Can you believe it’s already August and that it’s time to start thinking about school again? We hope you all had (and are having) a tremendous summer, one for the history books, and we can’t wait to see all of our returning and new students in just a few weeks.
Before the year starts, however, we just want to provide some basic information that everyone will need for the start of the year. Some of it has already appeared on this blog, but we figured we’d put it all in one place.
Four Big Changes
1. We’ve Purchased a New Headquarters!
As you probably know, LiHigh School has purchased the historic train depot in the center of Main Street in Poultney. The depot will house the students in our Therapeutic Program, and over the course of the year, we’ll be developing it into the new LiHigh School Culinary Institute, where students will learn vital life and career skills while also becoming trained in the culinary arts. We’ve hired a highly-experienced culinary instructor to oversee the program, and we’re eager to taste the meals he and our students whip up!
2. We’ve Started A Middle School!
As we announced in the Spring, LiHigh School now enrolls students from 7th grade through 12th grade. The upcoming year will have four students in middle school and four in high school, all being taught in our “one-room schoolhouse” in the Poultney Small Business Center (actually, the “one room” is three different rooms, plus the entire town of Poultney, which we truly consider to be part of our campus). For this year, all of the students will be led by the same advisor — that would be me, Kyle Callahan — but I’ll be getting plenty of support from Greg, Zohara, and our other staff members, as well as from the parents of students and alumni. I’ve been taking classes this summer to get ready for this exciting challenge, and I can’t wait to get started!
3. We’ve Created A Social-Entrepreneurial Program!
Again, as you might have seen, we’re excited to announce that our high-school and middle-school students will be participating in a new social-entrepreneurial program that will focus on solving community-based problems through the development of the students’ entrepreneurial skills. Students will conceptualize innovative solutions that have value in the real world, and in the process, develop the skills they’ll need to be successful in the 21st century. Early in the year, all the students will work together as a team, but as the year progresses, the high-school students will begin to develop independent projects and the middle-school students will work on a group project, but all of them will continue to focus on projects that solve community-based problems. This is an electrifying improvement to our program, and we are eager to see what it sparks.
4. We’ve Hired A Dedicated Math Educator!
We had the great fortune to receive an email from a Poultney resident who just so happens to have his Ph.D. in Math Education and who wants to help us out. So, starting this year, he’ll be coming to class for four hours a week to work in both a group and one-on-one setting with our students, helping them to master middle-school and high-school level math. With this new hire, we’ve improved our ability to give our students the math skills they need to be successful.
We are in the process of updating our website to reflect these major changes to our school, but if you have any questions or ideas in the meantime, please let us know!
We’ll be sending the students home with a schedule of all the important events for the year (and we’ll soon have our website calendar updated with all the events as well), but the important events for the first months of school are as follows:
- Sunday, August 25th, 1-4pm: LiHigh School Welcome Party
All parents and students are invited to a cookout in front of our new headquarters on Main Street in Poultney. We’ll take a tour of the new building, as well as the classrooms in the Poultney Small Business Center, and answer any questions you may have.
- Tuesday, September 3rd: First Day of School
School begins at 8:30 and ends at 3pm.
- Wednesday, September 11th, 6:30-7:30pm: Parents Night
All parents are invited to a short presentation and the development of your child’s learning plan for our first term.
- Friday, October 4th, 6:00-8:30pm: Who Am I? Exhibitions
All parents, students, friends, and family members are invited to the first student exhibition of the year, a series of speeches wherein each student at LiHigh School answers the question: “Who Am I?”
- Thursday, October 10th: Bring A Friend Day
All students are encouraged to bring one friend to school who they believe might benefit from the unique curriculum we offer at LiHigh School.
- Friday, October 11th: First-Term Evaluations Sent Out
Your student’s advisor will send out his narrative evaluation of your student’s progress during the first term.
- Monday, October 14th – Friday, October 18th: Learning Plan Meetings
Parents and students will meet individually with your student’s advisor (as well as at least one of the co-directors) to develop a unique learning plan for the second term. Meetings will take place after school, at a time that meets your convenience.
- Thursday, November 7th: Parents Bring-A-Friend Day
All parents are encouraged to bring one friend to the school whose child might benefit from the unique curriculum we offer at LiHigh School, or parents can come on your own to experience first-hand what your student experiences at school.
While all students should bring whatever they feel they need to be successful this year, the following items are required for each student:
- An iPad or iPad mini
All students are required to have their own iPad (iPad 2 or later) or iPad mini. If your student doesn’t currently own an iPad, we recommend purchasing an Apple-certified refurbished one (10% to 20% off) from their online store. Some families have also found quality iPads on Craig’s List. If you have any questions about the iPad, please contact Greg.
- A thick three-ring binder (at least 3.5 inches) with slots for loose papers
- Pen, pencils, and a pencil sharpener
- A multi-subject notebook
- A ruler and mathematical compass
If you have any questions about anything mentioned here, please don’t hesitate to leave a comment below. We’ll see you in a few weeks!