Week at a Glance
March 3-7

Click Here to download a copy to print for the front of the fridge!

Save the Date: Spring Event
May 17, 2014

Mark your calendars! The annual St. James' Spring Event will be held May 17 from 7-11 pm at The Vibiana downtown. Watch your email in the coming weeks for formal save the dates and ticketing information. We cannot wait to come together as a community for this always anticipated St. James' tradition. 

New Uniforms Available Now

Online ordering through Lands' End is available here!  Click here for more information about the uniform change. 

Singapore Math Parent's Night
March 5, 6-7 pm
St. James' Hall

St. James' parents are invited to learn more about Singapore Math from featured speaker Bill Davidson,  a leader in Singapore Math who will spend the day immersed in St. James' math classes. Please RSVP to the email invite you received this week or by replying directly to this email. 

Introducing the St. James' Spring Play

We are pleased to announce that following the success of "The Wizard of Oz", St. James' will be putting on a Spring production of William Shakespeare's "A Midsummer Night's Dream". More information is available here and you can sign up on the Parent Portal, click here to register now!

Hear Ye! Hear Ye! A Spectacular Diversity Event at St. James'
March 12, 6 pm

Orpheus Crutchfield is coming to town!  As anyone on the St. James’ faculty who met and worked with Orpheus last year will tell you, he’s the greatest diversity trainer of all time.  In a school and a parish like ours where diversity is such an obvious characteristic of our population, sometimes the real work of understanding one another gets overlooked because the picture we present to the world is already so perfect.  Orpheus Crutchfield gently helps us peel back the layers of our fears and misunderstandings, our preconceived notions and our hidden dreams.  Any community he touches is richer and more deeply unified as a result of his presence among them. 
Founder and CEO of Strategenius in the Bay Area, Orpheus Crutchfield is a delightful human being.  He serves as a trustee of the French/American International School and is a past trustee of the San Francisco School.  He has been the program manager of Summerbridge National as well as the Vice President of the Multicultural Alliance of San Francisco.  His style is quiet, non-threatening, insightful, and compassionate.  He has a notably strong moral compass, an infectious sense of humor, and the ability to see and understand all sides.  He consults to private schools on issues of diversity throughout the United States and quite literally around the world.  And we can’t believe he found time in his busy schedule to visit St. James’ for an evening with parents! 
For one night only, Orpheus will meet with us…all of us, whatever race or creed or color…to help us learn how to draw strength and courage from one another and move forward together as one with renewed hope and conviction.  Don’t miss the chance to do the real work of building a stronger and more effective community in our church and school.  Join us Wednesday evening, March 12, at 6:00 p.m. in St. James’ Hall for an hour with Orpheus Crutchfield.  All you need to bring is your heart.

African American Heritage Month

Thank you to everyone who has participated in our African American Heritage Month events so far. Don't forget that Skate Night is this Sunday, March 2 at the Moonlight Rollerway in Glendale. If you didn't get your tickets, they are available at the event. See you there!

Around the World Week

We are pleased to announce that once again our three-day Around the World event will take place next month on March 12th, 13th, and 14th.  It is our opportunity to share and celebrate the cultural diversity of our school community.  We will celebrate the Americas and Asia on Wednesday, and on Thursday, we celebrate Africa, Australia, Europe, the Middle East, and the Pacific.  On Friday at 1:30 p.m., the three-day celebration will culminate in an All School Assembly with performances from many regions.  In addition to the work the students are doing, we will celebrate on Wednesday and Thursday (not Friday) with a special FOOD FAIR that will feed students an international buffet "tasting" lunch.  (Note that Hot Lunch will not be served on those two days.)  Sponsored by parents through the Parent Association under the guidance of Mrs. Jill Gillett, the food served each day will be themed around the international regions of the day.  You should have received a detailed flyer and sign-up sheet earlier this week.  This year, parents will be able to drop off food on Food Fair days between 7:30 and 8:30 a.m., and it will not be necessary for parents to serve the food themselves.  We are recruiting serving volunteers!  

Regarding Hot Lunch on March 14th, there seems to have been some confusion.  Our Around the World Food Fair takes place only on March 12th and 13th, so Hot Lunch will be available on Friday, March 14th.  If you would like to order Hot Lunch for your child on that day, please follow normal procedures.   Otherwise your child should bring his or her own lunch on that day.

6th Grade Spanish Information

The 7th Grade Spanish Placement Test is coming up. Middle Schools usually give this test to new students at the end of March or beginning of April. The 6th Grade Spanish MidTerm Exam at Saint James’ will take place on the following dates:

March 3 - Vocabulary

March 6 and 7 - Grammar and Reading Comprehension

March 10 - Writing. Topic: Talk about yourself, family, and things you like to do. Please follow the guide.

We are going to continue working on conjugations of verbs in present tense, past tense and future, numbers, time, occupations and more. Please continue practicing Rosetta Stone at home. If you have any technical problems, do not hesitate at contact our SJS Tech Support.

Spanish Tutoring is available Monday to Friday before school, at recess and lunch. For more information please contact Ms. Casas. 

Gracias! Nos vemos!

Spring Dance
March 7th, 6-9 pm

The 6th grade invites grades 4, 5 and 6 to a Mardi Gras dance party in St. James' Hall complete with food, drinks, photos, and dancing in your best Mardi Gras beads and masks! Deadline for tickets is Wednesday, March 5th.  Sign up forms and payment information can be downloaded here.

Ash Wednesday All School Chapel
March 5, 8:45

Join us for a special service including part of the liturgies of Ash Wednesday. The children, parents, and faculty will be invited to participate in the liturgy of imposition of ashes during the service.

This will remind us of our mortality and encourage us to love one another during our life time. 
We will instruct the children in our religious classes and at the service that they can freely choose the optional liturgy of imposition of ashes. If you do not feel your child needs to participate in the liturgy, you may also instruct her/him to remain seated at her/his pew during the time of the liturgy.

Parents are always welcome to attend the chapel services which help to develop your children’s spiritual lives. Please consider joining your children at this service. You are also encouraged to sit with your children in the church. Please park your car across the street from the school and wait for your children in the parking lot between the church and the school.

At this service we will be taking an offering of non-perishable goods which will be donated to St. James' Food Closet to help need neighbors. Please bring your donations to school. Suggested items include:Canned goods (fruit, vegetables, fish and meat), Rice, Cereals, Peanut butter, Dried beans, and Macaroni.

Party Book Update

Reserve your spaces for a Party Book party now, register here

"The Preppy Handbook" Complete Guide to Clam Bakes
Details: Friday, April 25, 7 pm, $75 per person

Every Princess Loves a Tea Party! (K-2)
Details: Saturday, May 10, 2-4 pm, $40 per person

For more information on how to sign up, click here. Any questions can be sent to

Take the shackles off my feet so I can dance...

It was a true celebration of freedom in our Chapel on Wednesday, with a Gospel choir, a rousing preacher in the person of the Reverend Zelda Kennedy from All Saints’ Church, Pasadena, and enough joy to rock the world of all 360 children at St. James!’  Most of us have known the joy of freedom all our lives and so we seldom think to rejoice in it.  You would think the United States of America would have been a stronghold of freedom since its inception…but it hasn’t been, at least not for all. Liberty and justice have been elusive for some Americans who struggle still to feel completely free, and utterly equal.
Yes, we celebrated freedom with all our collective heart on Wednesday, but it made me ask, “When did it all begin?”  Was it in 1776 with the Declaration of Independence?  Or did it start almost a century later in 1863 with the freeing of the slaves in the Emancipation Proclamation and the Gettysburg address?  Did it start with an exhausted seamstress who would live in our history books forever for refusing to give up her seat on a bus in 1955? Did freedom come into being at a lunch counter at Woolworth’s in North Carolina in 1960? Did it begin with the integration of Ole Miss by James Meredith in 1962 or with thirteen little first graders walking bravely into an all-White school in Memphis in1961; or with the March on Washington and the “I Have a Dream” speech in 1963? Or did it begin in earnest in 1968 when President Johnson signed the Civil Rights Act just one week after Martin Luther King’s assassination?  Or is freedom emerging even as we speak, born of a series of profoundly heroic acts and unthinkably brave deeds?
Did liberty-for-all grow like some unearthly tree rooted in the blood of martyrs who gave up their lives for the cause of civil rights in our country?  Did the blood of 14 year-old Emmett Till, and that of Medgar Evers, and of the four little girls who died in the bombing of the 16th Street Baptist Church fertilize the earth and allow freedom to grow?  Did the bloody deaths of three civil rights workers working to register Black voters in 1964 water the seeds of freedom?  Did the brutal death in 1965 of Malcolm X nourish the soil of our freedom?   Must there be still more martyrs before we can truly say we’re all free?
When our kids were little and we took long car trips, they would inevitably ask ten minutes out of the garage, “Are we there yet?”  Well, when I saw the multi-hued Gospel choir on Wednesday in Chapel, and drank in the fact that I was looking at a Black woman Episcopal priest; and when I heard the haunting harmonies, and listened to the inspired preaching of Reverend Kennedy I thought to myself for just a moment, “We’re finally there.”  But, then today I realized we’re not there yet; we’re still on that journey, still walking the road to freedom even in this land-of-the-free-and-home-of-the-brave America; and we still have miles to go before we sleep.  It’s a very long walk indeed; a long walk till all the shackles fall from every ankle and we can truly dance and sing in jubilation, “Free at last, free at last, thank God Almighty, we’re free at last.”  I’m incredibly proud to share this journey with you, my St. James’ family.  So, here’s to freedom: today, tomorrow, and always.   Walk ON!   

Deborah David
Head of School

Family Pancake Breakfast

It was a record breaking year for the Family Pancake Breakfast doubling in revenue and serving over 350 people! With Seth Horowitz at the lead, food from Neal Fraser and BLD, coffee from Craig Min and LAMILL, and over 50 St. James' Dads in the kitchen, the Parent Association threw another spectacular event. Thank you to everyone who volunteered and participated. Click here for photos. 


Last Thursday was a full day at St. James'. K-3rd Grade welcomed parents into the classroom for Singapore Math during Math-N-Munch, everyone enjoyed In-N-Out lunch on the yard, and parents turned ropes so students could take their shot at Double Dutch. Click here for photos from this action packed lunch. 

Author Visit

St. James' welcomed David Hollaway, owner of Quackenworth, a publishing, consulting and multimedia company that Hollaway created to educate kids using fun illustrations, characters and educational tools. Click here for photos of his visit. 

Kindergarten Pigs

Mrs. Vermette's Kindergarten class started their paper mache pigs this week, a tradition enjoyed by many St. James' students. They began with one layer of paper mache and will add two more and a layer of paint before the finished product is ready to be displayed. Click here for photos. 

African American Heritage Month Gospel Chapel

Our Chapel was not to be missed this week as we celebrated African American History Month. The church rang the beautiful voices of our Gospel Choir led by Dawn Lett, a spectacular message by Rev. Zelda Kennedy, and the astounding a cappella music by Street Corner Renaissance. Thank you to all our special guests and to the Parent Association for the delicious "Taste of Soul". Our hearts-and stomachs-were full on this fantastic morning. Click here for photos. 

Service Learning Update

Next Wednesday, March 5, Ms. Brown, Mrs. Leonard, and I will be making our way to visit St. Jacques in Haiti.  As I have mentioned before, our sixth graders have been raising funds off campus to help out our sister school in different ways:  money for food, uniforms and shoes, and to help with building improvements.  In total, our sixth graders raised $1,432!  Along with their gifts, we will be taking $1,213 to pay teacher salaries at St. Jacques, money raised through your generous donations to our “Buck for Jeans” fundraiser.  Thank you so much for your help and support.  It will be an honor to share with our friends at St. Jacques.  

Photo of the school “building” at St. Jacques.

If you were among those that had the pleasure of being at our Gospel Chapel on Wednesday, you saw that as a community, you were a part of donating 523 cans of tuna for the St. James’ Food Pantry.  Our donations are always appreciated as they are used in “quick bags” that go to feed the homeless in our community.  I’ll check in with our friends at the Pantry and find out how we can help with another collection after Spring Break.  Thanks again for your help and support!

“Big Sunday” is at it again with their first ever “Baby Day and Community Dinner.”  According to their website, they will be holding a “major diaper drive for the L.A. Diaper Drive, as well as collecting, books, food and furniture for babies on behalf of Baby 2 Baby, and new and gently-used stuffed animals for SAFE (Stuffed Animals for Emergencies).”  You can also help out “making quilts for preemies and gift bags for new babies (and their moms), who are in disadvantaged circumstances.”  All of this will be taking place on March 9, 4-6 p.m., at the Big Sunday space, 6111 Melrose.  For more information you can contact  If you are interested in being a sponsor, you can contact  

Rob Krueger
Service Learning Director

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