Dear SouthLake Christian Family,
September has arrived, Labor Day weekend is ahead, and fall weather is around the corner. And while the school year has presented some challenges, overall we are off to a rather peaceful start. My updates this month pertain to the coming enrollment cycle, our COVID dashboard, and my observations of stellar teaching.
First, you will recall we use a continuous enrollment process at SouthLake, meaning your current students remain enrolled from one year to the next unless you tell us otherwise. As a current family, you also receive priority consideration for your non-SouthLake children who may wish to apply. Beginning September 27, current families may submit an application for any grade JK-12. Space is not guaranteed, but if a grade is full, getting on a wait list early puts you near the top of the list when a spot becomes available. Applications will open to the general public October 11. You can find an application on our website under the admissions tab. We process completed applications on a rolling basis in the order we receive them, as space allows. The application fee is $100. If you have any questions, feel free to contact firstname.lastname@example.org.
Second, we are 16 days into our academic year without disruption. After watching many schools in our area open and then close, I am thankful for the relative calm in our community. Thus far we have seen only a few disconnected COVID cases among our students and employees since the start of school on August 11. To view SouthLake’s COVID statistics, you can visit the dashboard on our website. Rest assured that if your student is ever a close contact of a SouthLake person who tests positive for COVID, we will contact you with all the relevant details. If you or a family member tests positive or if you have questions about how to handle a potential exposure, you may contact our amazing school nurse Elizabeth Metzger at email@example.com.
Finally, each month this year I will report on stellar instruction I observe in classrooms across campus. I’ve asked our teachers to invite me to see them at their best – their best project, presentation, lesson, or lecture – so I can brag about them to whomever will listen. Last week I had the privilege of observing Mr. David Gonzalez teach his 4th grade students about the political cartoons of the American Revolution. A sophisticated genre, political cartoons require the reader to understand historical context, symbolism, hyperbole, sarcasm, and subtleties of theme and tone. Mr. Gonzalez led his class through an examination of the interpretative skills needed to understand the cartoons, dividing students into timed discussion groups, and then inviting them to share their observations with the class. With the patience and skill of a veteran teacher, Mr. G wove together the historical details of the Revolution with insightful literary analysis. I was impressed by the speed with which these young scholars caught on and began to share their own unique insights, pointing out details I’d missed, adding to my own understanding of each cartoon and its historical context.
These experiences in the classroom remind me why our work matters. When I get caught up in the comparatively mundane details of day-to-day school administration, the faithful work of our teachers to instruct, coach, mentor, and minister to our students inspires me to do all I can to support all they do. Pray for our teachers. They are doing remarkable work under remarkably challenging circumstances.
Matthew S. Kerlin
Head of School
SouthLake Christian Academy