Back to School Night

Thursday, September 12, 5:00-7:00 p.m.

Please join us on Thursday, September 12, for an opportunity to visit with your child’s teachers at Back to School Night. Parents are invited to go directly to their children’s homerooms, where faculty will share what students have been working on. You’ll hear what’s coming up for the rest of the semester, learn more about progress reports and report cards, and maybe even get to experience a sample lesson from a teacher!

Lower School Presentation (grades K-5)
5:00 – 6:00 p.m.
Upper School Presentation (grades 6-11)
5:45 – 6:45 p.m.

The PTCA invites you to stay for the first General Meeting of the year, beginning at 7:00 p.m., immediately after Back to School Night.

September Hot Lunches

Hot Lunch Dates:
The PTCA will be offering two hot lunch options this month!

Chick-fil-A will be offered on Thursday, September 26.

Order Due Dates:
Chick-fil-A: Sunday, September 22

This year, all ordering will be done ONLINE. The process is slightly different from years past. If you have any questions or require help, please contact: lauren.bland023@gmail.com

How to Order:
Go to https://squareup.com/store/soptca. Only one lunch date will be available during the ordering period.

  1. Instead of adding one item at a time, you will order for one child at a time. Click “Child 1” and select each item they would like in their lunch (options are chicken sandwich, 6-ct nuggets, and salad; sides are chips, chocolate chip cookie, and bottled water). If they want multiple items, please select them all on this screen. Then hit “Add to Cart”.

  2. If you are ordering for more than one child, select “continue shopping” and then “Child 2”. Continue with more if needed. 3. When all children have an order, go to Checkout. There is a NOTES section right above the “place order” button.

*VERY IMPORTANT*:
You MUST enter EACH child in this section, even if only ordering for one. Please enter it as - Child 1: name (teacher); Child 2: name (teacher). This will ensure orders are correct and get to each student. (Use grade rather than teacher for students in 6-11.)

Orders are due on Sunday, 9/22. We are happy to provide financial assistance if needed through our lunch fund. Students can receive one chicken selection or salad (plus all sides).

Please email Lauren Bland at lauren.bland023@gmail.com for any help.

How Purchasing a Hot Lunch Benefits Others:

The funds raised by the PTCA Hot Lunch Program is used to purchase breakfast, lunch, snacks, and water for students who are in need or happen to forget their lunch. Funds are also used for hospitality events such as teacher luncheons, grandparents day, teacher appreciation, Founders Day, and snacks for students during state testing. (**If you require lunch assistance, please email the PTCA. Students can receive up to two pieces from Avers and one chicken selection or salad from Chick-fil-A in addition to all sides.)

We understand that concerns have been raised about Chick-fil-A. The PTCA is a neutral organization. Chick-fil-A and the PTCA simply strive to provide a Hot Lunch for students. Our local Chick-fil-A has been generous and easy to work with, taking the first steps in reaching out after discovering that our school did not have a Hot Lunch program.

Job Opening: Health Aide

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Seven Oaks Classical School is currently seeking a part-time Health Aide.

We hope you will join us in thanking Mrs. Mandy Hall for her unwavering efforts to keep our students safe and healthy. We wish her nothing but the best in her new position at the YMCA Spencer as Childcare Coordinator.

JOB DESCRIPTION FOR SCHOOL HEALTH AIDE:

The primary goal of the Health Aide is to care for student health injuries and/or illnesses promptly and safely. The Health Aide works with parents, students, and the school nurse for the control and prevention of disease and the development of optimum health for each student.

If interested, please contact Nurse Summerlot for a full position description:

(812)935-5003 Ext. 5906

angela.summerlot@sevenoaksclassical.org

Convocation & Open House

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Convocation and Open House
Thursday, August 8, 2019
4:00 – 6:30 p.m.
Seven Oaks Gym

On Monday evening, Seven Oaks Classical School hosted Kindergarten Open House. Our kindergarten team – Mrs. Pursell, Ms. Biller, and Miss Moran – welcomed our soon-to-be kindergartners by asking them to share what they know about numbers, colors, and shapes. The teachers also answered parent questions to help families prepare for their children's first steps in a classical education.

If you have kindergartener and were unable to attend, or if you have a student entering another grade and would welcome a chance to meet your students' teachers, never fear! Convocation is just around the corner.

With the 2019-2020 school year only three weeks away, we know you may have questions, too! Convocation & Open House is on Thursday, August 8. This is a wonderful opportunity to have your questions answered. It’s also the perfect time for your children to meet their teachers and visit classrooms.

The school's Headmaster, Dr. Stephen Shipp, will welcome all families at the Convocation meeting and provide the information your family needs to start off another successful year. He will meet with grade ranges as follows:

  • 4:15pm – Grades K-1

  • 5:00pm – Grades 2-5

  • 5:45pm – Grades 6-11

There will be informational tables and parents will have opportunity to visit with faculty and staff and sign up your children for extra-curricular sports and clubs. The Seven Oaks Parent Teacher Community Association (PTCA) will also have an information table, and we encourage all families to join.

One additional item: School supply kits are now in for parents who ordered one. They will be available for pick-up in the front office on Monday, July 29, 10:00am-12:00pm. Supply kits can also be picked up on the evening of Convocation, or parents can leave them for students to pick up on the first day of school. Parents are also welcomed to drop off school supplies to their child's classroom. Otherwise, students may bring them the first day of school.

Again, doors will open at 4:00 p.m. on Thursday, August 8. Student are invited (but not required) to wear their uniforms.

Questions? Please call (812) 935-5003.

Summer Academic Camps

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Parents of new and returning students you are invited to sign your children up for our summer reading and math camps. The purpose of the camp is to introduce new students to the curriculum and give returning students a refresher before the start of the school year. Uniforms are not required to attend summer camps.

Academic Camps 2019-2020

Click the above link to sign up. If you have any questions, please contact Mr. Thomas @ Tyvoris.thomas@sevenoaksclassical.org.

Seven Oaks To Celebrate Classics Week

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Seven Oaks will celebrate Classics Week from April 22-26. Some of the activities include:

  • Each morning will see a recitation during assembly.

  • The headmaster will conduct naming ceremonies in each lower school classroom with a history lesson on each room’s namesake

  • On Monday after school, students have a dress rehearsal for the spring concert

  • On Tuesday, Ms. Hoit’s upper school Latin students will be holding reading groups with the kindergarten students. Then, in the afternoon, a faculty team will square off against the student Junior Classical League’s Certamen team for a trivia contest.

  • On Wednesday evening, the school is hosting a movie night from 5-7pm for the younger students featuring Disney’s Hercules, including costume contest.

  • On Thursday evening at 6:30pm, the school community is invited to attend the Declamation finals at the Ellettsvile Branch Library.

  • On Friday morning, the winners of the Declamation Contest will recite in morning assembly.

  • On Saturday, 1-3pm, the school will hold a Toga Fun Run & Spartan Athletic Contests on campus.

Ms. Hoit Named Indiana Classical Conference Rising Star Teacher of the Year

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Jennifer Hoit has received the 2019 Indiana Classical Conference Rising Star Teacher of the Year award. The Rising Star award is given to teachers in the first five years of teaching.

Ms. Hoit will be given this award at the Spring Meeting of the Indiana Classical Conference for her success and advancement of Latin at her school and in the wider Indiana Classical Community. She will also be recognized at the Indiana Foreign Language Teacher Association meeting in November.

Jennifer has been an active Junior Classical League sponsor in addition to all of her duties and responsibilities at school. She goes above and beyond to provide more opportunities for students. She offers many opportunities to her students and contributes to the larger classical community as well.

Please congratulate Ms. Hoit for her success!

A Thought Experiment in 8th Grade History

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At Seven Oaks, history is a serious study — though with a seriousness that is fully compatible with a spirit of fun. Consider this vignette:

As the 8th grade history class nears the end of its study of modern world history, students assumed the roles of Soviet Politburo members struggling to keep the USSR together during the tumultuous events of the 1980s. Through a classroom simulation that began in 1982, the year of Brezhnev's death, class members were confronted with a series of scenarios drawn from true historical events, debated the merits of possible reactions, and struggled to balance the impact of their decisions on various facets of Soviet life, such as the economic troubles, military hardliners, and popular dissent. The exercise gave students a deeper sense of the constraints that bound their real-life counterparts while applying their historical knowledge (and using the word "comrade" frequently). Our fictitious Politburo’s attempts to maintain control ended in a military coup in 1989, following their refusal to devote more funding to the Soviet military in response to American advances in SDI technology and spending.

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Seven Oaks Launches New After School Care Program

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After a temporary closure to reboot our after-school care program, we're pleased to let you know what is now available under Mr. Rix's pioneering leadership. 

As before, after-school care is available to students from the end of school until 6:00pm at a cost of $5 per hour. But the space and the programming have been transformed.

When you walk in, you'll see a beautiful space, made cozier with plants. On the board each day, you'll find notes about the day's programming, "this date in history," and a spotlight on the virtue of the month.

When they first arrive, students will enjoy a structured setting to complete homework, with assistance by Mr. Rix. Then they will transition to regular programming. Consider the calendar line-up for the upcoming week: 

  • Mon, 3/25 - A moment of science, including a hands-on science activity

  • Tue, 3/26 - Mini master chef to help students recover the lost art of cooking

  • Wed, 3/27 - Chess/checker club, including tutorials (tournament to come!)

  • Thu, 3/28 - IU music demo by a guest from the Jacob's School of Music

Next month's special focus, in addition to these regular features, will be sewing. If we have enough participants, students will partner with a local sewing club to piece together two quilts for a local women's shelter.  

For details about how to apply for the Extended Care program, please email Mr. Rix at jonathan.rix@sevenoaksclassical.org. 

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Teacher Recruitment Fair

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Seven Oaks Classical School is holding a recruitment fair on Saturday, April 6, 10:00am-12:00pm. We are seeking individuals for the 2019-2020 school year who are professionals who are expert in their field, who are eager to train the minds and improve the hearts of young people, and who have a love of classical education. Please visit the employment page of our website for additional information about our school and employment opportunities. 

Click here to RSVP for the event.

A Formidable 2nd Grade Greek Phalanx Surprises Headmaster, Assistant Headmaster, and Unsuspecting Teachers

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This year, twenty-seven 2nd grade students took part in the 3rd Annual Hoplite March. This was the largest march in SOCS history! Students learned to cover the person standing next to them, move as a team, and march quietly through the halls so that we could “attack” as a proper Greek phalanx would.

Students first attacked Dr. Shipp (who was in Mr. Thomas’ office). Mr. Thomas was caught by surprise. Ms. Geldhof and Mr. Reynolds marveled at the scene and felt amazement at the wondrous historical event they witnessed. The hoplites then moved to Mr. Huber’s room where he was teaching 9th graders the history of the Battle of Marathon (perfect!). After that, the 2nd graders invaded the office of Mr. Noyes and Mrs. James. Those two had to be claw-mad as lions to fight off the onslaught of the invading warriors—somehow, 27 students were able to fit into their office!

Specials thanks go out to Mrs. Walcott, Mrs. Shipley, parents who enthusiastically helped with shield construction, the 2nd graders who put a great amount of though into their shields, and the teachers and administrators who endured the attacks.

Shields are on display in Ms. Hoit’s room for Upper School students to admire. If only the 2nd graders could hear the Upper School students’ admiration of the shields.

Seven Oaks Earns 'A' Rating Again

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Seven Oaks Classical School has once again earned an ‘A’ rating on both state and federal report cards. These grades were based on the academic growth of students in grades 3-8 as measured by the Indiana Statewide Testing for Educational Progress (ISTEP+) for English Language Arts and Mathematics.

Seven Oaks’ enrollment grew by 40% from the 2016-2017 to the 2017-2018 school year. Despite this wave of new students, the school achieved strong academic growth. Pass rates in all subjects are above state averages. What is most remarkable is a number the state data fails to capture: Among the students who joined the school in 2016, the average growth in pass rate across grade levels was 27%!

The real story here is that academic growth is possible without intensive test preparation. Seven Oaks pays little attention to the state test. We refuse to become a test-prep school. Our teachers and students are not burdened with the stress of high stakes testing. Instead, we offer students a rich classical curriculum.

Seven Oaks students enjoy daily, year-round instruction in the fine arts, foreign languages, history, and science. We do not waste precious class time with diagnostic after diagnostic, practice test after practice test. Nor do we sacrifice our curriculum in order to boost scores in tested subjects.

That is the real story to tell: Without preparing for the test, in two years of testing, the school has received an ‘A’ rating twice for academic growth.

Seven Oaks Receives Large State Grant

By Kate Nielsen Photos [CC BY-SA 3.0  (https://creativecommons.org/licenses/by-sa/3.0)], from Wikimedia Commons

By Kate Nielsen Photos [CC BY-SA 3.0  (https://creativecommons.org/licenses/by-sa/3.0)], from Wikimedia Commons

Seven Oaks was awarded a grant of nearly $900k on Friday. The school applied for the grant under the Quality Counts Indiana Charter School Program Grant. The Quality Counts program is intended to support the opening, expansion, or replication of high-quality charter schools. The funding will extend over a four-year period and will help Seven Oaks grow its academic program as the school continues increasing enrollment and adding grade levels. The money will allow Seven Oaks to provide additional instructional staff; professional development opportunities; admissions software; instructional technology; science, fine arts, and physical education equipment; and additional books and instructional resources for both teachers and students.  

Seven Oaks Wins Lawsuit

Image from blogtrepreneur.com/li

Image from blogtrepreneur.com/li

On Thursday, September 6, the federal district court judge dismissed the lawsuit against Seven Oaks Classical School. The school's primary focus has been and always will be on providing a high-quality classical education to the students who attend our school. We are not surprised by the dismissal of this suit, as its claims were baseless. Even so, it is a relief to have the matter settled. 

The court's favorable decision will allow the school to focus without distraction on its core mission of training the minds and improving the hearts of young people through a solid education in the liberal arts and sciences. Seven Oaks appreciates Grace College’s ongoing support in authorizing our charter, which allows us to continue offering this kind of education as an open-enrollment, tuition-free, public school. 

Enrollment grows (again) by 50%

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Seven Oaks Classical School has seen exceptional growth for a second year in a row. This year's enrollment is up by 50% over last year's count, jumping from roughly 220 to 340. This is after growing approximately 40% the previous year from an opening enrollment of around 160 in 2016. Last year, this meant we were the fastest growing 'A'-rated charter school in the state. 

Not only is Seven Oaks growing in number, but it is also growing in grades. The school started in 2016 with kindergarten through 8th grade. Last year, it added 9th grade and this year 10th. The school will continue to add a grade each year until it offers a K-12 classical education. As a chartered public school, enrollment is open and parents pay no tuition. 

Notwithstanding this growth, the school is committed to remaining a community school. It plans to limit long-term growth. Seven Oaks want to become a school of around 700 students. The goal is 50-60 students at each grade level so that the education remains on a human scale and students are known by name.