Saturday, January 16, 2016

Classroom Donations Please!

We are in need of Tissue Boxes and Disinfecting Wipes for our classrooms. Please drop off any donations to the front office. Thank you in advance for your support!

Sunday, January 10, 2016

Rainy Day/Cold Weather Jackets

Students may wear raincoats and cold weather jackets outside and between classes when a morning announcement is made (8:05) due to due to heavy rainy or unusually cold weather. Raincoats/cold weather jackets must be free of logos and advertisements.


We have a new clubs starting this week: Art Club & Spoken Latin. Drama moves to new schedule. Reminder to club members from Quarter2/Semester 1 - you must sign up again to continue for Quarter 3/Semester 2.
Sign up information can be found here for Middle School and here for High School.

This week the following clubs will have informational meetings after school to determine best meeting schedule:

Website Changes

You may notice some changes to the arrangement of information on our website. We have moved things around to differentiate our Middle and High schools.

If you have any questions or difficulty finding information please contact Ms. VanDeusen

Yearbook Photos Wanted!

Our Journalism Club will be assembling the yearbook over the next few months.  Members of our school community can upload images for consideration in the yearbook! Use the following access code to upload images at
Community Image Upload Site Access Code: VUACND

No School Monday - R&R Weekend

Reminder next Monday is a No School Day in observance of Martin Luther King Jr. Day. This will be a R&R Weekend.

CC FAQ's - Week 1

Important Factors in the Admissions decision – Week 1
Many families have asked about the most important factors in the Admissions decision, for which we turned to NACAC’s publication, the State of College Admission.

Let’s begin by examining the top two factors in the admissions decision as reported by colleges:
  1. Grades in college prep courses 
  2. Strength of curriculum 
Frequently Asked Questions: 
  • Why are these the most important factors? 
  • What is a college prep course? 
  • How do colleges know about the strength of our curriculum? 
  • What are the strengths of our curriculum?
Check back next week for more information on the Honors/AP/IB designations and their value in the admissions process.

Why are these the most important factors? 
  • According to the NACAC report, these factors predict greater collegiate success: “Although overall GPA serves as an indicator of a student’s academic success in high school, strength of curriculum – and particularly grades in college prep courses – are better indicators of a student’s likelihood of succeeding in college” (32).
What is a college prep course? 
  • College prep courses are courses designed to prepare a student for continued academic study. They generally exceed the minimal requirements of state standards for education and include a heavy focus on reading and writing.
How do colleges know about the strength of our curriculum? 
  • This is one primary function of the Great Hearts College Counselors. We build relationships with college admissions representatives in order to ensure that they understand the curriculum our students undertake and that they consider the transcripts, test scores, and letters of recommendation in the context of this curriculum. We share our curriculum in multiple ways:
    • In print: School Profiles, Great Hearts Magazine 
    • In public: Symposium, Site Visits 
    • In person: Direct communication via e-mail, phone, and at networking events such as NACAC. 
What are the strengths of our curriculum? 
  • Our focus on the Liberal Arts provides students a strong, balanced foundation on which to build in college. Rather than specifying in particular fields at this early stage, all students undertake detailed study of the core subjects of English, history, mathematics, and science. All students study a foreign language for at least four years. All students undertake training in the arts, participating in poetry, art, music, and drama classes.
  • Our practice of using Seminar in classes trains students to be active and engaged participants in education. Students learn to formulate thoughtful questions, to respond articulately to criticism or inquiry, to collaborate in the analysis and synthesis of ideas, and to form personal evaluations of ideas based upon this thorough process of critical examination. 
  • Our focus on the Great Books means that we include primary texts as models of excellence in every field. We emphasize the need to examine primary texts for ourselves, rather than relying upon the interpretations of others. Students also develop strong reading comprehension and vocabulary skills in their encounters with such rich texts. 
  • Our use of Writing throughout the curriculum and most notably in the Senior Thesis, prepares students for the writing requirements of continuing education. More importantly, writing develops the ability of students to think and to communicate clearly. How does this relate to the Honors/AP/IB course designations? Honors is a designation made by a school to indicate the level of rigor of the course. The AP and IB programs are two independently developed college preparatory programs of study.