May 2021 E-News
A Message from the Faculty Chair
This past weekend I attended our Early Childhood’s Come Grow With Us event. Families had the opportunity to meet our teachers and learn about our program, had an interview while their child explored the playground with a teacher, sowed some seed, and watched a puppet show. They went home with a potted plant and a smile.
A common question from parents at this event is, “Why should my child have two years in kindergarten?” The mainstream thought is that the sooner one starts first grade, the better. The Waldorf thought is that the social education and the education of the body that takes place in kindergarten is foundational for academic achievement. We want their large and fine motor skills to be solidly in place. This allows the body to rest and move in a way that does not require extra work from the child. The child is free to fully take up the learning of the grades.
The title Come Grow With Us states it truly. Waldorf students grow, stretch, expand – deepening their inner roots while they stretch out into the world of learning. Our Kindergarten doesn’t prepare children only for first grade; our Kindergarten program prepares children to be life-long learners.
It works! Our current seniors, who started their education in our Waldorf Early Childhood, have been accepted to Lafayette, Lehigh, Rensselaer Polytechnic Institute, Villanova, Berklee College of Music, Barnard, Brandeis, Bryn Mawr, Cornell, University of Delaware, Franklin and Marshall, Holy Cross, Ithaca College, Middlebury, Mount Holyoke, Skidmore, Tufts, Fashion Institute of Technology, NYU, Pratt Institute, Parsons, Art Institute of Chicago, to name a few.
With the roots planted in Early Childhood and the heart nourished in the Lower School, The Waldorf School of Garden City intentionally opens the pathway for critical thinking to blossom in the High School and beyond.
Celebrating a Reunion This Year?
Calling our graduating classes ending in ‘1s and ‘6s! Have you started making plans for your big reunion this year? We’re here to help! Whether you plan on celebrating in the fall during Alumni Weekend or are looking to schedule something virtually on your own time, please keep us posted. We’d love to help in any way possible.
Please contact Samantha D’Aleo at email@example.com for assistance.
Sign Up Today for Early Childhood 2021-2022!
Parents who wish to enroll children in the Nursery and Mixed-Age Kindergarten for September 2021 are encouraged to submit a New Admissions Application now. Enrollment in these classes is currently underway. While priority is given to families who have siblings in the School, spaces are limited and fill up quickly. Please contact Carol Proctor at (516) 742-3434 ext. 301 or via email at firstname.lastname@example.org with questions.
Waldorf Students Win Princeton Prize in Race Relations
The Waldorf School of Garden City is proud to announce that junior Sanaalee Troupe and senior Zamiya Jean are recipients of the 2021 Princeton Prize in Race Relations Certificate of Accomplishment! According to the PPRR website, “recipients of the Princeton Prize in Race Relations have stood up to intolerance, worked toward advancing racial equity, and encouraged racial comity in their schools or communities.”
While our traditional Earth Day activities were slightly different this year due to the pandemic, students continued to participate in exciting hands-on activities, engaged learning, and meaningful service with faculty today.
Activities began in the afternoon for all grades. Students in grades 8 – 12 and teachers spent time outside caring for the Earth by tending to our School grounds. In-school students spruced up flower beds in the Winkler Garden, in the Cranin Courtyard, in front of the School, and added new plants to the Living Plant Walls in the Breezeway and High School. For students learning remotely, there were two Earth Day workshops offered: “Celebrating Mother Earth with Landscape Art & Nature Drawings from Observation” with Ms. Cavallaro, and an “Upcycling through Mending and Eco-printing Workshop” with Ms. Gupta.
Waldorf Junior Wins Yale Bassett Award for Community Engagement
Junior Sanaalee Troupe has won the Yale Bassett Award for Community Engagement! She is one of only twenty students within a pool of over 1,000 applicants who have been selected as winners of this year’s award!
“By establishing this award, the faculty of Yale’s Center for the Study of Race, Indigeneity, and Transnational Migration sought to honor emerging leaders who…distinguished themselves through a record of creative leadership and public service, academic distinction, interdisciplinary problem solving, and experience addressing societal issues.”
We’re excited to welcome our three new lambs to Glen Brook to help care for our pastures. They’re incredibly friendly, and we look forward to working with their wool and welcoming their lambs next spring!
We had a wonderful extended trip with the 8th grade in mid-April and will be welcoming the 3rd, 11th, 9th, and 12th grades this spring. You can see photos from these trips as they happen on our Facebook and Instagram pages!
Some Space Available
Our Summer Camp is quite full in many groups, but there are still some beds available. If you’re looking for a great opportunity for your child to get out of the house, away from technology, and to find a new part of themselves in this special community, we’d love to talk with you about our program!
Happy Spring, Waldorf Community!
I am delighted to say our Spring Intramural Sports Program is well underway and going wonderfully. Student-athletes from 7th – 12th grade gather on the main athletic field after school four days a week to practice and play in preparation for next season. We have completed three weeks of soccer training and are moving on to Volleyball and Baseball/Softball clinics. Our participation numbers have been strong, and the motivation and energy brought every day has been sky high. The shouts and cheers for success and hard work can be heard all over campus.
Earlier last month, some of our Alumni gathered for a Virtual Lacrosse Reunion hosted by myself and Gordon Purdie, former WSGC Lacrosse Coach. It was a fun evening catching up and reminiscing on Lax years at Waldorf! We look forward to getting together next School year for an in-person game.
For everyone interested in honoring our current Seniors, please mark June 2nd on your calendar for a Sports Night like no other! This year’s Sport’s Night will again be virtually held via Zoom. It will be solely focused on honoring our Seniors and recognizing their wonderful contributions to our athletic program over the years. Hope to see you there!
Three Waldorf Alums, Dorian Glover ’84, Linda Mejias ’97, and Sherry Levin Wallach ’88 have all held presidential roles for three different Bar Associations.
Dorian Glover ‘84 achieved his life-long dream of becoming a lawyer when he received his Juris Doctorate from Touro College’s Jacob D. Fuchsberg Law Center. He received the CALI award in academic excellence for his publication, “Racism in American Law”. He is currently an Adjunct Professor at Touro College (Jacob D. Fuchsberg Law Center) and is the first President of the Nassau County Bar in its long-standing history.
Sherry Levin Wallach ’88 is the Deputy Executive Director of The Legal Aid Society of Westchester County and Secretary of the New York State Bar Association (NYSBA). In January 2020, Sherry was elected President-Elect of NYSBA to take office on June 1, 2021. She will assume the role of NYSBA President on June 1, 2022.
Hon. Linda Kelly Mejias ’97 made history in 2017 when she was elected to the position of Nassau County Family Court Judge – becoming the first person of Latin American descent elected to that Court And the first person of Latino descent elected to any countywide judgeship.
Philip Berthenal ’64 & Putzi (Vivian) Hirshberg ’65
After a search through DNA matches for a cousin with the last name of Hirsch, Philip Berthenal ’64 learned that Putzi (Vivian) Hirshberg ’65 is a very distant cousin of his! It turns out, Putzi’s father was born just 30 miles from where Philip’s great-grandmother was born. You never know where your Waldorf connections will lead you!
Kenneth Chenault ’69
Kenneth Chenault ’69 is leading an effort to fight restrictive voting laws making it harder for black people to vote in Georgia. The New York Times article written by Andrew Ross Sorkin David Gelles states, “Dozens of the most prominent Black business leaders in America are banding together to call on companies to fight a wave of restrictive voting bills being advanced by Republicans in at least 43 states. The campaign appears to be the first time that so many powerful Black executives have organized to directly call out their peers for failing to stand up for racial justice.”
Visit www.nytimes.com/2021/03/31/business/voting-rights-georgia-corporations.html for the full story.
William Scott Galasso ’70
William Scott Galasso ’70 was nominated for the Haiku Society of America Touchstone Award for his poem, zen garden/every snowflake/finds a stone. His full-length poem, The Year We Never Saw Coming, was honored as the first poem published in the San Diego Poetry Anthology 2020-21 out of 295 poems in the issue, as picked by the editors. In addition, he will be the featured poet throughout the month of June at the Mann Library at Cornell University. His work can be seen here.
Congratulations to Josh Blumenthal ’99 who was voted as Central Texas Class C Coach of the Year. Josh is the Associate AD and fifth-year Head Coach at the St. Andrew’s Episcopal School in Austin, Texas. He currently coaches three teams on two campuses (2 Middle School and 1 Varsity).
Franklin Rankin ’13 released his acoustic instrumental folk EP “Eurynome” on Earth Day. With beautifully blended guitar and percussion, the EP creates a feeling of peace and warmth. The bright and captivating melodies are an embodiment of both Rankin’s personal connection to nature and the sense of urgency facing us today in our fight to save the earth. To purchase/stream music visit: https://songwhip.com/franklinrankin/eurynome https://franklinrankin.bandcamp.com/releases
Cailyn Hobbs ’17 has found a passion for Mental Health after suffering from severe anxiety and depression. With the help from her family and the faculty and staff at Waldorf, Cailyn graduated High School on time with her class and attended Nassau Community College with a focus on psychology. Today, Cailyn is happy to report that she has been accepted into Hofstra University’s premedical/psychology honors program with a very generous academic scholarship. We are so proud of you, Cailyn, and cannot wait to see what you accomplish in the future!
Caitlin Li’ 19 began Taro Silk Boutique www.tarosilk.com as a quarantine project in March 2021. Caitlin says “Stuck at home, I found myself spending money online shopping and decided to invest my time in learning how to start my own small online clothing business instead. Inspired by the many other girls who began their small businesses this lockdown, from selling jewelry on Etsy, making soaps and body creams, reselling clothes, and many more, I wanted to experience what that was like for myself. These past two months have been a lot of work, but it’s rewarding to see how it’s paid off.” The site, www.tarosilk.com, launched on April 20, 2021. Best of luck, Caitlin!
In February 2021, Waliya Ahmed ’19 joined Disrupt’s eight-week FinTech Innovation program at Northeastern University where she developed skills in ideation, programming with Python, design thinking, and digital transformation through weekly workshops. Throughout the program, her team had the mission to use the skills and knowledge from their weekly workshops to design a business model for an innovative FinTech venture. At the end of the series, they presented their EdTech + FinTech investing platform to a group of angel investors in the Boston community and were awarded third place out of nine teams for their venture and received a cash prize of $1,000!
Congratulations to Sean Chen ’20 for receiving the 2020 Fall Dean’s Award for Academic Excellence at Colgate University.
Dear Waldorf Community,
Last month, the anticipated verdict in the Derek Chauvin trial coupled with our own emergency in the Garden City community brought a wealth of emotions to the surface within our School and beyond. While the guilty verdict is a significant win, true justice goes beyond the courtroom and requires a fundamental transformation of our society. We hope this outcome has brought some solace to the Floyd family and the witnesses who bravely took the stand, and we equally hope that this gesture of accountability signals the possibility of a different kind of future.
This basic affirmation of the value of Black life will be fundamental to moving toward change; accountability is not the same as justice. As racially motivated violence continues, it is clear how much work remains to be done. Many of us feel anger, confusion, and exhaustion, but we cannot forget that these abuses of power are not unique, new, or isolated. They represent one of many patterns of systemic racism against Black people and other people of color in the United States.
In the coming weeks, you will notice a flag flying over the School stating “Love Your Neighbor-No Exceptions.” The Waldorf School of Garden City firmly stands by this statement and works to infuse it into all that we do. We embrace the belief that a society that is unjust to any of its members is not a just society, and that peace for some can only be enjoyed when there is justice for all.
Many of our staff, students, and families have participated in marches, protests, and demonstrations; through work inside and outside the School they have intentionally pursued knowledge, cultivated empathy examined privileges, and questioned personal bias.
We are a community that has always valued kindness and character, and we have seized the opportunity to explicitly assert anti-racism as a way to live those qualities fully. Our shared commitment to graduating generations of students with the courage to confront injustice and to act as advocates for themselves and others remains more hopeful and inspiring than any single verdict could be. We look forward to sharing the triumphs and challenges of this continued work with our WSGC community in the weeks, months, and years to come.
The Waldorf School of Garden City
Keelah Helwig, Early Childhood Chair
Thomas Jenkins, Lower School Chair
Nicole Littrean, Administrator
Kelly O’Halogan, Faculty Chair
Roland Rothenbucher, High School Chair
Deirdre Somers, College Chair
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Monday, May 3rd – Sunday, May 9th
High School Spirit Week
Tuesday, May 4th – Friday, May 7th
3rd Grade at Glen Brook
Thursday, May 6th
Sophomore Play: A Human Write – 7:00 pm & 8:00 pm (Attendance by RSVP Only)
Saturday, May 8th
Sophomore Play: A Human Write – 7:00 pm & 8:00 pm (Attendance by RSVP Only)
Senior Arts Reception – Senior Families Only
Friday, May 14th
8th Grade Play: A Midsummer Night’s Dream – 7:00 pm (Attendance by RSVP Only)
Parent Association Meeting – 8:30 am (Attendance by RSVP Only)
Saturday, May 15th
8th Grade Play: A Midsummer Night’s Dream – 7:00 pm (Attendance by RSVP Only)
Monday, May 17th – Friday, May 21st
11th Grade at Glen Brook
Friday, May 21st
Monday, May 24th – Friday, May 28th
9th Grade at Glen Brook
Wednesday, May 26th
Virtual Silent Auction Night – 7:30 pm
Thursday, May 27th, and Friday, May 28th
7th Grade Poetry Night (Attendance by RSVP Only)
Monday, May 31st
Memorial Day – SCHOOL CLOSED
Wednesday, June 2nd
Virtual Sports Night
Thursday, June 3rd – Saturday, June 5th
Senior Play – Times TBD
Don’t Forget you can Shop and Support The Waldorf School of Garden City with the following organizations!