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Director’s February Update

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Auction 2017

Good afternoon Maggie Walker Community.

As the forsythia begin to bloom we know that spring is right around the corner.  With spring we anticipate more delightful, warm weather as we prepare for our gradual descent toward the end of the 2016-2017 school term in June.

February has been a busy month.   This past weekend the PTSA held the annual Night of the Dragon Auction.  What an event!  The turnout was excellent and the Hilton Hotel and Spa at Short Pump was the perfect backdrop for an exciting and entertaining evening.  Many thanks to Mrs. Peggy Feldmann and all the PTSA volunteers for their many hours of hard work and persistence in making the evening a tremendous success.

This week we look forward with great anticipation to the spring musical Pippin, a Tony Award-winning musical with music and lyrics by Stephen Schwartz, book by Roger O. Hirson.  Performances will be offered Thursday, Friday, and Saturday, March 2-4 at 7:00 p.m. in the auditorium. Tickets are $10 and will be sold at the door. I encourage everyone to come out and enjoy the production.

Wednesday evening, March 1, we will welcome spring sports parents to school for an opportunity to meet the coaches and hear from Activities Director Ms. Paige Hawkins about expectations for the upcoming season.  If you have a student participating in spring sports, please plan to join us at 6:15 p.m this Wednesday in the forum on the third floor.

This Friday afternoon we will hold a winter sports pep rally to honor our winter athletes.  Of particular note are the girl’s indoor track team, girls diving team, and boys and girls swimming state championships teams, with special recognition to boys swimming for their first-ever state title.  Congratulations to our many winter athletes for their great efforts representing MLWGS!

During the week of March 20, we will welcome future dragons to Maggie Walker to experience a day in the life of a Maggie Walker student.  These middle school students have been accepted for admission or have been placed on the wait list for MLWGS for the upcoming school year.  Many thanks to the Future Dragon Day committee for their outstanding preparation for this welcoming event!

Celebrations

Once again this month we recognized many students and staff for their successes in and out of the classroom.  These successes include Mrs. Lisa Williams, who is this year’s recipient of the Pat Taylor Teaching Award; our We the People team, led by Mr. Sam Ulmschneider, which won its 19th state title and is now slated to attend the national competition in Washington D.C. on April 21 – 24; Andrew McCullough-’17-Powhatan, and the many student volunteers who made this year’s Walker Model Congress a huge success; and members of the National Science Honor Society, led by Mrs. Anna Shore, for their work bringing science activities and lessons to students at a number of local elementary schools.

Safety Upgrades

Switching gears, we continue to work to improve school safety.  Beginning a few weeks ago, the Lombardy Street entrance remains locked throughout the day.  Security staff is now present at the student parking lot entrance during the time it is open, from 7:30 a.m. to 8:40 a.m. each morning.  After that entrance is locked, all students, staff, and guests must enter the school through the Bluestone entrance, which is open from 7:30 to 9:00 a.m. each morning.  After 9:00 a.m., guests using the Bluestone entrance must ring the bell to enter school.  The Bluestone doors are unlocked again from 3:00 a.m. to 6:00 p.m. and security is always present when the door is unlocked.

In addition, to enhance security on the student parking lot side of the school, we are trimming back some of the landscaping and adding additional lighting at that entrance and along the side of the building.  Finally, after evening programming, we are making every effort to have sponsors and security personnel (when available) walk groups of students to their cars.

Director’s Search Update

The period for receiving applications for Maggie Walker’s next director closed on Monday, February 13, and our regional school board recently completed the application screening phase of the selection process.  Interviews will be conducted in March, and it is possible that a new director may be named as early as April.

Thank you!

In closing, I want to thank the school community for your continued support during my time as interim director at Maggie Walker.  I appreciate hearing from students, parents, and alumni, and I encourage you to contact me with any suggestions, questions or concerns.  As spring approaches, I encourage you to come out to school, attend school events, and share in the excitement.  I look forward to seeing you on campus!

Jonathan Lewis