Science Olympiad Team to Compete at State Competition

By Suzanne Bizot Gorman, Head of the Downtown Campus

Congratulations to our Science Olympiad team for finishing fourth at the Regional Competition and moving on to the State Competition in April!  Individual accolades include Sam Borden and Sam Edwards-Kuhn winning 2nd place in Hydrogeology and Lucy Lv and Matt Siciliano taking 3rd place in It’s About Time.

Last week, I attended the NAIS Annual Conference in San Francisco. along with Alexandra Thurstone, Luke Johnson, and our Goshen Campus colleague Jennifer Griffith.  The day before, we visited The Bay School, a progressive high school in the Presidio area of San Francisco.  They may have a lovely view of the Golden Gate Bridge, but inside the school, backpacks and students filled the halls just as they do at St. Francis, so we felt right at home!

The two major keynotes at the conference were both superb.  Randi Zuckerberg opened the conference on Thursday with an address on technology and the future.  She noted that the workplace our students are preparing for is a creative, mobile, on-demand one and clearly one in which technology plays a role; she cautioned, though, that the push toward technology should never replace the time children and adults need to spend outdoors, playing, relaxing, etc.  Bryan Stevenson, author of Just Mercy, related tales of his work as an attorney who founded the Equal Justice Initiative, which examines issues of race and poverty while focused on fighting unfair application of the death penalty and life imprisonment for children tried as adults.  He shared the incredible statistic that since 1972, the number of people incarcerated in the United States has gone from 300,000 to 2.2 million.  He advised that in order to actually change the world, we must get proximate with those in the margins; change the narratives that sustain the problems; remain hopeful; and be willing to do uncomfortable things.  I read Just Mercy a few months ago and highly recommend it.