News Detail

Head of School Update: Saturday, September 1, 2018

Dear JH Classical Academy Parents, 

Our faculty and staff just completed three intense weeks of orientation, curriculum training, a servant leadership seminar, and our annual retreat at the Mariposa Ranch in Cody. We have 32 new students this year, three new teachers, and one new staff member. 

Time away during June, traveling through Europe with my family, let me reflect, restore, and reboot for these wonderful weeks of practical preparation and relational investment. I hope your family had a summer full of adventure and intentional time together, and that all 106 of your children are ready to begin school next week!
The highlight of our summer preparations was a seminar that Steve and I brought to the faculty and staff, facilitated by two gentlemen trained and equipped in servant-leadership. The phrase “servant leader” was coined by Dr. Robert Greenleaf in an essay that he first published in 1970. In it, he says:
“A servant-leader focuses primarily on the growth and well-being of people and the communities to which they belong. While traditional leadership generally involves the accumulation and exercise of power by one at the “top of the pyramid,” servant leadership is different. The servant as leader shares power, puts the needs of others first, and helps people develop and perform as highly as possible.”
There is more to share about this seminar. However, one concrete and immediate outcome of our efforts was the creation of a faculty and staff vision statement articulating our ideal working environment, captured within a covenant we sign committing to the principles that will get us there. A key element of this vision was to have parents understand the “why” behind our policies, procedures, and programs, that we may work together in an optimal manner in educating your children and our students.
With this goal in mind, we scheduled a mandatory Parent Orientation on Thursday, September 6 from 5:30-7:30 PM, similar in format to our past Discover Classical Learning events, but refreshed with entirely new content. Five groups of parents will rotate rooms in order to hear from five groups of teachers, following my short welcome address. We value your time. These presentations will be clear and concise and full of relevant information. For your investment in JH Classical Academy to pay the greatest dividend to your family, we need you to attend on Thursday night! 
As we begin our educational pursuits, it is essential to have the end in mind. I have included Lynn Friess’ remarks to our Eighth Graders at their promotion ceremony last June, to provide that perspective. Lynn shared the opening line of the address that the remarkable teacher Anne Sullivan delivered in 1886 at her gifted student Helen Keller’s graduation:
“If a love for truth and beauty and goodness is not cultivated, the mind loses the strength which come from truth, the refinement which comes from beauty, and the happiness which comes from goodness.”
Our faculty share the same determination and diligence that Anne Sullivan had in teaching the impetuous and brilliant Helen Keller. They share the same dedication to truth, beauty and goodness because they experience the strength, refinement and happiness it brings to their students. We are full of anticipation. We are excited for students to arrive in order for the stories to begin!
Come to Open Doors between 4-5:30 PM on Monday for the opportunity to meet your teachers. Learning will commence on Tuesday, September 4 at 8:10 AM. Please bring your children early so they can greet their friends from 8:00-8:10 AM in the multipurpose room before attendance is taken at 8:15 AM.
With great anticipation,
Mrs. Polly J. Friess
Head of School

P.S. Mark your calendars for this Thursday, September 6th @ 5:30 PM for mandatory Parent Orientation.

Mountain Range


Jackson Hole Classical Academy
P.O. Box 7466
Jackson, WY 83002
Enrollment Inquiries:
Polly Friess
(307) 690-8396
All Other Inquiries:
School Office
(307) 201-5040
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