Dear NDB Families,
Welcome to the 2019-2020 school year! We are delighted to welcome NDB students back to campus, and, in particular, a hearty welcome to this year’s freshmen class, 118 strong. All of our students - 475 at last count - form a strong sisterhood of caring and energetic young women. As you may recall from last Spring, we are beginning this year with some changes to our administrative structure. Change, of course, is both exciting and anxiety producing, but we are looking forward to starting this year with renewed energy and look forward to continuing our collaboration with all of you! Let me share a few of the higher level changes:
- Dr. Linda Kern is the new Associate Head of School for Curriculum and Instruction. Dr. Kern has been hard at work since July, familiarizing herself with all aspects of her job, and enjoying her one-on-one conversations with our teachers. She has been impressed with the professionalism, passion, and commitment of our faculty. Her email is firstname.lastname@example.org.
- Dr. Rachel Shanley has moved from Admissions to Dean of Student Life and Leadership, with responsibility for student leadership and activities. Rachel is taking on a big job - and a tremendously important one - and we are all delighted to have her working so closely with the students. Rachel’s email is email@example.com.
- Mrs. Alisia Bergholm is now the Assistant Dean of Student Relations, with responsibility for student behavior and attendance. Alisia will be working closely with Barbara Tauskey in the front office. Alisia’s email is firstname.lastname@example.org.
- Both Rachel and Alisia will be working closely with Cathy Lewis who has assumed more responsibilities under the mantle of Enrollment Management. Cathy’s new title will be Associate Head for Enrollment Management.
- NDB’s counseling program has also undergone some important changes. We have integrated academic counseling, the Empowered for Success program, college and career counseling, and health and wellness into one department. All three areas are vitally linked, and we believe that this new configuration will allow us to be more effective in serving your daughters. Michelle Bizeau, who has done such a wonderful job as Director of the Empowered for Success Program, will be the new director of this department, with the title of Associate Head for Empowerment and Wellness. Michelle’s email is email@example.com.
We also have some exciting updates about many parts of the school to keep up with our growing student body.
- Painting and classroom renovation: The first floor and basement of the main building got a face lift. The hallways were repainted and the classrooms were renovated, painted, and carpeted.
- Some administrative offices, as well, were updated and counseling and student life and leadership switched offices. Counseling - both academic and college - is now located across from the Dining Room in Room 126. Student Life and Leadership is now in the space beyond the small gym, Room 117.
- The “soda fountain” which is located in the basement, was renovated for student use and will be open to our Tigers all day long. For those of you who don’t know, long ago, the soda fountain at one time actually was a soda fountain. At this point the room has neither soda, nor a fountain, but the name has stuck. Our students will be able to use this space throughout the day for lunch, study hall, group projects or just hanging out.
The external campus also received some makeovers and improvements:
- We finished the landscaping around the four beach volleyball courts, creating a perfect setting for playing and watching volleyball. The courts, I might add, have been well used this summer, and we are excited about their future use.
- Exterior security lights have been added all around the main building and the Moore Pavilion. In addition, we installed security lights on the two pillars at the exit of the school. The last piece to fall into place will be the security monitor at the front door, which is in the process of being installed. The video monitor will help to ensure the safety of everyone in the school community. The security lights and video monitoring system are thanks to the generous support of parents and friends at last year’s auction. Thank you!
So yes, we hope that you and your daughters will enjoy the improvements made, but please know that the most important component of the NDB experience will remain unchanged: the personal care and encouragement your daughters will receive, as together, we help them grow into their most authentic selves. I look forward to many opportunities to meet you, and I encourage you to attend my monthly Head of School Coffees on the first Friday of the month at 8:00 a.m. in the Parlor.
Besides this monthly gathering, I invite you to attend our other parent activities:
- Moms and Dads Clubs meet monthly (check the website calendar for dates and times).
- Boosters Club will sponsor the annual Crab and Casino on Saturday, February 1st.
- Finally, you won’t want to miss this year’s Auction and Dinner on March 7th!
As we begin this new school year, we pray that our Good God and St. Julie will bless your daughters as they embark on abundant opportunities and challenges this year.
In Notre Dame,
Head of School