifth grade. Kindergarten is preparing to host families for the annual Adjective Talent Show! Finally, fourth graders presented a movement and word study of the Preamble to the Constitution, learning that a democracy values each unique voice.

As always, we appreciate our volunteers that help with lunch on Fridays. This week’s volunteers were a part of lunch conversations that explored important questions like, “What do you think a rainbow would taste like?”

We hope to get great participation in our collection drive next week!

Kind regards,
Molly Hudson
Director of Lower School

Shelley Searcy
Head of Lower Campus

March 14, 2022

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Thursday, March 17: St. Patrick’s Day
Students are invited to wear green tops with uniform bottoms.

SAVE THESE DATES

Wednesday, March 23: Lower School Conference Day, No School for Lower School Students
We invite parents to come to school, sit in your child’s classroom, and see the work displayed in the hallway at our Spring Parent Conference. There is no school for students on this day. If you have not already signed up, please refer to your class’s Veracross page for the sign-up genius. We are committed to beginning and ending each conference on time to ensure all families have an opportunity to connect with the teacher.

Friday, March 25: MV Cares: MV Parent Prayer Group
8:00 – 9:00 am
Gailey Hall, Lower Campus
Our MV community is invited to lift up our students and others who have needs, in prayer. At this meeting, we will reflect on our community, and pray for individuals – students and staff members by name – offering gratitude for where we are as a school and ask for grace as we build something exceptional, together. Prayer requests may be made here.

Saturday, March 26: 1972 Society Appreciation Party

April 1 & April 8: Lower Campus Spring Soirees
More information to come
Spring Soiree plans are underway! A special event for Lower School students and a guest. If you are interested in helping coordinate this event please sign up below.

Kindergarten – Grade 2 Volunteer
Grade 3 – Grade 5 Volunteers 

A WORD FROM YOUR DIRECTOR OF LOWER SCHOOL

We hope that you had a wonderful Spring Break. This week often comes at a much needed time to reset with some family time. Whether you enjoyed rest or adventure, we are looking forward to seeing you tomorrow and hearing all about it.

We wanted to highlight one special project that happened right before our berak. Beginning in January, our Kindergarten and First Grade students in Profe Lilly’s Spanish class participated in a project called “Bringing Happiness.” They showed kindness to other children their age in an orphanage in Medellín, Colombia. After learning about the children in Medellín, our students designed and created colorful bracelets to spread kindness. Each different colored bead represented a Spanish word – sé tú, amigos, fé, amor, paz. Profe Lilly mailed the package filled with notes, the bracelets, and lots of love. Upon receiving the package in Colombia, the teachers at the orphanage videoed the children opening their gifts of kindness and sent a thank-you video message back to our Mount Vernon students. Profe Lilly showed our students the video so they could see the excitement and smiles of the children receiving their gifts. Our students were eager to identify the bracelet they created and watch a little boy or girl put it on. Profe Lilly couldn’t tell whose smiles were bigger- those who received the gifts or those who gave. It was a very special moment. We are grateful for our teachers who set the conditions for our little ones to learn to love others.

Kind regards,
Molly Hudson
Director of Lower School

Shelley Searcy
Head of Lower Campus

February 28, 2022

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Lower School COVID Landscape

The following reflects the COVID landscape as of Friday, February 25.

Lower School Students Lower Campus & Upper Campus Employees
C19 Positive  0 out of 351 0 out of 265

 

Tuesday, March 1: Uniform Resale
7:30 – 9:00 am
Administration Building 2, Upper Campus
Stop by the Uniform Resale to purchase gently used uniform and spirit wear items: Shirts/$5, Bottoms/$10, Sweatshirts, jackets, sweaters/$10. The Uniform Resale is open the first Tuesday of each month. If you are able and interested, please consider becoming a Uniform Resale volunteer. Bring your friends or make new ones at this fun and easy one-time volunteer opportunity. As a bonus – parent volunteers will have the first pick of inventory! Sign up here.

SAVE THESE DATES

March 7 – March 11: Spring Break, No School

April 1 & April 8: Lower Campus Spring Soirees
Spring Soiree plans are underway! These are two special events for Lower School students and a guest. More information to come. If you are interested in helping coordinate either of these events please sign up.
Kindergarten – Grade 2 Volunteers
Grade 3 – Grade 5 Volunteers 

A WORD FROM YOUR DIRECTOR OF LOWER SCHOOL

We cannot believe that February is coming to a close, and spring is upon us. This past month in the Lower School, your children had the opportunity to be artists! The Missoula Children’s Theatre production of “Rumplestiltskin” showcased the talents of 60 of our students, including 2 assistant directors! We appreciate the hard work of our children and support from our teachers and parents to make this magical event happen.

In visual arts, our kindergarten and first grade students studied Faith Ringold, a black author and illustrator who is best known for her story quilts. Students made their own quilt squares from cardstock and fun foam. Third graders have been exploring the Culinary Arts. This unit included studying the work of Wayne Thiebaud and zooming with an MVExpert, Sarah Holden, a culinary producer and cake artist. Students designed donuts with original ingredients and flavor combinations using paper mache and model magic. Their creations will be on display in the third grade hallway. Next time you are on campus we encourage you to check them out.

All good things,
Kind regards,

Molly Hudson
Director of Lower School

Shelley Searcy
Head of Lower Campus

COMMUNITY DEVELOPMENT

Engage as an MVPN Parent Volunteer in 2022-23
The Mount Vernon Parent Network (MVPN) relies on family volunteers to help the School build connections through community, while enhancing the student experience. Make a school-wide impact through athletics, arts, social events, service, MVXperts, and more, from home or on campus. Sign up for specific positions/committees for the 2022-2023 school year. Please contact Director of Community Impact Hunter Pierce for more information – [email protected].

Made in MV Spirit Shop
Engage in the Upper School with students, teachers, and other parents by volunteering for a short shift in the Made in MV Spirit Shop. Be some of the first to see the newest spirit wear and gear. Training is quick and easy! Contact Teresa Campbell at [email protected] with questions.

  • Tuesday mornings, 7:30 – 9:00 am
  • Wednesday afternoons, 2:30 – 4:00 pm
  • Thursdays at lunch, 11:00 am – 1:00 pm

February 21, 2022

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Monday, February 21: No School 

Tuesday, February 22: Jazz Night, All Ages Welcome
6:30 – 8:30 pm
Upper School Cafe
Join us for Jazz Night featuring live music, dancing, and food. This event is free to all. Swing dance lessons begin at 6:30 pm with live music from Middle School students, the Upper School Fabulous Mustangs, and professional jazz musicians starting at 7:00. Reserve your free tickets here.

Friday, February 25: MV Cares: MV Parent Prayer Group
8:00 – 9:00 am
Gailey Hall, Lower Campus
Our MV community is invited to lift up our students and others who have needs, in prayer. At this meeting, we will reflect on our community, and pray for individuals – students and staff members by name – offering gratitude for where we are as a school and ask for grace as we build something exceptional, together. Prayer requests may be made here.

SAVE THESE DATES

Tuesday, March 1: Uniform Resale
7:30 – 9:00 am
Administration Building 2, Upper Campus
Stop by the Uniform Resale to purchase gently used uniform and spirit wear items: Shirts/$5, Bottoms/$10, Sweatshirts, jackets, sweaters/$10. The Uniform Resale is open the first Tuesday of each month.

March 7 – March 11: Spring Break, No School for Students

April 1 & April 8: Lower Campus Spring Soirees
More information to come
Spring Soiree plans are underway! A special event for Lower School students and a guest. If you are interested in helping coordinate this event please sign up below.

Kindergarten – Grade 2 Volunteers

Grade 3 – Grade 5 Volunteers 

A WORD FROM YOUR DIRECTOR OF LOWER SCHOOL

Carpool duty on Monday morning was quite a site with flowers, mailboxes, Valentine’s, and other gifts making their way into the Lower School buildings. It was fun to see everyone dressed in their festive attire and celebrating friendships. Throughout the week, students learned about the meaning and traditions of the lunar new year this week. On Thursday, third graders had a special day. Dressed in lab coats and hearing from MV Expert, Kristen Cranmerstudents simulated surgery. All were highly engaged, cutting open the brain to learn science, dissecting numbers to understand fractions, and dividing words to master syllables.

On Friday, while you all began your long weekend, all teachers, Preschool through Grade 12 participated in an in-depth inquiry-based learning training to enhance our robust learning experiences for our students this spring. The project approach and project-based learning (PBL) prioritizes students’ curiosities and passions, optimizes deep learning, and sets the conditions for collaboration, creative thinking, and impact making. Teachers are excited about the new strategies learned and units they designed to keep students engaged in meaningful learning this semester.

We hope you all enjoyed your long weekend. We look forward to seeing you on Tuesday.

All good things,
Kind regards,
Molly Hudson
Director of Lower School
Shelley Searcy
Head of Lower Campus

February 14, 2022

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Lower School COVID Landscape
The following reflects the COVID landscape as of Friday, February 11.

Lower School Students Lower Campus & Upper Campus Employees
C19 Positive  3 out of 351 0 out of 265

As a reminder, effective February 14, the School will shift the face covering protocol from required to recommended for all students and faculty/staff members in Preschool through Grade 12. While not required, the School will recommend wearing a face covering, in classrooms and hallways. Supporting all members of our community, we will continue to have available KN95 face coverings and will offer vaccine clinics on both campuses at periodic times throughout the spring. During Chapel and other divisional large gatherings, students will be required to wear face coverings.

Monday, February 14: Valentine’s Day
Students are invited to wear a Valentines top with uniform bottoms or jeans.

February 14 – 18: Missoula Children’s Theatre
Grade 1 – 5 students are invited to participate in this weeklong immersive arts program through the Missoula Children’s Theatre. Please consider reserving this week for your student to participate in this exciting audition and rehearsal process, with a performance of “Rumplestiltskin” at the end of the week. More information to come. Reach out to Amanda Lower, [email protected], with questions.

Friday, February 18 – Monday, February 21: No School for Students

 

SAVE THESE DATES

Friday, February 25: MV Cares: MV Parent Prayer Group
8:00 – 9:00 am
Gailey Hall, Lower Campus
We invite all parents, grandparents, and caregivers to help lift up our Mount Vernon community in prayer. At each meeting, we reflect on a very relevant and timely devotion and pray for different MV students, faculty, and staff members by name. Prayer requests may be made here.

March 7 – March 11: Spring Break, No School for Students

April 1 & April 8: Lower Campus Spring Soirees
More information to come
Spring Soiree plans are underway! A special event for Lower School students and a guest. If you are interested in helping coordinate this event please sign up below.
Kindergarten – Grade 2 Volunteers
Grade 3 – Grade 5 Volunteers 

 

A WORD FROM YOUR DIRECTOR OF LOWER SCHOOL

Thank you for joining us at the MVat50 Benefit Gala to meet new families, eat, and dance the night away! What a wonderful evening. Thanks to your generous donations at this event, our Lower School students will be able to enjoy field experiences and expeditions – like hiking at the Chattahoochee or presenting their animal research at Zoo Atlanta – on new Mount Vernon buses.

This past week our Kindergarten students shared that their favorite learning was shape sorting in the classroom and the obstacle course in PE. (So if you see an obstacle course being constructed at your home, please join in the construction fun.) Second grade students published their final drafts of their nonfiction books and presented them to their third grade peers. Our third graders then wrote book reviews of these newly-published works. Fifth grade students are in the process of building sustainable cars, currently laser cutting their prototypes, and researching sources of renewable energy.

Be sure to swing by the STEAM wing of the Activities building the next time you are on campus to see our Grade 1 Light Museum of Reflection exhibit.

We look forward to celebrating Valentine’s Day on February 14. Students can wear a Valentine’s top with uniform bottoms or jeans.

Kind regards,

Molly Hudson
Director of Lower School

Shelley Searcy
Head of Lower Campus

 

COMMUNITY UPDATES

Mount Vernon Parent Network (MVPN)
As members of the Mount Vernon community – parents and grandparents are automatically a part of the MVPN, which works to promote a strong sense of community by encouraging MV families to Learn, Serve and Give. We provide our families the opportunity to support each other, as well as faculty and staff in an informed, welcoming environment. Our success is grounded in a shared mission, supportive community and strong parent participation.

Please complete this form to indicate your interest in getting more involved in the MVPN next school year. Please contact Director of Community Impact Hunter Pierce – [email protected] – with any questions.

Made in MV Spirit Shop
Located in the Upper School Building

Store Hours:

  • Tuesday, 7:30 – 9:00 am
  • Wednesday, 2:30 – 4:00 pm
  • Thursday, 11:00 am – 1:00 pm

Apple Pay, Credit Card, or electronic invoice via email available. In the Made in MV shop you can find men’s and women’s apparel, youth and toddler apparel, winter hats, leather goods, water bottles, umbrellas, aluminum MV car badges, and more.

Contact Teresa Campbell at [email protected] with any questions.

Uniform Resale
Located in Administration Building 2, Upper Campus
First Tuesday of every month, 7:30 – 9:00 am

Purchase gently used uniform and spirit wear items:

  • Shirts/$5
  • Bottoms/$10
  • Sweatshirts, Jackets, Sweaters/$10

February 7, 2022

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Wednesday, February 9: Virtual Grandparent Coffee
10:00 – 11:00 am
Zoom Link
ID: 87266610410
Passcode: wCDk9c
Please invite your students’ Grandparents & Special Friends to join us from the comfort of their own homes for this virtual event. Director of Visual and Performing Arts Matt Neylon will be joining the call to share more about the School’s integrated art strategy across all four divisions.

Wednesday, February 9 – Friday, February 11: Middle School Sketch Show
6:00 – 8:00 pm
Middle School BlackBox
The Mustang Musical Sketch Show is a hilarious mash-up of short student-written comedy sketches and some musical numbers – it’s like “Saturday Night Live” meets “Studio C” meets “Glee.” Don’t miss out!

Thursday, February 10: All-School Open Mount Vernon Parent Network Meeting
Two opportunities to participate – in person or virtual
Connect with fellow MV Parents during our All-School Open MVPN Meeting. Our
incoming Head of School, Kristy Lundstrom will share her vision for next year, and Chief Community Development Officer Anne Katz will update us on our growing community and share more about how to get involved. You will also hear from several of the School’s most engaged parent volunteers who inspire us to Learn, Serve, and Give every day. From boots on the ground to behind the scenes support, MV parents are the core of our community. We look forward to seeing you at one of our meetings. Please RSVP for the meeting(s) that you will attend.

IN PERSON
9:00 – 10:00 am
Lower Campus Fellowship Hall

VIRTUAL
7:00 – 8:00 pm
Zoom Link, ID: 89972634786 / Passcode: 806488

Thursday, February 10: Lower School Talk & Walk with Molly Hudson
8:15 – 8:45 am
Our February Talk and Walk will focus on the importance of questions. We will discuss how we build a culture of questions in our classrooms and examine a collection of learning artifacts. Then we will take a learning walk through our hallways and classrooms in Lower School. Spots will be limited to 10 participants enabling our group to travel in and out of classrooms in the least disruptive way possible. We will have a waitlist for each session that we will open if the response is high. We can’t wait to talk and walk with you. Please sign-up here to join us.

 

SAVE THESE DATES

Monday, February 14: Valentine’s Day
Students are invited to wear a Valentines top with uniform bottoms or jeans.

February 14 – 18: Missoula Children’s Theatre
Grade 1 – 5 students are invited to participate in this weeklong immersive arts program through the Missoula Children’s Theatre. Please consider reserving this week for your student to participate in this exciting audition and rehearsal process, with a performance of “Rumplestiltskin” at the end of the week. More information to come. Reach out to Amanda Lower, [email protected], with questions.

Friday, February 18 – Monday, February 21: No School for Students

RECAP

PARENT UNIVERSITY RECAP: Courage, Connection, and Resilience with Rachel Simmons
Watch the full recording in the Veracross Parent Portal. Rachel is a bestselling author, educator and executive coach helping people to be more authentic, assertive and resilient. As a regular on Good Morning America, she shares her expertise with MV families on how to navigate parenting tweens and teens through times that are more turbulent than ever.

This was such a relevant Parent University for daily conversations in our home. I feel better equipped to empower my Kindergartener to communicate and self-advocate as she faces friendship challenges now and in the future.” – Kindergarten parent Jacki Fink

PARENT UNIVERSITY RECAP: Trends in College Counseling
In case you missed it, you can learn more about Mount Vernon’s College Counseling program here. In this Parent University, the College Counseling team shared what they have learned during the unprecedented shift in the educational landscape since March 2020, additionally sharing the ways that Mount Vernon students are uniquely prepared to be competitive even in the most uncertain of times.

 

A WORD FROM YOUR DIRECTOR OF LOWER SCHOOL

There is much excitement in the air this month. It was fun to see so many Lower School families at the Gala on Saturday. What an evening! Thank you for your support.

In school this past week, we are learning about Lunar New Year and Mardi Gras transitions from some of our Mount Vernon students. Additionally, we kicked off Black History Month by extending our learning of the history and achievements of African Americans. Did you know that February was chosen because Frederick Douglass and Abraham Lincoln were both born in February?

Thank you for entrusting us with the care of your children. We see each child loving school, learning, and growing. Our Lower Schoolers are mastering foundational skills, building relationships, and increasing their curiosities, and last week three Upper School students signed athletic letters of intent on #NationalSigningDay to play in college. Their coaches spoke about each athlete’s character, effort, and heart. It’s great to be a Mount Vernon Mustang!

 

Kind regards,

Molly Hudson
Director of Lower School

Shelley Searcy
Head of Lower Campus

January 10, 2022

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Thursday, January 13: Parent University with Dr. Lisa Damour: Helping Children and Teenagers Manage Challenging Emotions in Challenging Times
9:00 – 10:00 am
Join Zoom Meeting:
https://us02web.zoom.us/j/85081015382?pwd=cytxT1N3Z1VmNm03U1FsTXI2Y3VXUT09
Meeting ID: 850 8101 5382
Passcode: GiN3Hf
Dr. Lisa Damour explains the psychological science key to understanding how stress and anxiety operate, both under everyday conditions and at times of heightened concern and disruption. Join us to learn more about how we can:

  • cultivate and protect kids’ psychological health
  • help kids develop adaptive strategies for managing intense emotions
  • address the specific challenges which come with each stage of development

Recognized as a thought leader by the American Psychological Association for her work on stress and anxiety, Dr. Lisa Damour is the author of two New York Times best-selling books, Untangled: Guiding Teenage Girls Through the Seven Transitions into Adulthood and Under Pressure: Confronting the Epidemic of Stress and Anxiety in Girls.

Thursday, January 13: Lower School Walk and Talk with Molly Hudson
2:15 – 2:45 pm
Fellowship Hall
This month our Talk and Walk will focus on Inquiry-Based Learning (IBL). Come hear the neuroscience behind learning through inquiry and how we do it throughout Lower School. Then we will take a learning walk through our hallways and some classrooms to observe IBL in action. Spots will be limited to 10 participants enabling our group to travel in and out of classrooms in the least disruptive way possible. We will have a waitlist for each session that we will open if the response is high. We can’t wait to talk and walk with you. Please sign-up here to join us.

 

SAVE THESE DATES

Monday, January 17: No School for Students

Wednesday, January 19: MV Cares, Parent Prayer Group
8:45 – 9:30 am
Gailey Hall, Lower Campus
We invite all parents, grandparents, and caregivers to help lift up our Mount Vernon community in prayer. At each meeting, we reflect on a very relevant and timely devotion and pray for different MV students, faculty, and staff members by name. Prayer requests may be made here.

Monday, January 24 – Monday, February 7: Perennial Enrollment Period
More information to come.

Thursday, January 27, 2022: Parent University- Trends in College Counseling, 2022 for K-8 Families
9:00 – 10:00 am
https://us02web.zoom.us/j/86181980265?pwd=RnVFWEFYWStvc3BJTWNDUmlNZy9tdz09
Meeting ID: 861 8198 0265
Passcode: 877s0G
Please join us to learn more about Mount Vernon’s College Counseling – an added advantage to the Mount Vernon education. Since March 2020, all schools (high schools, K12 schools, and colleges) have been dealing with an unprecedented shift in the educational landscape due to the impacts of COVID19. We look forward to sharing with you what we’ve learned through this admissions cycle and highlighting the ways that Mount Vernon students are uniquely prepared to be competitive even in the most uncertain of times.

Your MV College Counseling Team of Erin McCubbin, Ryan May, Aerial Dickerson, and Alejandro Ramirez are excited to meet with you! Feel free to submit any specific questions or topic requests in advance here. Sample topics:

  • The current structure and goals of the MV college counseling program
  • How MV’s grading and assessment philosophy (Altitude and CBE) align with today’s shifting college admission landscape
  • Statistics and outcomes from previous graduating classes
  • What the person who reads your child’s college application is looking for in a future student

Saturday, February 5: The MVat50 Benefit
7:00 – 11:00 pm
Guardian Works
755 Echo St NE
The MVat50 Benefit Gala will be here before we know it on Saturday, February 5 at Guardian Works in Midtown. Volunteers are planning a spectacular night for our community and you will not want to miss it – dress is cocktail attire. Dance to live music by the band Yacht Rock Schooner, enjoy heavy appetizers followed by dinner, and bid on unique experiences and items through both a silent and live auction. Get your tickets now! 

More event information.

Wine/Bourbon Drive for MVat50 Benefit Gala
The MVat50 Benefit event Parent Co-Chairs are looking for donations of high-end quality bottles of bourbon and/or wine for the MVat50 Benefit Gala. The donations will be used at the event in the Wine/Bourbon Toss game.

If you would like to donate a bottle of wine or bourbon they are looking for a variety of labels that range at $50/bottle and above.

The event chairs will be at the morning and afternoon carpools on Lower Campus on Thursday, January 13 to collect any donated bottles. On Upper Campus they will be at morning and afternoon carpool on Friday, January 14 to collect donations.

Please reach out to the co-chairs with questions:
Ashley Giardino
Marci Ehrlich
Ashly Cox 

 

A WORD FROM YOUR DIRECTOR OF LOWER SCHOOL

We are grateful that we were able to start school back on campus and on time, unlike many of our counterparts in our city and around the world. Last week, we enjoyed hearing your children’s stories of adventures, traditions, and memories made over the holidays, and we are ready to jump into a new year. On Wednesday, Ms. Hayes shared a virtual chapel message encouraging our students to let their light shine. Matthew 5:6 says, “In the same way, let your light shine before others, that they may see your good deeds and glorify your Father in heaven.” We are also reminding our students to use their Mount Vernon Mindsets to be a bridge, helping our community to stay connected and stay safe.

Please note that with the COVID spike, we are favoring outdoor learning, play, PE, and lunches again. We encourage you to label your child’s coats and ensure they come to school each day. Please also pack a beach towel to help us spread out for picnic lunches.

We would like to take this opportunity to introduce you to our new Lower School Executive Assistant. Replacing Mr. Cheek, Ms. Katie Jennison will be greeting our community at the front desk each day and helping to run the behind-the-scenes operations of Lower School. In addition to loving children, Katie is personable, positive, and very organized. She is an advanced musician and vocal performer, sailing instructor, and speaks two languages. A graduate of Furman University, Katie served as the Sailing Program Manager at Camp Seafarer and is excited to bring her variety of gifts and passions to the Lower School at Mount Vernon. When you see a new face at the front desk, please introduce yourself and welcome Katie.

Finally, there are two events we want to make sure you do not miss. We encourage you to attend Dr. Damour’s Parent University on Thursday. With the health and well-being of our youngest at the forefront of our attention, she has great insight and tools for parenting during these stressful times. Also, the MVat50 Benefit Gala will be on Saturday, February 5 at Guardian Works in Midtown. This is a great opportunity to connect as a community and have fun!

 

Kind regards,

Molly Hudson
Director of Lower School

Shelley Searcy
Head of Lower Campus

 

January 3, 2022

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COVID Landscape

Due to the current COVID surge present in the Mount Vernon community, all faculty/staff members and students are required to wear face coverings, as the School temporarily shifts the protocols for the health and well-being of our entire community. For more information, be sure to read the email from December 28.

Monday, January 3: No School for Students

SAVE THESE DATES

Thursday, January 13: Parent University with Dr. Lisa Damour: Helping Children and Teenagers Manage Challenging Emotions in Challenging Times
8:30 – 9:30 am
*Zoom Information to come 
Upper School Blackbox Theater
Dr. Lisa Damour explains the psychological science key to understanding how stress and anxiety operate, both under everyday conditions and at times of heightened concern and disruption. Join us to learn more about how we can:

  • cultivate and protect kids’ psychological health
  • help kids develop adaptive strategies for managing intense emotions
  • address the specific challenges which come with each stage of development

Recognized as a thought leader by the American Psychological Association for her work on stress and anxiety, Dr. Lisa Damour is the author of two New York Times best-selling books, Untangled: Guiding Teenage Girls Through the Seven Transitions into Adulthood and Under Pressure: Confronting the Epidemic of Stress and Anxiety in Girls.

Thursday, January 13: Lower School Walk and Talk with Molly Hudson
2:15 – 2:45 pm
Fellowship Hall
This month our Talk and Walk will focus on Inquiry-Based Learning (IBL). Come hear the neuroscience behind learning through inquiry and how we do it throughout Lower School. Then we will take a learning walk through our hallways and some classrooms to observe IBL in action. Spots will be limited to 10 participants enabling our group to travel in and out of classrooms in the least disruptive way possible. We will have a waitlist for each session that we will open if the response is high. We can’t wait to talk and walk with you. Please sign-up here to join us.

Monday, January 17: No School for Students

Thursday, January 27, 2022: Parent University- Trends in College Counseling, 2022 for K-8 Families
8:15 – 9:15 am
Lower Campus Fellowship Hall
Please join us to learn more about Mount Vernon’s College Counseling – an added advantage to the Mount Vernon education. Since March 2020, all schools (high schools, K12 schools, and colleges) have been dealing with an unprecedented shift in the educational landscape due to the impacts of COVID19. We look forward to sharing with you what we’ve learned through this admissions cycle and highlighting the ways that Mount Vernon students are uniquely prepared to be competitive even in the most uncertain of times.

Your MV College Counseling Team of Erin McCubbin, Ryan May, Aerial Dickerson, and Alejandro Ramirez are excited to meet with you! Feel free to submit any specific questions or topic requests in advance here. Sample topics:

  • The current structure and goals of the MV college counseling program
  • How MV’s grading and assessment philosophy (Altitude and CBE) align with today’s shifting college admission landscape
  • Statistics and outcomes from previous graduating classes
  • What the person who reads your child’s college application is looking for in a future student

 

COMMUNITY DEVELOPMENT: LEARN, SERVE, GIVE

MVFund
Through the month of December, more than 250 families answered the call to contribute to the MVFund, joining the 450 families already participating in the School’s annual giving campaign. All families are asked to participate to help the School meet its commitment to enhance the experience for every student at MV through a variety of projects to improve the fields our students compete on, the stages they perform on, the unique spaces they learn in, and even the buses they travel in. Every student on both campuses benefit from this year’s Mount Vernon Fund.

MV Impact
Did you know that if each MV Family serves at least 50 hours, we will exceed our goal of 50,000 volunteer hours during our 50th anniversary of Mount Vernon School! To date, the heart of service in our MV Community has reached individuals and organizations in Georgia, Alabama, Missouri, and California and have accumulated 32,081.75 of volunteer impact hours! Thank you for sharing your time, talent, and treasure with worthy causes all over the world.

Engagement
There are many opportunities to get involved throughout the second half of this school year. Volunteer your time and talent while you make new friends! View all of our current volunteer opportunities or contact Hunter Pierce at [email protected] to learn more.

Currently, we are looking for volunteers to help in Lower School through the end of the year, weekly or bi-weekly. The teachers could use a break at lunchtime and parents could join their children in the cafeteria. This is a great way to show appreciation to our teachers…just a short block of time per week! Lunchtime Support for LS Teachers

Events

Thursday, February 10: Open Mount Vernon Parent Network (MVPN) meeting
9:00 – 10:00 am in person
7:00 – 8:00 pm on Zoom
All MV community members including parents, grandparents, faculty, and staff are invited to join this open meeting to hear from existing Network Chairs to learn how the Parent Network operates, how to get involved and engaged from helping at events to participating in the MVXperts program, and what the Network with look like in the 2022-2023 school year.

Saturday, March 26: 1972 Society Appreciation Social
In honor of Mount Vernon’s founding year, those families who contribute gifts of $1,972 and higher to the MVFund become members of the 1972 Society, reflecting our Mount Vernon community’s strong legacy of giving. We look forward to celebrating all 1972 Society members at the 1972 Society Appreciation Social on Saturday, March 26.

Saturday, February 5: The MVat50 Benefit
7:00 – 11:00 pm
Guardian Works
755 Echo St NE
Tickets and sponsorships are going fast for the MVat50 Benefit – be sure to reserve yours today. You can find more detailed information about the Benefit here, as well as on Instagram and Facebook.

This gala event will feature both a live and silent auction. To learn more about how you can donate an item or experience, please contact Amanda Richmond at [email protected] or Carrie Patrick at [email protected].

A WORD FROM YOUR DIRECTOR OF LOWER SCHOOL

Happy New Year! Did you and your family enjoy a wonderful Christmas break? Our Toys for Tots Chapel and the Christmas Arts Showcases definitely sent us into the holiday filled with joy! We are looking forward to gathering back on campus to hear about everyone’s traditions, adventures, and rest.

We always like to remember the beauty of having a fresh start this time of year. August always brings new beginnings, and January does too. As a reminder, there is no school for students tomorrow, but teachers will gather on campus to engage in professional learning as well as design second-semester learning experiences that challenge each child to grow while still having fun. We look forward to inviting parents on campus more often and getting kids off campus to learn in real-world, relevant ways. We are grateful for the opportunity to set new goals, raise expectations, and have some fun in 2022.

See you on Tuesday!

Kind regards,

Molly Hudson
Director of Lower School

Shelley Searcy
Head of Lower Campus

December 6, 2021

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COVID LANDSCAPE
The following reflects the COVID landscape as of Friday, December 3, 2021.
Lower School COVID Positive: 0 out of 351
Lower & Upper Campus Employees: 0 out of 257

Monday, December 6 – Wednesday, December 15: Toys for Tots Drive
Students are encouraged to donate a new, unwrapped toy to Toys for Tots in partnership with the United States Marine Corps. On Wednesday, December 15, the drive will culminate with a special Toys for Tots chapel on each campus where members of the USMC are expected to be present to accept the donated toys. Lower Campus toy collection will take place in each classroom, while Upper Campus collections will take place at each respective front desk.

Monday, December 6: Rising Middle School Walk & Talk
8:15 – 9:15 am
Upper Campus, Middle School Art Gallery
Have you wondered what life will be like in a few years when you have a Middle Schooler at Mount Vernon? Join us for a walk and talk on December 6 at 8:15 am and see MV Middle in action! We will begin the Walk & Talk in the Middle School Art Gallery. Register here to reserve your space.

Tuesday, December 7: Uniform Resale
7:30 – 9:00 am
Administration Building 2, Upper Campus
Stop by Uniform Resale on the first Tuesday of each month to pick up lightly used uniform and spirit wear items.

Wednesday, December 8: All-School Late Start
9:10 am Carpool begins
9:30 am School begins
*Childcare is not available before school begins 

Thursday, December 9: Parent University – Parenting in a Tech World: Live Q&A
8:15 – 9:15 am
Fellowship Hall, Lower Campus
Please join Chief Parent Officer Titania Jordan and Vice President of Business Development Matt McKee, co-authors of Parenting in a Tech World and leaders at Bark.us, as they answer families’ questions live and in-person. Although Preschool through Upper School families are invited to attend, this event is most applicable for families of children in grades 4-12.

Friday, December 10: Covid-19 Vaccine Clinic for ages 5-11
1:00 – 3:00 pm
Fellowship Hall
MV has partnered with a local pediatrician’s office and pediatric nurses from CHOA to offer a Pfizer COVID vaccine clinic for students ages 5 – 11. Prior to the clinic, please sign up here.

 

SAVE THESE DATES

Tuesday, December 14: Christmas Arts Showcase
6:00 – 9:30 pm
Upper Campus
Join us for our 10th Annual Christmas Arts Showcase on Tues, Dec 14. Visitors will be guided on a 90-minute immersive tour with short performances, visual art installations, showcases of learning, virtual reality, hot cocoa and more. Mount Vernon’s creativity will be on full display as our instrumental and vocal ensembles, dance teams, theatre troupes, VR club, and iDiploma programs join forces to create a truly unforgettable experience. Get your tickets today here.

Wednesday, December 15: MV Cares, Parent Prayer Group
8:45 – 9:30 am
Gailey Hall, Lower Campus
We invite all parents, grandparents, and caregivers to help lift up our Mount Vernon community in prayer. At each meeting, we reflect on a very relevant and timely devotion and pray for different MV students, faculty, and staff members by name. Prayer requests may be made here.

Thursday, December 16: Lower Campus Christmas Arts Showcase
8:00 am – 12:00 pm
Lower Campus, Mount Vernon Presbyterian Church Sanctuary
Mount Vernon Lower Campus parents, grandparents, and special friends are invited for a morning of performances. Check out the schedule below to see when your student(s) will be performing.
8:30 – 9:00 am – Preschool
10:00 – 10:30 am – Grades 2-3
12:15 – 12:45 pm – Kindergarten & Grade 1
1:30 – 2:00 pm – Grades 4-5

Friday, December 17 – Monday, January 3: School Break

 

COMMUNITY DEVELOPMENT: LEARN, SERVE, GIVE

Volunteers Needed: Faculty Appreciation Lunch
Wednesday, December 8
Lower Campus, Fellowship Hall
Help is needed for the annual Faculty Appreciation Lunch, a moment faculty and staff look forward to each year. Volunteers can sign up to help serve lunch or to provide class coverage during lunch. With questions, please contact Hunter Pierce, [email protected].

Make an End-of-Year Impact: MVFund
With the end of the calendar year fast approaching, we invite you to make an impact with a year-end gift! Thank you to these 400+ families that have already contributed to the MVFund, the School’s annual giving campaign.

Please make a gift or pledge to the MV Fund to provide additional learning opportunities and expedite key projects. As a reminder, you have until June 30, 2022, to fulfill your pledge for 2021-22. Thank you in advance for your generosity and participation!

The MVat50 Benefit
Tickets and sponsorships are going fast for the MVat50 Benefit – be sure to reserve yours today. You can find more detailed information about the Benefit here, as well as on Instagram and Facebook. Proceeds from ticket sales, as well as both the silent and live auctions, will benefit our entire community by providing the opportunity to purchase a new fleet of buses for the School. Don’t miss your chance to attend this event!

 

A WORD FROM YOUR DIRECTOR OF LOWER SCHOOL

Have you seen the MV buses pulling in and out of our campus lately? Our learners have been taking their learning out of the classroom and into our community. Expeditionary learning is part of our school culture as our learners start with questions from experts and have the opportunity to explore different parts of Atlanta to make discoveries and connections to the classroom curriculum.

This past week, fourth-grade students traveled to Meta Music by class to ask questions from experts, measured noise levels during Upper Campus chapel, and visited the BlackBox across the street.

We are excited that off-campus expeditions are back, and that all grade levels will be making plans for some exciting adventures in the second semester. Be on the lookout for announcements and opportunities to join your child’s class.

Kind regards,

Molly Hudson
Director of Lower School

Shelley Searcy
Head of Lower Campus

November 5, 2021

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Tuesday, November 2: Parent University — Talking to Children about the Birds and the Bees
8:15 – 9:15 am
Hosted by Mary Flo Ridley
Lower Campus, Fellowship Hall
Mary Flo Ridley is an expert in discussing sex with children in a healthy way. If you want your child to learn about sex from you – not their friends or the internet, to handle this differently than your parents did, but don’t know how, want CLEAR direction and a PLAN to tackle this topic, to build open and safe communication in your family, and/or to protect your kids from the sex-saturated culture, you will want to hear what Mary Flo advises. Her program, Birds & Bees, will empower you, as parents, to have difficult conversations about basic biology.

Tuesday, November 2 – Uniform Resale
7:30 – 9:00 am
Administration Building 2, Upper Campus
Stop by Uniform Resale on the first Tuesday of each month to pick up lightly used uniform and spirit wear items.

Tuesday, November 2: School Portrait Makeup Date
Due to the forecast for rain, we will be moving Retake Picture Day to Tuesday, November 2. School Portrait Retakes will be taken on Lower Campus from 8:20-11:20 am. If you would like your student to retake their photo, sign up here. If your student was absent on the original Portrait Day, you should have received a separate email from the School and do not need to sign up using the above form. Should you have any questions, please contact Reagan Langston at [email protected]

Thursday, November 4: PlayMaker Registration Opens
Registration for PlayMaker (after school enrichment classes) for spring opens November 4 in Veracross. Registration will take place on the Veracross Parent Portal. Classes fill quickly, so registering early is encouraged. Prior to registration, you can review the PlayMaker course selection catalog here. The deadline to register is November 18.

Thursday, November 4 – Saturday, November 6: Middle School Production of Puffs
The School of Magic is coming to Mount Vernon – Don’t miss an opportunity to see PUFFS or: Seven Increasingly Eventful Years at a Certain School of Magic & Magic. For seven years a certain boy wizard went to a certain Wizard School and conquered evil. This, however, is not his story. This is the story of the Puffs… who just happened to be there too. A tale for anyone who has never been destined to save the world. This show is appropriate for all ages. Reserve your tickets here. 

Friday, November 5: Early Dismissal
The Mustang Varsity Football Team is hosting their final regular season game of the year. Since we don’t have field lights, games typically start earlier, later in the season. With a 3:00pm kickoff, carpool, parking, guests, and other logistics impact both campuses. On November 5, the Lower School will have an early dismissal at 1:30 pm. Extended Play run 1:30 pm until 6:00 pm. No PlayMaker classes will be held on this day. Rather, classes will be made up on Friday, December 10.

  • 1:30 Preschool and Lower School Dismissal
  • 1:45 Upper School Dismissal
  • 2:00 Middle School Dismissal

 

SAVE THESE DATES

Thursday, November 11: Vaccine Clinic

Thursday, November 11: Lower School Parent Walk and Talk
2:15 – 2:45 pm
Our talk and walk this month will focus on how we teach thinking at Mount Vernon. Our teachers have been trained in the use of Visible Thinking Routines from Harvard Graduate School of Education’s Project Zero. Come hear the brain science behind their effectiveness and try one out for yourself. Then we will take a learning walk through our hallways and some classrooms to observe their use in Lower School. Spots will be limited to 10 participants enabling our group to travel in and out of classrooms in the least disruptive way possible. We will have a waitlist for each session that we will open if the response is high. We can’t wait to talk and walk with you. Please sign-up here to join us.

Friday, November 12: Managing and Monitoring K-12 Children’s Online Presence
9:00 – 10:00 am
Hosted by Katie Cain and Bark
Register for webinar here
Back by popular demand, Katie Cain and our partners at Bark will share strategies and resources for managing children’s online presence. From school-issued iPads to personal cell phones, from web filters to parental controls, we aim to equip families with resources to confidently approach technology use with their children/teenagers.

Friday, November 19: Grandparents/Special Friends Day
This is an early release day prior to Thanksgiving break. The invitation and schedule for the event was sent in late October. The School sent personal invitations to each student’s grandparents and/or special friends based on the information parents provided.

Help Needed for Grandparents and Special Friends Day
With so many moving parts, parent assistance is needed to make this event a success. Please sign up to be a parent volunteer the morning of November 19, indicating the role that best suits you. Volunteers will help by greeting and guiding our visitors around Lower Campus during the event. All parent volunteers will receive a green MV Volunteer t-shirt to wear for the event.

November 29: Authentic Connections: Virtual Lunch and Learn
11:45 am – 12:45 pm
Join Zoom Here
The Mount Vernon School is advancing its mission by engaging all students – through stories, experiences, data, and research serving as guides. As a result of the pandemic, MV students have had to adjust to a variety of circumstances, learn to be agile, and develop resilience. Partnering with Authentic Connections to collect and analyze data, we will be able to strengthen our focus on supporting well-being and resilience within our students. Join us virtually to hear from experts regarding trends and best practices for supporting adolescents through these unique times.

 

COMMUNITY DEVELOPMENT: LEARN, SERVE, GIVE

Connect to and with our MV Community through volunteer engagement, impact projects, and service learning. The Mount Vernon Parent Network (MVPN) works to promote a strong sense of community by encouraging families to Learn, Serve and Give. Our success is grounded in a shared mission, supportive community, and strong parent participation.

The MV Fund: Make a significant impact in the School’s 50th year by supporting our annual giving campaign, Mount Vernon Fund, with a gift or pledge. Your contribution helps the School provide additional learning opportunities, while accelerating key projects this school year.

In honor of the School’s 50th year, please consider contributing a $5050 anniversary gift. Learn more about how to make an impact in our 50th year.

The MVat50 Benefit
Plan to join us on Saturday, February 5, for an evening of fellowship with a purpose. Tickets will go on sale next week. All proceeds from sponsorships and auctions will benefit our entire community by providing the School the ability to purchase a new fleet of buses, allowing students to take advantage of expeditionary learning, athletes to travel to away games, and artists to take shows on the road. Learn more about sponsorship opportunities for The Benefit here.

 

A WORD FROM YOUR DIRECTOR OF LOWER SCHOOL

The energy in the Lower School is electric right now, and students are having so much fun learning about their world. One of my highlights was hearing from a second grade-class who published a class book, Say Something which was written and illustrated by each student in the class. Learning the conventions of grammar and, more importantly, themes like using your voice to make a difference, students have been reading their book to different audiences around campus. Inspired by author Peter H. Reynold’s book, we are so proud of the upstanders in our Lower School.

All students had a spooktacular day on Thursday. Classrooms focused their literacy, STEM, social studies, creating thinking, and art lessons through real-world integrated context of fall and Halloween. Additionally, Lower Schooers cheered for the Preschool Costume Parade and enjoyed class parties. We hope you have a fun and safe weekend.

Kind regards,

Molly Hudson
Director of Lower School

Shelley Searcy
Head of Lower Campus

November 12, 2021

Your Subtitle Goes Here
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COVID LANDSCAPE
In case you missed it, be sure to review November 3 COVID letter to PS-Grade 6. The following reflects the COVID landscape as of Friday, November 5.
Lower School COVID Positive: 0 out of 351
Lower & Upper Campus Employees: 0 out of 257

Thursday, November 11: Vaccine Clinic
11:00 am – 4:00 pm
Middle School Lightbox
The next vaccine clinic is scheduled for Thursday, November 11 from 11:00 am to 4:00 pm located on the Upper Campus, MS Lightbox. This clinic will be available to employees and students ages 12+ wanting the Pfizer vaccine or booster.

Thursday, November 11: Lower School Parent Walk and Talk with Molly Hudson
2:15 – 2:45 pm
Our talk and walk this month will focus on how we teach thinking at Mount Vernon. Our teachers have been trained in the use of Visible Thinking Routines from Harvard Graduate School of Education’s Project Zero. Come hear the brain science behind their effectiveness and try one out for yourself. Then we will take a learning walk through our hallways and some classrooms to observe their use in Lower School. Spots will be limited to 10 participants enabling our group to travel in and out of classrooms in the least disruptive way possible. We will have a waitlist for each session that we will open if the response is high. We can’t wait to talk and walk with you. Please sign-up here to join us.

Friday, November 12: Managing and Monitoring K-12 Children’s Online Presence
9:00 – 10:00 am
Hosted by Katie Cain and Bark
Register for webinar here
Back by popular demand, Katie Cain and our partners at Bark will share strategies and resources for managing children’s online presence. From school-issued iPads to personal cell phones, from web filters to parental controls, we aim to equip families with resources to confidently approach technology use with their children/teenagers.

 

SAVE THESE DATES

Tuesday, November 16 – 18: Upper Campus Production of Little Women the Musical
7:00 – 9:00 pm
Mount Vernon Studios is thrilled to bring you Little Women. Based on Louisa May Alcott’s life, Little Women follows the adventures of sisters Jo, Meg, Beth, and Amy March. Jo is trying to sell her stories for publication, but the publishers are not interested – her friend, Professor Bhaer, tells her that she has to do better and write more from her life experiences. Begrudgingly taking this advice, Jo weaves the story of herself and her sisters and their lives growing up in Civil War America. Reserve your tickets here.

Thursday, November 18: MV Grandparents Reception at the Night of the Arts
All Grandparents have received an invitation to a Grandparents only reception from 5:30-6:30. This will take place prior to the performance of Little Women. Please RSVP and reserve your tickets through the Paperless Post Invitation.

Friday, November 19: Early Release for Students
11:30 am
Please note that G2 – G5 carpool begins at 11:30, and older students who carpool with a PS – G1 student will be released at 11:15 to join younger siblings. Extended Play will not be available.

Friday, November 19: Grandparents/Special Friends Day
This is an early release day prior to Thanksgiving break. The invitation and schedule for the event was sent in late October. The School sent personal invitations to each student’s grandparents and/or special friends based on the information parents provided.

Help Needed for Grandparents and Special Friends Day
With so many moving parts, parent assistance is needed to make this event a success. Please sign up to be a parent volunteer the morning of November 19, indicating the role that best suits you. Volunteers will help by greeting and guiding our visitors around Lower Campus during the event. All parent volunteers will receive a green MV Volunteer t-shirt to wear for the event.

November 29: Authentic Connections: Virtual Lunch and Learn
11:45 am – 12:45 pm
Join Zoom Here
The Mount Vernon School is advancing its mission by engaging all students – through stories, experiences, data, and research serving as guides. As a result of the pandemic, MV students have had to adjust to a variety of circumstances, learn to be agile, and develop resilience. Partnering with Authentic Connections to collect and analyze data, we will be able to strengthen our focus on supporting well-being and resilience within our students. Join us virtually to hear from experts regarding trends and best practices for supporting adolescents through these unique times.

Wednesday, December 1: Vaccine Clinic
11:00 am – 1:00 pm
Middle School Lightbox

 

A WORD FROM YOUR DIRECTOR OF LOWER SCHOOL

It has been fun to host so many parents on campus recently, from our Parent-Teacher Conferences to Parent University to our first expedition! Thank you for your support and partnership. As requested, here is the slide deck from the Birds and the Bee’s Presentation. It is always wonderful to have parents on campus seeing the learning that is happening.

Additionally, we hope you have all had an opportunity to review your child’s trimester one progress report. As a reminder, to access the progress report, navigate to the Parent Portal: https://portals.veracross.com/mountvernon/parent. Then scroll down to the My Children section and click the reports tab for your student, then click the link to launch the report.

Finally, the Cardboard Challenge has been postponed to next week. We are excited for Lower Schoolers to have the opportunity to complete a lap in design thinking. They will be conducting empathy interviews to design a backpack for another student. After identifying a friend’s needs, children will be given cereal boxes, cardboard, and tools to sketch, design, prototype and build. We will practice giving and receiving feedback, and, of course, have fun! Be sure to check out your child’s Seesaw posts to see our young designers in action.

Kind regards,

Molly Hudson
Director of Lower School

Shelley Searcy
Head of Lower Campus

October 17, 2021

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Coming Up This Week in Lower School: October 18 – 22

Monday, October 18

Tuesday, October 19

Wednesday, October 20

Vaccine Clinic for Adults and Students who are 12 or older
11:00 -1:00 in the MS Lightbox – Required forms:
1) Briarcliff Health Mart Vaccine Immunization Form
2) MV School Consent, Waiver & Release Form

Thursday, October 21
Parent University – Understanding Your Child’s Progress
8:15 am Lower Campus Fellowship Hall
Mount Vernon uses a comprehensive and balanced approach to assessment and progress reporting. Come hear from our Lower Campus Leadership Team to learn more about our approach to assessing and reporting on student achievement.

Upper School One-Act Play

6:00 pm Upper School Black Box
Don’t miss The One-Act Play That Goes Wrong this week in the Upper School. This super-hilarious one-act is a hilarious 75 minute comedy like you’ve never seen before. The actors are accident-prone, and everything that can go wrong…does! Reserve your tickets here.

Friday, October 22 at 6:00 pm and Saturday, October 23 at 2:00 pm
Upper School One-Act Play in the Upper School Black Box
Don’t miss The One-Act Play That Goes Wrong this week in the Upper School. This super-hilarious one-act is a hilarious 75 minute comedy like you’ve never seen before. The actors are accident-prone, and everything that can go wrong…does! Reserve your tickets here.

SAVE THESE DATES

Tuesday, October 26: Parent University – Affinity and Alliance Program at Mount Vernon School (virtual only) Join via Zoom
8:30 – 9:30 am Mount Vernon norms call upon community members to start with questions and to share the well. These actions make a difference for individuals, and research shows that when individuals are able to gather in groups where they see themselves reflected, the questions and sharing take on new meaning and deeper impact toward positive ends. In this academic year, the Mount Vernon School will begin hosting Affinity Group gatherings for members of our Black, Indigenous, and People of Color (BIPOC) community. As a school grounded in Christian values, we draw upon sound research, stories, and experiences of our students, alumni, and families in the action of convening these affinity groups. Join Stacey Lee, Mount Vernon’s Chief IDEA Officer to experience, first-hand, the ways in which the design of Affinity Groups will enhance our school community.

Wednesday, October 27: New Family Drop-In Coffee
7:45 – 9:15 am MVPN’s New Family Chairs Amanda Woodall and Amanda Richmond invite new families who joined MV for the 2020-2021 and 2021-2022 to the Upper Campus Green to build community among our newest Mustangs. Come as you are, bring your morning caffeine, or grab a cup of coffee at the Ground Floor Coffee Shop in the US Cafe.

Thursday, October 28: Veracross Parent Portal Hands-on Workshop for Lower Campus
11:45 – 12:45 Families are invited on-campus to learn more about the Veracross system, including a hands-on tutorial on the many capabilities of the platform: subscribe to your student’s class schedule, update your profile information, find families within a 10-mile radius, donate to the MV Fund, link to key resources, and much more.

Friday, October 29: No School for Students/Fall Parent Conference Day
As we near the end of the first trimester, we look forward to the opportunity to share your child’s progress with you at our Fall Parent Conference. There is no school for students on this day, but save the date. A sign-up will be posted on your class Veracross Page.

Thursday, November 11: Vaccine Clinic

Friday, November 19: Grandparents/Special Friends Day
This is an early release day prior to Thanksgiving break. The invitation and schedule for the event will be sent in late October. Please fill out this form completely so a personal invitation can be sent to each student’s grandparents and/or special friends.

Wednesday, December 1: Vaccine Clinic 

A WORD FROM YOUR DIRECTOR OF LOWER SCHOOL

What a fun week in Lower School! We want to extend a special thank you to all families for attending the Lower School Walk and Talk with Mrs. Hudson and Ms. Hayes. Your feedback was encouraging, and your questions were inspiring. Be on lookout for additional opportunities each month.

Many thanks,

Molly Hudson
Director of Lower School l x4211

Shelley Searcy
Head of Lower Campus | x2001

October 25, 2021

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COVID LANDSCAPE
The following reflects the COVID landscape as of Friday, October 22.
Lower School COVID Positive: 0 out of 351
Lower & Upper Campus Employees: 0 out of 257

Tuesday, October 26
Parent University, 8:30 – 9:30 am – Affinity and Alliance Program at Mount Vernon School (virtual only) Join via Zoom
Mount Vernon norms call upon community members to start with questions and to share the well. These actions make a difference for individuals, and research shows that when individuals are able to gather in groups where they see themselves reflected, the questions and sharing take on new meaning and deeper impact toward positive ends. In this academic year, the Mount Vernon School will begin hosting Affinity Group gatherings for members of our Black, Indigenous, and People of Color (BIPOC) community. As a school grounded in Christian values, we draw upon sound research, stories, and experiences of our students, alumni, and families in the action of convening these affinity groups. Join Stacey Lee, Mount Vernon’s Chief IDEA Officer to experience, first-hand, the ways in which the design of Affinity Groups will enhance our school community.

Wednesday, October 27
New Family Drop-In Coffee, 7:45 – 9:15 am
MVPN’s New Family Chairs Amanda Woodall and Amanda Richmond invite new families who joined MV in 2020-2021 and 2021-2022 to the Upper Campus Green to build community among our newest Mustangs. Come as you are, bring your morning caffeine, or grab a cup of coffee at the Ground Floor Coffee Shop in the US Cafe.

Thursday, October 28
Veracross Parent Portal Hands-on Workshop for Lower Campus, 11:45 – 12:45
Families are invited on-campus to learn more about the Veracross system, including a hands-on tutorial on the many capabilities of the platform: subscribe to your student’s class schedule, update your profile information, find families within a 10-mile radius, donate to the MV Fund, link to key resources, and much more. Meeting will take place in the Lower Campus Church Session Room.

Thursday, October 28
Portrait Retakes RESCHEDULED FOR TUESDAY, NOVEMBER 2
On October 28, School Portrait Retakes will be taken on Lower Campus from 8:20-11:20 am and on Upper Campus from 8:20 am – 3:30 pm. If you would like your student to retake photo, sign up at mountvernonschool.org/retakes. If your student was absent on the original Portrait Day, you should have received a separate email from the School and do not need to sign up using the above form. Should you have any questions, please contact Reagan Langston at [email protected].

Friday, October 29
No School for Students/Lower Campus Fall Parent Conference Day
As we near the end of the first trimester, we look forward to the opportunity to share your child’s progress with you at our Fall Parent Conference. There is no school for students on this day, but save the date. If you have not already signed up, please refer to your class’s Veracross page for the sign-up genius. We are committed to beginning and ending each conference on time to ensure all families have an opportunity to connect with the teacher.

SAVE THESE DATES

Friday, November 5: Early Dismissal
The Mustang Varsity Football Team is hosting their final regular season game of the year. Since we don’t have field lights, games typically start earlier, later in the season. With a 3:00 pm start time, carpool, parking, guests, and other logistics impact both campuses. On November 5, the Lower School will have an early dismissal at 1:30 pm. Extended Play will also be available until 6:00 pm.

  • 1:30 Preschool and Lower School Dismissal
  • 1:45 Upper School Dismissal
  • 2:00 Middle School Dismissal

Thursday, November 11: Vaccine Clinic

Friday, November 12: Managing and Monitoring K-12 Children’s Online Presence
Hosted by Katie Cain and Bark
Registration to attend will begin next week.
From 9:00 – 10:00 am, Katie Cain and our partners at Bark will share strategies and resources for managing children’s online presence. From school-issued iPads to personal cell phones, from web filters to parental controls, we aim to equip families with resources to confidently approach technology use with their children/teenagers.

Friday, November 19: Grandparents/Special Friends Day
This is an early release day prior to Thanksgiving break. The invitation and schedule for the event will be sent in late October. The School is sending personal invitations to each student’s grandparents and/or special friends based on the information you provided.


A WORD FROM YOUR DIRECTOR OF LOWER SCHOOL

Thank you to all who participated in our Parent University last week: CBE, How might we better understand what assessment looks like at Mount Vernon. First of all, it was just great to be together on campus, and I hope everyone is still working on their coin rolling! Secondly, with parent conferences and progress reports right around the corner, we thought it was important to explain the why, how, and when of the Lower School’s approach to assessment in our Competency-Based Education model.

As shared in the Parent U, Mount Vernon focuses on foundational knowledge, developmental skills, and the dispositions of learners, thinkers, and designers at school. To learn more about this, we compared traditional report cards to the competency-based reports that Lower School uses which reveal more detailed information about each child’s development, position students for growth, and have high expectations for mastery. We also pointed out that this is written in child-friendly language and intended to be discussed with each student. We are excited for you to meet with your child’s teacher next week and to review the progress report. We hope you use both experiences as a catalyst for a conversation with your child about goals for the next trimester.

Kind regards

Molly Hudson
Director of Lower School

Shelley Searcy
Head of Lower Campus

October 3, 2021

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COMING UP THIS WEEK IN LOWER SCHOOL: OCTOBER 4 – 8

Monday, October 4
Global Read Aloud Kickoff

Tuesday, October 5
7:30 – 9:00 am: Uniform Resale in HQ.

Wednesday, October 6
8:10 – 8:30 PK3 – G1 Chapel
8:45 – 9:15 G2-G5 Chapel

Thursday, October 7

Friday, October 8: NO SCHOOL

SAVE THESE DATES

Monday, October 11: No School 

October 12 – 15: HOMECOMING
Spirit Days

  • Tuesday: Superhero Tuesday (no masks or accessories)

  • Wednesday: Jersey Wednesday (wear your favorite team’s jersey or tshirt)

  • Thursday: Tacky Thursday (wear mismatched clothing, fun patterns, turn things inside out or backward)

  • Friday: Tropical Friday (wear island getaway gear)

Thursday, October 14 at 8:15 am: Talk and Walk with Molly Hudson
Every second Thursday each month, we invite families to gather for a discussion and a learning walk through Lower School to see it in action in our classrooms. Spots will be limited to 10 participants enabling our group to travel in and out of classrooms. At Mount Vernon, we believe relationships are foundational to learning. In our October 14 session, we will discuss what that means for Lower School learners and see it in a variety of classrooms. Please sign up if you are interested in attending.

Friday, October 15
Homecoming Game and Activities
Fourteen years of Alumni, New Mustang Families, Grandparents, and our entire MV community are invited to celebrate the School’s 50th year by drawing the largest collection of Mustangs in one place, ever. We will recognize past performers and athletes, active service members, and former Homecoming Kings and Queens while honoring this year’s court and crowning our new King and Queen. Varsity football kicks off at 4:00 pm against Providence. Be there to participate in the festivities, meet up with long-term Mustangs, and continue the celebration of our School’s 50th year.

Homecoming Tents by Grade-Level
Providing an opportunity for families to gather together at Homecoming, grade-level tents and tables will be set up behind the stadium seating. If interested in participating, please sign up to bring food and beverages to share.
PS – Grade 1 Tent
Grades 2 – 5 Tent
Grades 6-8 Tent
Grades 9 and 10 Tent
Grades 11 and 12 Tent

Homecoming/Fall Silent Auction
Celebrate Homecoming by bidding on school-related experiences. This online silent auction will open for live bidding at 8:00 am on Thursday, October 7. Bidding will end on Friday, October 15. Register today to preview the auction items or text MVHocoAuction to 76278. Be the next Carpool VIP, reserve your seating for performances, or buy an out-of-uniform day.

Thursday, October 21: Parent University – Understanding Your Child’s Progress
8:15 am Lower Campus Fellowship Hall
Mount Vernon uses a comprehensive and balanced approach to assessment and progress reporting. Come hear from our Lower Campus Leadership Team to learn more about our approach to assessing and reporting on student achievement.

Tuesday, October 26: Parent University – Affinity and Alliance Program at Mount Vernon School (virtual)
8:30 – 9:30 am Join via Zoom
Mount Vernon norms call upon community members to start with questions and to share the well. These actions make a difference for individuals, and research shows that when individuals are able to gather in groups where they see themselves reflected, the questions and sharing take on new meaning and deeper impact toward positive ends. In this academic year, the Mount Vernon School will begin hosting Affinity Group gatherings for members of our Black, Indigenous, and People of Color (BIPOC) community. As a school grounded in Christian values, we draw upon sound research, stories, and experiences of our students, alumni, and families in the action of convening these affinity groups. Join Stacey Lee, Mount Vernon’s Chief IDEA Officer to experience, first-hand, the ways in which the design of Affinity Groups will enhance our school community.

Friday, October 29 – Fall Parent Conference Day
As we near the end of the first trimester, we look forward to the opportunity to share your child’s progress with you at our Fall Parent Conference. There is no school for students on this day, but save the date. A sign-up will be posted on your class Veracross Page.

Friday, November 19 – Grandparents/Special Friends Day
This is an early release day prior to Thanksgiving break. The invitation and schedule for the event will be sent in late October. Please fill out this form completely so a personal invitation can be sent to each student’s grandparents and/or special friends.

ENGAGEMENT OPPORTUNITIES

Parent Volunteers Needed for the ARTS
Do you enjoy designing, building, making, or creating? Would you like to use the design skills you have or gain experience learning new skills? The MV Arts Alliance is looking for parent volunteers to support Arts and Design. There are hundreds of opportunities from making robots and building sets, to painting Christmas trees and designing experiences. Chase your passion.

MVCares
MVCares is a part of the Mount Vernon Parent Network (MVPN) created to serve our community through appreciation, service, and support. If interested in participating on a committee, please contact Telisha Jackson, MVCares Chair.
Appreciation: Help with faculty/staff appreciation days in the fall and winter, snack donations for monthly faculty meetings in each division, assist with gifts, meals, and other classroom activities per grade.

Service:  Impacting our local and global community through community service, participating in community outreach.

Support: Join the Parent Prayer Group, organize meal trains, send care cards, video cards, and other special expressions that best meet the needs of our MV families going through challenging times. Support Request Form

Lunchroom Support
Volunteer to step in at lunchtime for our K through G2 students. Indicate your availability to join the Lunchtime Squad to support our students & teachers by setting and clearing tables, encouraging independence while supporting students with serving/pouring, and participate in lunch table conversations. This is a great opportunity for you to meet other volunteers and connect with faculty. All volunteers will receive a Learn, Serve, Give Volunteer t-shirt to wear during their shift, and will be able to eat lunch, too.

A WORD FROM YOUR DIRECTOR OF LOWER SCHOOL

I am grateful for all of the ways our community is coming together to build relationships, support our students and have fun this fall. We had a great turnout at Lower School Family Fun on the Frontier on September 24, and the house was packed at the Variety Show last week.

Mount Vernon’s Got Talent! The Lower School Variety Show never disappoints. Singers, dancers, musicians, magicians, and poets brought thunderous applause and lots of laughter to the Lower Campus on Thursday evening and Friday morning. It feels so good to have our families on campus and to see our children on the stage! Please make plans to attend other opportunities listed above. We are better when you are here.

Many thanks,

Molly Hudson
Director of Lower School l x4211

Shelley Searcy
Head of Lower Campus | x2001

October 10, 2021

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COMING UP THIS WEEK IN LOWER SCHOOL: OCTOBER 11 – 15
HOMECOMING WEEK

Monday, October 11: NO SCHOOL

Tuesday, October 12
Superhero Tuesday (wear a superhero top with uniform bottoms, no masks or accessories)

Wednesday, October 13
Jersey Wednesday (wear your favorite team’s jersey or tshirt with uniform bottoms)
8:10 – 8:30 PK3 – G1 Chapel
8:45 – 9:15 G2-G5 Chapel

Thursday, October 14
Tacky Thursday (wear mismatched clothing, fun patterns, turn things inside out or backward)
8:15 am: Talk and Walk with Molly Hudson
Every second Thursday each month, we invite families to gather for a discussion and a learning walk through Lower School to see it in action in our classrooms. Spots will be limited to 10 participants enabling our group to travel in and out of classrooms. At Mount Vernon, we believe relationships are foundational to learning. In our October 14 session, we will discuss what that means for Lower School learners and see it in a variety of classrooms. Please sign up if you are interested in attending.

Friday, October 15
Tropical Friday (wear island getaway gear)
2:00 pm Pep Rally 

Homecoming Football Game and Activities
4:00 pm Varsity Mustangs take on Providence Christian Academy for Homecoming 2021
Join 50 years of families, 14 years of Alumni, 1200+ current students including 117 seniors, 900 current families, and 250 faculty and staff members for the largest collection of Mustangs in one place, ever, as our entire community celebrates the School’s 50th year. Past performers and athletes, along with active service members, will be recognized. Former Homecoming Kings and Queens will participate in the halftime tradition of honoring this year’s Homecoming Court and the crowning of our new King and Queen.

Grade-Level Tents: Families are welcome to gather with grade-level peers for snacks and connection at their respective tents:

PS – Grade 1 Tent
Grades 2 – 5 Tent
Grades 6 – 8 Tent
Grades 9 and 10 Tent
Grades 11 and 12 Tent

Silent Online Auction: Visit the MVHOCOAuction online to bid on school-related experiences, including carpool VIP, front row seats at student performances, out-of-uniform days, and more. Text MVHOCOAuction to 76278. Bidding ends at 11:00 pm on Friday, October 15.

Putt the Vern – A Journey Through Time 9-Hole Golf Course: This student-conceived, planned, designed, and executed mini-golf course on the Upper Campus Green will be available for all ages to play during Homecoming. Relive iconic MV-places, spaces, and events, while learning more about the School’s history. Every structure on this course was created or repurposed in the Upper School maker space by the Innovation Diploma (ID) Grade 10 Cohort. Thoroughly and intentionally crafted, every hole has a story. Innovation Diploma – where age does not indicate capability.

Join us to participate in all of the Homecoming festivities, meet up with long-term Mustangs, and continue the celebration of our School’s 50th year.

COVID LANDSCAPE

The following reflects the COVID landscape as of Friday, October 8.

Lower School

COVID Positive

1 of 351

Lower Campus & Upper Campus Employees

0 of 257

SAVE THESE DATES

Wednesday, October 20: Vaccine Clinic for Adults and Students who are 12 or older
11:00 -1:00 in the MS Lightbox – Required forms:
1) Briarcliff Health Mart Vaccine Immunization Form
2) MV School Consent, Waiver & Release Form

Thursday, October 21: Parent University – Understanding Your Child’s Progress
8:15 am Lower Campus Fellowship Hall
Mount Vernon uses a comprehensive and balanced approach to assessment and progress reporting. Come hear from our Lower Campus Leadership Team to learn more about our approach to assessing and reporting on student achievement.

Tuesday, October 26: Parent University – Affinity and Alliance Program at Mount Vernon School (virtual)
8:30 – 9:30 am Join via Zoom
Mount Vernon norms call upon community members to start with questions and to share the well. These actions make a difference for individuals, and research shows that when individuals are able to gather in groups where they see themselves reflected, the questions and sharing take on new meaning and deeper impact toward positive ends. In this academic year, the Mount Vernon School will begin hosting Affinity Group gatherings for members of our Black, Indigenous, and People of Color (BIPOC) community. As a school grounded in Christian values, we draw upon sound research, stories, and experiences of our students, alumni, and families in the action of convening these affinity groups. Join Stacey Lee, Mount Vernon’s Chief IDEA Officer to experience, first-hand, the ways in which the design of Affinity Groups will enhance our school community.

Wednesday, October 27: New Family Drop-In Coffee
7:45 – 9:15 am MVPN’s New Family Chairs Amanda Woodall and Amanda Richmond invite new families who joined MV for the 2020-2021 and 2021-2022 to the Upper Campus Green to build community among our newest Mustangs. Come as you are, bring your morning caffeine, or grab a cup of coffee at the Ground Floor Coffee Shop in the US Cafe.

Thursday, October 28: Veracross Parent Portal Hands-on Workshop for Lower Campus
11:45 – 12:45 Families are invited on-campus to learn more about the Veracross system, including a hands-on tutorial on the many capabilities of the platform: subscribe to your student’s class schedule, update your profile information, find families within a 10-mile radius, donate to the MV Fund, link to key resources, and much more. 

Friday, October 29: No School for Students/Fall Parent Conference Day
As we near the end of the first trimester, we look forward to the opportunity to share your child’s progress with you at our Fall Parent Conference. There is no school for students on this day, but save the date. A sign-up will be posted on your class Veracross Page.

Thursday, November 11: Vaccine Clinic

Friday, November 19: Grandparents/Special Friends Day 
This is an early release day prior to Thanksgiving break. The invitation and schedule for the event will be sent in late October. Please fill out this form completely so a personal invitation can be sent to each student’s grandparents and/or special friends.

Wednesday, December 1: Vaccine Clinic 

ENGAGEMENT OPPORTUNITIES

MVCares
MVCares is a part of the Mount Vernon Parent Network (MVPN) created to serve our community through appreciation, service, and support. If interested in participating on a committee, please contact Telisha Jackson, MVCares Chair.
Appreciation: Help with faculty/staff appreciation days in the fall and winter, snack donations for monthly faculty meetings in each division, assist with gifts, meals, and other classroom activities per grade.

Service:  Impacting our local and global community through community service, participating in community outreach. 

Support: Join the Parent Prayer Group, organize meal trains, send care cards, video cards, and other special expressions that best meet the needs of our MV families going through challenging times. Support Request Form

Lunchroom Support
Volunteer to step in at lunchtime for our K through G2 students. Indicate your availability to join the Lunchtime Squad to support our students & teachers by setting and clearing tables, encouraging independence while supporting students with serving/pouring, and participate in lunch table conversations. This is a great opportunity for you to meet other volunteers and connect with faculty. All volunteers will receive a Learn, Serve, Give Volunteer t-shirt to wear during their shift, and will be able to eat lunch, too.

A WORD FROM YOUR DIRECTOR OF LOWER SCHOOL

In celebration of National Hispanic Heritage Month, students have celebrated Hispanic culture in the classroom, chapel, and lunch room. Experiences have included making flags, practicing Otomi embroidery, learning about famous Hispanic Americans, tasting tropical fruits like aguas fresca, and, of course, dancing. The chapel services have included Hispanic songs, and it is so special to see our members of our community including teachers, facilities, and dining staff join our worship and fellowship with the students. 

We would also like to share that Eric Cheek is moving to a new role on the Upper Campus. We will miss Mr. Cheeks’s energy and enthusiasm in the Lower School. In the next two weeks, Mrs. Pamela Wall will be serving at the Lower School reception desk. We are currently seeking a new Lower Campus Executive Assistant and Lower School Front Desk Receptionist. 

We hope you all enjoyed your fall break.

Many thanks, 

Molly Hudson
Director of Lower School l x4211

Shelley Searcy
Head of Lower Campus | x2001

September 26, 2021

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COMING UP THIS WEEK IN LOWER SCHOOL: September 27 – October 1

Monday, September 27
12:00 – 1:00 Parent Admissions Ambassadors – live webinar
Learn more about how you can be an extension of MV’s Admissions team and make an impact as a Parent Admissions Ambassador. Engagement opportunities include engaging with prospective families during admissions events, assisting with direct outreach, submitting online reviews, and discussing your creative ideas with us. Be an integral part of our School’s future.

Tuesday, September 28

Wednesday, September 29
8:10 – 8:30 PK3 – G1 Chapel
8:45 – 9:15 G2-G5 Chapel
11:00 -1:00 Vaccine Clinic for adults and students who are 12 or older. The clinic will be held in the MS Lightbox. Required forms to complete: 1) Briarcliff Health Mart Vaccine Immunization Form; 2) MV School Consent, Waiver & Release Form

Thursday, September 30
6:00 – 7:30 pm: The Variety Show:
Mustangs in grades K-5 will perform, exhibiting their talent and creativity.

Friday, October 1: Spirit Day

ATHLETIC TRYOUTS FOR GRADE 5
Winter sports tryouts for Grade 5 teams have been published. Please reach out to the respective coaches for additional information.

SAVE THESE DATES

Tuesday, October 5, 7:30 – 9:00 am: Uniform Resale in HQ2

Friday, October 8 and Monday, October 11: No School 

October 12 – 15: Homecoming Week Dress Up Days
Tuesday: Superhero Tuesday (wear superhero-themed shirt with uniform bottoms, no masks or accessories)
Wednesday: Jersey Wednesday (wear your favorite team’s jersey or tshirt with uniform bottoms)
Thursday: Tacky Thursday (wear mismatched clothing, fun patterns, turn things inside out or backwards)
Friday: Tropical Friday (wear island getaway gear with uniform bottoms)

Friday, October 15: Homecoming Game and Activities
Fourteen years of Alumni, New Mustang Families, Grandparents, and our entire MV community are invited to celebrate the School’s 50th year by drawing the largest collection of Mustangs in one place, ever. We will recognize past performers and athletes, active service members, and former Homecoming Kings and Queens, while honoring this year’s court and crowning our new King and Queen. Varsity football kicks off at 4:00 pm against Providence. Be there to participate in the festivities, meet up with long-term Mustangs, and continue the celebration of our School’s 50th year.

 A WORD FROM YOUR DIRECTOR OF LOWER SCHOOL

Are you curious what goes on at school on a late start day? Our teachers took off their teacher hats and put on their learner, thinker, and designer hats for a morning of rich professional learning and collaboration across grade levels. This year’s RDI focus is on foresight and strategic planning as well as the School’s four priorities: Competency-Based Education, Inquiry-Based learning, IDEA, and Wellness & Resilience.

We are excited to engage all the voices of our Mount Vernon community as we design our future strategic plan. Be on the lookout for updates in this important work.

Many thanks,

Molly Hudson
Director of Lower School l x4211

Shelley Searcy
Head of Lower Campus | x2001

September 19, 2021

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COMING UP THIS WEEK IN LOWER SCHOOL: September 20-24

Monday, September 20
Student Portraits, K – G5: Dress uniform (rescheduled to September 23 due to rain forecast)

Tuesday, September 21
3:00 – 5:30 pm Variety Show Auditions in the Fellowship Hall – sign up for an audition here.

Wednesday, September 22
All-School Late Start

9:10 am Carpool begins
9:30 am School begins

*Childcare is not available before school begins

Thursday, September 23
Student Portraits, K – G5: Dress uniform (rescheduled from Monday)
3:00 – 5:30 pm Variety Show Auditions in the Fellowship Hall – sign up for an audition here.

Friday, September 24: Spirit Day
4:00 – 5:00 pm Lower School Family Fun on the Frontier
All students in K-G5 are invited with their families to get together on the Lower Campus Frontier for games & crafts, facepaint, and ice cream, prior to the Varsity football game at home vs. George Walton Academy.

ATHLETIC TRYOUTS FOR GRADE 5
Winter sports tryouts for Grade 5 teams have been published. Please reach out to the respective coaches for additional information.

SAVE THESE DATES

Thursday, September 30: The Variety Show
The Variety Show is an opportunity for Mustangs in grades K-5 to share their talents and creativity while having fun! If your child is interested in trying out for the Variety Show, please sign up for an audition here.

Friday, October 15: Homecoming
Fourteen years of Alumni, New Mustang Families, Grandparents, and our entire MV community are invited to celebrate the School’s 50th year by drawing the largest collection of Mustangs in one place, ever. We will recognize past performers and athletes, active service members, and former Homecoming Kings and Queens, while honoring this year’s court and crowning our new King and Queen. Varsity football kicks off at 4:00 pm against Providence. Be there to participate in the festivities, meet up with long-term Mustangs, and continue the celebration of our School’s 50th year.


ENGAGEMENT OPPORTUNITIES

MV Serves: Year of Impact
Year of Impact is a year-long integration of service. Beginning on September 11, our MV Community committed to logging 50,000 hours of selfless service through May 11, 2022. This impactful opportunity will give us the chance to collectively give back while commemorating Mount Vernon’s 50th year. We ask our community to log every hour served, to reach our goal of 50,000 hours this year. Together we give back. #MVImpact

A WORD FROM YOUR DIRECTOR OF LOWER SCHOOL

Lower School teachers know the importance of outdoor play for our healthy bodies, creative minds, and community building. So, we provide outdoor experiences during the school day. These may be mixed-age and unstructured or teacher-led direct instruction. We are so fortunate to have the Frontier, the courtyard, the Lower Campus field, our outdoor classroom, and access to the 40 acres on Upper Campus. We value starting the day with movement in the courtyard, play at recess, outdoor PE, and expeditions off campus. Interacting with nature sparks new learning and aids in physical, sociological, psychological, and social development. We encourage you and your family to get outside!

One final reminder, get those dress uniforms ready for picture day!

Many thanks,

Molly Hudson
Director of Lower School l x4211

Shelley Searcy
Head of Lower Campus | x2001

September 12, 2021

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September 12, 2021

COMING UP THIS WEEK IN LOWER SCHOOL: SEPTEMBER 13-17
MONDAY, SEPTEMBER 13

Tuesday, September 14
9:30 – 11:30 am ERB Assessment for Grades 4 and 5

Wednesday, September 15
8:10 – 8:30 am PK3 – G1 Chapel
8:30 – 9:30 am MV Cares Parent Meeting via Zoom: Join the Community Development team to learn how, with your help, we can better support our MV community and make a strong impact through appreciation, prayer, and service. (ID: 95415716123 Passcode: YDOD9UoK)

8:45 – 9:15 am G2-G5 Chapel

Thursday, September 16

9:30 – 11:30 am ERB Assessment for Grades 4 and 5

Friday, September 17: Spirit Day

COVID LANDSCAPE

The following reflects the COVID landscape as of Friday, September 10.

Lower School

COVID Positive
0 of 351

Lower Campus & Upper Campus Employees
0 of 257

SAVE THESE DATES

Monday, September 20: K – G5 Student Portraits

Wednesday, September 22: Late Start
Mount Vernon will implement a late start across all divisions five times this year to allow faculty and staff to participate in cross-divisional professional learning prior to students arriving on campus. On these select days, carpool will begin at 9:10 am and the school day will start at 9:30 am. Childcare will not be available before carpool on either campus. (Remaining four late starts: December 8, January 6, March 23, April 27)

Friday, September 24: Lower School Family Fun from 4:00 – 5:00 pm on the Frontier
All students in K-G5 are invited with their families to enjoy tailgate games & crafts, facepaint, cheering with MS cheerleaders, and eating Atlanta Ice Cream, prior to the varsity football game vs. George Walton Academy.

Thursday, September 30: The Variety Show
The Variety Show is an opportunity for Mustangs in grades K-5 to share their talents and creativity while having fun! If your child is interested in trying out for the Variety Show, please sign up for an audition here.

Friday, October 15: Homecoming
Varsity football kicks off at 4:00pm against Providence for 2021-2022 Homecoming. Join the festivities as we welcome 14 years of alumni back to campus, crown a new Homecoming King and Queen, and continue the celebration of our School’s 50th year.

ENGAGEMENT OPPORTUNITIES
MV Serves: Year of Impact
Year of Impact is a year-long integration of service. Beginning on September 11, our MV Community committed to logging 50,000 hours of selfless service through May 11, 2022. This impactful opportunity will give us the chance to collectively give back while commemorating Mount Vernon’s 50th year. We ask our community to log every hour served, to reach our goal of 50,000 hours this year. Together we give back. #MVImpact

 

Mustang Athletic Club and MV Arts Alliance
Joining the Mustang Athletic Club and/or the MV Arts Alliance is a great way to support Mount Vernon students outside of the classroom – on the court, track, and field, or on the stage, in the recording and art studios.

  • The Mustang Athletic Club is your guide to all things athletics. Whether you have a student-athlete participating or you’re just a Mustang fan, learn more about supporting MV athletes and joining the Mustang Athletic Club.
  • The MV Arts Alliance provides an opportunity for families to support artists – students, faculty, and staff – while building a community of parents and grandparents at the School. Your membership to the MV Arts Alliance helps celebrate all of the School’s artists from Preschool through Upper School.

A WORD FROM YOUR DIRECTOR OF LOWER SCHOOL
In order to prepare all students to be engaged citizen leaders while blurring the lines between real life and school life, we prioritize engaging MV Experts into our inquiry-based learning experiences. Students learn to ask meaningful questions, listen, and iterate ideas and products based on experts’ feedback. This past week our fifth graders engaged with two MV Experts. A playground designer helped students think through the math and design needed for their projects. Additionally, Clark Taylor taught our fifth graders about set design in Performing Arts with Mrs. Lower. An impressive set of MV Experts walked over from the Upper Campus to interact with our second graders in Maker last week. It was great to see older students teaching young students and strong collaboration skills emerging in Studio (i). We hope you will be a part of our MV Experts and share your passions with our students this year.

Many thanks,

Molly Hudson
Director of Lower School l x4211

Shelley Searcy
Head of Lower Campus | x2001

September 5, 2021

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September 5, 2021

Dear Lower School Mustangs,

It felt so good to have our families back on campus for Curriculum Morning, seated in tiny chairs meeting other families, and learning more about your child’s Mount Vernon experience in Lower School. We hope you have a better sense of the amazing teams of teachers supporting your child’s growth this year – your homeroom teacher, the connections team, our learning coaches, and PE coaches. Most importantly, like your children, we hope you had fun!

The fun is just beginning, so please pay careful attention to all that is happening at Mount Vernon in September. Our PlayMaker classes are back for kids, and our Rock the Block Social for adults will have an 80’s theme this year! We would also love to see your whole family cheering on the Mustangs at our Lower School Variety Show as well as any softball, volleyball, football, or cross country event.

WEEK OF SEPTEMBER 6-10

Monday, September 6: NO SCHOOL

Tuesday, September 7
Fall PlayMaker classes begin

Wednesday, September 8
8:10 – 8:30 am PK3-Grade 1 Chapel

8:45 – 9:15 am Grades 2-5 Chapel

Thursday, September 9
8:30 – 9:30 am Parent University: Essential Partners Virtual Zoom
Equipping Mount Vernon to Dialogue Across Difference: Why do conversations get stuck? Why do discussions sometimes leave participants feeling misunderstood and attacked for their perspective? Essential Partners will lead families through an experiential session designed to equip participants with an understanding of how to shift the dynamics of a stuck conversation to support effective communication. At Mount Vernon, dialogue across difference directly advances the work of IDEA by supporting an environment of listening and inquiry to further understanding—where students are partners in cultivating a community that acknowledges and communicates across differences. Thus, they are prepared to effectively engage with complex issues in their future beyond Mount Vernon, whether at a university campus, in the workplace or boardroom, or on the international stage.

Friday, September 10: Spirit Day
6:30 – 9:30 pm Rock the Block Adult Social (80’s Theme)
Our MV community is ready to socialize! Connect with parents, faculty, staff, grandparents, and alumni (21 and older) to celebrate the School’s 50th year. Join us on campus, dress up in full-on 80’s attire, and relive the neon decade with The Breakfast Club band playing on the Upper Campus lawn from 6:30 – 9:30 pm. Purchase tickets prior to September 7.

SAVE THESE DATES

Tuesday, September 14 and Thursday, September 16
G4 and G5 learners will be assessed using the Educational Records Bureau (ERB) Milestone Assessment. Please read the Educational Review Bureau (ERB) Milestone Assessment information.

Wednesday, September 22: Late Start
Mount Vernon will implement a late start across all divisions five times this year to allow faculty and staff to participate in cross-divisional professional learning prior to students arriving on campus. On these select days, carpool will begin at 9:10 am and the school day will start at 9:30 am. Childcare will not be available before carpool on either campus. (Remaining four late starts: December 8, January 6, March 23, April 27)

Tuesday, September 30: The Variety Show
The Variety Show is an opportunity for Mustangs in grades K-5 to share their talents and creativity while having fun! If your child is interested in trying out for the Variety Show, please sign up for an audition here.

Friday, October 15: Homecoming
Varsity football kicks off at 4:00pm against Providence for 2021-2022 Homecoming. Join the festivities as we welcome 14 years of alumni back to campus, crown a new homecoming King and Queen, and continue the celebration of our School’s 50th year.

Mustang Athletic Club and MV Arts Alliance
Joining the Mustang Athletic Club and/or the MV Arts Alliance is a great way to support Mount Vernon students outside of the classroom – on the court, track, and field, or on the stage, in the recording and art studios.

  • The Mustang Athletic Club is your guide to all things athletics. Whether you have a student-athlete participating or you’re just a Mustang fan, learn more about supporting MV athletes and joining the Mustang Athletic Club.
  • The MV Arts Alliance provides an opportunity for families to support artists – students, faculty, and staff – while building a community of parents and grandparents at the School. Your membership to the MV Arts Alliance helps celebrate all of the School’s artists from Preschool through Upper School.

Parent Engagement Opportunities
As a member of the Mount Vernon community – parents and grandparents are automatically a part of the Mount Vernon Parent Network (MVPN), which works to promote a strong sense of community by encouraging MV families to Learn, Serve, and Give. We provide our families the opportunity to support each other, as well as faculty and staff in an informed, welcoming environment. Our success is grounded in a shared mission, supportive community and strong parent participation. If you haven’t already determined how you would like to share your time and talent with the School, please complete this engagement interest form and you will hear back from Hunter Pierce, Director of Community Impact.

Parent University: Wellness Jumpstart Recap
Recently, our parent community joined together on Zoom to learn more about Wellness at Mount Vernon – how students and families are holistically supported throughout the School. The work and the progress being made in every department is focused on the betterment of our community, developing character, empathy, confidence, and safety, in addition to expanding on the foundation of academic growth.Hear from representatives of Community Development, IDEA, Athletics, Arts, Counseling, and Technology Safety.

We hope you are all enjoying your Labor Day Weekend. Did you know the first Labor Day was celebrated in 1882 and continues to be a day dedicated to celebrating the contributions and achievements of American workers? We are certainly celebrating our teachers and encouraging them to rest from their work tomorrow. As a matter of fact, Mrs. Lee led our Lower School chapel last week and reminded us that even God rested on the seventh day. Ask your child if they can remember what Mrs. Lee said about REST and try her four tips as a family:

Relax
Exercise
Silence
Thankfulness

We look forward to seeing everyone back on campus on Tuesday and hearing about the ways you all rested.

Many thanks,

Molly Hudson
Director of Lower School l x4211

Shelley Searcy
Head of Lower Campus | x2001

August 22, 2021

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August 22, 2021

Dear Lower School Mustangs,

We didn’t think it was possible to have more fun than the first week of school, but the second week of school was fantastic. We especially enjoyed being back in the Sanctuary for chapel to pray, worship, and learn. In order to spread out, our kindergarteners and first graders are having chapel first and second through fifth graders follow.

The biggest highlight of the week was Dr. Jacobsen’s Convocation on Friday in the Upper Campus gym. It was exciting to make the walk and sit among our Lower Campus friends. We will continue to explore Dr. Jacobsen’s charge for us all year. Considering questions and ideas such as:

  • How might we build bridges between different classes within the Lower School and with other grades between Preschool and Upper School?
  • How might we connect to our local community in moments of service, to share our talents and to learn in real and relevant ways?
  • How might we build connections to students around the world that lead to real collaboration around designing solutions to problems?

We appreciate those of you who were able to join us to hear the message, feel the energy, and be inspired to be a part of a community who is making an impact.

Carpool Tip
Have you noticed afternoon carpool getting quicker? Thanks for working with your student(s) to learn your family’s carpool number. Additionally, when exiting onto Mt. Vernon Highway in the afternoons, please use your turn signal. This will help our officer direct you and keep carpool moving.

WEEK OF AUGUST 23-27

Monday, August 23

8:30 – 9:30 am Parent University: Wellness Jumpstart (via Zoom)
Parents are invited to join a Zoom meetup to learn how Mount Vernon is developing relationships and furthering the School’s mission by getting to know each child and family through work related to Academics [Bo Adams], IDEA [Stacey Lee], Athletics [Brad Dehem], Arts [Matt Neylon], Counseling [Kelli Bynum], Technology Safety and Integration [Katie Cain], and Community Engagement [Anne Katz]
Join Zoom Meeting
ID: 84259200873 / Passcode: 6n82D9QF

Wednesday, August 25

8:10 am PK3-G1 Chapel

8:45 am G2-G5 Chapel
We are excited to be back in the Sanctuary for weekly worship. Please note that we are unable to accommodate parents for chapel at this time. Students are required to wear their Dress Uniform.

Friday, August 27: Spirit Day
4:30 pm All-School BBQ at the 1st Varsity Football Home Game
Join our entire community to kick off the football season with a complimentary BBQ tailgate and special gathering spots for new families, grandparents, and alumni. Admission is free for all Mustangs for this first game. Future home game admission is $7.

Save The Date

Friday, September 10: Rock the Block Adult Social (80’s Theme)
The School’s 5th Rock the Block evening social will be hosted on campus for the first time as we celebrate our parents, grandparents, special guests, faculty, staff, and alumni (21 and older) for our 50th year. The Breakfast Club – an 80’s tribute band – will be playing on the Upper Campus lawn from 6:30 – 9:30 pm. Wear your totally tubular 80’s attire – more details to come.

Coming Up

Lower School Curriculum Mornings
August 31: G4/G5, 8:15 – 8:45 am
September 1: G2/G3, 8:15 – 8:45 am
September 2: K/G1, 8:15 – 8:45 am

We know that your Lower Schoolers tell you a lot about their brilliant teachers, interactive classrooms, and innovative school, but they may not tell you everything! Curriculum Morning is an opportunity for parents to sit in your child’s seat and experience a glimpse of their day. You will have the opportunity to hear directly from your child’s teacher and learn more about the knowledge, skills, and dispositions that your child will focus on this year. After dropping your child off, please make plans to stay on the days designated above. Parents can gather in the Fellowship Hall from 7:45-8:15 am to make connections and have a cup of coffee. Then, each meeting will begin at 8:15 in your child’s classroom. Following, parents are invited back to the Fellowship Hall to continue the fun!

We are dedicated to reconnecting and staying connected this year. If available, we encourage you to join the virtual Parent University on August 23. We also hope to see you in-person at the varsity football opening game and the Rock the Block Party. We are Mustangs!

Many thanks,

Molly Hudson
Director of Lower School l x4211

Shelley Searcy
Head of Lower Campus | x2001

August 15, 2021

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Dear Lower School Mustangs,

The first day in Lower School was amazing! We enjoyed seeing our Kindergarten families in classrooms for the first day dropoff, heard honks from grateful parents, and students running on the courtyard again. Doors opened to the Mount Vernon we all know and love – kids were huddled around tables, high fives could actually make contact, and family-style lunch brought us all back to the values that reflect our School’s mission. On Wednesday, we gathered in the Sanctuary for the first time since March of 2020. Although we were in masks and missed our parent visitors, it felt good to honor long-lasting traditions and welcome everyone to this special year where we will celebrate our School’s 50th birthday.

Our students were given the charge to activate their Mount Vernon Mindsets by making new friends, setting ambitious goals, and playing hard.

COVID Landscape
As communicated in the July 30 COVID announcement, the School has designed a set of thorough and thoughtful COVID protocols and mitigation strategies influenced by, among other things, the interdependence of the following factors: recommendations from public health officials; consulting with experts within the Mount Vernon community; proven effectiveness of multiple layers of mitigation strategies; analysis of COVID positive cases and transmission data at the School; real-time COVID data in counties surrounding the School; strong vaccination rates for age-eligible adults and students (12+); maintaining as many students on campus as possible and preventing extended periods of being sent home; affect on social-emotional health of students and faculty/staff members; and impact on the quality of teaching and learning between teachers and students.

After the first week of school, the following reflects the COVID landscape as of Friday, August 13.

Lower School

COVID Positive
1 of 350

Direct Exposure
2 of 350

Upper Campus Lower Campus Faculty/Staff
0 of 257
0 of 257
Carpool reminders
  • The first week of school has the longest carpools. Thank you for being patient with us as everyone learns the system.
  • Students will be released once their respective car is in the carpool line. For everyone’s safety, please do not park and walk up to retrieve your student. If you walk to school, please let us know.
  • Great news: Morning carpool courtyard play begins next week! Our Kindergarten – Grade 2 students are welcome to play outside when they arrive at school on Mondays and Thursdays, and our Grade 3 – Grade 5 students may join their friends on Tuesdays and Fridays. Students are called inside by 7:50 to get settled for the day.

WEEK OF AUGUST 16-20

Monday, August 16
10:00 am – 1:00 pm Vaccine Clinic in the Black Box Theatre in the Upper School Building
Mount Vernon is offering a COVID-19 Pfizer vaccine clinic, free of charge, administered by Briarcliff Health Mart Pharmacy on Monday August 16, 2021 from 10:00 am to 1:00 pm in the Upper School Building for all age-eligible students (12 or older), employees, and parents that would like to participate. In order to receive a COVID-19 vaccine please complete both forms below and bring them to the vaccine clinic. 1) Briarcliff Health Mart Vaccine Immunization Form, and 2) Mount Vernon School Consent, Waiver & Release Form

Wednesday, August 18
8:10 am PK3-G1 Chapel
8:45 am G2-G5 Chapel

We are excited to be back in the Sanctuary for weekly worship. Please note that we are unable to accommodate parents for chapel at this time. Students are required to wear their Dress Uniform.

Friday, August 20
Spirit Day: MV spirit shirt with uniform bottom or jeans

8:45 am Convocation for PK4-Grade 5: Students, parents and faculty/staff are invited to the Upper Campus gym to hear Dr. Jacobsen and Head Prefect Jaden Ward set the tone for the 2021-2022 school year, the School’s 50th.

Save These Dates

Friday, August 27: All-School BBQ at the 1st Varsity Football Home Game
Join our entire community to kick off the football season with a BBQ tailgate and special gathering spots for new families, grandparents, and alumni.

Friday, September 10: Rock the Block Parent Social
The School’s 5th Rock the Block evening social will be hosted on campus for the first time as we celebrate our parents, grandparents, special guests, and alumni during our 50th year. More details coming soon.

Important Lower School Contacts

Eric Cheek, Lower School Executive Assistant | x2000
Angie Bush, Lower Campus Head of Learning and Innovation l x2012
Elisse Hayes, Lower Campus Head of Community and Culture | x2022
Samantha Flowers, Director of Academic Resources l x2007
Anna Stoller, Lower Campus School Nurse | x2010
Stephanie Corbett, Lower Campus Counselor | x2021

We encourage you to ask your child about new friendships that have been cultivated during the first week back. Talk about big goals for academics, athletics, leadership, and service. Finally, find out how your child had fun last week. I have certainly seen the smiles, heard the laughter, and felt the hugs that assure me we are off to a great start!

Many thanks,

Molly Hudson
Director of Lower School l x4211

Shelley Searcy
Head of Lower Campus | x2001

August 8, 2021

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August 8, 2021

Dear Lower School Mustangs,

Welcome to the 2021-22 school year! We are back and excited to begin this school year looking and feeling like the Mount Vernon that we all know and love.

At Mount Vernon, we start with questions, and we know you have many as a new year is upon us. It was so great to see you all at Lower School Orientation last week, and we hope you all will take advantage of the opportunity to share a little bit about your student and your family with your new teachers through our Lower School Parent-Share Conferences on Monday. We cannot wait to begin the first week of school with your children. As a reminder, please review the School’s COVID Protocols & Mitigation Strategies released last week.

We are excited to return to some of our favorite places and traditions, like the Sanctuary Building for chapel and Fellowship Hall for lunch this week. However, we need some time to help our students learn norms that will promote safety and wellness. We will not be able to include parents and visitors at our large gatherings at this time. We appreciate your patience and understanding for this slow roll out.

WEEK OF AUGUST 9-13

Monday, August 9
Parent-Share Conferences

Tuesday, August 10
First Day of School
Lower School Welcome Assembly

Friday, August 13
Spirit Day

Carpool
Lower School morning carpool begins at 7:30 am. Parents are asked to drop their students off by 7:50, for everyone to be settled in class prior to the start of school at 8:00 am. Students will be released at 3:00 pm for afternoon carpool. While there will be assistance during both morning and afternoon carpools, please take a moment to review and become familiar with carpool details for Kindergarten through grade 5. Carpool numbers for new families will be distributed on the first day of school in your student’s Home Learning folder.

We appreciate your patience as carpool usually takes a bit longer at the beginning of the year. We have new teachers and families learning the system. Additionally, PlayMaker classes have not yet begun. However, our highest priority is getting all children on and off campus safely. Our carpool times always improve after a few weeks!

Kindergarten Families
On the first day of school, Kindergarten families have the option to park and walk their Kindergartner into the School. If your student is ready to go through the carpool line, however, we encourage you to drop off instead. All students should be dropped off in the carpool line beginning Wednesday, August 11. Teachers will be present in the mornings to walk them inside.

Save the Date
Monday, August 16: Vaccine Clinic for 12+
Providing an additional layer of protection within the MV community, the School will offer a vaccine clinic free of charge for students who are 12-years-old, faculty, parents, and grandparents. More details will be shared later this week regarding times, process, and required forms.

Coming Up
Did you know that Mount Vernon is turning 50 this year? Last year, all students mastered the number 6. We learned to be six feet apart through estimations, measurement, and calculations. We learned to count by 6, multiply, and divide by 6. We are excited to leave that number behind and focus on a much bigger number this year! We will be doing a lot to celebrate the School’s birthday, so be on the lookout for fun celebrations coming your way.

Our teachers have been working hard this summer to plan an engaging first week of school for your Lower Schoolers. We will focus on relationship and community building to build your student’s confidence and excitement about returning to school. The Lower School leadership team facilitated robust training this past week to further equip our teachers with the latest research about student development, neuroscience, competency-based learning, and creating a culture of belonging. Meet our newest Lower School faculty.

Important Lower School Contacts
Eric Cheek, Lower School Executive Assistant | x2000
Angie Bush, Lower Campus Head of Learning and Innovation l x2012\
Elisse Hayes, Lower Campus Head of Community and Culture | x2022
Samantha Flowers, Director of Academic Resources l x2007
Anna Stoller, Lower Campus School Nurse | x2010
Stephanie Corbett, Lower Campus Counselor | x2021

We can’t wait to see familiar faces and welcome new ones.

Many thanks,

Molly Hudson
Director of Lower School l x4211

Shelley Searcy
Head of Lower Campus | x2001

August 29, 2021

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August 29, 2021

Dear Lower School Mustangs,

During the first two weeks back, our Lower School classrooms have been busy building relationships, creating classroom norms, and learning the higher expectations that a new grade level brings. It is a big adjustment from the pace of summer, but Lower School students have risen to the challenge.

We wanted to take this opportunity to highlight our division-wide math inquiry-based-learning initiative. Carrying forth from last spring, homeroom teachers and connectors collaborated on a unit of study in each grade level that would focus on mathematical concepts from the previous year. 

These concepts are investigated through hands-on, inquiry based learning, and integrated content. We have had the balloon play in Kindergarten PE investigating the properties of floating versus sinking. First grade scientists are becoming experts on the principles of insects. Ask a second grader to tell you how paper airplanes are being used to learn about measurement. Be careful when walking down the third grade hallway as marbles are rolling everywhere as students experiment with the height and speed of their course. Fourth and fifth graders are starting the year with geometry. Fourth graders are exploring the complex structures of bridges. Fifth graders took their first walking expedition, engaged with a playground designer external expert, and are building playgrounds with wooden planks. You can check them out, outside of the Science Lab. 

It’s creative and it’s messy; we know. However, it’s fun! We see kids loving school and learning higher level math integrated into PE, science, nature, play, social studies, geography, and real-world experiences. What a great way to start the year! 

COVID Landscape
The following reflects the COVID landscape as of Friday, August 27.

Lower School

COVID Positive

1 of 351

Lower Campus & Upper Campus Employees

0 of 257

WEEK OF AUGUST 30 – SEPTEMBER 3

Tuesday, August 31
8:15 – 8:45 am Lower School Curriculum Morning: G4/G5 

Wednesday, September 1
8:10 – 8:30 am PK3-Grade 1 Chapel

8:15 – 8:45 am Lower School Curriculum Morning: G2/G3 

8:45 – 9:15 am. Grades 2-5 Chapel

Thursday, September 2
8:15 – 8:45 am Lower School Curriculum Morning: K/G1 

Friday, September 3
11:30 am Early Dismissal Please note that G2-G5 carpool begins at 11:30, and older students who carpool with a PS-G1 student will be released at 11:15 to join younger siblings. Extended Play will not be available. 

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Friday, September 10: Rock the Block Adult Social (80’s Theme)
The School’s 5th Rock the Block evening social will be hosted on campus for the first time as we celebrate our parents, grandparents, special guests, faculty, staff, and alumni (21 and older) for our 50th year. The Breakfast Club – an 80’s tribute band – will be playing on the Upper Campus lawn from 6:30 – 9:30 pm. Wear your totally tubular 80’s attire. Purchase your tickets today!

Friday, October 15: Homecoming 
Varsity football kicks off at 4:00pm against Providence for 2021-2022 Homecoming. Join the festivities as we welcome 14 years of alumni back to campus, crown a new homecoming King and Queen and King, and continue the celebration of our School’s 50th year.

Please try to join us for Curriculum Morning (the schedule is above) to learn more about your child’s daily experience and the big picture ideas for the year. From 7:45 until 8:15 on the patio near Fellowship Hall, coffee will be served while parents build community. 

We are excited to see you soon!

Many thanks, 

Molly Hudson
Director of Lower School l x4211

Shelley Searcy
Head of Lower Campus | x2001

Divisional Updates

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Lower School Updates
Middle School Updates
Upper School Updates

 

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COVID Information Line: 678.515.4891
COVID Information Email:
[email protected]
COVID eFax Line: 404.591.1441

 

Community Development:
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The MV Fund
The MVat50 Benefit
MVCares
Mount Vernon Parent Network
MV Serves

 

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