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Important changes coming: A message from the Head of School

Posted on: Dec 04, 2020

Dear Holland Hall Families,

Amidst the news of the forthcoming vaccine and the hopes that might await us on the other side of this challenging winter, I write with gratitude for our teachers, for our students, and for our extended Holland Hall family.

I am grateful we are going through this time together. So many, sadly, do not have a community to anchor themselves, a place where they can share their joys and their worries, where they can feel love and find consolation amid troubled waters.

I am grateful for how unbelievably and heroically committed our teachers and support personnel have been to make the absolute best of what’s been offered to us. They remain so intently focused on the heart, mind, and spirit of each child we serve.

I am grateful you continue to believe in what the spirit of this place will offer to the promise of your child’s life. From their teachers, coaches, and directors, they are seeing what true courage looks like — what it means to put others before themselves.

I am grateful for our guardian angels, our benefactors who have made profound commitments to help us bridge the financial hardships we’ve felt. With so many needs right now, we are profoundly fortunate they choose Holland Hall and invest in the future of your children and the leadership of Tulsa.

I hope our gratitude can surpass our worry — a tall order. For all the lessons offered in the past nine months, the ability to hold two competing ideas in one’s heart and mind while not losing it completely is chief among them. It’s also renewed my faith, the hope in the unseen — emanating from the way God is speaking through our teachers and students.

Faith. Gratitude. Realism. Careful and considerate decision-making. Flexibility. Listening. That’ll get us through.

 

Second semester At-Home learning days for US and MS

We have learned a lot these past few months, and I want to share how some of that learning is informing plans for the second half of the year. Much will remain the same, but it’s clear we need to do more to offer care to our faculty and, when possible on certain days, reduce the worry.

Below, you will see where we have carefully outlined days in the semester where we have committed to At-Home learning for grades 4th-12th and a few half-days for students in grades EPK-3rd. The goals are twofold: 1) continue to move curriculum forward; and 2) offer some much-needed relief from a day that requires constant, attuned vigilance for our public health concern.

While 4th-12th grade teachers will still be at school and delivering outstanding lessons, having all students on the same platform eases the stress of lesson planning. An At-Home day for students also offers relief from the worry that accompanies the aforementioned vigilance. While these days are not breaks for teachers and students, the intent, simply, is to help reduce the worry — if only temporarily.

 

Primary School half-days

Because our primary school faculty prefer to be wholly on campus, offering half-days to them on select Fridays meets the same goal. While all learning at Holland Hall is important, most of the core academic work in the primary school is completed by lunchtime. If you are in need of childcare those afternoons, it will be provided at no additional cost to families. More information to come on dismissal times, and how to request childcare on those days. We are dedicated to doing all we can to lessen the childcare burden this may pose on our families.

 

Childcare for Middle School students

Because we know finding childcare can be difficult during these At-Home learning days, we plan to offer spaces where our 4th- through 6th-graders can do their virtual work on campus at no additional cost. Our extended-day staff and some assistants will be on hand to monitor students as they work through their day’s classes.

If parents of 7th- and 8th-grade students need accommodations, we can explore spaces for them, as well. Please reach out to Deborah Almohandis, dalmohandis@hollandhall.org, if your family falls into this category.

 

Important date changes for the 2020-21 school year

Please mark the following dates carefully on your calendars. They are reflected on the school’s website as well.

Friday, Dec. 18

  • US dismisses at 11:50 a.m.
  • MS dismisses at 11:10 a.m.
  • PS dismisses at 11:30 a.m.

Monday, Jan. 4

  • Professional Day: No classes

Tuesday, Jan. 5 – Friday, Jan. 8

  • MS and US: At-Home learning days for grades 4th-12th
  • PS: Classes resume in-person for grades EPK-3rd

Monday, Jan. 18

  • Martin Luther King Jr. Day: No classes

Friday, Feb. 5

  • MS and US: At-Home learning day for students in 4th-12th grades
  • PS: In-person half day for grades EPK-3rd (childcare provided for the afternoon, if requested)

Monday, Feb. 8

  • MS and US: At-Home learning day for students in 4th-12th grades
  • PS: Classes resume in-person for grades EPK-3rd

Monday, Feb. 15

  • Winter break: No classes

Friday, Feb. 26

  • MS and US: At-Home learning day for students in 4th-12th grades
  • PS: In-person half day for grades EPK-3rd (childcare provided for the afternoon, if requested)

Monday, March 1

  • MS and US: At-Home learning day for students in 4th-12th grades
  • PS: Classes resume in-person for grades EPK-3rd

Friday, March 12

  • Parent teacher conferences: No classes

Monday, March 15 – Friday, March 19

  • Spring Break: No classes

Friday, April 2

  • Good Friday: No classes

Sincerely,

J.P. Culley
Head of School