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Volume 25 • Fall 2013

Mentoring Moments

Launch at Trinity Episcopal School The Reverend Loris Adams, TES Chaplain

T

he thought had been rolling around in my spirit for several years - how exactly are we supporting the racial development of our students in the Lower School? Each classroom had specific ways, but our Lower School students of color did not appear to be connecting well with each other. One Friday a second-grade teacher called me into her classroom. Her students were doing their usual postchapel journal reflections. Chapel that day had been about differences, and she was challenged by what she had discovered. She walked me around the room, allowing me to see the entries of several students until she subtly led me past her three students of color - two African American girls and one Latina girl. All three young ladies began their reflections on being different with stories about their racial heritage. Not one other student in the class had any mention of race or culture in their reflection. Why? Because these three young ladies think about race daily. It is an important part of who they are as they live in a world where they are constantly made aware of this “difference.” If you think about it, it is a perfectly reasonable endeavour this embracing diversity with the youngest of our scholars. We don’t wait until middle school to hold them to high expectations in regards to academics, communal ownership and responsibility.

Jabari Spruill, TES Head of Middle School

T

hirteen years ago, two middle class African American filmmakers from Brooklyn, NY, Joe Brewster and Michèle Stephenson, enrolled their five year old son, Idris, at the Dalton School, one of the most rigorous college prep independent schools in New York City. Dalton had recently strengthened its commitment to build a more diverse and inclusive school community and its institutional goal was to have their school mirror the racial makeup of New York City.

Nor is middle school the time when we become spiritual co-journeymen with our students. So why delay opening up the fullness of joys, triumphs and challenges of embracing diversity until middle school?

How blessed we are to have a community that honors each member of the body... Last year, after researching the need for diversity support in the Lower School and attending National Association of Indpendent Schools (NAIS) sponsored training workshops on diversity initiatives in independent schools, Trinity launched Mentoring Moments. Mentoring Moments is an affinity group and mentoring program for students of color in grades 3-8.

Because Trinity acknowledges that students of color experience natural feelings of kinship with one another, we chose to use the success of the Middle School affinity groups

(The Young Men of Color and The Young Ladies of Colors) to assist with shaping the Lower School program. Students in grades 3-5 are matched with mentors in grades 6-8 to form a support network. The students meet once a month to do activities around building relationships and forming a strong sense of self and community - encouraging each other to remember that even though they are in a minority as it relates to their number, their voice and ideas are just as important, just as relevant and just as valued as all others in our community. There are sometimes tough questions and challenging conversations as we “hug the porcupine” that is embracing diversity. I remind them though their journey may not always be easy, by faith all things are possible. As the Mentoring Moments program expands, we look forward to introducing and producing activities and ideas for our allies* that run parallel to the work of those in the Mentoring program - in this, we will fully embrace the prickly beast that is the heart of diversity work. How blessed we are to have a community that honors every member of the body, encouraging each of us to do and be who God has called and is shaping us to be. * An ally is someone who actively supports and defends the rights and dignity of individuals from social groups other than their own especially when those individuals are not present.

American Promise

Race, Class & Opportunity in Independent Schools Joe and Michèle were attracted to Dalton because they wanted to provide their son the best education possible and because they were frustrated with their attempts to navigate the public schools in New York City. Idris began Kindergarten at Dalton with his best friend Seun, as one of few black boys in a Kindergarten class of 90. Joe and Michèle began to document their journey from Kindergarten through high school graduation with the hopes that their investment would pay off with great opportunities for advancement and success after high school and college.

The documentary has created considerable buzz as it has made the rounds on the independent film circuit. American Promise won a “Special Jury Award” at the 2013 Sundance Film Festival and will be broadcast on the PBS Point-of-View series in 2014. The filmmakers also use American Promise as the centerpiece of a national campaign to address the “achievement gap” - the disparity of educational measures between the performance of groups of students defined by socioeconomic status, race/ethnicity and gender. The “achievement gap” is especially prevalent among AfricanAmerican male students.

Over thirteen years, viewers see the boys and their families struggle with issues of identity, stereotypes, authority, authenticity and safety. The boys’ paths diverge after 8th grade, but both develop resiliency (continued on page 2) and find success on their own terms and colleges that meet their needs.

Creating Scholars, Nurturing Spirituality and Embracing Diversity in Charlotte’s Center City


The Trinity voice

Volume 25 • FALL 2013

What is the Trinity Fund American Promise Race, Class & Opportunity in Independent Schools and Why Give (continued)

On Thursday, October 17, Trinity hosted an advance screening of American Promise. We thought the documentary was valuable for our school community because it focused on universal themes of parenting with high expectations and navigating an independent school environment in addition to the specific issues of raising and educating African-American boys. We decided to open the screening to the wider community in Charlotte in order to encourage all stakeholders in the area to consider our shared responsibility to ensure all of our children can succeed. Over 300 guests attended the event. Following the event, we have used the film to begin discussions and reflections within our school community of students, faculty/staff and parents. Middle School Koinonias discussed what American Promise means to them, why they think kids adjust their behavior to fit in with others out of fear and how we can work together better to lessen those fears. Faculty and staff will engage in reflection on the film and it’s focus on issues related to teaching boys, including parenting, race, socio-economic status, learning differences and more - and how those issues can intersect for students. We have also invited our African-American parents to come to campus and debrief the film and to discuss their child(ren)’s experience at Trinity. The School will host an Embracing Diversity parent education event on December 3, to further debrief the film, as well as share information about how we embrace diversity through our curricular choices and programs in our school community. “American Promise provides a lens into some of the challenges non-majority students, specifically African-American boys, experience in independent schools” said Tom Franz, Head of School. “Our mission focuses on embracing diversity which requires us to educate ourselves about the challenges our students face. One of the pillars of Episcopal schools is a focus on social justice, and events like this screening of American Promise and the work we do every day at Trinity puts us in a unique position as a school in the Charlotte area.” American Promise raises questions about the interweaving of race, class and opportunity as it asks audiences to consider what the “American Promise” really means for each of us as parents and educators. To learn more about the American Promise campaign and ways you can get involved, visit www.americanpromise.org.

Thank You to our 2013-14 Trinity

Fund Co-Chairs

Trinity Episcopal School would like to thank Trinity Fund Co-Chairs Margaret and Angus McBryde for their leadership, dedication and support to this year’s campaign. As volunteer Chairs, the McBrydes work closely with the Advancement Office team to set goals, enlist Grade-Level Ambassadors and attend committee and school events related to the Trinity Fund. Margaret and Angus have two daughters, Grace (Gr. 4) and Jane (Gr. 3) and have been involved in the Trinity community for many years.

Margaret & Angus McBryde, Trinity Fund Co-Chairs, and Michelle Hunt, Annual Giving & Community Relations Manager When Trinity welcomed its first students in 2000, the school was supported by time, resources and the imagination of people throughout the Charlotte area. A true community came together, with a common belief in the lasting impact an Episcopal school would have on students, families and the city. Now, thirteen years later, Trinity students and families enjoy a beautiful, modern campus, an exemplary faculty and staff, state-of-the-art technology, nearby athletic fields and a proven track record of student achievement in high school and beyond, thanks in part to the Trinity Fund. The Trinity Fund allows us to stay true to our mission of providing a servicelearning

education, grounded in faith and diversity. Tuition only covers about 82% of the cost of a Trinity education; the Trinity Fund helps make up the rest and allows for our teachers to receive the best training and our students the opportunity to thrive in a diverse environment. Last year, over 3,100 professional development hours were logged thanks to the Trinity Fund; allowing our teachers and staff to pursue professional development opportunities and bring the world at-large back to our campus. Last year, 22 % of Trinity students received tuition assistance, affording a broader and more diverse student community the opportunity to learn from and laugh with one another. Parents send their children to Trinity, not only for the academics, but for many other reasons: for the experience of sitting beside, playing with and learning from other children who may be different; for the spiritual nurturing children receive from being in an Episcopal environment; for the extreme dedication and love every teacher gives his/her class each day; for the child that emerges in 8th grade, instilled with confidence and character to succeed and make a difference in the world. These are some of the reasons why giving to the Trinity Fund is so important and vital to our school. Each year, parents, grandparents, trustees, faculty, staff and friends of Trinity can make a taxdeductible contribution to the Trinity Fund. Trinity is fortunate to have such a generous and giving school community that wants our students to experience all

Pictured: Margaret & Angus McBryde speaking at the 2013 New Parent Reception.

of the above mentioned. Knowing that all of this could not be offered without the Trinity Fund, giving to this fund is an opportunity for our donors to help ensure our mission. Thank you to everyone who has already given or pledged to the 2013-14 Trinity Fund. It is the hope that the entire Trinity community of family and friends will consider giving as generously as possible and in a way that feels right. Whether it’s a gift of $10 or $10,000 matters not – every gift matters in helping reach this year’s $500,000 goal. For your convenience, pledges and gifts to the Trinity Fund can be made using the enclosed envelope. Pledges and payments can also be made on the “Give/Pledge Online” page at www.TEScharlotte.org. Each year, Grade-Level Ambassadors make the Trinity Fund campaign possible through their leadership and solicitation of peers. Thank you to this year’s Trinity Fund Ambassadors: - Katie & John Beam - Candy & Darren Bing - Lisa & Tom Brown - Scott & Russell Bryan - Zan & Heath Byrd - Delane & Walter Clark - Lark & Tom Elliott - Olga & Jay Faison - Brooke & Mike Goldman - Jennie & Greg Harper - Shyla & John Hasner - Allison & Turner Herbert - Cornelia & Rod Hoover - Lynn & Daniel Jacobs - Dorothy & John Killeen - Kelli & Pete Lash - Kim & Lamar Lloyd - Kathy & Donn Martin - Lori & Andy Martin - Sally & Brian Mesibov - Lori & Rob Raible - Carla & Chris Rosbrook - Margaret & Scott Schrimsher - Wendy & Jason Solomon - Laura & Chuck Thompson - Karen & Rob Vaughn - Tracy & Lawrence Watts - Meg & John Wilkinson - Christie & Durette Woods - Court & Andy Young


The Trinity voice

Volume 25 • FALL 2013

More than a Driver

Cristina Warlick, PA President

A Parent’s Journey Through Trinity’s K-8 Service Learning Program As I reflect about service learning at Trinity, I realized that as the parent of an eighth-grader, my oldest child and I have experienced the full arc of this singular program. It does not seem that long ago, my six year old daughter and I were delivering Friendship Trays to residents at Edwin Towers. I remember at the time having conversations with fellow Kindergarten parents and talking about whether this was going to be “too much” for our children. Some parents were uncomfortable with the uncertainty of it all and how we - the adults in charge would handle it. It’s funny to look back now and think that we had those feelings of uncertainty and concern.

Trips to Urban Ministries in third-grade and the Metro School in fourth-grade rewarded us both as it opened my eyes to facets of my child that I never had the opportunity to witness. Seeing my daughter engage with children, some of whom were severely disabled, is one of the most powerful moments I have had at Trinity. At the same time, my daughter and her classmates were forced to step out of their comfort zone and confront some of the serious hardships that a child with a serious disability or a person living on the streets can face. It was rewarding to see these same qualities again during Middle School as she and her classmates in seventh-grade regularly visited and befriended elderly patients convalescing in rehab clinics. Honestly, who would have guessed that adolescents - who were so caught up in their lives and dramas - could be so present and engaging with a group of people who could benefit from some extra attention? Witnessing this was another unexpected gift to parent drivers who had the opportunity to see their children and peers show real concern and empathy for others.

In the eight years between delivering Friendship Trays together and her independent trips as an eighth-grader to read to Kindergarteners learning English, we have both experienced and learned quite a bit. As often as I have grumbled about the amount of time required to drive children to and from service learning trips, I see that the moments I witnessed were perhaps as powerful as the lessons she learned.

Sure, measuring rice into packets in first-grade at Loaves and Fishes helped her understand measurement; and volunteering at The Raptor Center complimented all that she was learning about flight and raptors in fifth-grade. I feel certain though, that the conversations there and back about where the food we stocked was going or about how we are stewards of God’s creation, taught her far greater lessons: lessons on how we can make a positive difference in people’s lives and what it truly means to be a servant leader.

TES Students Play Hard,

Play Smart, Play Together and Have Fun Trinity Episcopal School’s athletic department is all-inclusive, meaning we do not conduct skill-based cuts. If a student wants to play one of the sports we offer then we create that opportunity. Typically, 90% of the middle school student body participates in our athletic program either in the fall, winter or spring - while most play all three seasons. Our coaches enjoy preparing more experienced players for the next level, as well as introducing the game to interested student athletes. Trinity’s athletic programs enjoyed a fun and successful fall season, here are a few of the highlights: Girls’ Tennis Coached by Kindergarten Assistant Rachel Caldwell and MS Language Arts Teacher Lilla Clark, Trinity had its best Girls’ Tennis season in school history, achieving a record of 8-3. All nineteen team members contributed to the team’s success. And while the team had excellent eighth-grade leadership, it was a very young team and will undoubtedly be a conference powerhouse again next year. “Every team we played said that they loved playing Trinity because of how nice our girls were. We were continually complimented on our sportsmanship and on how our girls handled themselves on the court,” said Coach Caldwell. “As a coach, that was the greatest compliment I could ever hear.” Girls’ Volleyball Two years removed from a conference championship, our Girls’ Volleyball team undertook a rebuilding year and did not have its usual success as far as wins and losses go, but it was a rewarding season nonetheless. Coaches Leigh Fresina, MS Math Teacher, and Natalia Guerrero, K-6 Spanish Teacher, worked with a team featuring

David Martin, Athletic Director

only four returning players and ten players new to the game. It took a few games for the girls to learn the fundamentals and trust their teammates, but once they did, they were competitive in every match and were a lot of fun to watch. We will miss the four eighth-graders who were a part of our conference championship team in 2011, but with ten girls returning next year, our team will make some noise in conference play next year. “Having coached in a public school conference before, I am all too familiar with schools that tend to value the athlete-student over the student-athlete. Trinity does an admirable job of focusing on the student first while fostering competitive teams.,” said Fresina. “I have been impressed with how readily players accept responsibility for their academics regardless of their athletic schedule.” Co-Ed Cross Country Coached by K-8 Healthful Living Teacher Jason Martin and MS Social Studies Teacher de’Angelo Dia, our cross country program enjoyed another successful season. Our Boys’ Cross Country team finished second in the conference championship, with three members being individually recognized for finishing in the top five. Our Girls’ Cross Country team finished first in the conference championship and had two members individually recognized for finishing the in the top five. Coach Martin and Coach Dia oversee a very popular program, with thirty-three runners and look to earn more medals and trophies next year.

Boys’ Soccer By virtue of an undefeated season and the regular season championship in a very competitive conference, our Boys’ Soccer team entered the Queen City Conference tournament as the top seed. The team continued its march through the post season with a come-from-behind 2-1 win in the championship game. Coaches Mitchell Austin, Kindergarten Assistant, and Sean Casey, MS Science Teacher, emphasized unselfish play, and fans were impressed with beautiful passes to set up teammates all season long. This very talented team was a lot of fun to watch. With nineteen of the twenty-four team members returning next year, the chances for a repeat title are good. We have 102 students registered for basketball this winter, which is about 68% percent of the total middle school student body. We will field at least eight basketball teams this coming season and our coaches are up for the challenge. See you on the court. Play hard, play smart, play together and have fun.


Upcoming Events

MS Musical: Guys & Dolls

November 14 & 16, 7pm, Florence B. Gunn Theater (Former Afro-Am Center)

Music Ensemble concert

Thursday, November 7, 6:30pm, First United Methodist Church

Fall Book Fair

November 13-16 (various times)

All-School Oyster Roast

Saturday, November 23, 6:3010:30pm, Jamie’s Courtyard

Chapel: Lessons & Carols

Friday, December 20, 2pm, Gymnasium

Family chapel/Epiphany

Monday, January 6, 8am, Gymnasium

State of the School Address

Tuesday, January 21, 7pm, Dickson Dining Hall

Freedom fete w/Special guest Sy Kahn

Friday, January 24

750 E. 9th Street Charlotte, NC 28202-3102

Telephone 704. 358. 8101 Facsimile 704. 358. 9908 www.TEScharlotte.org

2013-14 Board of Trustees The Honorable David C. Keesler, Chair Philip C. Colaco, Vice Chair & Treasurer Elizabeth G. Hobbs, Secretary Robert R. Anders, Jr. The Reverend Kevin Brown Ann Blakeney Clark Mary Anne Dickson Martha M. Eubank John F. FitzHugh Kenneth A. “Thold” Gill III Claudia F. Heath Elizabeth O. Kiser Albert P. Lindemann III Stephen A. Mayo Debra Plousha Moore Anna S. Nelson Cynthia Oates Joseph W. Pitt, Jr. S. Woods Potts T. Edmund Rast Caroline M. Stoneman David R. Tate Frank Toliver, Jr. Ex Officio Thomas J. Franz, Head of School Cristina Warlick, PA President

Trinity Alumni - News & Notes Franccezka Descalzi (‘13), freshman at Charlotte Catholic High Mario Jerez (‘13), freshman at East Mecklenburg High School, School, recently joined the Special Olympics Club of Charlotte made the drum line in the East Mecklenburg High School Catholic. Franccezka works to teach children with special needs Marching Band. how to play sports. Anna Kilguss (‘13), freshman at Myers Park High School, Ava DeVine (‘13), freshman at Myers Park High School, is made the JV Volleyball team which tied for first place in their enjoying her first year in the IB Program. She is participating on conference. Anna is also participating in the non-profit Playing the MPHS debate team and the Latin Club. Passionate about for Others (PFO), where she works one-on-one with a girl with photography, Ava recently submitted her photos to National cerebral palsy. PFO is a national non-profit that encourages Geographic. teenagers to become strong leaders who are passionate about inclusion and diversity. Elisabeth Durham (‘04), has returned to Trinity as she was recently hired as the Assistant Director of Extended Day. Christy Reid Kutrow (’05), graduate of UNC Chapel Hill, is now Harrison (‘05), recent graduate of Western Carolina University, working as an Associate Publicist at Sacks & Co. (www.sacksco. was also hired as a Trinity Extended Day Staff Member. com) in New York City. Ann Eubank (‘10), Elizabeth Lampe (‘10) and Marie Smoak (‘10), were recently listed as National Merit Commended Scholars. Commended Scholars scored in the top 5% of 1.5 million students who took the PSAT nationwide in 2012. Derek Fulton (‘09), graduated from Myers Park High School in the Spring and is taking a “gap year” before heading to the University of North Carolina in Chapel Hill. Derek will spend his year shadowing various medical practitioners, teaching guitar lessons, participating in a NOLS Patagonia experience and then embarking on a cycling trip through Europe in Spring 2014. Derek is documenting his year through is blog at www.derekgapyear.blogspot.com. Troy Henderson (‘10), senior at Gaston Day School, has committed to play Division 1 basketball for Mount Saint Mary’s next year.

Meredith Nelson (‘10), senior at Myers Park High School, was featured in The Charlotte Observer for her summer internship at the UNC School of Science and Mathematics, where she created and tested iontophoretic devices: testing cancer-fighting drugs and their success. Will Perlik (’05), graduate of Virginia Tech, is currently stationed at Fort Rucker, Alabama, and is training to become an Army Aviator. Adam Watts (’11), junior at Charlotte Latin School, was featured in South Charlotte Sports Report (page 7) on September 12, 2013, for his accomplishments on the soccer field with Latin’s Varsity Soccer team, his service work with the Urban Eagles Soccer team and for his high academic honors in the classroom.

Thomas Jackson (‘10), senior at Charlotte Country Day School, Send your alumni news & notes to Communications & Alumni Relations was featured in South Charlotte Weekly for his impact on the Manager Jessica Masanotti at jbmasanotti@tescharlotte.org. Country Day football team. Thomas has racked up 1,000 total yards and is ranked 19th in the country in kick return yardage this season.


Trinity Voice Newsletter, Fall 2013