A Word From the Head
December 5, 2013
Mr. Rod Gilbert, Head of School
Six Things in This Picture
A parent sent me a picture this week and said, “Rod, I thought you’d like to see Harlan in the Regents Science & Nature Center with a caterpillar.” She was right. I put this photo on my computer screen last night and my wife and I just stared at it for a while. What did we see? Plenty, but here are my top six:
- I see the silt fence that lets me know we have more construction to complete on the West Campus. I know more about silt fencing and flood plain development than I ever thought possible. Pray for our Construction Development Committee as they work with city officials on our West Campus and future athletic fields.
- I see a fence post and have no idea who dug the hole for the post. My guess is that Darcy Shorman or Rich Grafton knows. But, if it was one of them that dug it, they will humbly say, “One of the volunteer dads dug it one night in 2000.” The Nature Center stands as a powerful vision of parents who embrace their role in being the primary educators of their children, and it signifies the lovely mandate from Christ to enjoy and cultivate this world.
- I see small traces of autumn colors in the trees. Now, being a North Carolina boy these colors are meager at best, but they do reflect the beauty of the Texas Hill Country.
- I see a caterpillar that is probably fighting for his life. He’s enjoying a view from the fingers of a giant. There is something oddly funny about trying to imagine the instincts of a caterpillar. The imagination of our children can capture this much better than my pragmatic adult mind.
- I see Harlan’s smile. Is there more? Yes. I see his gentle spirit as he enjoys the beauty of a caterpillar. I recall that St. Francis of Assisi used to walk in the gardens and carry a broom so that he could sweep away little insects and not step on them. In my youthful crassness, I once called St. Francis of Assisi the St. of Sissiness because he wrote a book on flowers called Little Flowers. Big mistake!!!
- Look at the bottom left hand corner carefully. Can you see my favorite image in the picture? It is a little child’s hand. The child is trusting Mr. Gilliam as a man of God who loves God and His creation. Can’t you sense the GLEE and JOY with the simplicity of playing with a caterpillar? I can. What a picture.
How about taking a twist on your Christmas wish list? Instead of making a list of what you wish you had, can you make a list of 1,000 things that you have already that you are thankful for? That was the challenge in Anne Voscamp's little book called One Thousand Gifts. Faced with life's challenges, Anne penned a memoir that introspectively highlights her journey to find 1,000 things that she is thankful for.
8.75% - 17-23% - $400,000 – Three numbers that define our tuition assistance program.
With over 900 in attendance at the gala Saturday night, we raised $400,000 to be used towards tuition assistance. Many thanks to the gala volunteers and attendees who made this event such a great success. We are truly humbled at the outpouring of generosity by our community.
There is a resurgence of the classical education movement in the United States, and it is being featured in news publications you would not expect. In June, CNN wrote an article about this called 'Classical schools put Plato over iPad.'
Here's the interesting deal about Regents' gala this year – you decide the ticket price. There is no set amount. The goal is 100% participation of all families and staff at the event. Dust off your boots and jeans. Keep it casual and fun. Register online now. And, don't miss the three cool blind bid opportunities that close out this Sunday.
Last week I led off my "Word" article with a quote from Theodore Roosevelt about contentment. Lo and behold, ol' Teddy is on my mind again for some reason. As much as our President Roosevelt was admired for his leadership and masculinity, there was another side to him worth noting. He loved being around his children.
"Comparison is the thief of joy," Theodore Roosevelt aptly affirmed. This rough-riding man's man probably had himself in mind, but I believe this life principle is a major struggle for our precious daughters far more than Teddy would have considered. Out of our 1,000 students, Regents has 510 girls, and ALL them have fathers.
You only need to read the title of this article in order to get the point. Do not use your phone while driving, and especially not during carpool driving. I hope you are NOT reading this article while in carpool. That would be ironically dangerous.
Wednesday, October 9 from 2:30-4:30 p.m. in Squires Hall.
Cost: $24.00 Flu Shot, $39.99 FluMist — Limited supply of FluMist
For all staff, students (all minors must be accompanied by an adult, a signed consent form is NOT sufficient. No children under 7), and family members. No advance registration is required!
Humana Insurance: cardholders and dependents will have $0 copay. Payment, consent form and/or Humana Insurance Card are due at time of vaccine.
Glancing at our past decisions should only be fleeting looks in order to prepare for the next thing coming at us. Each day we rise out of bed with a chance to learn from our past decisions so that we can fine-tune our approach for the next challenges. Think about conducting your life like driving a car. You glance occasionally at your rear view mirror for perspective, but you stare out of your windshield to focus on what is in front of you.
Next week is our first Dads' Lunch. Last Saturday we hosted over 100 dads at our Annual Dads' Boot camp. Today, another gathering of parents included an RPC Welcome Coffee with over 40 moms in attendance. Praise God, our parents are everywhere!!! Your presence and continual advancement strengthens our school.
On the gleeful edge of starting a great year, we have a very important update about campus safety and security. Since the tragic Newtown shootings in December 2012, schools across America have been reassessing their safety and security measures. Since January we have consulted a range of experts and have dialogued with many parents and employees along the way. With that information, we are leading this school year with a new security plan.
The campus is buzzing with energy as we prepare for the first day of school. Soon, and very soon, teachers will welcome all students back to our campus. But before our students take to their new classrooms, they will walk into a building with a new name.
The Class of 2013 shares a history unique with the Regents community. Sixteen of you have been here since kindergarten. As kindergartners, you were the last class to be at our Tarrytown Baptist Church campus. You were the last class to be in Middle School in the current Grammar School; the first 8th grade class to be in the SOL 'cottages'; the last class to give your thesis in Knights Hall; and the last seniors to be in the SOR building.
In May 2014, we will simulcast Senior Thesis presentations from our new building onto the web for all to see. We purchased the equipment that makes this technology possible as part of our new SOR building provisions. Our team has tested the waters by setting up two viewing locations this week for 2013 presentations.
Something happened on Tuesday. My heart kept rolling around and around with emotion and contentment. And, my biggest thought was – "I wish I could transport every Regents person to this spot at this moment."
The Class of 2013 is surging forward with solid acceptance offers from 62 colleges and universities, bountiful scholarship offers totaling $5,305,614, and vision-laden plans for the 2013-2014 year.
Last Friday night the boys varsity baseball team defeated St. Michael's for the second time this season. This week they won the TAPPS Area Playoff Game and will face Fort Bend Christian Academy in the Regional Playoffs on Tuesday. But that success pales in comparison to their spirit of love for each other and the Bunch family.
Regents high school students are partnering with a local ministry to apply their math skills. Please read this inspiring story from Mr. Josh Wilkerson. He is one of our math teachers in the School of Rhetoric.
here is a paradox in our school. It exists now. It has been here a long time. It will be here in 20 years as well. Paradox: If we publicly proclaim the specific achievements of students, we celebrate. However, is such recognition braggadocios and elitist? How do we balance on this fine line?
This week's article is by Daniel Pope, SOR Humanities Instructor and Regents Mock Trial Head Coach...
Mock Trial is one of the most demanding extra-curriculars our school offers, one of the most selective, and our 6:30-9:30 PM practices redefine grueling. And that's all before the first competition.
Next week we will be showing Austin hospitality to educators from our accrediting association, the Association of Classical Christian Schools. A special thanks goes to Doreen Howell who efficiently led our teams in preparation for this important 5-year renewal.
What songs inspire you about the resurrection of our Lord?
Regents 8th-12th graders won top awards in the 2012-13 Scholastic Art and Writing Competition, which included public and private schools such as Austin High, St. Stephens, and Westlake. Out of the 15,000 entries at the national level, only four 8th grade artists from Texas were selected as Gold Medalists and two were from Regents.
Last weekend I was reminded of how much some of us love speed. On Saturday a friend took me and my son Ryan to the COTA F1 track to enjoy some races. What a blast! The sounds brought back memories of pushing my Hot Wheels back and forth, wishing my 4 inch Shelby Cobra would grow exponentially into a car I could drive.
Did you know that the Regents Boys and Girls Swim Team won the overall combined score championship at the TAPPS Division II state swim meet last Friday in San Antonio? This was a remarkable accomplishment for only 6 boys and 5 girls from Regents who, like our other sports, moved to a more competitive TAPPS division this year.
Since 2007, Regents has been the home of Pack/Troop 25. We are thankful for their presence at Regents. Today's article highlights an act of service by Troop 25 after the death of a retired United States Navy SEAL and true American hero, Chris Kyle. John Childers, Scoutmaster of Troop 25, is the guest writer.
Friends, I have written often in my "Word from the Head" articles that February is the hardest and most emotionally draining time of a school year for students, teachers, and parents. It's a documented fact, and this year is no exception.
What happened in 1961 that won't occur again for another 4048 years? Both years can be read upside down. The year 6009 is a long way away, but time does fly. It seems like yesterday that thoughts and resolutions were crossing our minds for the New Year. And here we are on the cusp of February 1, providing you with the Regents 2013-14 Holiday & Event Calendar.