Page 1


September/October 2012

Cover Photo: Mrs. Salapka’s third grade class watches as construction begins on the new modular building.

In this



Construction, construction... What’s your function? Updates on carpool and campus improvements.


Celebrating Success and Watching Swift Grow Swift prepares for a yearlong celebration of its 15th anniversary.


New Kids On the Block Swift welcomes 85 new students and their families at the Ice Cream Social.



Dyslexia Dash | October 20 | Riverside Park Dash with us to support dyslexia awareness and to celebrate our community as Team Swift. • 5K run/walk on Saturday, October 20th at 8 am at Riverside Park in Roswell. • Organized by the Georgia chapter of the International Dyslexia Association. • Last year was a huge success for Team Swift with more than 200 Swift students, family and friends participating in team shirts. We want to repeat that in 2012. • Order your 2012 Team Swift shirts for participants by September 14. Shirts can be worn on spirit wear days at school and are $12 each. Seeing the sea of Swift shirts at the race is the goal. • Register online for the Dash via Active network by October 1st. Cost is $25 if you register before October 1st. Save $5 if you are an IDA member. After Oct 1 cost is $30. • The class that registers the most runners (tabulated by t-shirt orders) wins an ice cream party!!

Courier September

September/October 2012

Volume 3 Issue 1



Parent Coffees(1st - 2nd grades)


Parent Coffees (3rd grade)

Construction, construction ... What’s Your Function? ....... 3

Butter Braid Orders Due


Parent Coffees (4th grade)

A status update on campus improvements.


Parent Coffees (5th grade)

School Photos

Celebrating Success and Watching Swift Grow ............... 4


Parent Coffees (Middle Division)

A look back at Swift’s history and a glimpse into the future.

Spirit Wear Day

New Kids on the Block ............................... 6


Swift welcomed new students and families with its


Parent & Faculty Mingle


First Academic Quarter Concludes


Professional Day (No classes)


Dyslexia Dash


Lower School Parent Conferences

(No classes grades 1-5)

New and returning students learn who their teachers are


Middle Division Parent Conferences

(No classes grades 6-8)

for the 2012-2013 academic year and check out their new

Spirit Wear Day


Family & Parent Series/7:00 p.m.

(Parents of students grades 5th-8th)

annual Ice Cream Social.

Swift Meet and Greet ....................... 8

classrooms at Swift’s Meet and Greet.

31 Swift-O-Ween November 5

GISA Professional Conference

(No classes)


Thanksgiving Recess (No classes)


Classes Resume


Follow Swift School on Facebook and Twitter for frequent updates and information regarding school activities.


nIn Every Issue Head’s Column ......................................................................................................... 2 Famous Faces of Dyslexia ..................................................................................... 10 News You Can Use ................................................................................................. 11 Swift Scene .............................................................................................................. 12

Coming Up .............................................................................................................. 13

@SwiftSchool_GA September/October 2012


nHead’s Message


Richard Wendlek

Executive Committee

The rhythms of the past academic year

experience at Swift School work so

are playing themselves out in this issue of

successfully in the delivery of our mission

the Courier. The new academic year is a

provides a stake in the ground around which

time of eager anticipation marked by the

sustainability is programmed.

commencement of classes and the actual beginning of a new educational experience

Many of you experienced a sense of Swift’s

for students, families, and the faculty.

core values when you have entered the

Traditional events in Swift’s calendar have

School. It is the thing you describe as ‘feeling

served to ease new students and families into

right’. The reason for that sense relates to

the School’s culture while veteran families

an alignment between your own values

arrived at the Meet and Greet event full of

– defining ideals and standards - and the

the same anticipation. Indeed, we have

School’s. Core values define priorities by

much to be thankful for – the spirit of youth,

articulating the ideals and beliefs that this

the wisdom of experience, and the drive to

organization stands for. They establish our

solve challenges as a community.

identity and lead to the behaviors that form group norms. Swift’s core values are the

The basis for success is derived from shared

cornerstones of our efforts and knit together

values. Over the summer the opportunity

a community of soul mates.

presented itself for the executive staff to

Dr. Richard Phillips, Chair Laurie Green, Vice Chair Peter Williams, Treasurer Jeff Kudlata, Secretary

Trustees Jason Butler Dr. Paul Cohen Dr. Gail Flanigan Robert Gray Gregory Hill Laura Ries Paul Schur

examine Swift’s values, and to identify those

During this year many exciting strategic

that are core to our collective beliefs as

initiatives will come to life. Among these a

an institution; those values that motivate

new building will be added to the campus,

decisions and guide Swift in aligning

and a campaign aimed at paving the way

practices to answer the most basic questions

for the School’s future will be launched.

about the School’s existence: What do we

As the heart of the school, the faculty will

stand for? Why do we exist?

participate in professional development

Gail Swift, Emerita Richard Wendlek, Ex officio


workshops and courses that keep them on

Richard J. Wendlek, Head of School

This conversation was extended to include

the cutting edge of best teaching practices.

Dr. Andrea Salapka, Associate Head

the entire faculty at the recent Retreat. It

Students will be provided many opportunities

resulted in the identification of the following

that allow them to learn more about their

core values as they relate to all that is done

own interests and talents.

on behalf of Swift students and families. They

I look forward to sharing the many wonderful


aspects of Swift School with you and the community all year long!

Karen Buttermore, Director of Development Paul Foltz, Business Manager

Parent Association President Margot Vetrovsky

• Community – a sense of place and purpose; value in belonging • Collaboration – to labor together; to work jointly • Safety – an environment free of threats; one that appreciates differences • Belief in individual potential – changing

Rich Wendlek Head of School

lives for the better; self-advocacy These values allow for the promise of benefit that aligns beliefs and deeds. Indeed,

Swift School 300 Grimes Bridge Road Roswell, GA 30075 678.205.4988

knowing what makes the educational

2 September/October 2012

Construction, construction ...

What ’ s your

FunCtion? l

ast spring the process of seeking

20-25 minutes for the school to

Carpool Update


Lower School

began. The permits required to

Students of parents who arrive early

Morning Drop off:

commence construction were

will be dismissed first. The normal

Student drop off should occur

received in late August.

Lower School academic day is from

between 8-8:15 a.m. Please do not line

8:30 a.m.- 2:55 p.m.

up on the campus before 7:55 a.m.

campus will undergo preparation

During the construction period the

Forming a carpool line before that

for the new facility. By early

instructional day remains at 6.5 hours,

time interferes with the Middle Division

November, the Swift Community will

without diminishing the academic

drop off procedure and makes for a

see a new building rise on campus,

day. When the normal schedule

potentially unsafe situation. Students

as construction is completed and

is resumed, the academic day

begin their day in the classrooms at

school history is made. The students

exceeds 6.5 hours This practice

8:15 a.m.

and faculty share excitement about

remains the same as in prior years.

building and site permits from the City of Roswell for the new building

Over the next few weeks, the

what is to come in the next few months.

Afternoon Carpool: In order to keep Swift’s carpool

Please do not arrive for afternoon

functioning as smoothly as possible

carpool before 2:30 p.m. Students

During construction it will be

please review the following updates

will be called to carpool beginning

necessary to close the west parking

for Lower School dismissals and

at 2:40 p.m. Traffic coordinators are

lot on certain days. Through the

pick-ups. Thank you again for your

attempting to move the carpool line

conclusion of construction, dismissal

patience and cooperation during

as safely and efficiently as possible.

of Lower School students begins

this time. Because of this expansion,

Swift must avoid traffic backing up on

at 2:40 p.m. In prior years dismissal

Swift will be able to better serve your

Grimes Bridge Road. Your assistance

began at 2:50 p.m. The dismissal


will greatly help us.

process typically takes between September/October 2012


Celebrating Success and

Watching Swift Grow Celebrating School history and paving the way the way for the future

Success is a difficult term to define.

need. Success to Swift occurs when

To a writer, success could mean

a student learns to read; success to

being published in a magazine. To a

Swift occurs when a child becomes

businessman, success may be defined

more confident in his/her own ability,

as a quarterly profit. To an athlete,

no matter the subject; success

success may be winning an Olympic

to Swift occurs when a student

medal. But how do teachers, students,

looks forward to attending school.

administrators or parents define

Ultimately, success to Swift is meeting

success when school is the subject?

students’ educational and helping

That’s easy—at least for Swift.

students realize that their potential is

Fifteen years ago, in 1998, when Gail Swift opened the doors to the

limitless. This year not only marks 15

first five students she had no idea

succesful years of educating students

that hundreds of families would be

with dyslexia and language based

impacted in the future. Those five

learning differences, but aslo opens

students expanded to nine, then to

another exciting chapter in the

18 and and at an enrollment of 84

story of Swift. The addition of a

requireda move to the current five-

new modular building to the current

acre campus. Today Swift is home to

campus provides more classroom and

212 students and still growing.

dedicated space for music, art and

Although enrollment continues to increase, numbers are not the

indoor physical education. Swift looks forward to celebrating

way Swift defines

with families, friends, faculty and

success. Swift

staff year-round. Save the date for

strives to provide

Swift’s official anniversary celebration

a specialized

that will take place on March 22 in

education fitted

conjuction with Swift’s annual Stellar

to each student’s


Page 4 September/October 2012






en r a


Skip the coffee line at your local coffee shop and join Swift at its Annual Parent Coffees on the deck! Grades 1-2 September 21, 2012 8:30 a.m. Grade 3 September 24, 2012 8:30 a.m. Grade 4 September 26, 2012 8:30 a.m. Grade 5 September 27, 2012 8:30 a.m. Grades 6-8 September 28, 2012 8:30 a.m. • Celebrate the start of a new academic year • Get to know your child’s teacher • Meet other parents within your child’s grade-level 5



They’ve got the Right Stuff

Sister Act Fifth grade student Madeline (right) and her sister try two different flavors of ice cream offered.

With another record-breaking enrollment, Swift is excited to welcome more than 80 new families into the Swift community. Prior to the commencement of classes, Swift hosted its two annual events, the New Student Orientation and the Ice Cream Social to help students and parents acclimate to their new school home. The Ice Cream Social was held on August 7 and more than 150 people attended. The event provided a time for new parents to connect while students enjoyed eating ice cream, listening to music, blowing bubbles and creating sidewalk chalk art.



6 September/October 2012


Ice, Ice (Cream) Baby Third grade student Carlye enjoys a Sponge Bob Square Pants ice cream treat before heading to play.

1. Family Matters: Ice cream is the perfect way for Courtney and her family to kick off the fourth grade. 2. Different Strokes: Third grade student Katherine and her brother each try a different flavor of ice cream. 3. Two’s Company, Three’s a Party: Bren, Sierra and Elyse take a break from playing on the field to pose for a picture. 4. Gold Medal Art: Middle Division student Sarah uses sidewalk chalk to show her enthusiasm for the Olympic Games.



5. Three of Kind: What do ice cream and Swift have in common? Smiles, just ask the Ward family. September/October 2012


Reunited and It Feels So Good Returning students Octavia, Izzy and Livvy are ready to take second grade by storm.


my nam e On August 17 new and returning students arrived at Swift to meet their teachers for the 2012-2013 academic year. During the meet and greet, families previewed afterschool activities being offered for the year and learned about ways to volunteer with Swift. Parents and students also were free to check out the campus improvements Swift made over the summer recess including 4 new classrooms. The Meet and Greet is a highly anticipated event for all students. For some, it is a chance to be reunited with former classmates. For others, it’s their first glimpse of what the Swift Community will offer—a safe, caring and understanding learning environment.

Swift Schoo

8 September/October 2012


l Meet & Gr


Ready to learn, twins Jack and Will feel at home in their new 1st grade classroom.

Picture Perfect After enjoying a fun experience during Swift Summer Explorations, third grade student, Lauren and her mother visit her new classroom and teacher Mrs. Swain. Hey I Just Met You, And This Is Crazy (Below) Fifth grader Maggie meets her energetic and always exciting teacher Mrs. Litzky. Call us crazy, but Swift believes this is going to be a fun year in fifth grade. Your Move (Below) Fifth grade student and chess club member Conrad quickly finds the chess master at the Meet and Greet.

8 September/October 2012


nFamous Faces of Dyslexia The four dead-end kids One was spanked by his teachers

brokerage business. Chambers is

problem with no name. Boies,

for bad grades and a poor attitude.

CEO of Cisco. Boies is a celebrated

Schwab, and Bill Samuels Jr., the

He dropped out of school at 16.

trial attorney, best known as the guy

president of Maker’s Mark, did

Another failed remedial English and

who beat Microsoft.

not realize they were dyslexic until

came perilously close to flunking out

In one of the stranger bits

some of their own children were

of college. The third feared he’d

of business trivia, they have

diagnosed with the disorder, which

never make it through school--and

something in common: They are

is often inherited. Samuels says

might not have without a tutor. The

all dyslexic. These adults were

he was sitting in a school office,

last finally learned to read in third

very challenged as students. All

listening to a description of his son’s

grade, devouring Marvel comics,

have been extremely successful in

problems, when it dawned on him:

whose pictures provided clues to

business. Most have now begun to

“Oh, that’s me.” Most of the adults

help him untangle the words.

talk about their dyslexia as a way

diagnosed themselves.

to help children and parents cope

Until about five years ago

respectively, Richard Branson,

with a condition that is still widely

Chambers kept his dyslexia a secret.

Charles Schwab, John Chambers,

misunderstood. “This is very painful

As CEO, he says, “you don’t want

and David Boies. Billionaire Branson

to talk about, even today,” says

people to see your weaknesses.”

developed one of Britain’s top

Chambers. “The only reason I am

brands with Virgin Records and

talking about it is 100% for the kids

Virgin Atlantic Airways. Schwab

and their parents.”

These four losers are,

virtually created the discount

A generation ago this was a

One day a little girl at Cisco’s Bring Your Children to Work Day forced Continued on page 12

nSwift and 15 Recipients Are Grateful to GOAL Contributors Fifteen Swift students are receiving partial tuition scholarships due to the generosity of 26 families in the Swift community who directed a portion of their Georgia income taxes to Swift through the Georgia GOAL Scholarship Program. Students who are enrolled in a public school or eligible to enter pre-K, kindergarten or first grade, may apply for these scholarships if their parents believe they would benefit from a private school education. As predicted, the $51.5 million allocated in 2012 for Education Expense Tax Credits was claimed entirely in late August. Swift appreciates the following families who contributed a total of $56,250 to the Georgia GOAL Scholarship Program in 2012: Laura Ries & Scott Brown

Suzanne & Bob Gray*

Kelly & Paul Schur

Karen & King Buttermore

Deborah Haertel

Susan & Stephen Slifer

Peggy & Patrick Carroll

Tena & Mike Hargrove

Deborah & Kevin Smith

Jennifer & Dr. Paul Cohen

Nancy & Mark Herbert

Laura Green & John Thielman*

Gail & Tom Flanigan

Renee & Christopher Kopkowski

Becky & Ken Weatherford

Ellyn & Paul Foltz

Regan & Jeff Kudlata

Susan & Peter Williams*

Nancy & David Friedman

Martha & Doug Martin

Janine & Jared Wiskind

Patricia Hubbard & Jonathan Glidden

Ellen & Kenneth Medved

Sara & Christopher Wynne

Caroline Goldstein

Kelly & Richard Phillips*

*Denotes Alumni Parents

10 September/October 2012

News You Can Usen Butter Braid Fund-raiser Butter Braids are delicious pastries that can be served as an entrée or dessert and are the perfect holiday gift. Swift School is striving for 100 percent student participation. The goal this year is to sell 3,000 Butter Braids. Start talking to friends, family and neighbors and let them know the delicious pastries are

Annual Fund Chairs Announced; New Giving Club Established Sara and Chris Wynne, parents of 4th grader Michelle, will serve as Chairs of The Annual Fund for Swift 201213. They will be assisted by Martha and Kerry Dodd,

back! Please contact the school if you did not receive more

parents of 6th grader Jenna. The Wynnes and the Dodds

detailed information.

kicked off the Annual Fund by speaking at each Parent

If you have any questions, please contact Debbie Hogan. For more product information visit Visit the Swift School Website to download additional order forms. Submit one check for entire order payable to Swift. The deadline to order is September 24.

Night and then following up with a personal letter and a brochure. As part of the school’s 15th anniversary celebration, a new Giving Club has been established. The 1998 Society recognizes those who give $1,500 and above to the Annual Fund. The inaugural recognition party for those in this new giving club takes place in April 2013.

7th grade Parent Meeting Swift invites the parents of all students enrolled in the seventh

The society’s name is derived from the year the school was founded. All giving levels are described in the Annual Fund brochure.

grade to attend an eighth grade informational meeting on October 11 at 7:00 p.m. During the evening, parents will

Parents are encouraged

hear from Middle Division faculty and Swift administrators

to seek a matching gift

regarding the curriculum and opportunities offered during a

from their company. The

student’s eighth grade year at Swift.

matching gift combines with



the parents’ personal gift to determine which giving

Grandparent Days Rescheduled Due to construction on campus, the dates of Grandparent/ Special Friend Days have been moved to spring 2013. Instead of Oct. 17, 18 & 19, the much-anticipated visits by these special guests are now scheduled as follows.

club they are members of. United Way gifts may also be directed to Swift



School since Swift is a 501(c)(3) institution. All gifts to the Annual Fund are tax deductible. TRANSFOR

Wednesday, May 1 is 1st - 3rd grades


Thursday, May 2 is 4th & 5th grades Friday, May 3 is 6th - 8th grade

Additional Annual Fund brochures can be

Grandparents and special guests are welcome to attend the Spring Concert on Thursday, May 2. We wanted to notify families now, particularly if airline reservations are a factor. We look forward to hosting these special guests during the

downloaded from

The Annu

al Fund

for Swif

t 2012-2


under the “Support Us” tab.

300 Grim es Bridge Road Roswell, GA 300 75

South’s beautiful springtime. September/October 2012


ting 15 year s of Succ ess


nSwift Scene

Notes from the Middle Division Director - Patty Nathan The Start of Something Great Since the commencement of classes, the Middle Division has been moving full steam ahead. Teachers and returning students were eager to start the year and welcome new students (pictured right) to the Middle Division family. Students have already resumed responsibility for last year’s recycling initiative and will soon announce new projects for this year. On September 13 the Middle Division left for its annual overnight retreat. The retreat took place at the Georgia 4-H Environmental Education Center in Hampton. The retreat is part of Swift’s Middle Division character formation curriculum. During the retreat students • nominated representatives for student council; • participated in a night sensory awareness activity; • learned outdoor survival techniques and • enjoyed a hands on herpetology lesson.

The four dead-end kids continued from page 10

Technology tidbits Swift used the speed of its

him out of the closet. Chambers had called on her, and

new domain server, along

she was trying to ask a question before a crowd of 500

with imaging software,

kids and parents. But she couldn’t get the words out. “I

to load all applications

have a learning disability,” she said tearfully. Chambers

and configurations from

cannot tell this story without choking up himself.

a master image to new

“You could immediately identify with what that was

laptops for students. This use

like,” he says. “You know that pain. She started to leave,

of the new server enabled

and you knew how hurt she was in front of the group and

Swift to be more efficient with supplying students the

her parents.” Chambers threw her a lifeline. “I have a

programs they need on their computing devices.

learning disability too,” he said. In front of the crowd, he

The Middle Division’s newly implemented Dell Netbooks

began talking to her as if they were the only two people

(pictured above), is the latest addition to the Digital

in the room. “You’ve just got to learn your way through

Learning Environment. Swift’s IT manager loaded all files

it,” Chambers told her. “Because there are some things

simultaneously with very little user intervention.

you can do that others cannot. Reporter associates: Lisa Munoz and Patricia Neering id=207665

More than 80 devices including laptops for 5th grade students and staff were deployed in this most efficient manner this summer moving Swift into a new era of technology advances.

12 September/October 2012

coming upn

Mark your calendars with these important dates Coffees n Parent September 21, 24-25, 27-28, 8:30 a.m.

& Faculty Mingle n Parent October 6, 7:30 p.m.

Celebrate the start of a new academic year and meet

Mix and mingle with other members of the Swift

other parents within your child’s grade-level during

Community in a strictly social “no agenda” setting.

Swift’s Parent Coffees on the deck. • September 21 - Parents of students in grades 1st-2nd • September 24 - Parents of students in 3rd grade • September 25 - Parents of students in 4th grade • September 27 - Parents of students in 5th grade • September 28 - Parents of students in grades 6 -8 th

On Saturday, Oct. 20, the Swift School community will be th

Day n Picture September 27 Picture day will be held on Thursday, Sept. 27. Students should come prepared to be photographed in their everyday uniform.

Team Swift for the 2012 Dyslexia Dash n Join October 20, 8:00 a.m. supporting the International Dyslexia Association’s (IDA) Dyslexia Dash. The 5k race/walk will be held at Riverside Park. Families can register by online at dyslexiadash. com/georgia. Save $5 by registering before October 1.

Celebrating 15 years of Success

300 Grimes Bridge Road Roswell, GA 30075

The Doorway to Success

Discover how our

Comprehensive Educational Experience for students in grades 1-8 provides tools and strategies for success.

Admission Open House Sunday, October 21 1:00 p.m. - 3:00 p.m.

Presentation at 1:30 p.m. followed by school tours. For more information, visit Swift online at www.swiftschool. com or call 678.205.4988. Use your SmartPhone to scan the QR code to go directly to our Web site.

Swift Courier September/October Issue  

The Swift Courier is the school's bimonthly publication highlighting school news and events.

Swift Courier September/October Issue  

The Swift Courier is the school's bimonthly publication highlighting school news and events.