November 2011 Issue


School Wide News

We have so many great events happening here at Stratford.  Click here to view a school-wide calendar of events for the month of November

Stratford Academy receives 2011 Exxon Mobil Grant
Thanks to the efforts of Frank Walthall III of Walthall Oil Company in Macon, Stratford has been awarded a $500 ExxonMobil Educational Alliance grant for science education. Funded by the ExxonMobil Corporation, the ExxonMobil Educational Alliance Program is designed to provide Exxon retailers like Walthall Oil Company with an opportunity to invest in the future of their communities through educational grants to neighborhood schools. On hand to accept the check from William Caldwell of Walthall Oil Company was Stratford's Advancement Director Kathleen Medlin.

Year-End Donations Drive Stratford Loyalty Fund
Goal: $300,000
Given to date: $ 56,136

During the final quarter of the year, many families maximize their charitable donations in support of non-profit organizations. Stratford Academy typically sees a large volume of gifts during this year-end time. As we once again strive for 100% parent participation for the Loyalty Fund, we ask that every parent pledge to this annual giving program by December 31. Payments can either be made at this time or can coincide with the end of Stratford’s fiscal year on May 31. Many parents wonder, “What does a Loyalty Fund go towards?” Gifts to Stratford’s Loyalty Fund made the following improvements and opportunities possible for students and faculty in each division for 2010-11:

3,645 square feet of worn carpet replaced
1,100 square feet of tile replaced
192 Computer workstations purchased
119 Computer monitors upgraded
66 Desks purchased for Lower School classrooms
50 Teachers attended continuing education conferences
7 Bathrooms totally remodeled
1 Server added to Stratford IT network
1 Stage floor in the Tift Auditorium refinished

In the next few weeks, Stratford parents, alumni, grandparents and parents of alumni will receive a mailing about the Loyalty Fund. Please take the time to consider your family’s best gift and return your pledge by year-end. For convenience, parents also have the option of having Loyalty Fund gifts billed monthly or one-time to a student’s account. Pledge online today Many thanks to the Stratford supporters who have made their gifts for 2011-12 and to the Stratford faculty/staff who have posted 100% participation.

Georgia GOAL State Tax Credit Meets Cap for First Time
In 2008, taxpayers for education choice lobbied for legislation that would provide Georgia families scholarship funds for their children who were enrolled in public education systems in which the students were unable to succeed. From this house bill, the tax credit for education choice program was born and the Georgia GOAL Scholarship Program was established as the front runner in the education choice arena. Since that time, Georgia taxpayers have had the opportunity to redirect up to $2,500 of their state income tax to the Georgia GOAL Student Scholarship Organization on behalf of Stratford Academy. Our school has been able to utilize these funds to offer financial assistance to families whose children have transferred to our school from a public school. In addition to the credit a taxpayer receives, the amount can also be taken as a deduction on one’s federal taxes. This program has been a win-win-win for Stratford with the taxpayers receiving credits/deductions, families receiving needed aid and the school expanding its financial assistance capabilities.

For the first time in this program’s history, the state cap of $50 million was met in November. Stratford Academy would like to thank the  families who are participating in the Georgia GOAL program. If you were unable to participate this year but would like to next year, the state will begin accepting applications on January 1st for 2012. Please contact or visit for more information.

Harvest For Hope Food Drive Begins On November 7th
The 2011 Harvest for Hope Food Drive sponsored by the Stratford Key Club will be November 7-16. This is a school-wide project which will benefit the Mulberry Outreach Program. The need is crucial. Each Stratford student is encouraged to take part in this event. The food ministry is in a desperate situation as the number of needy families has increased tremendously this year. Together we can make this year's food drive the most plentiful one ever.

Key Club Sponsored "Pink Day" - A Great Success
The Stratford community supported Susan G. Komen for the Cure by participating in a Pink Day on Friday, October 14. Students and faculty paid $1 to dress-down by wearing pink all day. The Key Club helped support this effort by sponsoring a "Pink-Out" of the home volleyball games vs. Augusta Prep and then at the home football game vs. Mount Vernon later that evening. Over $1400 was raised to help eradicate breast cancer. Special thanks to Key Club advisors Rachel Chabot and Lynn Hutto and breast cancer survivor and Stratford teacher Reeda Katz, all of whom worked tirelessly to make sure that this event was a great success!    top 

Preschool News

Littlest Eagles Learn About Jobs
While studying the letter "J", the Beginners' classes talked about jobs and community helpers. Throughout the week art, stories, dramatic play, and even tea party time centered around this theme. Dr. Seth Bush, father of Stratford Beginner Gates Bush, taught children about the role a pediatrician plays in keeping children healthy. Lt. Annette Horn from the Bibb County Sherriff's office Crime Prevention unit talked about safety and gave each child a badge and goody bag. The highlight was the turning on of the siren! Piedmont Animal Clinic brought its mobile vet clinic, and Dr. Jennifer Proctor saw and treated the children's sick stuffed animals. The week culminated with the visit of a fire truck to help the children learn about fire prevention and fire safety. It was a great week!

Tennis Anyone?
The second session of Extended Day preschool tennis is in full swing! Coach Ramsey Earnhart, with the help of preschool teachers, teaches nearly a third of the preschool children using the Quick Start teaching method. Everyone in the preschool has the opportunity to get involved; their progress is amazing.   top

Lower School News

Bring In Your Gently Used Coats To Stratford
Stratford Academy’s Annual Coat Drive sponsored by the fifth-grade council runs through Friday, November 11th. Please help Macon Outreach by donating your old coats and sweaters. Drop boxes will be located in the following areas: Mrs. Schorr’s office(US); Mr. Myler’s office (MS); the Lower School workroom; and  the Preschool workroom. Don't miss this wonderful opportunity to help those in need in our community stay warm this winter.

Artwork Shows That Fall is Here
Stratford’s lower school art students recently learned about color wheels and how to create new colors by mixing three colors. Afterwards, they painted works of art using their mixed colors. Second-grade students painted scarecrows, and many are currently on display in the lobby at the entrance hall of the Fine Arts building.   top 

Middle School News

Stratford Seventh Graders Selected For 2011-2012  Duke TIP Program
Duke University is the sponsor of a national search endeavor known as the Talent Identification Program or Duke TIP. This talent search identifies academically-gifted seventh graders based on standardized test scores in specific content areas. Candidates who qualify are invited to sit for either the SAT or the ACT, which are college entrance assessments. These are the same tests offered to eleventh and twelfth-grade students who are competing for college placements. The simple act of taking these assessments is extremely challenging. Forty-three Stratford seventh graders were selected for the 2011-2012 TIP program. Students selected were: Grace Adams, Anna Katherine Boswell, Martin Burnette, Gracie Childers, Claudia Clark, Lizzie Clayton, George Dunwody, Crawford Edwards, Jake Edwards, Walker Gibbons, Maggie Greer, Justin Griffin, Riley Grossnickle, Janie Hatcher, Jackson Hendry, Julianna Hightower, Lily Howe, Ames Jamison, Emily Jones, David Matlock, Kevin McGean, Kate Monahan, Spencer Morgan, Callie Moring, Taylor Moyer, Sanford Caroline Neel, Alex Newberry, Rosie Poku, Safi Rahman, Claire Rinehart, Coleman Rozier, Zainab Saddiqui, Ruth Samuel, Sarah Kate Sellers, Luke Slappey, Rosalee Spivey, Robert Stone, Maggie Thornsberry, Thomas Thwaite, Bailey Toole, Cameron Walsh, Carly Wanna and Judson Williams.

Come Join the MS French Club For An Afternoon Movie
The Middle School French Club is hosting a fun fundraiser on Monday, November 28, from 4-6 p.m. in the auditorium. They will be showing the movie "Ratatouille". Admission is $1.00 for lower school students and $2.00 for middle and upper School students. Come join your friends on the 28th and help support the fundraising efforts of Stratford's Middle School French Club. top

Upper School News

Distinguished Panel Speaks To Stratford Upper School Students
In October Stratford’s upper school students heard a fantastic panel of mental health providers address the subject of “Being Good to Each Other in the Digital World.” Dr. Sondralyn Fackler, Mrs. Carol Mathias, and Brian Conner from Ridgeview Institute in Atlanta spoke about issues such as “valuing empathy in a selfish world,” “serious consequences of on-line drama” and “what exactly does it mean to be good to each other” on social networking sites. Students submitted timely and thought-provoking questions to the panelists for response. The three panelists addressed their topics in a concise and helpful way with practical suggestions for networking. The discussion was a timely one and relates to Head of School Dr. Bob Veto’s theme for the current school year of “being good to each other” in every area of life. Special thanks to our panelists, our moderator Shaun Kell, and to Tina Wootan, who worked hard to make this event a success.

Peer Mentoring 101
The Peer Mentor Program is designed to help new freshmen transition smoothly into high school. Seniors and juniors apply each year to obtain these highly-coveted spots. Once selected, the mentors are then assigned a freshman homeroom and three other mentors to work with. The mentors meet with their group every two weeks to discuss pivotal high school "issues." -- community service, grades, or even grade reputation. The meetings take place at break, and delicious snacks are provided by FLIK each week. Each meeting is well coordinated due to the preparation time and training provided by the Peer-Mentor advisors Nancy Todd and James Jordan.

Through the Mentor Program, upperclassmen form strong bonds with the youngest of the lowerclassmen. The first unifying experience is at the Freshman Retreat, where mentors and freshmen work together to traverse "death-defying" obstacle courses. Peer Mentors become people the freshmen can turn to with their latest high school dilemmas such as concern over a poor grade, their friend who decided to double-cross them, or the dreaded Sadie Hawkins dance.  The relationship extends into the outside world as well. At soccer games, church events, and La Berry, people now witness giggling, joking, and serious, heartfelt conversations between freshman students and their mentors. With the help of peer mentors, freshmen are making a smooth transition from middle school into high school life. According to one Stratford mentor, "Mentoring has given me an entirely new perspective on high school. Each one of my freshmen has taught me something new about leadership, friendship, and relationships, and I hope they have gotten just as much out of the program as I have. I remember the first day, meeting all of them as they scampered around the lunchroom seeking out their new homerooms, their safe haven for the next four years. We were there to calm their nerves. We got to know them individually. There is a new, unique bond between the upperclassmen and the new freshmen. We have built relationships, not as teacher and student, but as friends. I talk to my "mentees" at youth group, when I see them at the mall, or at a game. I love each of them and wish them the best, and just because formal mentoring is almost over, I feel our relationship will not stop. I hope at the end of this program that all of the freshmen will not only have adjusted well, but know that we upperclassmen are not scary monsters whose only wish is to gobble them up, but actual people who just want to be their pals."

Stratford's Gupta Finds Great Success Outside of the Classroom
Stratford junior Shruti Gupta has been very busy in recent months. This summer Gupta completed the Young Scholar Program (YSP)  at UGA performing research in the area of food/nutrition science. She received first place in the poster competition at the end of the program. On October 12, 2011, Gupta also received the Girl Scouts of America's Gold Award, which is the highest award a Girl Scout can achieve. For her project she helped redesign and update the Care Cottage for abused children and adults, under auspices of the Sheriff's Department in Forsyth, Georgia. Gupta is the daughter of Dr. Raj and Meenu Gupta. Way to go Shruti!

Stratford Senior Wanna Spends Summer Performing Community Service on the Island of Guadeloupe
This past summer Casey Wanna spent a month working in the Caribbean on the French-speaking island of Guadeloupe with VISIONS Service Adventures, an international service learning program. Wanna was one of 25 high school students who accomplished community service projects while living in a small village on Terre-de-Bas, one of the archipelago islands off Guadeloupe’s southern coast.The teen volunteers entirely reconstructed an open air pavilion into an enclosed welcome center for island visitors. With an island artist, the group also created a large-scale mural on a cliff that overlooks the port and organized a summer day camp for island children. “Service is a powerful bridge to friendship and learning,” says Katherine Dayton, VISIONS Executive Director. “We give students tangible ways to be of use and to discover their own potential in the process. They live for awhile in a very different world from what they typically know, engaging in activities that build confidence and offer first-hand knowledge. Over the course of a month, they come to know the people whose lives they are impacting.”

Key Club Presents Check to Ronald McDonald House
The Stratford Key Club recently sponsored the school's annual McJeans Day. The entire school dressed down, and the Key Club collected almost $1100 in donations for the Ronald McDonald House of Central Georgia. The Ronald McDonald House provides temporary housing and meals for families of critically ill children undergoing treatment at local hospitals. Pictured is Key Club President Matthew Jukes presenting a check for the total amount collected to Ronald McDonald House Development Chair, Worth Chestnut.

Debate Team Continues Its Tradition of Excellence
Following great performances at both the Greenhill and Samford tournaments, the varsity debate team most recently competed in the St. Mark's School of Texas Tournament (Dallas) where they won five out of six of their Preliminary debates and reached the elimination debates ranked eighth. The Eagles defeated a team from Marquette School (Milwaukee, WI) in the double Octa finals, a team from Dunwoody (Atlanta) in the Octa finals, and a team from Edina (MN) in the Quarter finals. In the semifinal round, top debaters junior Andrew Jones and sophomore Hemanth Sanjeev were defeated by a team from Woodward Academy (Atlanta). This was an amazing run for the young Eagle debaters. Jones was the only junior in the quarterfinals and semifinals, and Sanjeev was the only sophomore to be in the elimination debates. Jones was named 10th speaker at this tournament. Keep up the great work.   top

Fine Arts News

Musician Joseph Gramley Visits Stratford
Multi-percussionist Joseph Gramley visited Stratford on October 13, in conjunction with Lower School Fine Arts Day, and performed for Stratford students. Gramley talked about the origin of many of the instruments onstage and "wowed" the students with his amazing musical talents. Gramley is a professor of music at the University of Michigan and director of the university’s famed Percussion Ensemble. His biography on his website states that, " An invitation from Yo-Yo Ma in 2000 led Gramley to join Mr. Ma’s Silk Road Ensemble. In addition to participating in the group’s extended residencies in American cities, Gramley has toured with Mr. Ma and the Ensemble throughout North America, Europe and Asia, performing in the world’s finest concert halls. Along the way, Gramley has studied percussion styles and instruments from around the globe, collaborating with internationally-renowned musicians from India, Iran, China, Japan, Korea and Central Asia. He has appeared on several top-selling albums with Yo-Yo Ma on the SonyBMG label, and with other members of the Ensemble on the recent Off the Map (In a Circle Records). In November 2008, Gramley and Yo-Yo Ma performed together along with guest artists from the Nashville Symphony."  

One-Act Cast Heading to State Competition
The 33-member cast and crew of the fall one-act play performed on Thursday, October 27, at the GISA 2AAA Region Competition. Stratford's cast was recognized by the judges with a Top Performer plaque, which was awarded collectively to the entire ensemble. The judges' scores totaled up to find Stratford in second place for the overall award. The show will continue on with a performance at the GISA State competition on Wednesday, November 9th. Break a leg!

Stratford Students Cast in Local Holiday Production
Congratulations to the following Stratford students who were cast to perform in Macon Little Theatre and The Academy of Performing Arts' production of The Littlest Angel which runs December 16-18. The Littlest Angel: Dane Reynolds; The Archangel Gabriel: Grey Faulkner; Saint Peter, Keeper of the Gate: Matt Newberry; Angels: Anna Thompson,Ava Adams, Mary Sellers Shockley, Olivia Walsh, Janie Harrison, Janie Hatcher, Cameron Walsh, Carly Wanna, Michelle Tang and MacKenzie Conn. top 

Athletic News 

Fastpitch Eaglettes Claim Third-Consecutive GISA State Title
Anyone who has ever played on a championship team will tell you that winning that first championship is difficult, but winning back-to-back championships is extremely difficult to do. What the 2011 Fastpitch Eaglettes did this season in winning their third-consecutive state title is defying the odds. Despite returning eight starters from the 2010 state championship team, the Eaglettes were not favored by anyone to win a third-straight championship.The Eaglettes first big region win of the season came at Westfield, where Sloan Sibley outdueled Christine Campbell as the Eaglettes defeated the Lady Hornets 2-0. After losing to Tattnall and defeating Westfield again at home, the Eaglettes finished in a three-way tie for first in the region, forcing a playoff to decide the region champ and more importantly, seeds for the state tournament. The Eaglettes played the Lady Hornets to determine who would play Tattnall (who won the coin toss) for the region title.  The Eaglettes came up short losing in extra innings to the Hornets, and entered into the GISA State tournament as the three seed from region two. The Eaglettes made it to the final four and the scenario was much like last year's. Stratford lost to the Lady Trojans in the first game, then defeated Trinity Christian to advance to a do-or-die game against Tattnall for the right to play Westfield in the finals. Similar to last year, Lexi Rouse came through with a huge bat, this time hitting two homeruns en route to an 8-0 trouncing of the Lady Trojans. The finals again was Westfield vs Stratford in a best two-out-of-three matchup.The Eaglettes set the tone for the day by winning the first game 7-5. Sibley and Campbell squared off again in game two as the Lady Hornets jumped out in front to take an early lead. Sibley dug deep and ended up allowing only three hits in the game as the Eaglettes defeated the Lady Hornets 6-3 to win their third straight GISA-AAA State Championship. The 2011 Eaglettes have much about which to be proud and played their best ball when it mattered. The leadership of the team's five seniors - Julie Anne Bradley, Catherine Chambless, Morgan Long, Carmen Russett and Sloan Sibley - will be greatly missed next year. Hats off to Julie Anne Bradley, Catherine Chambless, Morgan Long, Carmen Russett, Sloan Sibley, Caroline Avant, Macy Meeks and Lexi Rouse who were all named to the GISA 2AAA All-Region Team. Congratulations go out to Bradley, Long, Sibley, Avant, Meeks and Rouse who also received All-State honors, and to GISA-AAA Coach-of-the-Year, Jeff Treadway. Congratulations to Coach Julie Long, Coach Tyler Brown and the rest of the Eaglette players for their record breaking third-consecutive fastpitch state title.

Cross Country Eagles and Eaglettes Finish Great Seasons
The Varsity Girls' Cross Country Team finished the season as Region Champions and 7th in the State Meet. Throughout the regular season, the Eaglettes had first-place finishes at the Lancer Invitational and the Southland Meet and finished second at the Stratford Invitational, the Knights Invitational, and the Cavalier Clash. Cali Ruth Hays, Conner Hefner, Blaire Burton, Lauren Reynolds, and Malone Slappey rounded out the top five and were all named to the All-Region Team. Next year looks promising with all of the top seven returning. However, they will be losing a great group of senior leaders including Kristin Banks, Mary Bennett Easterlin, and Catherine Pierson.

The Varsity Boys' Team was the Region Runner-up and finished 6th in the State Meet. They also finished first in the Lancer Invitational and the Southland Meet and had second-place finishes at the Stratford Invitational and the Cavalier Clash. The Eagles were led by Jonathan Dean, Daniel Groselle, Jasper Cowart, Morgan Sowell, and Garrett Scarborough. Groselle set a new school record at the Southland Meet with a time of 17:51. Dean, Groselle, and Cowart were all named to the All- Region Team and Dean was also All-State with an impressive ninth-place finish at the State Meet. The boys are looking to improve next season with five of the top seven returning and some strong junior varsity runners moving up. The Eagles will miss seniors Groselle, Cowart, and Charlie Avant.

Youth Football and Cheerleading Wrap Up Their Season
The youngest Stratford Eagles were able to enjoy youth football and youth cheerleading this fall. Boys in first and second grades participated in flag football, while those in grades three through six donned pads to play tackle. Stratford's youth football flag league is intramural, while the Junior and Senior League players compete against students from Tattnall, Covenant, Mount de Sales, and Westfield. Stratford's youth cheerleaders cheered for their corresponding age groups. One of the highlights of the season was having these youngsters be a part of the Stratford versus Mount de Sales varsity football game. The Senior League players and along with the same-age cheerleaders enjoyed a pregame meal prepared by the varsity football parents. All of the youth football players joined together in leading the varsity Eagle football team onto the field for the game. At the end of the first quarter, all youth cheerleaders joined the varsity cheerleaders on the track for a dance and a favorite cheer. Stratford's youth programs strive to introduce lower school students to sports played at the varsity level while igniting a flame for Eagle Pride.

The Eagle Online newsletter is a publication of the Stratford Academy Communications Department. We'd love to hear from you. To make a submission for the Eagle Online, please send information to .   top 

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