Students and faculty will return from Mardi Gras break this year to a week of LAUNCH 2020 festivities. Although the majority of the presentations will take place on Friday, March 6th, the official day of LAUNCH, several presentations and activities will lead up to the big day. Planning and preparation have been underway for months, as students have taken projects and work that they are passionate about and adapted their in-depth knowledge into an engaging presentation. This is what LAUNCH is all about -- coming together as a community to celebrate some of the most exciting moments of learning. Our students act on their own passion and curiosity to create something authentic, then boldly stand before an audience to share what they’ve discovered.
What you’ll see during LAUNCH week are distilled versions of much larger projects. ESTAAR students, for instance, spend over 100 hours in a laboratory working to test their hypotheses and collaborate with research assistants and professors. Some Thesis students have 50 pages of content written to support their argument. And, of course, the "Mamma Mia" session is just a joyful teaser of what’s to come in a few weeks. But each presentation and project has been carefully crafted for a very specific audience: their peers. For these presenters to take their ideas and new understanding, crafting it into a presentation to share with an auditorium full of their friends and classmates requires a great deal of vulnerability and bravery. When you watch these presentations, it will be apparent that these students care deeply about what they have learned, so much so that they care about sharing that learning with others. By sharing so openly about these ideas, our students are creating an opportunity for dialogue and engagement with their classmates that would be difficult to bring about in a typical classroom setting.
Check out the schedule for LAUNCH week and get excited to learn at LAUNCH -- there will be many opportunities to look at topics from new perspectives and celebrate the success of our incredible Episcopal students.
LAUNCH 2020 Merchandise is available for purchase in the library. Shirts are $20 and fanny packs are $8 -- buy both for $25.
Tiffany has been an educator for twelve years and serves as the Director of Library at Episcopal. A lifelong resident of Baton Rouge, she earned her Bachelor’s degree in Education from Southeastern Louisiana University and her Masters in Educational Technology Leadership from Northwestern State University of Louisiana. She has served as the President for ISTE’s Librarians Network and was recognized as one of ISTE’s 2014 Emerging Leaders. Tiffany is National Board Certified in Library Media and was named one of the 2014 Library Journal Movers & Shakers. She was the 2016 recipient of the Louisiana Library Media Specialist Award and is a past president of the Louisiana Association of School Librarians. In 2019, she received the ISTE Librarians’ Network Award for her work in Aldrich Library at Episcopal. Tiffany speaks regularly at state, national, and international conferences on school library and technology topics.
A Book Called "Bob"
Lower School librarian Catherine Word kicked off the 2020 community read by presenting this year’s book selection – “Bob” by Wendy Mass and Rebecca Stead. Third graders will embark on a journey with Bob and 10 year old Livy in this novel that The Wall Street Journal calls “Magical.” As Word introduced this year’s book, she thanked Parents’ Guild for their continued support of the effort and she encouraged the entire Episcopal community to read along.
To read about the first Lower School community read, click the links below.
Third graders may just have the next big idea! Students recently presented their business ideas to parents and visitors as part of a "Shark Tank"-like activity. Pitches included everything from dog walking enterprises to lawn care and cooking services. The presentations were the culmination of the students’ project-based unit on managing a business.
Over the course of the unit, students heard from experts and learned a range of skills. Local business professionals spoke with students about their own entrepreneurial experiences with everything from a stationary business to a jewelry company. Students even had the opportunity to FaceTime with Jen Rosen, Casting Manager of the ABC TV show “Shark Tank.” Rosen gave the Episcopal students suggestions for making their business pitches appealing and compelling for “investors.”
When creating their own business plan, students estimated start-up costs and prepared a budget. They also created promotional flyers and a promotional video to persuade parent “investors” to support their potential endeavor. To make the day more exciting, there were secret shark investors among the crowd. The sharks will compare notes and announce a grand prize winner soon.
Episcopal alumni have a long history of entrepreneurship. Today’s third graders proved they are ready to continue that tradition.
What better way to learn the elements of a story than by retelling a classic fairy tale with your own enchanted twist? First graders recently presented their own fairy tales complete with puppets and props. The event was the culmination of the enchanted engineering project-based learning unit. There was even a sighting of the big bad wolf!
Tooth Fairy Visits Episcopal
How many times do we brush our teeth each day? How many times do we floss? Thanks to a visit from a very special guest, PreK-3 and kindergarten students know the answers to these questions and other important tooth care facts. The tooth fairy read students a story, discussed the importance of eating healthy foods and demonstrated how to brush with the help of her friend Henry the Horse. A special thank you to Episcopal parents Dr. Johnnie Hunt and Dr. Brooke Wood for inviting the tooth fairy to Episcopal!
When the VPAC Theater needed a facelift, the baseball parking lot needed to be resurfaced and new kitchen equipment was needed in the refectory - you made it happen. You support your children in so many ways and we just wanted to say thank you. We know that behind every National Merit finalist, every musical theater soloist and every sports enthusiast, there is a supportive family making it possible for their child to excel.
Thank you for supporting your child and for supporting Episcopal.
Every year The eFund provides families the opportunity to have an immediate and lasting impact on the student experience at Episcopal. Contributions to The eFund directly support the arts, athletics, academics, spirituality, service learning and technology initiatives that make Episcopal a special place.
We thank you for your continued support. This year we have already reached 88% of our 2019-2020 goal with $631,000 raised and $84,000 remaining. Thank you to our trustees, faculty and staff who have reached 100% participation again this year. Thank you to the families in 13 Lower School classes and one Middle School homeroom that have reached 100% parent participation.
To further express our gratitude, any parent who participates in The eFund by May 1st will have a chance to win a VIP carpool parking spot next year and two senior parents will have a chance to win an extra seat in the chapel for graduation. As always, your gifts to The eFund are fully tax deductible.
To learn more about The eFund, please review our list of frequently asked questions below.
Thank you to our eFund volunteers! From volunteering their time during awareness events such as Parents' Night and The eFund P.E.P. Rally, to hours on the phone during the 1965-Minute Challenge and the Contact-a-Thon, we are incredibly grateful for the more than 50 volunteers who provide leadership and support.
Where do annual fund donations go? Your gift to The eFund has an immediate impact on the student experience, as all gifts are used in the year in which they are given. Your donation provides for teachers’ salaries, classroom supplies, technology resources and upgrades, library books and subscriptions, and support for exceptional arts and athletics programming. Your gift may be directed to an area meaningful to your family or you may choose to let the school direct it toward the area of greatest need.
How much should I give? Every gift, no matter the size, makes a difference. We depend on the participation of our entire community – parents, alumni, trustees, grandparents, parents of alumni, faculty and staff, and friends – to support our school year after year. This year’s margin of excellence is $1,590, which is the difference between tuition and the cost of educating a student at Episcopal. Donors at the Associate level will be invited to the leadership donor celebration in September 2020.
How do I become a member of the 1965 Society for Loyal Donors? Donors who support The eFund for two or more consecutive years will be recognized as members of this consistent giving society. These donors are acknowledged on an outdoor plaque on the Alumni House wall next to the deck. If you supported the campaign in 2018-2019, all you have to do is renew your commitment to The eFund at any level to be included.
Katie joined the Advancement Office in November 2015 and currently serves as the Director of Annual Giving and Stewardship. Katie is responsible for overseeing the school’s annual fund, called The eFund, and for stewarding gifts and donors to the school. A Baton Rouge native, Katie is a graduate of St. Joseph’s Academy and Louisiana State University, where she earned a bachelor’s degree in marketing. A key member of the development team at the Louisiana Arts & Science Museum for seven years, Katie brings a variety of experiences to our fundraising work. She is a former board member and active member of the Association of Fundraising Professionals.
We are excited to celebrate members of the Class of 2020 as they make their college enrollment decisions. Congratulations!
Throughout the year, Episcopal teams up with MasteryPrep to hold ACT and SAT boot camps for our Upper School students. The camps typically are held on Saturdays from 9 a.m. to 3 p.m. In a single session, students review test content and learn pacing and time management, essential test-taking techniques, tips for the most important question types, and effective guessing strategies. These camps are very popular with Episcopal students, who rate the camps and the instructors with the highest marks.
MasteryPrep is a college readiness company that specializes in helping schools improve their students’ standardized test scores. MasteryPrep was founded by Baton Rouge native Craig Gehring. The company has supported Episcopal by running our boot camps and supplying materials for other test prep programs.
To read more about Episcopal test prep, click here. To learn more about College Counseling at Episcopal, click here.
Dr. Alan Newton
Dr. Alan Newton hails from Alabama and received his PhD in English from the University of Kansas. At Episcopal, he has taught eighth grade World Geography and History of Religion in addition to his current roles as English teacher, Writing Center Director, and College Counselor. Dr. Newton has taught English and social studies classes and served as a college admissions consultant for more than twenty years, predominantly at college preparatory schools in the United States and South Korea. He is also a published poet and playwright whose play, Whiteout (2001), won a national Kennedy Center award. Outside of school, he enjoys theater, world travel, and playing drums. He is married to Dr. Rebecca Kuhn
Episcopal School of Baton Rouge congratulates 10 National Merit Finalists.
Episcopal also congratulates Trevor Heath as a National Merit Semifinalist and the following Commended Scholars:
These 14 students represent 14% of the Class of 2020. However, National Merit information only tells part of the Episcopal student experience. Students in all three divisions are accomplishing amazing things academically. Below are a few examples.
Class of 2019 AP performance
AP Scholars: 31
AP Scholar with Honor: 18
AP Scholar with Distinction: 37
National AP Scholar: 2
Total students with AP recognition: 88
Class of 2024 Duke TIP honors
State High Scorers: 13
Grand Winners: 2
Louisiana Elementary Math Olympiad 1st place: 1 student
As a school committed to a whole child experience, Episcopal students are encouraged to participate in co-curricular activities. In all three divisions, there are artists, athletes and students committed to service.
Congratulations to all of the outstanding Episcopal students who are excelling in the classroom, on the court and in the community. Episcopal truly is educating tomorrow’s leaders every day.
All students, parents and alumni are invited to join us for a schoolwide celebration of the new Episcopal Field House.
Monday, March 9th
Festivities begin on the Episcopal football field.
The new Episcopal Field House will be used by students in all divisions and is a symbol of Episcopal’s commitment to health and wellness. The building boasts more than 22,000 square feet of space for everything from weight and cardio training to physical education classroom space, an expansive terrace and coaching offices. Don’t miss your opportunity to be a part of this historic occasion.
Naming opportunities including individualized lockers, weight training equipment, terrace pavers and various indoor and outdoor locations are still available for those who are interested. Visit spiritmindbodybr.org or email email@example.com for more information.
Episcopal’s winter athletes have had a tremendous season and it’s not over yet!
The girls basketball team won the 8-2A district championship! The Knights went into the district tournament as the top seed and finished business with a victory over Northeast and Port Allen. With a record of 23 and 5, the team is on a 10 game winning streak that they hope to continue. In recognition of their successful season thus far, the girls were also named the 94.1 High School Team of the Week. The Knights wrap up the regular season tonight at Madison Prep Academy. Bi-district playoff action gets underway on February 20th.
The boys basketball team continues to battle through a successful season. The Knights defeated top ranked Dunham in the district tournament before falling to Port Allen in the final. The boys host Lusher on February 17th at 6 pm and Rapides at 5:30 pm on February 21st.
The third-seeded girls soccer team finished the regular season with a district title. After a first round bye in the playoffs, the Knights had a big win against Menard scoring six goals. The girls now prepare for the quarterfinal game that will take place on Monday, February 17th at 4 pm versus Catholic High New Iberia.
The boys soccer team also earned district championship honors. The number one ranked Knights faced Dunham in the regional round of the playoffs this week. Episcopal came out on top with a final score of one to zero. Tanner Morales scored with a header into the goal from Jett Turnley's free kick. The boys will now host the quarterfinal round on Monday, February 17th at 6:30 pm vs. Pope John Paul II High School.
Indoor Track & Field
The indoor track & field team will compete at the LHSAA State Indoor Track Championship on February 22nd at the LSU Carl Maddox Field House. There are a host of Episcopal boys and girls that have qualified for the meet in hopes of becoming state champs.
The Knights wrestlers had a successful showing at the Brother Martin High School event. William Thomas York placed third in the Middle School championships. JV wrestler Carter McLean finished runner up in the 113 pound weight class at the JV City Championship meet. Wrestling travels this weekend to Shreveport for the state wrestling match at the CenturyLink Center.
The powerlifters pressed their way to a first place finish at the Woodlawn Invitational Powerlifting meet. The team competes again at regionals on February 29th.
The Middle School navy boys and gold girls soccer teams are division champions! The squads won their divisions in the Baton Rouge Soccer Association tournament. Read more about Middle School soccer success here.
The girls eighth grade basketball team finished second in the league, losing by one point to Northwestern in the championship game.
The boys eighth grade basketball team plays for the league championship Saturday, February 15th at 2 pm versus Parkview Baptist. The boys finished third in the St. Thomas More tournament and first in the St. Alphonsus tournament.
The seventh grade boys finished first in the St. Alphonsus tournament.
Senior DJ Morgan has been selected to the 2020 All-Star Basketball Team! The game is set for Saturday, March 14th at Bossier Parish Community College in Bossier, LA. In addition, Coach Chris Beckman was selected as a member of the coaching staff for the 2020 All Star Basketball Game.
Senior Tochi Mbagwu has been selected to the 2020 East All-Star Soccer Team! The game is set for Saturday, February 29th at 9 am in Strawberry Stadium in Hammond.
Congratulations to Episcopal defensive back Kolin Bilbrew for being named 1st Team All State and running back Ryan Armwood for being named 2nd Team All State. Both Knights were also selected All-Metro in football for classes 3A and below.
MATHCOUNTS Team Wins First!
Congratulations to the Middle School MATHCOUNTS team! The seventh and eighth graders won first place in the MATHCOUNTS Chapter Competition at LSU. With 13 schools and 115 students competing, Episcopal’s Autumn Reynolds placed seventh individually. The team, which is coached by Middle School math teacher James Moroney, now qualifies for the state competition. This is Episcopal’s first time returning to the state competition in many years, making the achievement even more special. MATHCOUNTS is a national organization which seeks to make learning math fun and to encourage a love of math among Middle School students. The state competition is set for March 6th in Pineville.
Congratulations to the Episcopal MATHCOUNTS team:
Autumn Reynolds (8th)
Joie Lee (7th)
Hayden Singh (8th)
Joey Roth (8th)
Ivy Jiang (8th)
Luke Stelly (7th)
Hayden Willett (8th)
Noah Vincent (8th)
Ahebwa Muhumuza (8th)
Ayush Patel (8th)
Episcopal Team Places Second at Baton Rouge High Mu Alpha Theta Tournament
On Saturday, February 1st, Episcopal placed second in Division 1 at the Baton Rouge High Mu Alpha Theta math tournament. The tournament was attended by 222 students from 16 schools. Episcopal brought 39 students in grades fifth through twelfth that competed in subjects from Algebra 1 to Calculus BC. Click here to see the individual results and a gallery of photos from the event. To read about the team's first place finish at the Catholic High Mu Alpha Theta tournament, click here.
!Felicidades a Todos! Episcopal Spanish Students Achieve Outstanding Results at the 2020 Louisiana Spanish Convention by Micheal Posey
The Louisiana Association of High School Spanish Clubs (LAHSSC) Convention brings together high school Spanish clubs from throughout the state for a fun weekend of competitions and events. All students participate in a variety of activities, ranging from linguistic, literary and cultural elements of the Hispanic world. “¡Descubre La Diferencia!” (“Discover the Difference!”) was the theme of this year’s convention.
A delegation of Upper School Spanish students participated and earned prizes in competitions, which consisted of language studies and cultural intelligence including artwork, theater and talent, literary recitation, sight-reading, and multiple levels of grammar and vocabulary. Each member of the Episcopal delegation medaled in at least one category. The winning results of Episcopal students are as follows:
The delegation was led by Upper School Spanish teachers, Dr. Victoria Alvarez and Micheal Posey.
Excelsior! 2020 National Classical Etymology Exam Winners Announced by Michael Posey
Who could have possibly vaticinated, or foretold, this year’s award winners of the National Classical Etymology Exam (NCEE)? If you are an Upper School Latin student, you could have easily identified this rare English word’s etymology from its Latin root, vates, which means prophet.
Congratulations to ten Episcopal students who medaled on this year’s examination of the NCEE.
Administered in October 2019, the NCEE is based on English vocabulary words that are derived from Latin and Greek, with emphasis on academic and SAT vocabulary words. The exam, organized by the National Junior Classical League, tests a student’s ability to handle both Latin and Greek derivatives and their usage in the English language. This is the tenth year of the exam and over 4,000+ students participated. This year's winners are:
National Honor Society Inductees
Congratulations to the newest members of the National Honor Society!
The National Honor Society is a nationwide organization which recognizes high school students who excel in the areas of scholarship, leadership, service and character. Juniors and seniors who have maintained a 3.67 GPA in the core classes (foreign language, science, social studies, mathematics and English) and who have demonstrated excellence in scholarship, leadership, service and character to a faculty council are selected for membership.
In the quiet hours of an early morning, Episcopal graduate Flynn Foster ’85 can often be found sipping coffee and discussing life in the south Louisiana marsh. Foster has been an avid duck hunter since he first entered a blind at the age of five. “I like the fellowship of it,” he says of his passion. Foster learned how to duck hunt from his father. He also learned life lessons and the business principles and values that he still employs today as President of Guaranty Corporation.
Guaranty was founded in 1926 by Foster’s grandfather George Foster Sr. Later, George Foster Jr. took over the company and served as an example for his son on how to do business. “He was a steadfast, stoic businessman who never wavered from his principles and stuck to his values,” says Foster. Foster says his dad was larger than life and is still an inspiration for him as he leads the family business. Under Foster’s leadership, Guaranty continues to thrive. A recent article in the Baton Rouge Business Report highlights the ability of Foster and his team to adapt in an ever-evolving business climate. In addition to Guaranty’s four local radio stations (including the LSU flagship station Eagle 98.1), the company also includes a digital media company named Gatorworks, a senior living facility in Mandeville, a restaurant founded by Food Network Star, Jay Ducote, called Gov’t Taco and a real estate development in Lafayette named Cotè Gelee. The ability to modify the business model is critical for success. However, even in a modern, corporate environment, some traditions remain.
The Foster family has a longstanding tradition of attending Episcopal. Eight members of the family, including Foster’s sons Landon ’16 and Luke ’18 graduated from the school, which is a testament to their belief in the value of the Episcopal experience. Foster sums up why the school matters so much. “It starts with a great education and Christian values.” He says Episcopal teaches students “the ability to think.” Foster made the most of his Episcopal experience. He played basketball and was a four year member of the Naval Junior Reserve Officers Training Corps. His favorite subject was American History and he is still a history buff today. As you might expect though, Foster says he didn’t realize the quality of an Episcopal education while he was on campus. When he looks back now, he recognizes the foundation that the school provided him. “Episcopal is planting a seed for the future,” he says. “The options are limitless after graduating from Episcopal.”
Foster credits God, his parents and his relationships with colleagues for his success. “I have a network of men who aren’t afraid to tell each other that we love each other,” he says. In a fast-paced world where people communicate in 280 characters or less, Foster still values relationships and connections. Even now his high school classmates are an integral part of his life. “It feeds the soul when we get together,” he says. Members of the Class of 1985 maintain an email distribution list which allows them to keep in touch and stay up to date on the latest class news. As Foster travels for business, he makes time to catch up with old friends and nurture those friendships.
“As a leader, you never have to choose between love and results – rather, strive for love-driven results.” “The Heart-Led Leader: How Living and Leading from the Heart Will Change Your Organization and Your Life” by Tommy Spaulding
Foster’s focus on relationships doesn’t only apply to his personal life. Inspired by Spaulding’s writings, Foster leads Guaranty in a way that shows an appreciation for and a connection to the company workforce. In a podcast on Talk 107.3FM, Foster spoke about his leadership style saying he wants his colleagues to know that he supports them and believes in them.
Under Foster’s leadership, Guaranty also has a positive relationship with the community. “I’m blessed beyond reason so I should give back,” says Foster, who says his mother modeled for him what it means to be involved in the community. “We have the opportunity to make a difference in people’s lives,” he says. Dreams Come True, the American Cancer Society, the Cystic Fibrosis Foundation and Alzheimer’s Services of the Capital Area are just a few of the organizations that Guaranty supports. Personally, Foster has long been involved with the Louisiana/Mississippi ALS chapter. His sister, Felisha ’88, passed away as a result of ALS making this commitment his most meaningful. In 2017, Foster and his family commemorated his sister’s legacy in a special way by naming the Episcopal basketball court in her honor.
As Foster sits in that duck blind contemplating life, he has much for which to be thankful. He is carrying on the family legacy by ensuring that Guaranty is prepared for the future. He is serving others and maintaining relationships with people he has known for decades. He is building on the foundation laid out for him by his grandfather, his father and even his alma mater.