2019–21 President's Report

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CONVENT & STUART HALL

2019–21 P R ESI DENT’S R EPORT


OUR MISSION Convent & Stuart Hall educates mind, Heart and body, animating a zeal for discovery, inspiring a passion for justice and nurturing the strength to transform.

FRONT COVER: As Nisrine Rahmaoui ’20 processed through the Main Hall for her individual graduation diploma conferral ceremony, her mother, right, and President Krejcarek greeted her. LEFT TO RIGHT: Ethan Arguelles SHB’20 holding his diploma following his individual conferral ceremony. Jalysa Jones CES’20 received her diploma from her mother during her conferral ceremony in the Cortile.


2019–21 P R ESI DENT’S R EPORT

TA B L E O F CONTENTS

3 Message From the President 4 Students Engage in Ancient Stories Retold with Visiting Author Madeline Miller

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A Spellbinding Author Visit Libraries at the Heart of Convent & Stuart Hall COVID-19: An Inflection Point Living and Learning Without Borders Cor Unum: Understanding the World Within and the World Without A Most Beautiful Thing Little Theater: A New Performance Space A Celebration of Reading with Two Award-Winning Authors

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Judd Winick Encourages Students to ‘Find Out Who You Are’ Nigel Newton CBE SHB’69: A Royal Title for a Publishing Giant Heritage: From Caves to Cathedrals in the Heart of France Convent & Stuart Hall Athletics Highlights A Spirited Year A New Professional Endeavor: Angela Taylor Faculty Highlights Faculty Awards From the Archives: Did You Know? Quarantine Art Our Board of Trustees Message From the Board Chair


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Pierce We are forever grateful for the time we had with Pierce. He will live in our hearts and minds for all time. May your Spirit always soar.


2019–21 P R ESI DENT’S R EPORT

M E S S A G E F RO M

President Ann Marie Krejcarek Dear Convent & Stuart Hall Community, This edition of the President’s Report shares stories that reflect our journey from the start of a seemingly typical academic year and the fall of 2019, through our encounter with an unprecedented global inflection point posed by SARS CoV2, the impact of which continues to be felt as this publication goes to print. As we adapted and responded to the challenges the virus imposed, we were deeply impacted by another momentous affliction, as our country witnessed racial inequities and injustices. As Sacred Heart educators, we asked ourselves “What are we doing to keep our students and our community informed, empowered, strong, safe and prepared to meet the realities in front of us?” The stories in this report reflect the strength of a community that demonstrated Courage and Confidence in meeting the promise of a Sacred Heart education, even amidst the most challenging circumstances and times. The pandemic imposed a loss of familiar ways of being in school together, as our community could not gather for in-person school or any in-person activities for several months. Traditional ways of gathering for the community celebrations and rites of passage core to the Sacred Heart experience could not be held. Nevertheless, with a deep appreciation for the spirit of our traditions, we realized, reimagined and invented new ways to experience them. With our Sacred Heart mission foremost in our hearts and minds, we found the resilience and creativity to set the course for a year like none before. The deepest loss in our community came in January of this year when the life of the beautiful 9-year-old boy pictured on the page next to this letter was tragically taken away. Family, friends and faculty found a way to say goodbye to Pierce through memorials in the sanctity of the Mary Mardel, RSCJ Chapel. Images of paper airplanes, bicycles and letters of true friendship and love reflected the powerful impact of Pierce’s life. He will always be remembered and celebrated for the love in his heart, the joy of his presence and the heights to which his spirit soared. Pierce’s spirit will remain alive forever in our community and in the hearts of his family, classmates, friends and teachers who experienced the blessing of knowing him. These past 13 months have required Grace; grace that was divinely sent as well as the grace we afforded each other. As you make your way through the stories in this report, I hope you will see and feel that Schools of the Sacred Heart San Francisco lived true to its mission in easy and not-soeasy times. With sincere appreciation,

Dr. Ann Marie Krejcarek President Convent & Stuart Hall

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CONVENT & STUART HALL

STUDENTS ENGAGE IN ANCIENT STORIES RETOLD WITH VISITING AUTHOR MADELINE MILLER KATE BAKER Upper Form Associate Dean and Convent Elementary Studies in Literature & English Language Faculty 4

When I heard Madeline Miller speak at the 2019 Key West Literary Seminar entitled, “Under the Influence: Archetype and Adaptation from Homer to the Multiplex,” I was impressed by her authenticity and intelligence. Her passion and excitement drew the crowd towards her as she spoke thoughtfully about the process of writing her New York Times best-selling novel Circe, as well as her previous novel, The Song of Achilles.

what it was the author might have meant, and then to consider what it is that the book means to a modern audience, and, specifically, to her. In many ways, this process is what last year’s theme, “Heritage,” calls us to do. In considering our heritage, we do not simply think about what our foundresses said and reread the Goals and Criteria. Our heritage is about knowing where we come from so that we can set a path for where to go.

Ms. Miller wrote both novels out of love and passion for these ancient stories, as well as her frustration with the gaps they left. If Circe is one of the most powerful witches in mythology, and an immortal, why does she cower at Odysseus’ feet? Why does no one ask Circe why she turns men into pigs? Ms. Miller spoke about adaptation as a conversation between old and new; her stories bridge the thousands of years between Greek mythologies and modern times.

By inviting Ms. Miller to Convent & Stuart Hall, we wanted our students to engage actively in her visit. Instead of attending a lecture, the eighth grade read The Odyssey with the same questions in mind that Ms. Miller grappled with when she read it herself in eighth grade. Whose story hasn’t been told, or hasn’t been told well? What is meaningful to me about this story? What do I have to say about this? How do my thoughts change this story? These can be hard questions for students to answer. Too often, students may think the classics are the classics for a reason — that they are beyond criticism — and there’s nothing new to say about them.

Reading always bridges these gaps. Regardless of when a text was written, it is always read in the present, and negotiating the space between the author’s present and the reader’s own is the reader’s job. While reading can often feel like a passive practice, at Convent & Stuart Hall we teach our students that the role of the reader is much more active. As readers, our students must engage in conversation with the text. A reader’s job is to consider

The eighth grade was introduced to Book Ten of The Odyssey through Emily Wilson’s translation. We discussed the epic genre, analyzed the poem’s figurative language and wondered at the story’s lessons. The students discussed the power of word choice and the deceptively


2019–21 P R ESI DENT’S R EPORT

LEFT TO RIGHT: Author Madeline Miller. New York Times best-selling novel, Circe. Madeline Miller with Gabby Vulakh ’20 before her evening event.

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simple way that words can sway a reader’s engagement. Within the first ten lines of Book Ten, we are introduced to a character, Aeolus, who has “six strong boys and six girls.” The students noted that when the author does not describe the women, they are immediately cast as unimportant. As one student wrote, “What frustrates me about this is that we deserve a word next to us.” Our students’ questions had something in common with Ms. Miller’s quest to tell untold or elided stories. The unit culminated with students writing their own adaptations of The Odyssey, and their stories speak to both our shared heritage and to their own personal identities. Odysseus found himself the cool kid in high school, while Circe’s home, Aeia, was transformed into a popular resort destination, and men were turned into lions because they fell in love. Circe was a modern mean girl with a passion for Instagram revenge, or she was a desolate nymph alone on her island in ancient Greece. Students had the agency and freedom to interpret and change, to give voice and to empower. Students met with Ms. Miller around a seminar table in Williams Library — not for a lecture but as a group of authors ready to discuss similar projects. In preparing to meet with Ms. Miller, one student wrote, “I would like to get the opportunity to talk with someone who is very

good at doing what I am trying to do because it would be helpful to get advice.” Another wrote that she looked forward to meeting with Ms. Miller because “we must have gone through the same steps of the process.” They asked questions of craft and of process, eagerly taking in Ms. Miller’s advice on what it means to be an author and on developing their own voice as one. Janet Erskine Stuart, one of the founding mothers of the Network of Sacred Heart Schools, wrote, “Our education is not meant to turn the children out small and finished but seriously begun on a wide basis. Therefore they must leave us with some self-knowledge, some energy, some purpose.” The purpose of the classroom is not to give students answers. The purpose of the classroom, of every educational opportunity, is to empower students to form their thoughts, to search for knowledge and to engage in the world around them. Because the students were prepared to meet with Ms. Miller as authors ready to discuss their craft, her visit became an opportunity for the students to see what they were capable of. By the end of their meeting with Ms. Miller, it was clear that her visit had done just that. After she left, one student turned to me and emphatically said, “I’m never going to wash this hand. Madeline Miller shook it!”


CONVENT & STUART HALL

A SPELLBINDING AUTHOR VISIT MARY BLUM Stuart Hall for Boys Modern & Classical Language Faculty On a chilly, mist-filled evening in late November, with an unsipped glass of wine in hand, Madeline Miller told me that she had loved teaching and that one of her fondest memories was of leading a swordfighting class with her students. “Like fencing, with foils?” I inquired. “No,” she murmured before looking me in the eye, “with broadswords, actually.” I burst into laughter. Of course it was with broadswords. She laughed as well, and then explained how her theater background gave her the idea, and I mused on what it would have been like to have been her student and to have learned to fight with a

parents and faculty; her evening reception and talk was the last for us, as she was headed for a red-eye straight from the book signing. Given the line of grown-ups with books in hand waiting in a queue behind her table, I wonder if she might have missed her flight. Ms. Miller was never the “author on a pedestal;” rather, she talked intimately and specifically about the craft of writing. For instance, she revealed that she has to be sensorily deprived for her work to flow. For her this is literal darkness, a retreat to her cave of inspiration, perhaps something like what Odysseus does when he LEFT TO RIGHT: Author Madeline Miller poses with the Convent & Stuart Hall Latin teachers. The line outside Mother Williams Library for autographed copies of Circe.

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broadsword. In school. With her. Shortly thereafter, she was swept away to Williams Library and we, her rapt audience of parents and faculty, were swept away into the world of Circe. In the end, her novel makes it very clear that payback is, indeed, a witch. Ms. Miller’s title character, Circe, was born a minor deity, a nymph, a pawn to be used by Titans and Olympians to further their own ends. Through her own heroic journey, through her pain and her growth, her empathy and her fury, her talent and her intelligence, Circe becomes so much more: witch, mother, wife and finally, perhaps, mortal. Ms. Miller brought this all together with her own magic, that potent brew of master storytelling she shared with our community. Over the course of two whirlwind days, we basked in the spells she wove for the students, staff,

seeks the prophecy of the dead. She writes best when she is alone. She writes first on her laptop and always edits from printed pages. These practical tips – thrown in with her musings about her story, her characters and her writerly life – were jewels for all of us, but especially for the students lucky enough to have heard her speak. Throughout her visit, and in spite of her prowess as a published author, Ms. Miller generously shared her craft with each of us and spoke to our community, not as a demigoddess or master of arcane skills, but rather as a mortal, a person with empathy and curiosity and ferocity of mind, much like her title character, Circe. In the end, she did not turn us all to pigs, but she did turn us all to the light that literature shines across the minds of all who read or are read to, of all who desire to write and do write. Therein lies her magic.


LIBRARIES AT THE HEART OF CONVENT & STUART HALL ALYSON BARRETT Academic Department Chair for Libraries

As I write during the COVID-19 school closure, libraries have proven essential in providing communities across the U.S. with access to resources. Besides athletic fields, parks and the occasional Grange hall, libraries are some of the last non-denominational civic spaces where people form relationships across divides of background or opinion. Like large public libraries, our Convent & Stuart Hall libraries serve an important civic role at the heart of our community. As such, our libraries circulate everything the vibrant life of our school depends upon: resources, ideas and lasting friendships. Our work is centered entirely on our patrons. This orientation begins early in librarians’ training, inspired by our delicate position resisting censorship, preserving privacy and ultimately protecting the independence of our readers. One of my first memories of library school was learning that librarians never, ever divulge patron records without a verified warrant. This compulsion toward protection cultivates an environment where young readers exercise independence and choice. Without judgment, we know our patrons through their requests, through the sensitive areas of the collection they visit and leave in welcome disarray, through their research and collaborative projects, and through their selections, which refine throughout their journey into young adulthood. While their intellectual growth is astonishing, it is also true that our avid readers retain lasting memories of the stories that shape their childhoods. Encouraging minds and inspiring hearts, we stand by our students during their moments of discovery while preserving their freedom to select sources that inform and inspire.

Alyson Barrett looking for a document in the school’s archives, which were relocated to Mother Williams Library in March 2018.

Our patron-centered collections require vigilant curation that goes beyond simply buying new books. Revitalization, reorganization and deselection of resources are critical for well-stewarded collections. This invisible and immensely time-consuming work is based on the following truths: Print readership has remained steady in recent years despite the digital revolution; librarians build active, relevant print collections to work with online resources for a more comprehensive library. Online resources exist within a complex network of publisher platforms holding proprietary, costly information that is unavailable on the open internet. Librarians navigate this landscape for evaluation, purchase and delivery — something patrons could not do on their own. Not all scholarly information exists online. Print and digital sources are distinct cornerstones of a complete research process. Navigating the physical and virtual spaces where information resides is even challenging for most adults. Librarians, aware of the resources at hand, guide patrons to items uniquely relevant to them. Our curated collections also support creative faculty who teach beyond the confines of textbooks. Working through subject area call numbers, we have deselected and hand selected thousands of resources to keep our collections both anticipatory and historically robust. Centering on Sacred Heart Goal 3, a social awareness that impels to action, librarians recognize that action must be anchored in both learning and love. Consequently, our resources

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LIBRARIES AT THE HEART

CONVENT & STUART HALL

INFORMATION PHILOSOPHY PROGRAM The expansion beyond information literacy to information philosophy is an intentional and essential reimagining of the library curriculum, in which traditional information literacy skills are taught within the active and participatory context of metaliteracy. While information literacy prepares individuals to access, evaluate and analyze information, metaliteracy prepares individuals to actively produce and share both original and repurposed information in participatory environments.* In stand-alone library courses, as well as collaboration with classroom teachers, we deliver instruction and experiences that offer meaningful connections to and competence with information — with visual, digital and news literacy; with emerging technologies; and with the critical thinking and reflection that is required of ethical participation in research and its conversation. *Thomas P. Mackey and Trudi E. Jacobson. “Reframing Information Literacy as a Metaliteracy.” College and Research Libraries 72, no. 1 (2011): 62–78 within “ACRL Framework for Information Literacy for Higher Education.” Association of College and Research Libraries, 2015, ala.org http://www.ala.org/acrl/standards/ilframework.

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Elementary students often use the Hoffman Learning Commons to study and do homework.


educate toward the building of a fair, accountable, empathetic and diverse society, supporting students as they learn to denounce social structures and confront individual biases that prevent justice. In a world where information seems to grow exponentially, our Information Philosophy Program offers a curriculum of discernment. Analysis of primary sources, from scientific data to historical accounts, pushes students to seek their own answers. Access to scholarly sources inspires students to synthesize complex academic writing with their own discoveries. Explicit teaching about the coexistence of online and print helps students learn that information is a commodity that shapes bias, has value and impacts credibility of sources. Ultimately building toward the Association of College and Research Libraries information literacy framework with signature research projects, we help students claim their rightful place in the scholarly conversation. Supported by visiting scholars such as Brookings Institute fellow, Trustee and parent John Villasenor, information philosophy goes beyond traditional information literacy to equip students to navigate the swiftly changing information landscape with knowledge and confidence. By preserving the past and anticipating the future, our students are producers. Since 2018, a team of dedicated high school interns have volunteered their time to digitize more than 400 archival documents under the direction of our librarians. Due to the work of these interns, the archives established by former Director of Schools Mary Mardel, RSCJ, and stewarded by Virginia Murillo ’48’44 and Mary Ashe ’48, are now online. From building library shelf spacers (Grade 4) to creative writing workshops (Grade 5) to the International Baccalaureate Diploma Programme (IBDP) Extended Essay (Grades 11 and 12), our students are learning to collaborate and to create and publish their own work. Our library faculty expand the boundaries of our work through professional development and personal curiosity: Kathleen Esling enriched her critical work building equitable collections and classroom spaces through her participation in the first Institute for Racial Equity in Literacy at the University of New Hampshire (2019) and the Pollyanna Conference hosted at Town School for Boys (2020). Kathleen also received a National Endowment for the Humanities grant to study “Remaking Monsters and Heroines: Adapting Classic Literature for Contemporary Audiences,” at the University of Arkansas (2018). The experience brings continued inspiration to her role as

an English teacher and librarian. Reba Sell received the Sister Ann Conroy Award for professional development, supporting her attendance at a philosophy seminar held at the University of Oxford (2019). In the seminar, Reba explored the nature of the “common good” and its application to the IBDP core requirements of the Extended Essay and Theory of Knowledge. Alyson Barrett received a National Endowment for the Humanities grant to study The Battle of Little Bighorn and the Great Sioux War in Montana (2019). This experience falls in line with Alyson’s trajectory studying marginalized events in America’s history, giving her fresh material for both the classroom and collection. In January 2020, a group of faculty and administrators attended the Key West Literary Seminar. Last year’s theme, “Reading Between the Lines: Sports and Literature,” inspired deep reading, lively conversation and debate as the group explored the unique literature of sport. The calling of our profession requires that we transcend library walls to engage the world with a sense of wonder. From intellectual pursuits to coaching, knitting and painting, we enthusiastically wear infinite hats and seek to model lifelong curiosity for our students. This unprecedented time in history and our absence from school has made the value of our community all the more apparent. While I remain astonished at the speed and professionalism demonstrated by colleagues, the administration and parents in offering our students a meaningful online experience, it is clear that being together in our distinct physical spaces is a priceless aspect of the Sacred Heart education. Some continue to define libraries as simply places where resources are exchanged. Those who have spent time gazing at the San Francisco Bay from Mother Williams Library or watched first grade students eagerly consume a bookshelf or caught the afternoon slant of light in the Carroll Learning Commons know that libraries transcend their perceived role as mere book repositories. They are places where students make independent choices, develop lasting world views and spark lifelong relationships. Most critically, they are the places where ideas are liberated and exchanged. While our books, people and programs certainly hold intrinsic value, the work of the library is knowing that these things are most valuable when, as a community, we come together to share them.

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CONVENT & STUART HALL

COVID-19: An Inflection Point

COVID-19 RESPONSE

in·flec·tion point

noun 1. MATHEMATICS a point of a curve at which a change in the direction of curvature occurs. 2. US (in business) a time of significant change in a situation; a turning point.

Definitions from Oxford Languages

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The result of a planning meeting held in the President’s Office before remote learning began.


2019–21 P R ESI DENT’S R EPORT

OUR STRATEGIC PLAN IN THE CONTEXT OF A GLOBAL PANDEMIC Area of Impact III in our strategic plan called us to build organizational structures and systems that would demonstrate “strategic agility in order to respond to an ever-changing world and imbue the same agility in each of our students and professionals.” This plan of action and vision positioned us, sooner than we might have imagined, to meet the COVID-19 inflection point with swift and effective agility. Strategically, we were poised as an organization to respond to an adaptive problem* that would require swift innovation and creativity. Fortunately, our Leadership Team was trained in design thinking and design implementation, and in 2018, an ad hoc committee of the Board of Trustees had been formed to consider and advise on what future life and future work might look like. The “Future Life: Future Work” committee consisted of trustees, faculty and staff, and this group forecast what the future of our education would need to be in order to stand the test of adaptability and to respond to ambiguity and unknown variables. In the first days of March 2020, it became clear to President Ann Marie Krejcarek and the Leadership Team that Convent & Stuart Hall needed to design for a significant change in what it meant to “hold school” and that our own response and learning curve needed to be quick, effective and sustainable for the “long haul.” *Adaptive challenges refer to situations where there are no known solutions to the problem or cases where there are too many solutions but no clear choices. Adaptive challenges are volatile, unpredictable, complex and ambiguous in nature. Solutions to this type of challenge usually require people to learn new ways of doing things, change their attitudes, values and norms and adopt an experimental mind-set. - “Adaptive Challenge and The Leadership Challenge.” Edited by Joe NG, Team Building Singapore, FOCUS Adventure, 11 Dec. 2016.

OUR BELIEFS AND COMMITMENTS Continuing a high quality school experience for our students was paramount in our design process, and we were confident the faculty could deliver in any environment they encountered without sacrificing the quality of their instructional time with their students. School leaders were guided by the words of one of our founding mothers, Janet Erskine Stuart: “It is always here and now, there is always the present moment to do the very best we can with, and the future depends on the way these moments are spent.”

DESIGN ASSUMPTIONS 1. Possible 12–18 month pandemic impact 2. Synchronous teaching and learning was required; asynchronous engagement would not be adequate 3. Short-term solutions would add more disruption; the design needed to be “pressure-tested” for longterm sustainability 4. A belief that our faculty and staff were poised for success. They had training and access to equipment that had been in place as part of their teaching long before March 2020. The learning environment was saturated with technological tools so faculty had the means, capacity and mastery to shift their teaching and learning to a new remote environment. 5. A unified, school-defined communications platform for students, faculty and families via the learning management system (LMS) to provide consistency with virtual navigation 6. The technology team would become an ongoing responsive resource, providing a learning center and “concierge” tech support 7. School as it had been previously experienced would not occur for at least 12–14 months; meanwhile, in-person, on-campus instruction would begin as soon as the county allowed, so Convent & Stuart Hall would begin immediate preparations of the campus with viral transmission mitigation: ventilation, sanitation stations, traffic flow and density management, layouts and signage

COVID-19 RESPONSE

As the impact of COVID-19 took hold, Convent & Stuart Hall developed an innovative, adaptive and expansive response plan.

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CONVENT & STUART HALL

Digital Learning Toolbox

COVID-19 RESPONSE

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On March 16 and 17 of last year, the school hosted a professional learning conference to prepare and support our faculty and staff in implementing the design. This teacher-led, in-house conference was a time to share and practice techniques and tips for seamless and synchronous remote delivery. Topics were led internally by peer leaders in the use of technological tools, making for an experience in community and organizational learning like never before. By the end of the day on Tuesday, the collective community felt equipped and confident to begin remote delivery the following day.

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role, providing drop-in support throughout the instructional day to respond to “in the moment” needs for troubleshooting or questions. The process for iterating and enhancing what was possible with remote synchronous instruction was streamlined by an administration that was responsive and willing to stay ahead of the market n in purchasing equipment and supplies. 1 7 As a starting point, the Design by Talbot Moore. Academic Council gathered to work with departmental faculty to establish needs for curricular continuity once the initial move to online learning happened.

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DIGITAL LEARNING TOOLBOX

When school resumed on March 18, the importance of the prior saturization of campus with technological tools and know-how eased the way in the first days of remote instruction. The 1:1 iPad and laptop programs for Grades 3–12 were expanded to Grades K–2, which dramatically increased the number of teachers who were using iPads as secondary writing devices. The Technology and Innovation Department established the “Tech Concierge”

Guided by the essential question, “What needs to be taught and what needs to be learned?” the school then engaged the “how.” What technology, training and support would be needed to make sure the instructional experience would be of the highest quality and seamlessly delivered in a new format? A leadership group of faculty and administrators gathered to co-create a shared plan of action: leverage a unified communication platform via the LMS and expect teachers to use a toolbox of technological support for online teaching and learning. This toolbox included Zoom and its many features, such as screen sharing, whiteboard, breakout rooms and the ability to view participants in different ways (gallery view vs. speaker view). Additional tools to enhance the learning experience included Screencastify, Seesaw, Flipgrid and Formative.


2019–21 P R ESI DENT’S R EPORT

COVID-19 RESPONSE

OUR COMMITMENT TO ESTABLISHING CHANNELS OF COMMUNICATION AND BUILDING COMMUNITY

13 LEFT TO RIGHT: Kara’s Cupcakes delivered treats to faculty and staff at their homes. The moment Stuart Hall eighth graders announced a first-of-its-kind virtual Congé. Dr. Lisa Damour, now a regular guest at Convent & Stuart Hall, first spoke to the community in April, talking to students on Zoom about managing stress and anxiety during the pandemic. While at a distance, faculty and staff stayed connected by sharing their creative endeavors in the Cor Cafe.

Convent & Stuart Hall would commit to being a community that was intrepid in its capacity to try new things and one that would learn from regular feedback channels (we initiated a weekly feedback log with every teacher) as a means of communicating what was working well and what else was needed. Using this feedback, we provided enhanced support where necessary and made tweaks to the design of the plan. On day one of our remote learning launch, a microwebsite was developed for families and students to find links to remote classes, FAQs and any current updates, and a dedicated email address was established for parents and faculty to find out more information and share feedback.

As much as anything, we wanted to keep the spirit of our community alive. The goal was to create a rich learning environment, where the quality of the studentteacher relationship was a constant and where aspects of community life — such as chapels, assemblies, clubs, advisory and even Congé — could still be realized. While our faculty were engaged with the academic delivery, our Leadership Team worked to design and deliver the community experience that included “walking the halls,” teacher appreciation, Cor Unum, community support, world-class speakers and, of course, a special commencement for each individual student in Grades 8 and 12.


CONVENT & STUART HALL

COVID-19 RESPONSE

OUR COMMITMENT TO PROVIDING IN-PERSON SCHOOL

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While we were committed to delivering an excellent remote experience, our hope was to hold in-person school for our students as soon as it was deemed safe by the Department of Public Health (DPH). In April 2020, we forged a unique partnership with CAPSID Consulting, a company dedicated to developing comprehensive infection prevention programs in hospitals, medical centers and skilled nursing facilities. They agreed to share their expertise with us, their first school client. With the guidance of CAPSID Consulting, our Director of Physical Plant and Strategic Design Facilitator, Geoff De Santis, led a comprehensive overhaul of our school ventilation systems both in buildings with HVAC and in older school buildings. The HVAC and duct systems were sanitized, filters were replaced with MERV 13 filters and a bipolar ionization generator was installed in each system. For those areas not supplied by an HVAC system, portable Dyson air filtration systems were installed so that every square foot of our internal environment was treated to diminish transmission of viruses while also improving the quality of air during any external air quality event, including smoke from the fires in Northern California. Additionally, internet bandwidth was increased both inside and outside, and flexible classroom audio systems were installed.


2019–21 P R ESI DENT’S R EPORT

Starting immediately with the move to remote school in response to the city’s shelter-in-place order in March 2020, the school recognized the need to provide care and a learning space for faculty with elementary school-aged children. As an essential educational facility, we were granted approval to host a school program for our essential workers (faculty and staff) throughout the school day. Hosted by After School Program (ASP) staff, the school day for faculty children was held in a “one-room schoolhouse” classroom space where faculty children across various elementary grades could access their remote-learning options in a safe and supervised school environment. In June 2020, the school was granted approval from the DPH to host summer camp. The experience of a successful summer camp, from a Kinder Kids program to high school “summer term” classes, provided robust confirmation of the solidity of the school’s health and safety plan and protocols. We ran several weeks of programming for several hundred students, successfully, joyfully and without any incidence of COVID transmission.

LEFT: Howard Levin (far left), Director of Educational Innovation and Information Services, held a series of Meeting Owl training sessions for faculty and staff with the 360-degree camera. Students returned to campus on the first day of in-person learning following safety measures outlined in the school’s Health and Safety Plan. Right: A successful and safe summer camp and on-campus learning opportunities for children of faculty and staff members provided a chance to evaluate our systems in operation.

COVID-19 RESPONSE

FIRST IMPLEMENTATION: SUMMER CAMP AND FACULTY CHILDREN LEARN ON CAMPUS

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COVID-19 RESPONSE

CONVENT & STUART HALL

A RETURN TO IN-PERSON SCHOOL REALIZED

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Despite a city-wide return to remote learning at the beginning of the 2020–21 school year, Convent & Stuart Hall remained focused on delivering the promise of in-person instruction to our students and families as soon as possible. Making this happen would require approval from the DPH and ongoing updates and messaging to community members — faculty, staff, families and students — to communicate health and safety plans,

hopes, intentions and logistical details. We submitted our application to reopen in person on September 4, just days following the release of the application by the county on August 31. Following our site visit, we received the good news that we were approved to open in a staggered format, starting with Grades K–2 on September 22 and, then, in two-week intervals, Grades 3–4 and subsequently 5–8. When the


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COVID-19 RESPONSE 17

application process opened for high school, we submitted immediately and were prepared to meet the criteria set forth by the county. As a result, our high school students were welcomed back the first week of November. This sequence of school reopening required careful communication and planning to ensure that our scheduling systems, including traffic flows, instructional scheduling, recess and lunch times, would allow for

consistent management of density and cohorts. As students began returning to campus, the school launched a robust on-site COVID-19 testing program to complement a wide range of other mitigation measures. All of these initiatives combined was no small task, but the joy on our students’ faces when they returned to school was well worth it. Convent first graders enjoy being back in their classroom on the first day of in-person learning.


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LIVING AND LEARNING WITHOUT BORDERS AMANDA WALKER CES’91 and RACHEL SIMPSON Chief Academic Officer

The Society of the Sacred Heart, founded in Paris in 1800, was established amidst profound social and political upheaval in the wake of the French Revolution. Madeleine Sophie Barat and a small group of other newly consecrated young women set out to educate girls to rebuild, renew and transform society — in France and beyond. Just 18 years after its start, the French institution became


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an international organization when Rose Philippine Duchesne set out for America, and has since grown to include more than 150 independent schools in 41 countries on six continents. Internationality, which the Religious of the Sacred Heart define as “living without borders,” remains a defining characteristic of Sacred Heart charism and the educational program. Convent & Stuart Hall students and one exchange student from Argentina, third from left, gathered to reflect on their global exchange experiences.


CONVENT & STUART HALL

GLOBALLY-TESTED CURRICULUM At Convent & Stuart Hall, our curriculum and cocurricular experiences challenge our students to become informed, compassionate and globally-oriented students who commit to doing their part to make our world better. We believe that having our students become aware of their lenses and biases is a critical part of becoming globally-tested thinkers. International mindedness is a core goal of the International Baccalaureate Diploma Programme (IBDP), and students must develop a voice that is global rather than U.S.- or Bay Area-centric. Learning in the IBDP invites cross-disciplinary thinking where all areas of knowing are interconnected, just as all people can be and feel connected.

geographic provenance, sexual orientation, ability and other traditionally marginalized perspectives. In the History department, the curriculum includes a recontextualization of U.S. History as the History of the Americas, in order to reveal and uncover the complex history of the United States rather than presenting it as a single, dominant-perspective narrative.

GLOBAL PLATFORM AND IMMERSION AND EXCHANGE PROGRAM Furthering the experience of internationality at Convent & Stuart Hall is Greg Lobe, Associate Director of High Greg Lobe

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Student service and cultural immersion trips to Costa Rica and Mexico.

The K–12 curriculum develops fluency in sourcing, analyzing and evaluating different perspectives. This is on display in our Modern & Classical Language Department, whose proficiency-based curriculum is driven by essential questions such as how to make global connections and how to employ language as a medium for cultural understanding. The growing department, which has long offered instruction in French, Spanish, Latin and Mandarin, has added instructors to expand the Mandarin program in the seventh and eighth grades. The English department has engaged in a multi-year audit to examine what books are being taught when and why, both within each course and across the K–12 curriculum. Included in the examination of course readings was a careful eye towards both authors and story characters in an effort to identify gaps in representation of race, gender,

School Admissions, who has taken on an additional role as Global Platforms Director. Greg oversees the robust school exchange, service immersion and travel study program, in which many of our students and faculty participate. Greg, who joined Convent & Stuart Hall in July of 2017, roots his passion for international exchange in his own high school experience. “I am a firm believer that the high school years are a pivotal moment to experience a different culture, a different language and a different way of being.” Reflecting back on the impact of his first international immersion experience, he wants to pay that back to the students of this generation — especially now. Greg shares, “I am certain they are at a point in their lives when an authentic experience of stepping outside of one’s comfort zone and living with people in another culture will be something that students will remember for the


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rest of their lives as a vital growth point. Students will realize how this experience at the critical time of adolescence can fundamentally change how they think about the world.” Last spring saw three international student trips. The annual President’s coed sophomore trip to Costa Rica, now in its seventh year, has become a foundational element of the high school experience at Convent & Stuart Hall, stretching students to widen their perspective and deepen their connections. The annual Mexico service immersion trip, now in its fourteenth year, includes a visit to Sagrado Corazón, our Sacred Heart sister school in Mexico City, with the bulk of the trip spent working on a sustainable farm. The third trip delivered a group of high school Latin students to Italy, where they visited Rome, Pompeii and Florence. The purpose of the trip, according to Modern &

Monica St. Pierre. In making their contribution, Don shares, “We are so proud to be a part of the Sacred Heart community, and because so much of who we are as a family is rooted in being international, we hope to help the school expand its international reach and resources so that all our students and faculty can benefit from the wonderful international network that the Schools of the Sacred Heart and International Baccalaureate provide.”

FACULTY AND STAFF GLOBAL GROWTH OPPORTUNITIES

Convent & Stuart Hall’s robust professional development program delivers faculty and staff to locations near and far in continuation of their global education. Employees are invited to apply for two annual endowment awards, which recognize and support professional and personal enrichment pursuits. In February, the Sister Ann Conroy

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Classical Language faculty member David Jacobson, was “to make the ancient world live and breathe in ways that are impossible in the classroom, to gain a deeper understanding of the material and artistic culture of Rome, and to gain a spatial conception of the city at the heart of much of the literature and history we study.” In addition to group study and service trips, students in Grades 8–12 can elect to participate in national and international Sacred Heart network exchanges. Greg hopes to increase the number of individual annual exchanges, and says that within the network there is active conversation about how our schools can collaborate to offer all of our students joint summer courses, annual educational trips and group exchanges with course content — and perhaps academic credit. The expansion of the student exchange program will be helped in part by a generous endowed gift from Don and

Award was presented to Jason Enevoldson, High School History & Social Sciences Faculty, who plans to spend one month in Australia devoted to studying Aboriginal culture. Last year, the award was given to Accounts Payable Specialist Rena Franco, who plans to visit the SHIFT Foundation, a nonprofit run by Religious of the Sacred Heart in Northern Samar, Philippines. In her grant proposal, Franco shared that she had initiated contact with the executive director of SHIFT, Sr. Lydia Collado, who described Rena’s interest in their mission as a miracle for which she had been praying for years. Rena says, “I feel that God has given me the perfect opportunity to fulfill my dream.” The Sister Mary Mardel Fund for Faculty Excellence was presented to Suzanne Miazga, Convent Elementary Art Faculty, who plans to travel to Oregon to learn to prepare natural pigments, and then to Italy to paint the landscape of her ancestral heritage.


COR UNUM WEEK

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COR UNUM:

UNDERSTANDING THE WORLD WITHIN AND THE WORLD WITHOUT AMANDA WALKER CES’91 and RACHEL SIMPSON Chief Academic Officer

LEFT TO RIGHT: High school students with Suzanne Cooke, RSCJ, center, in April 2019 at Woodlands Academy in Lake Forest, Illinois, where they gathered with other Sacred Heart students and educators for an intensive dialogue training with the Tony Blair Institute for Global Change. A slide from Dr. Jerry Kang’s presentation to Grade K–4 students used cats and dogs to demonstrate implicit bias.

At Convent & Stuart Hall, we aspire to be a community that lives by the Sacred Heart precept of Cor Unum along with the International Baccalaureate’s mission to develop “inquiring, knowledgeable and caring young people who help to create a better and more peaceful world through intercultural understanding and respect.” This work has been called forward in our strategic plan, with initiatives that plan and promise to: • Create programs that equip all constituents to live and engage in a diverse world (Area of Impact I.D) • Inhabit invitational and constructive ways of sharing realities and building understandings toward transformation/change/growth (Area of Impact II.A.1) • Provide professional development such as Conversational Leadership and Dialogue Training (Area of Impact II.A.3)

COR UNUM WEEK: APRIL 2020

A commitment to unity is an essential and identifying element of the Religious of the Sacred Heart, and every

RSCJ wears a cross inscribed with the words Cor Unum et Anima Una in Corde Jesu (One Heart and One Soul in the Heart of Jesus). In service of these stated aspirations, initiatives and commitments, we engaged in our second annual Cor Unum Week last April, not only continuing but expanding our plans for programming after pivoting to distance learning during San Francisco’s shelter-in-place order. President Ann Marie Krejcarek has claimed the directive that our education equip students to “act according to an internal set of values and beliefs, living in the world with courage, grace and intellect.” It is the hope and purpose of Cor Unum Week to dedicate intentional time, space and focus in order to serve this element of our core mission. Building on the 2019 theme, as presented by visiting artist and author Chris Riley, we continued the development of dialogue skills in service of learning from rather than about others. The 2020 Cor Unum Week began with training for all faculty and staff on “The Essentials of Dialogue” with Generation Global, a nonprofit that


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COR UNUM WEEK

provides classroom tools and practices so students may peacefully and respectfully navigate differences. According to Suzanne Cooke, RSCJ, Head of the Conference of Sacred Heart Education in the U.S. and Canada, “Not only will this [dialogue] training equip our communities with new skills and tools to navigate differences in our communities, but it will also provide us with the opportunity to generate a vision to tap into our global network.” On April 28, 2020, we welcomed our second annual Cor Unum speaker, Dr. Jerry Kang, UCLA’s inaugural Vice Chancellor for Equity, Diversity and Inclusion and a leading scholar on implicit bias, critical race studies and communications. He presented a prerecorded and age-appropriate talk for students in Grades K–4 as well as a live interactive webinar with students in Grades 5–12, faculty, staff and guests from other Sacred Heart network schools. In a dynamic, substantive presentation, Dr. Kang used data and humor to convey the definition, pervasiveness and impact of implicit bias, as well as a defense against it. He reminded us that when combating implicit bias, which every person holds, “good intentions are not good enough.” Instead, he explained, we can and

Dr. Jerry Kang

must work to first become aware of our own implicit bias, become concerned about the consequences of this bias, and finally, learn to replace the biased response. A cohort of 60 students and employees who had participated in an intensive dialogue training in January 2019 then joined Grade 5–12 classes to reflect on Dr. Kang’s presentation. During these sessions, facilitators first reintroduced the dialogue framework, its purpose and its requisite skills, and established ground rules for creating “courageous and safe” spaces. Engaging their groups on the topic of implicit bias, the dialogue focused on Dr. Kang’s presentation and his question: What do you choose to do about implicit bias?

Later in the week, a musical celebration — the CorConcert — and a reflection by Paul Pryor Lorentz, Community Life Chair and Religion, Theology & Spirituality Department Chair, closed the week and honored what had emerged. With an opportunity to focus on interior practice in service of living into “one heart,” students participated in a guided lovingkindness meditation led by Paul. “Research shows that mindfulness practices help us focus, give us greater control over our emotions and increase our capacity to think clearly and act with purpose,” Paul shared with the students. “Might mindfulness help us — teachers and students alike — to minimize our biases as well?” Through meditation, prayer and guiding questions, Paul closed by offering an intention for our community. “As we take on the important task of self-reflection, as well as holding humility in remembering that our own biases may trip up our best intentions, we should always strive to maintain a growth mindset. May we invest the time and energy required to unearth our own biases and assume an attitude of openness as we ask the question, ‘How can I be better?’”

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COR UNUM WEEK

COR UNUM: BUILDING A FAIR AND JUST SOCIETY A month after last year’s Cor Unum Week, on May 25, the world witnessed the killing of George Floyd at the hands of Minneapolis police. As protests over his death intensified, Dr. Krejcarek first made space for faculty and staff to share their own responses and then called upon teachers to do the same for their students. With the principles of dialogue and Dr. Kang’s presentations fresh in their memory, faculty delivered age-appropriate instruction about the protests, racism and persistent inequities, and provided time for K–12 students to reflect and voice their sentiments. “Together we can make a difference, and in fact we are called to do so as members of the global Sacred Heart community,” Dr. Krejcarek wrote in a message to the community on June 4, referring to the Society of the Sacred Heart in the U.S. and Canada’s Statement on Racism. “The Society has called us to raise our voices against injustice and the sin of racism.” At the start of the 2020–21 school year, Dr. Krejcarek

24 A selection of summer reading texts as well as works by visiting authors from the 2020–21 school year.

announced the formation of a Cor Unum Workgroup made up of faculty and staff to engage ever more deeply the charge to build a fair and just society. The group, which includes elementary and high school faculty and Central Services staff, had its first meeting on September 10. The group will work to ensure that the aspirations of the strategic plan are resonant within the school community and will promote and coordinate programmatic initiatives such as the visits by historian Annette Gordon-Reed in November, author and activist Arshay Cooper in February, and authors Teju Cole and Grace Lin in April for the third annual Cor Unum Week. While the work of Cor Unum may be well begun, we recognize the critical role education plays in the formation of consciousness so that we may all serve the Goal 3 imperative to commit to a social awareness that impels to action.


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A Most Beautiful Thing:

Screening and Panel Discussions Spark Crucial Dialogue ELIAS FELDMAN Multimedia Communications Director As part of a celebration of Black History Month, Convent & Stuart Hall welcomed Arshay Cooper, whose memoir, A Most Beautiful Thing, is the subject of a documentary of the same title about the first all African American high school rowing team in the country. Joining him was Mary Mazzio, a former Olympic rower turned award-winning director, who left a career at a top law firm to dedicate her life to making films about the underserved. Mr. Cooper and Ms. Mazzio visited us virtually for a panel discussion with Grade 7–12 students and an evening talk and Q&A with the adult community.

As a lifelong rower, a former director of a youth rowing club and a former board member of the Marin Rowing Association, Mr. Hudson believes in the transformative power of rowing and wants to see the sport become accessible to more diverse populations. “I’m passionate about how the sport can help forge a positive path forward in kids’ lives,” he says. “Frankly, I’m overwhelmed by how this sport has so profoundly shaped Mary’s and Arshay’s lives and led to such a powerful message of hope about what can be achieved when people work together towards a shared goal.”

Mr. Cooper’s memoir tells the story of a group of young men growing up in rival sections of Chicago’s West Side in the 1990s and their journey to join their high school’s newly created rowing team against a backdrop of rampant gang violence and intergenerational poverty. Twenty years later, the men and their mothers reflect in the film about their entire journey, from childhood trauma to how rowing has positively impacted their lives. Now 38, Mr. Cooper, the team’s captain, is a motivational speaker, consultant and volunteer, using his story to help create social change and working to bring more racial diversity to the sport of crew.

Following the discussion with Mr. Cooper and Ms. Mazzio and a Q&A moderated by junior Joe Shea and sophomore Isa Infosino, students engaged in small group dialogue sessions, exploring the themes of empathy, privilege, implicit bias, police violence, the lasting impact of intergenerational trauma, how racism creates systemic inequities in this country, the power of sport to heal and bring lasting change, and, generally, what they took away from the film and our guests. “Whatever the reason, A Most Beautiful Thing is one of those films that reaches out beyond the scope of the screen and touches bonedeep into the lives of its viewers,” says Dennis Estrada, an Upper Form Associate Dean and Stuart Hall for Boys Studies in Literature & English Language Faculty who co-led the workgroup along with Alyson Barrett, Academic Department Chair for Libraries, to bring the film — and a curriculum to discuss it — to our community.

A team consisting of Cor Unum Workgroup members and others introduced faculty, students, parents and alumni to the film, providing a private screening link for classes and families to watch on Martin Luther King Jr. Day in preparation for the visits with our guests. Also helping to make this event possible was Stuart Hall for Boys parent Bill Hudson, who executive produced the film with NBA stars Grant Hill and Dwayne Wade, and Academy Award/Grammy-winning artist Common. Arshay Cooper, the author and protagonist of A Most Beautiful Thing.

One particular line in the film voiced by a Chicago police officer continues to resonate with Dennis. In speaking about the men’s lives, the officer says, “It doesn’t matter where they were; it matters where they’re going.” Dennis adds: “Now isn’t that a most beautiful thing?”

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LITTLE THEATER KATHLEEN ESLING Librarian and Studies in Literature & English Language Faculty

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Whether it be for Friday Morning Singing, assemblies, back-to-school nights or other gatherings, Convent & Stuart Hall’s Little Theater is a major community hub. Despite the frequency of its use, the Little Theater had not been renovated for decades.

LEFT TO RIGHT: Head of Stuart Hall for Boys Kevin Brenner leading an assembly in the old Little Theater. A seventh grader rehearsing in the old band room. Architectural renderings for the new Little Theater and lobby.


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After meetings with architects and faculty artists, and driven by the school’s strategic plan to match enhancements in the performing arts program with a reimagined space fit for both theatrical and instrumental performance, the Little Theater is actively under construction. The architectural plan will restore this magnificent space – originally the ballroom of the Flood Mansion – to its former glory, and the new space will accommodate different genres of performance to the highest standard.

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The former Little Theater space was not equipped for high-level instruction or performance. The Syufy Theatre was designed for stage performance and did not have sufficient space to accommodate orchestral performance. Additionally, both Syufy and the Little Theater had proscenium stages, so could not support non-traditional performance or workshop formats. The Little Theater redesign will offer a more flexible space, allowing for both large and small instrumental performances, lectures and community gatherings. On the east side of the room, a projection wall created by a suspended lighting grid allows the center of the room to be lit for performance, making possible a “theater in the round” experience. The redesign also extends to the space outside of the theater, making for another gathering area to mirror the grandeur and spaciousness of the Belvedere in the Main Hall.


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LITTLE THEATER 28

Music education has become an integral part of the Performing Arts curriculum, beginning with a coeducational Grade 5 instrumental music class. In this yearlong commitment, students try out different instruments and select one to focus on for the year, which culminates in a class ensemble performance. Most students remain in the instrumental music elective and deepen their study of the instrument they selected. The success of the instrumental music offering during the school day has created the enviable situation of stretching the capacity of the stage in the Syufy Theatre with an elementary program that includes 120 students and an equally robust high school program. Having a home in the renovated Little Theater will afford the music program new and exciting performance opportunities. Smaller ensembles can practice and perform in this new space, specifically designed for the acoustics of a musical performance. Music concerts and other performances can occur more frequently now that they are not vying for time on the Syufy Theatre stage, allowing more opportunities for students to compose, design and perform their productions. Performing Arts Faculty Chauncey Aceret ’06 reflects: “We will have less scheduling conflicts, more options acoustically and visually, and most important, we will be able to teach our

kids how to perform in a space specifically made to do that very thing. The Little Theater has a very special place in my heart. My brother Ryley Aceret ’15’11 and I are both alumni of Schools of the Sacred Heart and spent many hours in the Little Theater either performing, watching a performance or attending an assembly or special event. Having access to a performance venue, with updated acoustics, panels and aesthetics can really positively impact a performance.” Amy Tan, another member of the Performing Arts faculty, adds: “I think with the renovation of this space, Convent & Stuart Hall will see a growth in art appreciation and an uncovering of talents amongst us.” Band Director Leandro Joaquim agrees wholeheartedly, adding that the new space “brings motivation for students and faculty, access to new technologies, equipment and different interaction between the band, strings, musicals and vocals. I’m very excited about contributing ideas and suggestions, and I’m sure that this new space will bring the level of our student artists even higher!” “Flexible space is exciting,” says Theater Programs Director Margaret Hee, explaining that having a space like the Little Theater will allow students to practice staging and performing works that do not utilize a proscenium stage. Theater Manager Chris Miller adds, “This new ‘black


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box’ space will perfectly mesh with our plan for more frequent, less set-heavy, student-driven productions. The non-proscenium orientation and state-of-the-art lighting and sound capacities are tailor-made for exploring what theater can be. As a smaller space, it will be less intimidating than the Syufy Theatre for any student wishing to create their own world, in collaboration or solo. The ‘workshop’ ambiance also encourages an emphasis

on process over end product. We want our kids to feel free to explore any possibility they can imagine without being unduly inhibited by where that might take them.” Margaret agrees, recalling a cabaret performance that senior Anya Hilpert staged earlier last year when she was a junior. Sophomore Aza Reiskin and Zoe Forbes ’20 participated in this Cabaret Club as described by Anya herself: “With the help of Kat De Mesa (Gr. 12), we started the club, one that allowed for rehearsal space and time, as well as a performance night for student-driven pieces. This was such a cool thing to get to put together,

as getting to see the art that my peers were capable of was so moving and powerful.” Chris also highlights another exciting renovation the Little Theater will undergo, especially as we have been dealing with the challenges of being apart during the pandemic. The school has undertaken a project to increase available bandwidth for our internet data services and will take advantage of the increased throughput to explore “video everywhere” technologies — using existing ethernet connections to send a given video feed in real time. “We could, for instance, stage a show in the Little Theater with a multi-camera, student-run documentation crew, and send that to every classroom as an alternative to bringing large groups into Syufy Theatre,” Chris says. “Wireless systems also open up possibilities for ‘theater everywhere’ — productions staged or extended beyond the theatrical spaces per se.” When Performing Arts Department Chair Bonnie Fraenza was approached with the concept of a Little Theater renovation, in addition to the production possibilities, her mind also jumped to a much-needed functional opportunity: storage and sound-proofing. In meetings with architects, Bonnie had instrument numbers in hand (all those French horns!) and brought forward the need for the designers to soundproof the Little Theater if they wanted to make it a class space for the music program. As Director of Physical Plant and Strategic Design Facilitator Geoff De Santis explains, these meetings between faculty and designers are “one of my favorite things to do, hearing where the faculty and administration wants the teaching and learning to go.” Using Bonnie’s insights, the architects were able to design a thoughtful space that could truly live up to the department’s needs. This new design will allow for much more flexibility in terms of the meetings, performances and other gatherings the Little Theater will host in its future.

LEFT TO RIGHT: Elementary school band members practice for an upcoming performance. A scene from the theater program’s production of The Skokie Detective Charter School. Students leaving the Little Theater after an assembly.

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A Celebration of Reading with Two Award-Winning Authors Virtual talks by Annette Gordon-Reed and Erin Entrada Kelly highlighted a weeklong book fair celebrating Convent & Stuart Hall’s culture of reading.

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Two award-winning authors, Annette Gordon-Reed and Erin Entrada Kelly, joined students, faculty and staff, parents and alumni for virtual talks last November that coincided with Convent & Stuart Hall’s annual Book Fair Week, a celebration of the school’s Great Texts Philosophy and culture of reading. Following opening remarks by President Ann Marie Krejcarek and Academic Department Chair for Libraries, Alyson Barrett, Pulitzer Prize and National Book Award-winning author and historian Annette Gordon-Reed, who is also a Professor of History at Harvard, engaged Grade 7–12 students in a talk about “Most Blessed of the Patriarchs”: Thomas Jefferson and the Empire of the Imagination, her book written with Peter S. Onuf that offers an intimate portrayal of Jefferson in the context of his era. Emma, Grade 10: Annette Gordon-Reed has inspired me to continue to find ways to connect history to my daily life, to understand that I can make an impact on the future through my actions and be critical yet fair when I analyze historical events and figures. Alyson Barrett: The gift of her presence is that her work leads us into thought and conversation about the ways history lives in our present. Professor Gordon-Reed’s work and presence reflects our Cor Unum aspirations and offers an invitation to dialogue that extends beyond her visit.

“We wanted to try to start from scratch, not relying upon other people’s judgements about Jefferson, but coming at it with fresh eyes,” Ms. Gordon-Reed said. “In Jefferson we have the good and the bad.” The hourlong talk and Q&A centered on Ms. Gordon-Reed’s writing process, drawing from Jefferson’s writings and other primary-source material, and her view of history as a “moral enterprise.” Referring to Jefferson as a complex embodiment of contradiction — someone who enslaved over 600 people throughout his life yet who was opposed to the institution of slavery — Ms. Gordon-Reed told students that “You have to balance their [his] knowledge against our morality.” It’s necessary, she added, to have “humility about the things that we know that they [he] didn’t know.” Responding to student questions collated by former History & Social Sciences Department Chair and moderator Anne Porter, Ms. Gordon-Reed traced themes from her book to the present day. “We’re really uneasy about race and really uneasy about Black people’s place in America,” she said. “The sense that African Americans are not really American is still there among a lot of Americans.” Following the webinar and inspired by the talk, high school students and faculty engaged in an afternoon of dialogue reflective of our Cor Unum aspirations. Alliza, Grade 12: Through her book The Hemingses of Monticello, Professor Gordon-Reed pushes us to think about who holds the power in relationships and how the historian reenacts our history through their research and writing. Her presentation sparked a day of thought-provoking dialogue within our community.


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Speaking from her home writing studio, Ms. Entrada Kelly introduced students to her workspace, angling her camera around the room and holding up the first book she wrote and illustrated in fourth grade. “At a very young age, I started to write because I realized that all I needed was a paper and pencil and I could make my own books,” she said. “I really love the idea of having this blank page and writing any story I want.”

The next day, Erin Entrada Kelly, whose works have won the Newbery Medal, the APALA Award and the Golden Kite Award, gave two presentations, speaking first to students in Grades 3 and 4, followed by Grades 5 and 6. “I felt very self-conscious; my feelings would get hurt and I had a low opinion of myself,” Ms. Entrada Kelly said of her experience growing up as a Filipina-American in Louisiana. “One thing that saved me was books, because I absolutely loved to read.” Kathleen Esling: The thing I find most critical about Ms. Entrada Kelly’s work is that it reminds us that we all have a necessary role in the shuttle crew of our communities, to borrow a metaphor from her latest Newbery-honor novel, We Dream of Space. As we contemplate what it means to hold, offer and experience grace within our own school community, Ms. Entrada Kelly’s stories show us how no matter where we are or how we may feel at a given moment, we are part of our own constellations, connected to one another and creating an incredible galaxy of thinkers, readers and dreamers.

Ms. Entrada Kelly’s stories are about ordinary people who summon the strength to overcome difficulties in their lives, such as bullying and self-doubt. Her 2018 Newbery-winning novel, Hello Universe, is told from the perspective of four middle school students and celebrates friendship, bravery and being different. “The most important thing about a book are its characters,” she said, offering advice to an audience of young writers as she held up one of her sketchbooks, its pages providing a glimpse into her creative process. Librarian and Studies in Literature & English Language Faculty, Kathleen Esling, who introduced the visiting author with what Ms. Entrada Kelly called, “the most incredible introduction I’ve ever had,” relayed questions from students. One fourth grader asked why Ms. Entrada Kelly prefers to write about kids. “Young people are very funny and honest,” she replied. “Those are two things I really value in people.”

Matthew, Grade 4: Meeting her was very inspiring. I love her way of writing and liked the idea of how she used different words to show what the character was feeling in a specific moment in time. I think her talk with us grew my interest in writing and reading.

Keira, Grade 6: Erin Entrada Kelly really engaged our student body with helpful hints on the writing process. She answered questions on overcoming writing blocks and how doodling/art in her notebooks helped her turn ideas into written words.

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Judd Winick Encourages Students to ‘Find Out Who You Are’ 32

The cartoonist and creator of The New York Times best-selling Hilo series shared an inspiring story from his childhood about how he discovered his passion for drawing. On February 5, 2021, students in Grades 4–6 enjoyed a virtual visit from cartoonist, novelist and former reality TV star Judd Winick, the creator of The New York Times best-selling Hilo series. He started by narrating a story about his experience joining a new school in first grade, while showing a sequence of cartoon-style sketches. When his teacher would assign drawing projects, Mr. Winick explained, she asked students to color inside an outline of a tree, animal or object. Mr. Winick preferred to draw from his imagination. At Halloween, Mr. Winick drew Frankenstein as his classmates filled in pumpkins. “My parents used to buy me coloring books — I would never touch them,” he said. “I didn’t like coloring; I liked drawing my own things.” At first, Mr. Winick’s art looked different from everyone else’s, but soon other kids also began asking to draw their own scenes. “I want to give you this piece of advice and also ask a favor at the same time,” Mr. Winick told Convent & Stuart Hall students. “If the world out there somehow is telling

you who you’re supposed to be and it’s just not you, I want you to try to remember and try to find who you really are because that’s your job, that’s your journey.” That theme is at the heart of Mr. Winick’s popular Hilo series, including his latest book, Gina — The Girl Who Broke the World, about a regular girl who tries to protect her friends from otherworldly creatures by striving to become the person she was always meant to be. For Librarian and Studies in Literature & English Language Faculty, Kathleen Esling, who organized and hosted the author event, “Getting to hear Mr. Winick talk about his own inspirations and how he came to create this series was incredible.” Kathleen knew students would love hearing from Mr. Winick because she says, “We have intense Hilo fans here. It’s one of the series I have found myself reshelving the most over the last two years.” For most of the hourlong visit, students eagerly asked one question after another, covering topics ranging from why Mr. Winick decided to pursue a career as a cartoonist and what he enjoys about drawing, to why he made Hilo a robot and how real places inspire his fictional stories. “Mr. Winick charges each of our students to find what they love and practice it,” Kathleen says. “Hilo is about three kids learning who they really are, something he wants each of his readers to do, too.”


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A Royal Title for a Publishing Giant Early last year, Nigel Newton CBE SHB’69, the Founder and Chief Executive of Bloomsbury Publishing, received the London Book Fair’s Lifetime Achievement Award. And in another distinguished recognition for his contributions to the publishing industry, he was named a Commander of the Order of the British Empire (CBE) by Queen Elizabeth II in the 2021 New Year Honours list. This interview has been edited for length. Reflecting on the Commander of the British Empire honor, what does it mean to you? I was thrilled to receive a CBE in January. It was a surprise when I received an email from the Cabinet Office in 10 Downing Street on behalf of the Prime Minister and the Queen asking if I would accept a CBE — which is one notch below a knighthood — if one were offered to me. It is nice that the work of all 750 people at Bloomsbury has been recognised for the 34 years of toil since I started the company with the help of three other people in 1986. Briefly describe the original idea behind Bloomsbury — what was your vision and inspiration for opening a publishing house and how has it evolved over the years? The idea behind Bloomsbury was to start a mediumsized independent publisher of works of excellence and originality at a time when large media conglomerates were taking over many of the great independent literary publishers. We expanded through organic growth and 26 acquisitions of smaller publishing houses into the global publisher we are today with offices in London, Oxford, New York, New Delhi and Sydney. Our core subject areas are literary fiction, general non-fiction, children’s, academic and professional. Publishing Harry Potter helped.

What do you think you’ve carried with you from your time at Stuart Hall? I have carried my friendships from Stuart Hall. Zoom calls with old friends have been one of the upsides of lockdown, and I couldn’t believe my luck in being on a call recently with several Stuart Hall classmates. I also derive great succour from church on Sundays, and that must date back to my time as an altar boy in the Sacred Heart chapel. I remember fondly the jam donuts we were given at breakfast in the cafeteria after serving Mass.

What role did books play in your life growing up?

I learned about campaigning at Stuart Hall. Our current affairs teacher Russell Miller gave us a school project to save the two broken-down Dutch windmills in Golden Gate Park by Ocean Beach. I was one of our press spokespersons for the campaign and remember being tracked down in Stuart Hall by a reporter from KTVU Channel 2. I have been campaigning all my life ever since. More recently, I have come back into touch in the last four years with Reverend Mother Mardel, known as Be, and have thoroughly enjoyed that. She was a kind Reverend Mother and remains kind to this day, and still with total recall of conversations in 1970.

Books played a hugely important part in my life growing up. I always enjoyed English at Stuart Hall and writing reports on books we were assigned to read.

If you wish to connect with Mr. Newton, he can be reached at nigel.newton@bloomsbury.com.

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FROM CAVES TO CATHEDRALS IN THE HEART OF FRANCE DENNIS ESTRADA Upper Form Associate Dean and Stuart Hall for Boys Studies in Literature & English Language Faculty

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LEFT TO RIGHT: The village of Saint Cirq-Lapopie. One of the stations along the Way of the Cross at Rocamadour.


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The Pilgrimage In June of the summer of 2019, a group of five pilgrims from Convent & Stuart Hall and our two guides, Mary Moskoff and Marie Girard, began the first five days of a 10-day “Caves to Cathedrals” pilgrimage, journeying to a number of sacred sites dating back 40 thousand years in the Dordogne Valley of southern France. We visited Le Grand Abri, a prehistoric cavernous shelter used by early humans; the caves at Cougnac, Bernifal and Lascaux; the medieval village of Rocamadour with its Vierge Noire or Black Madonna; and Le Village de Madeleine, where according to legend, Mary Magdalene had lived after leaving the Middle East. Days were spent exploring sacred spaces and taking part in rituals led by our experienced guides. As in Dante’s “Divine Comedy,” the pilgrim men — Tony Farrell, Head of Stuart Hall High School; Erwin Wong, Director of Admissions, Enrollment & Financial Aid; Bill Jennings, K–8 Dean of Studies; Eric Gordon, Middle Form Associate Dean and History & Social Sciences Faculty; and I — turned to our Beatrices for guidance and inspiration. In the mornings and evenings, and well into the summer nights, we gathered outside our hotel in the shadows of the foliage of La Beune, the gurgling stream that meanders through the small town of Les Eyzies-de-TayacSireuil, to speak about the day’s experiences, insights and ruminations.

Eglise Saint-Francois-Xavier to visit the shrine containing the preserved body of the Society of the Sacred Heart’s foundress, St. Madeleine Sophie Barat. On the Sunday of our last day together, the five of us took the hourlong train ride to the Burgundian town of Joigny to spend time in the childhood home of Madeleine Sophie. Being members of the international community of Sacred Heart educators, we were graciously welcomed with open arms by the community at the Centre Sophie Barat. The Heritage Before we left for France, the five of us traveled with President Ann Marie Krejcarek to Oakwood in Atherton to meet with a small group of RSCJ sisters, including Mary “Be” Mardel and Mary Ann “Sis” Flynn. The elders’

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After five days in the Dordogne, we boarded a train and headed north to the Eure-et-Loir department of France to visit the Cathédrale Notre-Dame de Chartres with its two contrasting spires, magnificent original stained glass windows, interior heavy flying buttresses, well-worn labyrinth and crypt. One morning, we rose early and made our way to the south portal of the grand cathedral where we were met by a caretaker who gave us before-hours entry into the still darkened transept of the church. Once in the nave, we settled in and began our own private journeys into and through the 13th-century labyrinth, trodding upon the same limestone path pilgrims before us had walked for centuries on their way to the Holy Land. Late the following evening, a well-known scholar and attaché of the rector of the cathedral led our small group by candlelight through the crypt hidden beneath the church and built upon an ancient Druid sacred site dedicated to the Mother Goddess. In France, all roads lead to Paris, and it seemed only fitting that we sojourners would end our pilgrimage in the City of Light where we would eventually make our way to

blessing of pilgrims prior to a sacred journey is a ritual steeped in history and heritage, and we desired to stay rooted in such tradition. Every child of the Sacred Heart knows the story of Pauline Perdrau and her magnificent painting of Mater Admirabilis. One salient detail of the story, though, is often overlooked or even left out all together. And it is this: For the remainder of her life, Pauline continued in earnest to paint multiple copies of the original. Her deep devotion to Mater — the sacred feminine of her spirituality — was nothing less than admirable, astonishing and remarkable. The pilgrimage to the caves in the Dordogne and Chartres Cathedral was in its own way “admirabilis” due to the transformative effect it had on each of us as we journeyed into spaces most often associated with the


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sacred feminine. The caves — carved deep into Mother Earth herself and where births, burials, initiations and rituals took place since prehistoric times — are known to have transformed individuals emotionally, mentally and spiritually. Likewise, standing in the center of the ancient labyrinth in the expansive hollow of Chartres Cathedral is equally as transformative and profound. The Leadership Qualities such as empathy, vulnerability, compassion, intuition and humility are often linked to the sacred feminine. Each of us, all in leadership positions that fulfill different roles across the school, couldn’t emerge without a deeper sense for the calling to embody such traits in the work we do as leaders. Eric said it well when he reflected upon the experience: “While there were a variety of faith traditions represented within our group, it became clear to each of us that we had certain responsibilities as fellow pilgrims on a shared path — to embody a spirit of radical empathy; to shine a light on that which cannot easily be explained, yet cannot be ignored; to embrace the unknown; and to step out of our typical roles and identities in order to connect with the spiritual world that has so greatly shaped the human experience.” 36

The Vision The strategic plan, in its wisdom and desire to set the school apart in unique ways, highlights the need to develop content area expertise in “out of market” professional development opportunities and relationships. Given this charge, Dr. Krejcarek saw this pilgrimage as a positive force in helping to shape this cohort of school leaders organizationally, relationally and perhaps most uniquely, spiritually. The opportunity to engage and develop a spiritual interiority in her leaders was certainly at the heart of her vision for the journey. The Return Home Upon returning to school in August 2019, we shared our pilgrim experiences with the administration, faculty and staff at a convocation Mass in the Mary Mardel, RSCJ Chapel. Speaking to our colleagues provided us with an opportunity to put into words what was in many ways an inarticulate speech of the heart. As Joseph Campbell reminds us, the pilgrimage is a mythic journey that starts as an external quest and ends with internal transformation. As we continue to take on the mantle of leadership at the school, we will always have the profound and intimate “Caves to Cathedrals” experiences from which to draw strength, guidance and support.


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LEFT TO RIGHT: Pilgrims Erwin Wong, Tony Farrell, Eric Gordon, Bill Jennings and Dennis Estrada in front of the childhood home of St. Madeleine Sophie Barat in Joigny. Strolling the streets of Chartres. The church in the village of Saint Cirq-Lapopie.


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2019–20 ATHLETICS HIGHLIGHTS *

As the No. 4 and No. 7 seeds in the Division V NCS and NorCal tournaments, respectively, Convent High School varsity volleyball won two first round matches in straight sets.

After finishing the regular season tied for the league championship, Convent High School golf won the BCL West Tournament championship to earn a team berth to the NCS tournament. With Isabella Rovetti (Gr. 9) and Sarah Ramelot (Gr. 10) collecting All-League First Team honors, the future is bright.

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Stuart Hall eighth grade basketball won its fourth straight championship in the top CYO division, ending a magical fouryear run under coach Buzz Butler with a 61-6 overall record.

*Student grade levels represent their current grade in the 2019–20 school year.

The Gr. 6 Convent volleyball team won the BAIAL championship in straight sets, punctuating a dominant season with a win against the only team to beat them in the regular season. The 8-4 volleyball team won a close three-set match to claim a CYO title.

Senior Kyle Jasper, who set a career high with 29 points and seven made 3-pointers in the NCS finals, was named BCL West CoPlayer of the Year, while seniors Tomas Wolber (First Team) and Jay Henry Ryan (Second Team) earned AllLeague honors.


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In the pool, sophomore Kailer Tom qualified for the NCS Championships in the 100-yard breaststroke. The Gr. 7 CYO soccer championship was decided in overtime as Stuart Hall used the extra period to secure a 2-1 win, clinching an impressive 7-2 record. At the NCS Championship in November, Stuart Hall High School cross county raced to a fifth place finish while Convent High School crossed the line in sixth. Both teams advanced to the state championship for the second year in a row. After a thrilling one-point win in the BCL West Tournament finals, top-seeded Stuart Hall High School varsity basketball captured its second NCS title in program history, beating the No. 2 seed at Kezar Pavilion. The team capped a 25-win season with Jackson Jung’s (Gr. 10) memorable buzzer-beater in the first-round of the NorCal Division IV tournament.

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Before spring seasons were suspended, Stuart Hall baseball was off to a stellar 5-0 start, outscoring opponents 53-3, behind strong pitching performances by senior Ethan Reader. Stuart Hall High School track & field sat in first place in the BCL West, poised to claim a seventh straight league title. The Stuart Hall 7-2 basketball team secured a CYO title with an overtime win, while the 5-2 and 6-5 teams were also crowned champions in their divisions, earning the chance to move up to higher divisions next year.


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A SPIRITED YEAR ELIAS FELDMAN Multimedia Communications Director 40

The sun is setting over Golden Gate Park. It’s almost time for the Homecoming football game, which, along with the Convent High School volleyball match the night before, has generated more excitement throughout the Convent & Stuart Hall community than any athletic event in recent memory. On this Saturday night in late September 2019, the hallowed grounds of Kezar Stadium, former home of the San Francisco 49ers, are alive with excitement. Walking in from the parking lot, fans pass an alumni gathering, a Parents Association tent selling pizza and soft drinks and a giveaway table lined with hats. The stands on the south side of the sprawling stadium are packed with elementary and high school students, parents, faculty and alumni waving white rally towels emblazoned with the school logo. When it’s time for Stuart Hall to take the field, the team emerges from the old tunnel and runs through a giant banner, music playing as the public address announcer introduces the team. As Stuart Hall and its opponent, Upper Lake High School, jog out to begin the game, the student section starts singing the familiar rhythmic refrain heard at all big games: “I believe that we will win.” Standing on the sideline, Dana Kuwahara turns and looks up at the crowd, the sun low enough now that it casts a shadow across the grandstand. At that moment, she was thinking, “I want this to happen at all of our games.”


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When Dana was hired in spring 2019 as the new Head of Athletics & Physical Education, promoting unified school spirit was high on her list of priorities. After six years as an Associate Athletic Director at Santa Clara University, Dana was well positioned to help strengthen the school’s K–12 identity through athletics. But how do you actually build that elusive thing called school spirit? For Dana, school spirit is synonymous with athletics. “As an athletic director, all I want is for students to come out and cheer,” she says. “Having love for your school is what it’s all about.” It’s been quite a year for Dana — possibly the busiest of her professional life. She’s spent much of it learning the ins and outs of the school’s culture while running a robust department that she says operates much like a small college athletic department. Dana smiles broadly as she recalls attending high school

in Los Angeles, where she says, “People took school spirit very seriously. As kids, we just wanted some kind of identity, and my school helped define that for us.” Before joining Santa Clara, Dana worked for the UCLA athletic department and earned her doctorate degree from USC. The decades-old Southern California rivalry between the two universities evokes strong school spirit and unity from both sides. While Dana is quick to point out that her ambitions for growing school spirit at Convent & Stuart Hall exist on a much smaller scale, she says the overarching goal is the same: develop a sense of belonging and school pride for every student and family. Steeped in Sacred Heart tradition dating back more than 130 years, Convent & Stuart Hall students enjoy an array of beloved customs and spirit days throughout the school year. For Dana, athletics is a natural outgrowth of that

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LEFT TO RIGHT: Fueled by an energetic student section, Kezar Stadium was filled with excitement for the Homecoming football game. Elementary students stopped by the concession stand before kickoff. Freshmen showed their class spirit during the Homecoming game halftime competition. The student section came alive during the NCS Division V championship game in 2019.


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experience. To help get fans excited, she handed out branded gear at select games this fall and winter. “The giveaways not only get people to come,” she says, “but they spark conversations after the event that continue to build spirit.” On one particularly cold and rainy night at the Beach Chalet soccer complex, both high school varsity soccer teams played simultaneously on adjacent fields. With the wind kicking up off Ocean Beach, the athletic department gave away 100 rally scarves with Convent printed on one side and Stuart Hall on the other. “When you can visually see it,” Dana says, referring to the feeling of unity that is enhanced by fans wearing the same colors, “we witness school spirit growing before our eyes.” A few months later, a broad cross-section of the community formed a mighty cheering section at Kezar Pavilion to watch Stuart Hall’s exciting run to a North

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Coast Section basketball title followed by two games in the NorCal Championships. “I think it’s so cool when you see our younger students cheering with their pom-poms,” Dana says. “Exposing them to the opportunities they will have when they get older is part of what school spirit is all about.” This past fall, senior Kati Walter and junior Zeke Noveshen were elected as spirit leaders. They meet weekly with Dana, their adviser, and other spirit committee members to plan activities that boost school pride. The committee has already launched a high school competition to build spirit among classes. Students earn points for their class by participating in fun activities, and the class with the most points at the end of the year will win a special chance to celebrate together. Inspired by the school’s burgeoning culture of spirit and with a desire to strengthen it further, Board Chair Holden Spaht and his wife, Claire Spaht, have donated a gift toward establishing an endowed fund to nurture and sustain initiatives that promote spirit and unity. The interest earned from this fund will support pep rallies, fan transportation to big games, school plays and art shows, and beginning and end-of-year festivities. At the Homecoming football game, the crowd was an energizing force for the team on the field. But the final score, 48-34 in favor of Stuart Hall, was almost an afterthought. “Having a community, across grades, boys and girls, that unifies around these types of events is such a gift,” Dana says. “We will continue to build on this.”

ABOVE: Students made signs in support of the Convent varsity volleyball team on Senior Night. Athletics Director Associate Cody Fusco organized rally scarves before two varsity soccer games at the Beach Chalet complex.


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A COMPASSIONATE LEADER:

WISHING ANGELA TAYLOR ALL THE BEST IN HER NEXT PROFESSIONAL ENDEAVOR

Angela Taylor has been an integral part of Convent & Stuart Hall for the last 20 years. After arriving at Stuart Hall for Boys as the Lower Form Dean in 2000, she became the Head of Convent Elementary in 2012 and has had an immeasurable impact on students and faculty alike. On behalf of the entire Convent & Stuart Hall community, we are deeply grateful to Angela for her grace, compassion and leadership. We wish her all the best as she embarks on her next role as Head of Park Day School in Oakland. We asked faculty, staff and students to reflect on Angela’s leadership at the school and what she has meant to them personally. How would you describe Angela in three words? Intuitive, graceful and respectful — Brynn, Grade 5 Eloquent, problem-solver and collaborative — Cathy Cannon-Corea, Student Resources & Educational Therapist Role model, self-assured and understanding — Karen Glaub CES’80, Convent Elementary Administrative Assistant How has Angela had an impact on your life and/or the lives of Convent & Stuart Hall students? She makes everyone who encounters her feel loved and welcome. She helps us be better people to each other and for our students. — Mary Blum, Stuart Hall for Boys Modern & Classical Language Faculty She has armed me with the tools and resources that I need to claim my rightful stance as a professional educator, and she has provided me with opportunities to grow and broaden my reach. — Zoe Scott, Convent Elementary Grade 3 Faculty Our students continue to thrive in all areas of their development because Angela gave us the gift of her passion and expertise. — Andrea Deville, Convent Elementary Kindergarten Faculty What have you learned from Angela? To always be brave and have strength in the face of challenges, to appreciate my community and to be grateful for the amazing relationships I have because of Convent. — Cristina, Grade 11 How to be confident. If you put your mind to something, you can achieve it. And she taught us to have empathy for those in need, to be part of a community and to be the best you can be. — Taylor, Grade 8 What wishes do you have for Angela as she moves on to her next school? I wish her luck, much success, and that she helps others grow to their full potential, too. — Taylor, Grade 8 I wish that her new school brings her the same joy and sense of community that she has had here at Schools of the Sacred Heart. — Jack Sheehy SHB’98, Convent Elementary Mathematics Faculty

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FACULTY HIGHLIGHTS Convent & Stuart Hall would like to celebrate faculty members who are embarking on new chapters in life, who have stepped into new roles and who are taking a sabbatical.

THANK YOU FOR 28 INCREDIBLE YEARS

Ann Gigounas

After 28 years at Stuart Hall for Boys, English teacher Ann Gigounas transitioned to a new full-time role: that of grandmother to her nine grandchildren.

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Ann says she was hesitant to begin teaching eighth grade English in the early 1990s because she was much more used to the world of high school, subject-specific teaching. She remains grateful that she made that shift. “Teaching at Stuart Hall gave me an opportunity to interact with colleagues from kindergarten through twelfth grade.” Ann is also appreciative of each head of school she was able to work with over the years. “I have learned from each of them and kept in touch with them,” Ann says, appreciating the “freedom to pursue things” that working at Convent & Stuart Hall has allowed her. As Ann thinks about her time at Stuart Hall, she says, “I cannot say enough about the fact that teaching at our school allowed me to survive a lot of hard things — especially the loss of my husband — and know that I can go back to school. The personal nature of our community is very special.” Ann recalls St. Madeleine Sophie Barat’s quote, “For an Ofelia, I would have founded the Society,” a reminder that the network was established for each and every one of our students. Ann notes that this motto captures the heart of how she has approached teaching. Ann has moved to the North Shore of Chicago to be close to her family, but plans to visit the Bay Area often. She looks forward to dedicating her time to her grandchildren as well as pursuing her various interests, including advocating for children. She also looks forward to becoming a substitute teacher at Sacred Heart Schools in Chicago, where she visited as part of a Network exchange. We are deeply grateful to Ann for her years of dedication to our students and the Sacred Heart mission, and wish her all the best in the next chapter of her life.


FAMILIAR PEOPLE, NEW ROLES Over the past two years, changes in the school’s administrative structure have given classroom teachers the opportunity to step into new support roles while still continuing to teach.

Paul Pryor Lorentz High School Co-Chair of Community Life What comes to mind when you reflect on your role? At this point my role feels quite lived-in! Working to organize even one Congé adds some significant mileage! I love the opportunity to work closely with students on a variety of projects that contribute to the culture and communal experience of the school. A particularly special joy that has emerged from the work is my partnership with Mike Buckley. We’d been colleagues for 12 years before beginning this work, and any success I’ve experienced in the role has been thanks to his spirit of teamwork and support.

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Michael Buckley High School Co-Chair of Community Life What comes to mind when you reflect on your role? I often think back fondly on the patient adults who dealt with me when I was a teenager. I think the best way to honor the way they helped me is to try to pay that generosity forward to our students. While we don’t have all the answers, Paul and I are trying to encourage our students to grow into the best versions of themselves, and we truly believe that each and every one of them has something special to offer. Paul has been incredible to work with: an energetic and hard-working collaborator, a wise and fair-minded sounding board, a patient, tolerant and non-judgemental colleague.

How do you support students and faculty? When students and faculty approach us with questions that are simple or complex, I think we’re fulfilling a big portion of our work. The naming of the role, “Chairs of Community Life,” indicates that the ongoing building of community as a Christian value (Goal 4) is deeply important. We’re working towards contributing to “a safe and welcoming environment in which each person is valued, cared for and respected” (Goal 4, Criteria 2). How has your new role helped expand your impact on the community? The new role has necessarily expanded my sense of “teachable moments.” As a classroom instructor, I set the stage for instruction. As a Community Life Chair, more often than not, the teachable moments present themselves! I get to practice, every day, the idea that we are all works in progress in need of support from one another.

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How do you support students and faculty? The goal is to foster fun, productive learning spaces, honesty and good faith in our interactions with one another, and a community that is supportive of all of its members, youngest to oldest. How has your new role helped expand your impact on the community? I’ve always enjoyed working in education because it encourages me to be a better person. While I often don’t succeed, I aspire each day to model for our students the values we hope to instill in them. The Chair of Community Life position has encouraged me to be more patient, to listen and empathize better, and to communicate more clearly in fewer words. I’m working on these things every day, and in that I think I’m sharing part of the same journey as our students.


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Sharanya Naik Grade Chair for Grade 9 What comes to mind when you reflect on your role? As a Grade Chair, I get to know the ninth graders I advise. I keep an eye on their progress through the year — academic and other. It’s my goal to get a 360-degree understanding of each of them, as students and as people. In the spring, when we look back at the year and talk about growth and then look forward to discussing next year and the “future,” I get to know their aspirations for themselves. What do you enjoy most about your position?

Sarah Garlinghouse Grade Chair for Grade 9 What comes to mind when you reflect on your role?

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The Grade Chair acts as a trusted adviser for students when they seek out help or have questions about our academic program. We also provide opportunities for meaningful input and feedback from parents, students and their teachers so we can continue to improve our program. What do you enjoy most about your position? I have enjoyed working specifically with the Freshman Class to help each student devise the best program of study and co-curricular activities for the next four years and beyond. Freshman year is full of opportunity and wonder — it is always a delight to share what is possible with a bit of hard work and imagination. How do you support students and faculty? A Grade Chair promotes positive and productive relationships between students and their teachers. We intervene in times of academic difficulty and act quickly to form a strategy for improvement with students, teachers and parents. How has this role helped expand your impact on the community? As academic advisers, Grade Chairs have a good working knowledge of the curricular experience in the grade they represent and also subsequent grade levels. This allows us to help students navigate their academic program and make wise course selections for the following year. In order to do this effectively, I spend quite a bit of time collaborating with both internal and external stakeholders, which has been inspiring professional work.

I love seeing how ninth graders come in as newcomers and become an integral part of the community so quickly. And I love hearing about how they see their lives and what they would like to unfold as they move towards adulthood. How do you support students and faculty? There are many practical ways in which I support students and their teachers but less obvious are my interest in each student and willingness to accept them as they are instead of wanting them to be something else, my ability to see each student as a beautiful creation blossoming over four years in our care, and holding students accountable for their investment in school and their commitment to themselves, especially when the going gets rough. How has this role helped expand your impact on the community? When I help to connect students, teachers and parents, that has an impact on the whole community. Ninth graders are so important — they are the newest members of the community and their experience is a measure of how we are doing. I want to be sure that we are doing a good job!


Bill Jennings

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Dean of Studies, K–8 What do you enjoy most about your position? I was excited and nervous about jumping into this new role. I’ve been really grateful to help a much larger community than I had previously; most of my work now deals with the K–8 faculty and students in both divisions, especially in Grades 5–8. How do you support students and faculty? Much of my work is invisible. I’m often ensuring that the systems needed by teachers and students are working seamlessly; these can include the schedule, the learning management system and the tools we use to communicate grades. I’m also working with a larger team that includes the K–8 division heads, the Lower and Middle Form deans, and the six K–8 associate deans. Because I’m in my eighteenth year here, and my sixth as an administrator, I feel that I’m able to bring my institutional knowledge to the discussions that we have as an elementary leadership team.

Devin DeMartini Cooke Grade Chair for Grade 10 What comes to mind when you reflect on your role?

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I think the Grade Chair model has allowed us to focus on our academic support systems and curricular programming in new ways that push our students to be deep thinkers who are able to take accountability for their growth and development. What do you enjoy most about your position? In my previous roles, I had often worked alongside faculty and with students. However, the Grade Chair model really built upon this concept of teamwork and support. Working as a team with the other Grade Chairs has given depth to our ability to advise our students and share critical data and awareness. How do you support students and faculty? Having familiarity with our sophomores, I’m able to appropriately advise them on course selections and, with a unique, higher-level awareness of the entire sophomore experience, give helpful insight to individual teachers. How has this role helped expand your impact on the community? I strongly believe that being immersed in the sophomore experience has given me more insight into how students can be most successful in the latter part of high school. Being a sophomore Grade Chair has also enriched my perspective of the IB experience.

How has this role helped expand your impact on the community? I think the greatest thing I’ve learned is how to take the skills that I’ve always enjoyed in working with schedules and systems, and to apply them in new ways as I’m learning the depths of what our online learning management system has to offer. This year I’m teaching one section of Latin to Grade 5 students, and I’m so incredibly grateful to be teaching again, even in this small way.


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Nikki Hogan Middle Form Associate Dean What comes to mind when you reflect on your role? It is so important to have a teacher’s perspective on the administrative team, to be aware of the challenges that are unique to classroom teachers. I am so grateful to be able to represent my colleagues as we make thoughtful decisions that directly impact teachers and students. What do you enjoy most about your position? I believe this position has allowed me to better understand and get to know our broader school community. Sometimes, as a classroom teacher, our work can feel siloed, and this position has allowed me to interact with colleagues I didn’t know very well before. I have loved getting to work with the fourth grade team, and I hope we can continue to find ways to live into our new structure. How do you support students and faculty? My hope is that my fellow teachers feel more “heard” with our new structure and, in turn, our students benefit from that. Having several teachers on the leadership team brings a different perspective and I hope the student

experience continues to be improved and refined as a result. Working with a team of individuals who are passionate about education and are constantly looking for ways to improve our pedagogies to deliver a better student experience has been inspiring. What have you learned in this new role? It has been humbling to learn, through first-hand experience, the thought and care that goes into decisions made behind the scenes. Eric and I have learned so much from Talbot Moore, Assistant Division Head of the Middle Form, who has taken time and care to teach us new communication and leadership skills that we will carry with us. It has been invaluable to witness and learn from the poise and professionalism that the senior members of our leadership team embody.


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Eric Gordon Middle Form Associate Dean What comes to mind when you reflect on your role? I really enjoy how dynamic the new position truly is. I find that I am able to interact with students, parents and faculty in new ways, whether through individual student intervention, family meetings or leading faculty training and workshops. I have always enjoyed wearing many hats and feel this position allows me to share my strengths with the entire community while also challenging me to grow into a larger role and presence on campus.

A NEW KIND OF SABBATICAL During this 2020–21 school year, Michael Campos is taking on a new adventure, pursuing his passions above and beyond teaching.

How do you support students and faculty? Outside of teaching, I find that a lot of my time is now spent meeting with students to help them work through interpersonal and academic challenges that arise. It has been great to see the positive changes that students have experienced after helping them develop action plans. Additionally, I find this new role allows me to assist faculty in a variety of ways, through leading meetings and workshops, mentoring some of the newer members of our teaching community and making myself available to troubleshoot any issues that pop up.

Michael Campos High School Religion, Theology & Spirituality Faculty What will you be doing while you are away from school? I will be an Associate Professor in the Theology and Religious Education Department of De La Salle University in Manila. Why did you choose to take a leave? I was offered a teaching position that will allow me to further my ongoing research on theology, culture, sexuality and queer studies. I will also be closer to my elderly parents when in Manila. What are your hopes for your sabbatical year?

What have you learned in this new role? I have learned a lot about the importance of time management, celebrating small victories and how to communicate more effectively. It has also been amazing to see how much thought and care goes into the planning and design of our day-to-day operations.

I hope to learn more about emerging LGBTQ political movements in the Philippines and the unique role of shifting religious discourse. I also aim to complete two writing projects related to queer theology and race (U.S.) and Marian imagery post-Enlightenment (U.K.). What does this opportunity mean to you? I am grateful for the opportunity to voluntarily leave for a full academic year in order to pursue personal and professional growth. The security of a teaching position on one’s return frees one to cultivate diverse interests, inevitably enriching our work with students.

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FACULTY AWARDS

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During the President’s New Year assembly held in early February each of the last two years, faculty and staff ushered in the Lunar New Year with a celebratory gathering, hosted in the Little Theater in 2020 and on Zoom in 2021. An annual tradition, this event provides an opportunity for President Ann Marie Krejcarek to share an overview of the budget and to honor individuals with awards that support professional development and recognize others for their outstanding contributions in the classroom and the community. Dr. Krejcarek has expanded the awards given to seven from the two awarded when she joined the school nine years ago. All of the awards are supported by endowed gifts.

2 21 TOP LEFT TO RIGHT: Francisco Teixeira, Trisha Peterson, Jose Larusso, Krista Inchausti, Rena Franco, Belle Akers, Mary Welday, Suzanne Miazga and Dr. Ann Marie Krejcarek. BOTTOM LEFT TO RIGHT: Nikki Hogan, Jason Enevoldson, Evan Lang, Tim Duckett, Jared Moreno, Betsy Pfeiffer, Barclay Spring, Kristin Monfredini, Hector Flores and Danny Seibert.


2019–21 P R ESI DENT’S R EPORT

Awards and Recipients Esther Rossi Excellence Award 2020: Jose Larusso, Elementary Spanish Faculty 2021: Barclay Spring, Strength & Conditioning Coach The Esther Rossi Excellence Award is given each year to an employee of the school who has made outstanding contributions to our tradition of excellence, focused particularly on Goal 4 of the Goals and Criteria: the building of community as a Christian value. The award was established and continues to grow thanks to the support of members of the Rossi family, in honor of their beloved mother, grandmother, aunt and grand-aunt. Esther was a devoted alumna of the Sacred Heart and generously supported the San Francisco College for Women at Lone Mountain, which was founded by the Religious of the Sacred Heart. The Niehaus Family President’s Excellence Award 2020: Trisha Peterson, Chief Financial Officer 2021: Tim Duckett, Hector Flores, Evan Lang, Jared Moreno and Danny Seibert, Plant Engineers The Niehaus Family President’s Excellence Award was established in 2013 by Joe and Karen Niehaus, longtime supporters of Convent & Stuart Hall, whose children attended the school. Additionally, Joe served on the Board of Trustees for seven years, with one term as Chair. The Niehaus family established the fund so the President could select a recipient each year who exemplifies excellence in his or her work for the school.

The Fusco Family Awards in Support of Educational Excellence In November 2015, the school received a gift from the estate of Elvera “Ellie” Fusco, a beloved friend of the school and a graduate of the San Francisco College for Women at Lone Mountain. Her bequest established an endowed fund to support faculty salaries and benefits. President Ann Marie Krejcarek, in collaboration with the estate trustees, wanted to honor Ellie’s passion for education through the establishment of three awards presented each year in honor of Ellie, her sister Mildred (Millie) and their brother Lorenzo (Larry). The Fusco Family Award in honor of Ellie Fusco is presented to a faculty or staff member who has the true “heart of an educator,” someone who gives his or her all in the classroom while making sure the hearts and minds of students are activated and engaged. The award in honor of Millie is presented to a faculty or staff member whose work with students inspires passion and aspiration. The award in Larry’s honor is presented to a staff person who shines in his or her work with students as a coach or service learning mentor.

The following faculty members received the Fusco Family Awards: The Ellie Fusco Heart of an Educator Award 2020: Krista Inchausti, Educational Innovation Coordinator 2021: Betsy Pfeiffer, Director of Studies and Registrar, Grades 9–12 The Fusco Family Award in honor of Millie Fusco 2020: Francisco Teixeira, High School Spanish Faculty 2021: Nikki Hogan, Middle Form Associate Dean and Convent Elementary Mathematics Faculty The Fusco Family Award in honor of Larry Fusco 2020: Mary Welday, Stuart Hall Grade 1 Faculty and Belle Akers, Convent Grade 1 Faculty 2021: Kristin Monfredini, K–8 Spiritual L.I.F.E. Director Cor Unum Award 2021: K–2 Lead, Associate and Specialty Teachers This year, Dr. Krejcarek presented an additional award recognizing the first group of faculty members who returned to campus last fall to teach students in person.

Professional Development Awards Sister Mary Mardel Fund 2020: Suzanne Miazga, Convent Elementary Art Faculty The Sister Mary Mardel Fund for Faculty Excellence was established in 1997 by gifts to an endowed fund in honor of the beloved Sacred Heart educator. Each year, elementary faculty apply for the award in pursuit of a specific professional development opportunity or personal enrichment. With her award, Suzanne will travel first to Oregon, where she will attend a workshop to learn how to gather natural pigments and prepare them for use as paints. Then she will travel to Italy to paint and sketch the landscape of her ancestral heritage. Sister Ann Conroy Award 2020: Rena Franco, Accounts Payable Specialist 2021: Jason Enevoldson, High School History & Social Sciences Faculty The Sister Ann Conroy Fund for Faculty Excellence was established in 2013 in honor of another longtime Sacred Heart educator. This award application process is open to all high school faculty and Central Services staff for pursuits of personal enrichment. Rena plans to visit the SHIFT Foundation, a nonprofit run by Religious of the Sacred Heart in Northern Samar, Philippines. Jason plans to spend one month in Australia devoted to studying Aboriginal culture. He will visit sacred sites and communities, engaging in dialogue with Aboriginal leaders to learn about the parallel treatment of their people and Native Americans.

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CONVENT & STUART HALL

ARCHIVES

DID YOU KNOW? 1918 INFLUENZA

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Many people have drawn parallels between COVID-19 and the 1918 influenza, commonly known as the Spanish Flu. During the 1918 outbreak, schools in San Francisco and throughout the country closed to help prevent the spread. When our school reopened, it was “to the children’s great delight as the forced vacation proved very tiresome to them.” The sisters also wrote of being “obliged to wear masks while working.” Now 103 years later, Convent & Stuart Hall is experiencing similar circumstances due to the COVID-19 pandemic. While the school’s physical spaces closed last spring, classes continued through online instruction, thanks to technology and the resilience of the administration, faculty, staff, students and parents. Reopening this past September took just as much flexibility and collaboration within our community. The1916–1929 School Journal and the 1918 House Journal, copies of which are kept in the school’s archives, help to show how Sacred Heart educators have always found a way to carry on their commitment, love and support for the education of children.

1920 CENSUS

One hundred years ago, the 2200 block of Broadway was a much different place. The Flood, Grant and Hammond families, all well known in the San Francisco socialite circles, chose to build their homes in one of the most beautiful areas of the city, Pacific Heights. The 1920 Census provides a peek into the private lives of these three families. They maintained households that included a butler, maid and cook. These domestic workers, coming from China, Ireland, Switzerland and elsewhere, represented the growing and changing population of California and the United States. ABOVE: The 1916–1929 School Journal, which can be found in the Convent & Stuart Hall archives.


2019–21 P R ESI DENT’S R EPORT

While students were learning and quarantining at home, the Visual Arts Department took advantage of the virtual space to engage students in processing and responding to shared and personal experiences. Students were invited to observe, document and reflect through a variety of media including photography, digital design, drawing, collage and video.

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TOP TO BOTTOM, LEFT TO RIGHT: William Larson ’20, Kyle Jasper ’20, junior Sam Yancey, seniors Max Banks, Audrey Scott, Kyra Torres and Eloise Laluyaux.


OUR BOARD OF TRUSTEES Sean Jeffries

WELCOMING THE 2020–21 BOARD OF TRUSTEES AND THANKING THE OUTGOING MEMBERS Christine Leong Connors

Adriel Lares

Kirsty Ellis

54 Ann Marie Krejcarek, President

Martina Lauterbach

Mark Farrell SHB’88

Holden Spaht, Board Chair Nancy Morris, RSCJ

Joseph Gallo

Tom Roberts


2019–21 P R ESI DENT’S R EPORT

Paula Toner, RSCJ

Barbara Rogers, RSCJ

Shih-Yu Wang

Jennifer Tulley

Don St. Pierre

THANK YOU TO THE 2019–20 RETIRING TRUSTEES FOR THEIR SERVICE AND DEDICATION.

Ted Ullyot

Maureen Sullivan

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Lokelani Devone ’74’70

Todd Chapman

John Villasenor

Peter Swartz

Mary Finlayson, RSCJ

Ed Conlon

Dawn Vroegop

Nora Gibson CES’80


CONVENT & STUART HALL

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Board Chair Holden Spaht and Chief Advancement Officer Sarah Leffert survey the new ceiling paint in the Mary Mardel, RSCJ Chapel.


2019–21 P R ESI DENT’S R EPORT

M E S S AG E F RO M T H E BOAR D C HA I R Dear Convent & Stuart Hall Community, In the 2018 and 2019 President’s Reports, my predecessor Gabby Parcella summarized the progress made during her three terms and highlighted Convent & Stuart Hall’s positive momentum. She proudly talked about awarding the most financial assistance of any school in the Bay Area, of keeping tuition increases low while raising teacher salaries, modernizing our facilities, onboarding the International Baccalaureate Diploma Programme and increasing the endowment. While we continue to make great progress on these and other strategic initiatives, I would like to pause and reflect on the last 12 months. On March 12, 2020, we had a Board meeting in Williams Library, and Ann Marie spoke calmly about the spreading pandemic and the plans in place to move 1200 students in five days to a virtual learning environment. She explained how the technology in place would be leveraged and shared the outline of the rigorous professional development days that were planned to equip the faculty to handle the fast and thorough transition (page 10). Guided by the vision of Ann Marie and her Leadership Team, and supported by our courageous, dedicated faculty, I am proud to report that not only was the school able to transition quickly to a virtual learning environment, but we also now have almost all of our children learning safely on campus, not two or three days per week, but all children, every day. This is not luck and it’s no accident. It is the result of a great leader who — rather than celebrating a successful transition to online learning — immediately shifted the institution’s focus to preparing for an eventual return to in-person learning. After closely working with the school’s Leadership Team to make this happen, I can honestly say that I’ve never been prouder to be a part of any organization than I am to be associated with Schools of the Sacred Heart San Francisco. Meanwhile, we have stayed financially healthy and continued to invest in important elements of the strategic plan, many of which are detailed in this President’s Report, including our Cor Unum work (page 22), building the endowment through special named gifts (pages 18, 40), and a major and highimpact program with the Little Theater renovation (page 26), which carries a fundraising goal that will bring us closer to raising the remaining $11 million we need to fund our $20 million goal in support of the strategic plan. In the coming months, the Board will work closely with Ann Marie and Chief Advancement Officer Sarah Leffert to continue outreach with parents and alumni to help fund our building projects through naming opportunities and creating new endowed funds to bring faculty salaries above the median of our peer schools, just to name a few more of the priorities set forth in the plan. We’ve been fortunate to have the support of several talented and dedicated Board members whose terms ended in 2020 or will end at the close of this school year. Todd Chapman served for two terms and led the Committee on Trustees as well as provided valuable expertise on the Capital Asset Performance Committee where he served with Ed Conlon, who also served two terms. Lokelani Devone ’74’70 contributed a wealth of knowledge about the school community as an alumna and added valuable contributions as a member of the Audit Committee. Another Convent alumna and a parent at Stuart Hall for Boys, Nora Gibson CES’80, led the Advancement Committee and secured some of the early gifts in support of the strategic plan. Finally, we will miss the joy and positivity that Mary Finlayson, RSCJ, added to every meeting and encounter. With Gratitude, Holden Spaht

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Please find your special gift inside.

Benjamin Ullyot ’20 received his diploma during his individual graduation conferral ceremony with his parents on the Pine-Octavia campus.

sacredsf.org This is a publication from the President’s Office at Convent & Stuart Hall. We are grateful to our many contributors. Special thanks to the following: Editorial Contributors: Elias Feldman, Sarah Leffert, Karen Lenardi, Cara Patterson, Rachel Simpson and Robyn Wilkinson. Photo Contributors: Elena De Santis, Downie Photo, Giovanna Downing, Elias Feldman, Eric Gordon, Paul Harvey, Michael Hong, Bill Jennings, Ann Marie Krejcarek, Sarah Leffert, Greg Lobe, Peter Locke, Denis Marriott, Michel Edens Photography, Kevin Morrison, Mugsyclicks School Photography, Megan Mullins ’19, Alva Murphy, Ray O’Connor, Ralph Perou, Gerald Reader, Richard Schultz, Reba Sell, Nina Subin, Genaro Vavuris and Michael Williamson. Most photos in this issue were taken before the COVID-19 pandemic began. Design: Peter Locke