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Learned about this one via AQ's Twitter.

Working to re-forest coal mining lands in the surrounding area, Olney Friends School faculty and students- working together with BARK (Barnesville Area Reforestation Kommittee)- have participated in the planting of more than 30,000 trees over the past six years.

Learn more about their commitment on the school's blog, Olney Students Encourage Trees to Grow.

Photo credit: page_eliz

Ross School Offers Merit Scholarships

File this under the 'fantastic opportunity' category.

Ross School in Bridgehampton, NY "is offering $20,000 annual Merit Scholarships for students in grades 5-11 who demonstrate academic achievement and exceptional promise" in a number of areas.

Have a demonstrated talent for the Arts, Athletics, Community Service, Math, Media, Music (Jazz), Science, or Theater? This may be an opportunity to explore if you answered yes to any one of these categories.

I heard about this a bit late in the day (I read about it in the Independent Educational Consultants Association April/May Insights newsletter)- the deadline is May 1 and applications received post-May 1 will be reviewed on a rolling basis.

If you're interested, you can learn more on the school's site or submit an inquiry to school's admission office through their AQ admission inquiry form.

Boarding School Podcast Sustainablity Series

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In light of the economic downturn, school sustainability and adaptive strategies have been hot topics for a number of months. No one is spared from the realities of a shrinking economy- schools, families, students- we're all impacted.

To encourage a conversation about the options available to families and schools, AQ's Boarding School Podcast hosted a four part sustainability series featuring leaders in the private school world. Each interview provides history, current thinking and insights regarding adapting for the future. I encourage you to listen and share.

Boarding School Podcast: Sustainability Series

Boarding Schools Adapting To A Changing Environment
Pete Upham, Executive Director, The Association of Boarding Schools

The Value of Working with an Educational Consultant in a Tight Economic Climate
Mark Sklarow, Executive Director, Independent Educational Consultants Association

Exploring School Sustainability Directions & Ideas with Patrick Bassett, President, National Association of Independent Schools
Patrick Bassett, President of the National Association of Independent Schools

Approaching Financial Aid in an Economic Downturn
Martin Peyer, CEO, TADS & Jamie Miller, Director of Financial Aid, Blue Ridge School

A School Administrator Talks About Paying for Prep School

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As Brian mentioned in the post before this one, late last week I sat down with two financial aid experts for a podcast that examined financial aid in an economic downturn. My guests offered sound advice for families considering financial aid options.

We're always on the lookout for additional FA articles & resources and Rob Kennedy, my friend at, offers a number of blog entries that focus on the topic.

I encourage you to visit his site and read through his writings. A good one to begin with is his post on Paying for Private School in Tough Times- a Q&A with Dr. Wendy Weiner, Principal of Conservatory Prep Senior High.

Rob asks Dr. Weiner about what parents of currently enrolled students should do if they find themselves in a position where they can't afford their tuition payments.   

Dr. Weiner discusses the need to maintain an open line of communication with your school (a point we always stress); should parents use college savings to pay for prep school; what are your contract obligations; and renegotiating aid based on a change in circumstance.

A Podcast Conversation About Affording Private School in an Economic Downturn

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Addressing the admissions notification and financial aid season, we produced a podcast today discussing financial aid in tight times.

Peter spoke with Martin Peyer, CEO of Tuition Data Services and Jamie Miller, Director of Financial Aid at the Blue Ridge School. They explored financial aid and tuition payment strategies for families as they make their private school commitment for 2009-2010.

Suggestions to families include:

Opening a dialog with admission and financial aid officers at the start of the application process

Prepare to document your financial condition

Explore tuition payment plans and lending options

Ask the financial aid officers about resources. They know the foundations and sources interested in supporting their students.

Please share their commentary and suggestions as we work through then enrollment and financial aid process in this difficult environment. The episode is available below, through our Boarding School Podcast directory or AQ's iTunes channel.

Approaching Financial Aid in a Recession Download the .mp3 (Audio) (16.9 MB)

Get it on iTunes Get it on iTunes!

Thinking Spring on a Snowy March Morning: A Quick Look at a Southern Boarding School

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Like so many in the Northeast, I woke up this morning to another foot of snow and whole lot of shoveling. So now that I'm at my desk and editing an article on Southern boarding schools (and envious that it's the beginning of Spring for schools in the South), I thought I'd warm things up a bit with a shot from St. Andrew's School in Boca Raton, FL. Got to love being able to go school in shorts year round.

If you're not familiar with St. Andrew's, it's "an Episcopal School founded in 1962. It is a nationally recognized K-12 day and boarding college preparatory school." Visit the school's site to learn more.

Think Spring everyone. We're almost there.

A Couple of Quick Items to Start the Day

If you haven't checked out the Carnival of College Admission (AQ hosted an edition a couple of weeks ago), I encourage you to visit Eric Perron's blog at Dreamstrategy where he's hosting the 11th edition of the Carnival: Carnival of College Admission - A College Information Dream... A Dream Strategy that is!  

Eric featured Leo Marshall's post, In Defense of Childhood. Many thanks to Eric and the folks at Dreamstrategy.

One more thing... Alltop, the online magazine rack, accepted onBoarding Schools into their education directory. The site, founded by Guy Kowasaki and the team at Nononina, aggregates content from all over the web. It's a terrific place to discover new blogs.
Just before Christmas, I visited Kents Hill School to sit down with Pete Hodgin to talk about his use of social media in his economics and history courses for AQ's Boarding School Podcast series. I encourage you to give the two part episode a listen if you haven't had a chance- (Valuing Social Media in the Classroom: The Work of Peter Hodgin, Kents Hill School & Valuing Social Media in the Classroom: Expanding Discourse and Teaching Challenges) .

I also recorded a handful of video interviews with students as I toured campus and each zeroed in on the school's community when I asked them the question, "Why Kents Hill School?"

Students spoke of a tight knit community that encourages kids to try new things and take chances without fear of failure. I also heard the phrase "welcoming community" a number of times throughout the day-- always a good sign.

Kimball Union Academy's Conservation Featured on WCAX

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WCAX reporter Adam Sullivan recently highlighted Kimball Union Academy's participation in the Green Cup Challenge in a School Watch segment titled "Meriden School Going Green."

As part of Green Cup Challenge, KUA students and faculty are working to raise the community's environmental and energy consciousness. Students & faculty are reducing personal as well as school-wide environmental consumption- from turning your own lights and appliances off when not needed- to reducing water consumption- to leaving the dining hall lights off when the windows light the room just fine.

A bit about the Green Cup Challenge:

"The Green Cup Challengeâ„¢ (GCC) is the first and only national student-driven, interschool Climate Challenge that supports student efforts to measure and reduce campus electricity use and related greenhouse gas emissions, and to encourage water efficiency, waste reduction, and recycling.

The Green Cup Challenge builds awareness about climate change, educates the community about the importance of resource conservation, and encourages the participation of the entire campus. The GCC event takes place each February to call attention to peak energy use, and to provide an opportunity to make every day Earth Day!)"

Today I'm taking folks at Westover School, a girls boarding school in Middlebury, CT, through my social media workshop. As with each workshop, my desire is to be both theoretical and practical. One goal the workshop is to collaborate with the school to produce a finished blog post (missing accomplished!).

As homework, my Westover friends sent a list of five happenings/programs/events that they'd like to get the story out on.

Five Things to Know about Westover School

  1. WISE program and our push toward enrolling more in this award-winning program.

  2. Special program with Manhattan School of music.

  3. Special Dance program with Brass City Ballet.

  4. Solar/co-generation "Green" project that will provide our campus with 25% of our own energy.

  5. Our exchange programs: getting them more attention!

Time permitting, I hope that we can focus on one (or two) of these and record a podcast conversation around it. My goal is to post it to the Boarding School Podcast next week.

I hope to be able to do some live blogging and tell the workshop's story as we move through tomorrow.   Updates should appear on Twitter.

In the meantime, think about which of the topics might interest you and take some time to learn more about Westover School.

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AdmissionsQuest's blog dedicated to boarding school admission & schools.

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This page is a archive of recent entries in the Peter Baron category.

Performing Arts Boarding Schools is the previous category.

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