A Word From the Head
March 6, 2014
Mr. Rod Gilbert, Head of School
The Europe Trip Daily Devotional
As I write this article from my desk in Austin, five staff members, 31 parent chaperones and 75 juniors are somewhere in Paris. Today is day five of the junior’s twelve-day Europe class trip. Yesterday they were in London at the Les Miserables performance. In two days, they board a train and travel through the Alps to Florence. Last stop – Rome. Imagine the excitement as our students see the art and history they have studied for so many years come alive.
Our teachers have written a Europe Trip Daily Devotional where parents can follow along with the student’s journey. Each page is rich with history and scripture – take a look.
We are very proud of our juniors. As the students were leaving the C.S. Lewis Kilns Foundation in London yesterday, the Director of the foundation said: “Your group is one of the best we get here. They are so well prepared and engaged and ask such great questions. We have a lot of college groups come through but your group is the most impressive.” Josh Simmons, SOR Humanities Instructor and trip coordinator replied,“They're actually high school juniors.”
Say a prayer for these world travelers as they cap off three years of Western civilization studies with this memorable journey. It is both an exhausting and an inspiring experience, one of many steps towards our mission of equipping our students to purposefully engage in our far-reaching world.
As I write this article from my desk in Austin, five staff members, 31 parent chaperones and 75 juniors are somewhere in Paris. Today is day five of the junior's twelve-day Europe class trip.
As Dr. Swan stated last week, nothing makes us prouder than when our students achieve their goals and use the gifts God has blessed them with to serve this world. But how can we help our students decide what it is they want to do when they graduate from Regents?
This week's article is written by one of our School of Rhetoric science teachers, Dr. Christina Swan. Dr. Swan received her Ph.D. in Molecular Pathology from UCSD and studied HIV gene therapy. She continues to do virus research during her summer break at UT so she can stay on top of the latest science advancements and bring that knowledge back to the classroom.
It is with great zeal and excitement that we are announcing our new Head of Grammar School, Mrs. Melanie Sharpless. She will begin full-time duties on July 14. This wonderful news is the culmination of a comprehensive search and multiple rounds of interviews conducted over the past two months, led by our Head of Grammar School Task Force.
Four Texas inclement weather days in less than two weeks begs a story. Today's decision to delay was made by information from our early morning spotters, weather reports at 5 a.m., and the flash ice storm experience last week.
I read Cold War spy novels because I need the escape from the cascading amount of technology all around me. That conclusion only landed in my heart recently. During our last two ice days, I nearly finished John Le Carre's Tinker, Tailor, Soldier, Spy and I have my eye on his seminal work The Spy Who Came in From the Cold. Those books have dropboxes and slow, quiet espionage. There are no satellites, no GPS's, no texts, and no internet. I never thought I would say this as a "Red Dawn" age kid, but I miss the simple life of the oppressive Cold War.
Regents donors stepped up to meet the goal to raise $3M by December 31, 2013, taking full advantage of the generous matching challenge. Thanks to everyone who participated in the Vision 2020 campaign along the way.
Dr. Annie Bullock teaches 11th grade apologetics at Regents. She recently sent an email providing a glimpse into her student's upcoming discussion topics. As a parent of an 11th grader, I received the letter – and I thought you would like to see it as well. Our children are fortunate to have teachers who mentor with such depth. Enjoy the read -
"Have yourself a merry little Christmas, let yourself be light; From now on your troubles will be out of sight..." For the last week, Bing Crosby has been singing that wish to high school students to announce the beginning and end of each class—he has been our 'bell of the week.' Playing with changing bell tones in the School of Rhetoric is a lighter counterpoint to the 'troubles' of finals.
Regents gained approval on Tuesday night to go forward with plans to develop our West Campus property. By "West Campus" I mean the acreage across the street, which includes the Science and Nature Center.
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.
Each fall, we present a light-hearted talk to the high school students about dating, sex, and monogamy. The jokes are as corny as a field in Iowa and the maxims get right to the point. The goal is to help relax the students about the whole world of dances and dating.
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.
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?