Director’s Dispatch - 18th of May

posted May 18, 2012, 8:40 AM by Marylene, MICHELET   [ updated May 18, 2012, 8:40 AM ]
Greetings all! It has been a pleasant but very busy four-day week at ISD. Many teachers spent their Thursday morning running in the 3rd Annual Teacher Trot, with 15K, 10K, 8K and 5K routes. Many smiles and red faces yesterday, some sore legs today!

I spent last Friday flying back from Cairo after my one week ‘transition visit’ as I prepare to move into my new position as Superintendent of Cairo American College. (you may recall that incoming ISD Director Barb Gage had a transition visit to ISD in March). The visit was a whirlwind of meetings and a chance for me to learn of the challenges facing CAC as it weathers the political instability of today’s Egypt, as well as other issues. Student population there has dropped from 1400 to just below 1200 post-revolution, and their upcoming elections have them feeling like we were feeling in January: worried and uncertain about the future. CAC is building a new Middle School, and their project is almost exactly on the same (delayed) schedule as ours, so I’ll be moving into a familiar situation in that regard. In many ways, though, my visit to CAC underscored for me the tremendous progress that ISD has made as an international school in the past several years. The guidance, leadership, energy and vision of our Tech Director, Curriculum Coordinator, Athletic Director and Principals have put ISD in an enviable position--while we are always working to improve, and while we know we have areas that need our attention, ISD really has its act together relative to many other schools. I think we hear evidence of that whenever visitors come to our campus from other international schools, and I certainly felt that way as I flew back from Cairo....The Rutherfords will miss many things about ISD.

The coming weeks at ISD will be about celebrating growth and achievement, and I hope that parents will be on campus to join the community as we recognize our students’ hard work throughout the year. There will be several end-of-year performances from ISD choirs, music classes, and drama classes. Please check the calendar to enjoy an ISD student performance. ISD Art Students will be having an exposition on Jun 1 at Chez Rutherford (the brainchild of my creative and energetic wife and ISD Art Teacher Kelly Valdmanis). We will hold awards ceremonies for academic and athletic achievement--a great time to show support for ISD students and student-athletes. Of course, Graduation on June 13 is a wonderful close to our year of hard work and a chance to send off our 30 (!!) ISD graduates as they begin new journeys of learning. Graduation is an open event, and we’d love to see parents there.

A quick building update from ISD: new developments in the past two weeks include the hanging of doors, installation of glass in windows on floor 3 and 4, and the pouring of half of the upper school amphitheater. Coquillage (cement mixed with shell for walkway surface) has been completed on floors 2, 3, and 4, and electrical cables are being strung to join the new building to our transformer, etc. We should see a big push for painting and ceiling installation in the next week...the building is coming along in exciting ways, but we are still uncertain about final finish date....

Finally, a big Thanks to the ISD PTO who hosted two great lunches this week and last for Teacher Appreciation week. The faculty and the staff were fed on consecutive Wednesdays, and both events were very much appreciated by the folks at ISD who keep things moving. Thank you to all the PTO volunteers who helped organize, supervised recesses, and arranged for the events.

Next week is a full week at ISD, then we have another four-day week (Mon, May 28 is another Senegalese holiday) then a full week, then our last three-day week. The days will fly by! Enjoy your weekend. The ISD teacher band Lunch Thief is playing at Big 5 downtown on Saturday from 9pm...come on out and dance!

Wayne Rutherford
International School of Dakar
May 17, Thurs: Holiday - No School
May 25, Fri:  ISD Gr 3-12 Talent Show, ISD gym, 6-8pm.
May 28, Mon: Holiday - No School
June 2, Sat: SAT Exam
June 5-8 - High School Exams (June 8 is conflict/make up exams)
June 7, Thurs: MS/HS Spring Concert - 6:30pm
June 8, Fri: Senior Banquet, Terrou-bi Hotel, 8:30pm
June 12, Tues: MS/HS Sports Day am, MS/HS Drama Performances PM
June 13, Wed: Last day of classes--HALF DAY, noon dismissal.
June 13, Wed: HS Annual Run to the Lighthouse - 8:30 am
June 13, Wed: Graduation - ISD Amphitheater, 6pm.