The Episcopal School of Knoxville is pleased to announce the expansion of their Junior Kindergarten program to include a 3-year old class beginning in the fall of 2015. This academic program is designed for three-and four-year-olds who would be ready for Junior Kindergarten 4 in the fall of 2016. “Expanding our program to include 3-year-olds makes a lot of sense from the developmental perspective,” ESK Headmaster Jay Secor said. “We will now be able to take our youngest students and shape them to ensure they are prepared for our strong Kindergarten program. This allows ESK to stay at the forefront of early childhood education.” The Junior Kindergarten day begins at 8:00 a.m. and ends at 1:30 p.m. A Tuesday, Wednesday, Thursday class or a Monday through Friday class will be offered for those in the 3-year-old program. Lunch will be provided, and extended care (1:30-3:00 p.m. and 3:00 - 6:00 p.m.) is available for an additional fee. Class size is limited to 16 students. “This is an expansion driven by parents who have been so pleased with their child’s experience at ESK that they have been asking when we would add a 3-year-old class,” Lower School Director Nancy Laurence said. “I am thrilled that we can finally say August 2015!” At ESK, we believe that “play is the work of children,” and that through play-based projects, Junior Kindergarten students will be able to learn lifelong skills that will help them successfully transition to our Lower School Kindergarten program. Children are not left to their own devices, nor is their development left to chance. Academic goals and objectives are met by careful planning and building on what each individual can do and by challenging them to reach just beyond their comfort zone. The teacher’s role is to co-explore and co-construct the learning experience with the children. An emergent curriculum values student input and encourages children to explore, create, and make choices leading to greater involvement in their own learning. Time is not set by the clock but by the child’s needs and interests. There should be sufficient time for a child to express, learn, explore, extend, and revisit a given project. Enrichments will include daily chapel and also (but not limited to) library, Spanish, Mandarin, physical education, music, and art sessions. Our 96-acre campus will serve as our outdoor classroom to learn about the environment. ESK is committed to creating and maintaining a place for our youngest children that acknowledges, reflects and communicates our beliefs. The values of our Junior Kindergarten program are based on an image of the child as curious, competent and capable of co-constructing knowledge. 2014-2015 marks seventeen years of academic excellence at The Episcopal School of Knoxville. From the founders' earliest efforts, it is apparent that careful planning, consensus building and community outreach have helped pave the way for the school's success. The blessings of talented youth, willing volunteers, generous gifts, dedicated faculty and staff, community support and engaged parents have made The Episcopal School of Knoxville an important member of the independent school community in East Tennessee.
At least 200 animals received blessings Thursday, October 2, at the annual Blessing of the Animals on the lawn of The Episcopal School of Knoxville. Animals ranged from lizards to horses as well as throngs of cats, dogs and guinea pigs were present for the event. As in years past, a school-wide pet food collection project accompanied the longstanding tradition at ESK in honor of St. Francis of Assisi. Kindergarten classes collected nearly 400 bags, totaling 1,350 pounds, of dry food for cats and dogs, which was donate to the FISH hospitality pantries that feed hungry residents Knoxville residents. The project was conducted in partnership with the LAMBS pet ministry at the Episcopal Church of the Ascension. "St. Francis is often remembered for his vision of human kinship with animals and with all creation,” ESK Chaplain Father Josh Hill said. “Over the years that memory has been translated into a fun celebration of human companionship with pets, which reminds us of the biblical mandate to care for all creation. But there was more to Francis than loving animals. He was even more focused on God's vision for human beings. “So we bless pets, but our school also collects pet food for those pet owners who struggle to provide food. This is one small way we can strive to be like Francis." Each visiting minister blessed each animal by name as its owner stood near, saying “Bless, O Lord, (name of the animal) and may your love for this pet be a reminder of God’s love for you. Amen.”
First Wednesday of the Month (beginning October 1, 2014) 8:15 a.m. - 8:45 a.m. Clayton Lower School Library Beginning on Wednesday, Oct. 1, ESK’s Lower School librarian, Miranda Clark, will be offering a preschool story time on the first Wednesday of each month from 8:15am until 8:45am. This story time is open to all pre-K siblings of current ESK students as well as pre-K friends or neighbors and parents. Guests are invited to come and experience our chapel service at 8am then head to the Clayton Lower School Library for a half-hour story time. Mrs. Clark will read two or three books to the group and talk to parents about early reading suggestions for preschoolers. If you would like someone special to receive an email invitation or if you have questions, please contact Mrs. Clark at email@example.com or 777.9037, ext.237.
The Episcopal School of Knoxville is pleased to announce that Dr. Jack Talmadge has been appointed as the second Headmaster in ESK’s 17-year history. Dr. Talmadge succeeds James Jay Secor, III, who will retire this summer after 16 years as headmaster. Dr. Talmadge brings nearly 20 years of both public and private school experience as a teacher and an administrator to ESK. He is currently Director of The Summit Charter School, a public charter school for grades kindergarten through eighth in Cashiers, N.C. Prior to this, he worked as a senior administrator at a private school in Virginia. While at Summit, Dr. Talmadge has led such programs as Quest, Heritage Clubs, and S.E.E.C. that connect students at every grade level to an amazing experiential and place-based learning experience. “I am overjoyed and honored by the gracious offer to become Episcopal School of Knoxville’s next Headmaster,” Talmadge said. “There is truly a wonderful level of wholesomeness, dedication and care for child success eminent in all areas of the school’s program. I commend Jay Secor, his talented faculty, and the many great ESK families and friends who have partnered to build such a special and inspiring place to learn and grow. This call is an easy “yes” for me, and the Talmadge family members are beside ourselves with excitement to join ESK on its next great adventure.” Dr. Talmadge earned his Doctorate in Educational Leadership, Administration, and Policy at George Washington University in 2007 after completing his Master of Arts in Educational Leadership and Administration at George Washington in 2001. Dr. Talmadge graduated from Hampden-Sydney College in Virginia with a Bachelor of Science in Biology in 1993. ESK is honored and thrilled to welcome Dr. Talmadge, his wife Beth, and their three daughters to the community. Mrs. Talmadge is currently a Kindergarten teacher at Summit Charter School. The selection of ESK’s next Headmaster is the Board of Trustees’ highest responsibility, and the task was approached with great care and diligence. Since the spring, a board-appointed Search Committee, led by Chair, Amy Schumaker, and Chair of the Board, Cate Biggs, have engaged in a tailored, thorough and national search guided by the top-notch consultant firm Independent Educational Services. The process led to intensive interviews with several of the nation’s most qualified leaders in independent school leadership. “We are excited about Jack’s energy, enthusiasm, and credentials; we are certain he is the one to lead ESK forward,” Biggs said. “At every turn, the Search Committee was guided by the ESK Mission, the principles of Episcopal education, and the detailed list of competencies developed for the job description before the search even began. “What ultimately led us to Jack Talmadge, and distinguished him from our other strong candidates, was the combination of his breadth of experience, his thoughtful manner, and his clear articulation of sound educational ideas that are consonant with ESK’s culture and philosophy.”
The ESK Parents’ Association launched its annual fundraiser Tuesday afternoon at its first meeting of the year. This year, the PA is joining with Vienna Coffee to create a simple stream of monthly revenue for the ESK PA and, at the same time, show support of a local coffeehouse! Here’s how it works: Eighty percent of the parents at ESK drink at least 1-2 cups of coffee each day. Why not have those coffee drinking habits help support our school and our students! Instead of buying coffee from the local grocery or Starbucks, you can now buy the highest quality coffee from www.viennacoffeeco.com and $3.00 from every bag of coffee purchased will be given back to the school. If you, your spouse, or your company, are coffee drinkers, this is a great opportunity to buy coffee AND SUPPORT ESK. Go to www.viennacoffeeco.com and support ESK PA today! View this link for step-by-step directions for ordering. If you have any questions, please contact PA President Katherine Fielden at firstname.lastname@example.org