The Director's Corner: On the year's highlights

A lot has happened during the 2013-14 school year. Our classrooms, the Jaguars, the Landsquidz and Bread on Bread, were exposed to four themes, Books, Human Body, India, Paleontology or Springs, and are still working on their fifth and last, Florida History. Many visitors came: Julia Dehoff, Adrian Fogelin, Jim Ed Martin, a speaker from the American Lung Association, Dr. Sethuraman Paramasivan, Sara Black Brown, Dustin Frost, Sean McGlynn, Jay Kamke, Lisa Homann, Sage Wiard, Dana McMillan, Andrew and Kelly from Wells Fargo and Nicole Mercer.

The students went on a number of field trips, to the Tallahassee Democrat, the Public Library, the Facility for Arts Research, Wakulla Springs, Saturday at the Sea, the Nutcracker, the Thespians District and State festivals, the Museum of Florida History, the Tallahassee Regional Model United Nations (TSMUN) conference, Natural Bridge Battlefield Historical State Park, Mission San Luis, the Courthouse, and they will still go to the Panhandle Pioneer Settlement, San Luis City Park and Pas De Vie.

Enrichment activities included multiple guilds, gardening, the Botany Club, after-school music, the Thespian Club, TSMUN, the middle school Springs project and the Classroom to Courtroom program. There were also two Family Camping Trips: to O’Leno State Park in the Fall and to Torreya State Park in the Spring, as well as two middle school camping trips: to St. George Island in the Fall and to Rivercane Rendezvous in the Spring.

Outreach events included participation in the Winter Parade, Children's Day at the Museum of Florida History, the Mag Lab Open House and the Summer Camp Splash.

Fundraising events spearheaded by the PTO included: the American Legion Fall event, Skate Nights, First Friday Bake Sales, share events, pecans sale, Box Tops, the Magnolia Yard Sale and the Magnolia School Local Restaurants Coupons Books. In addition, the Board continued to raise funds through its Magnolia School Capital Campaign, the school held another Original Works fundraiser, and the Middle School continued its own fundraising through its Parents’ Night Outs and Cans collecting.

A lot of maintenance and beautifying projects were realized with the help of the whole Magnolia School community: new carpet, new computer set-up and other improvements in the back-room, new air-conditioning unit in the middle school, new roof on the elementary school building, new sand-box, swings and basketball goal as well as re-painted structures on the playground, removal of pine trees to improve parking at the elementary school. Other improvements included a website facelift, a new math continuum for the elementary school, and new conference forms.

We are especially pleased with the results of our more rigorous implementation of Conscious Discipline.

We were treated to special performances, one by the elementary school (“The Cat Came Back”) and another by the middle school (Macbeth, It’s a Pig, and other small group and individual acts).

We also enjoyed some warm convivial moments at our Halloween Party, our Thanksgiving Feast, our Indian Dinner, our fall and spring camping trips, and the March PTO Party.

Finally, this year was graced by the birth of Joanne Rayne, a.k.a. Sharon’s granddaughter, and Elijah Miguel, a.k.a. Julius’s brother. It was also saddened by the passing of Mrs. Benedict, a.k.a. Sharla’s mom.

Thank you all for a wonderful year. We are looking forward to celebrating our students’ growth in our upcoming yearbook and at graduation in a few weeks.