Voice Newsletter

August 29, 2014

Over the summer, a number of students (including Hugo, class of 2015) served as counselors in the AASK Day Camp.


I am excited to welcome you all back to another year in the Upper School and with it, to another year of the Voice Newsletter. For those of you new to the community, we hope this update, published on the 1st and 15th of each month, will be a useful resource. For more frequent communications, look for our weekly eGathering emails, and follow me on Twitter @OESheadUS.

As your family makes final preparations for the beginning of the year, three specifics to keep in mind are: First, please make sure that all forms for the opening of school have been submitted to the US Office. Second, please make sure that your child has all the necessary equipment for their opening school trip. Trip letters specific to each grade level give detailed packing lists. Finally, please support your child in obtaining all of the books and materials they will need for their classes.

Please also make note of our annual Back-to-School-Night. It will be held Wednesday, September 17 beginning at 6:30 pm.

Follow me on Twitter: @OESheadUS.


August 31 New & Sophomore Boarding Students arrive
  New Boarding Family Orientation, 4:00pm, Great Hall
September 1 LABOR DAY
September 2 Orientation for new 10, 11, 12th grade students, 11am-12pm
  Sophomore Backpack 101, 12-4pm, Dining Hall
  9th Grade Student Orientation, 3:30pm, Great Hall
  9th Grade Student/Parent Dinner, 5pm, Dining Hall
September 3 First Day of School; Belltower Opening Ceremony, 8:15am
  9, 10, 12 Fall Trips leave
September 8 First Day of US Classes
  Senior Entrance, 8am
September 9 Senior Parent College Night, 7-9pm, Great Hall
September 10 US New Parent Science Research Orientation, 7-8pm, DC 122
September 12 9th Grade Partnership Morning, 8-11am, MS Commons
  Holy Cross Chapel, 9:55-10:45am, OES Chapel
September 16 Books & Breakfast, 8-9:45am, Platt
September 17 US Back-to-School Night, 6:30pm, Dining Hall
September 19 US Pictures, Great Hall & Outdoors


First Day of School (Sept. 3 at 8:00am)
Students will meet with their class and participate in the All-School Opening, after which you will begin your fall trip. Please keep in mind that we prefer students not drive to school on Wednesday, September 3rd, since they will be going on trips. If it is necessary, please remember that juniors and seniors may only park in designated areas next to the practice field unless granted permission to park elsewhere by the Upper School Office. All other students must park at SPARC. Parking stickers MUST be obtained from the US office (your current sticker is valid if you have the same car).

Student Forms
We hope you have already turned in all the forms we require - without them we cannot send students on upcoming fall trips and they cannot practice for sports.

Student Accounts
Throughout the year, students have the ability to charge different expenses to their accounts here on campus. this can include candy/pizza sales, tickets for prom, entrance to a social event or fundraiser. Please take the time to talk to your children about charging to their account. If you have questions email or (in the Business Office).

Attendance REMINDER
Please remember to call or email in advance if your child is going to miss school or be late for any reason. Doing so will help us keep your child safe. Email USattend or call US Attendance Coordinator, Alison Nugent, at (503) 768-3169.

9th Grade Laptop Pick-Up
ATTN: 9th Grade Families picking up laptops on Tuesday, September 2 from 8am to 4pm.
Laptop pickup has moved location from the MS Commons to the Language Wing (Rms 70-73) in the Upper School.
Families can check in at the MS Commons and follow signs to the Upper School location, or are welcome to report directly to the outside entrance of the Language Wing, between the Upper School and the Drinkward Center buildings.

9th Grade Parent Potluck
Mark your calendars for an 9th grade Parent Potluck. Enjoy the company of your fellow 9th grade parents at a picnic hosted by Grace and Eric Park, parents of Max. Our 9th graders will be away at Camp Westwind.
 9th grade Parent Potluck & swift watch
Date:   Thursday, September 4th
Time:   6pm - sunset
Place:  Contact
Bring:   A dish to share & a lawn chair or blanket to sit on

11th Grade Parent Potluck
Mark your calendars for an 11th grade Parent Potluck. We can share a meal and watch the migration of vaux's swifts across the street.
What:  11th grade Parent Potluck & swift watch
Date:   Sunday, September 14th
Time:   6pm - sunset
Place:  Contact
Bring:   A dish to share & a lawn chair or blanket to sit on

US Picture Day
Please mark your calendar for US Picture Day: Friday September 19th. There will be a limited number of forms available at school or you can print this Order Form well ahead of time and send in with your student on September 19 or before.

Honeywell Instant Alert
As Fall fast approaches it is important to be ready for what nature throws our way. OES contracts with an emergency announcement calling service that will notify families of school delays and closures and other emergency’s. In order to receive these announcements, you must register with Honeywell Instant Alert.
Learn more.


Back-to-School Night!
Wednesday, September 17

On Wednesday, September 17, the OES Upper School will host its Back-to-School Night. We will start in the Dining Hall at 6:30 p.m. with a Welcome from Jordan Elliott, Head of Upper School.
The evening's events will inculde a brief "advisory," seven shortened class blocks, and a Gathering. During class time, teachers will share their approach and invite questions and discussion on their courses.

Upper School PAL Meetings - Mondays, 8 - 9:30am
Drinkward Center Volunteer Room
September 22 - 11th Grade
September 29 - 12th Grade
October 6 - 9th Grade
October 13 - 10th Grade
(List of all PAL meetings 2014-15)

Questions? Contact or in the Upper School Office (503)768-3122.


Homecoming 2014- Save the Date!
We’ve got spirit, yes we do!  We’ve got spirit, how 'bout you!

Homecoming is an all-school, week long event culminating in a picnic, parade and boys’ and girls’ varsity soccer games. All OES families invited!

Friday, September 26 at the OES Turf Field 
Varsity Boys’ Soccer vs. Catlin Gabel 4:15 PM
Varsity Girls’ Soccer vs Catlin Gabel 6:15 PM 

Join the fun and help make this event a success. Volunteer at Homecoming 2014 or contact with any questions.  

Go Aardvarks!


There are many consistencies in the residential life program, from our commitment and support of students to the details of our daily schedule and community gatherings. But there is also the arrival of change that we embrace that makes our community more vibrant and exciting. We have a wonderful group of students from around the world that will be arriving on campus this Labor Day weekend. We are thrilled to share our community with students from Afghanistan, Brazil, Canada, China, Hong Kong, Jamaica, Kenya, Korea, Taiwan, Thailand, Vietnam, and the United States. We look forward to welcoming them to OES!


Join the US Science Faculty members for an introduction to the Science Research Project on Wednesday, September 10, at 7 pm in the Physics Lab, room 122 Drinkward Center.
Each member of the US Science Faculty will briefly present an aspect of the process and there will be time for questions as well. Though your student only has one science teacher, each member of the department is a potential resource for specific skills or expertise. It is truly a collaborative effort amongst the entire faculty. Come meet the faculty, see the Research Lab, and learn about the Upper School Science Research and Engineering Design Project.
Questions? Contact (503) 416-9322 or (503) 416-9320.


Attention all Upper Schoolers: Join the OES Fencing Team (made up of Middle and Upper Schoolers).
Practices start next Wednesday, September 10 down at SPARC Fencing Gym. Practices will be held on Mondays, Wednesdays, and Fridays from 3:15-4:15pm. All equipment is provided. This is a sport you can participate in all year – Fall, Winter, or Spring (or any combinations of seasons). Remember you can earn a Varsity or JV letter in fencing. There are up to five tournaments to compete in during the school year – held on Saturdays. Be sure to come down and check out the excitement and thrill of fencing!
If you have any questions, contact Coach Charles Randall (503) 515-9245.


Books and Breakfast 2014-15

“The worst distance between two people is misunderstanding”  unknown.

The Community Diversity Link (CDL) hopes to foster multicultural awareness and understanding through reading and open discussion.  Books and Breakfast meetings are hosted by the Community Diversity Link and open to the entire OES community. It is not mandatory to read the books in order to participate in our discussions.

We will start off the school year reading Wonder by RJ Palacio.  Middle School students and Patrick Fuller, MS Librarian, will join us to discuss the themes of the book at our first meeting on September 16th at 8:00 am in the Platt Global Classroom. This book is “An inspiring, touching story of "one community's struggle with empathy, compassion, and acceptance” and a quick read! Bring your favorite precept or inspirational quote.

On October 28, 8:00 am in the Platt Global Classroom, we'll discuss Americanah by Chimamanda Ngozi Adichie. One of the top 10 New York Times Book Review books for 2013 and just shortlisted for the 2014 Bailey's Prize for Women's Fiction. Described as "a richly told story set in today’s globalized world: Chimamanda Ngozi Adichie’s most powerful and astonishing novel yet." We look forward to engaging with this gripping tale.

We look forward to seeing you!


The OES Performing Art's Department is proud to announce the fall production of The Curious Savage, written by John Patrick and directed by Liz Harlan-Ferlo.

When Ethel Savage inherits her late husband's fortune, her plans to start a "happiness fund" for strangers distresses her three grown-up children. It is only after they have her committed to The Cloisters sanatorium that they discover she has hidden the money, and become willing to look anywhere to find it.  Ethel finds herself part of the Cloister family of patients, a gentle and eccentric group, and with their help tests her children's greedy nature. Will the money ever be found? 

Auditions will take place after school on Wednesday, September 10th and Thursday, September 11th in the Theatre Lab. Performances are November 13th-15th. Watch this space to reserve your seat for this smart and charming comedy!


Go to Hands-On-Portland and find date-specific volunteer events at a variety of places all over town, or CLICK HERE for the OES Service Learning website's list of projects and agencies that always welcome volunteers, anytime.


Make AASK part of your service learning plans this year!

As you make plans for service learning, think strongly about making AASK part of your school year. Our focus is on tutoring students in 6th-8th grades at Whitford Middle School right after school on Tuesdays and Thursdays (we get back no later than 5:00pm). This is a great opportunity to help students not only become more successful with completing their homework, but to also experience the inner rewards of getting to know a child and making a difference in that student’s life. It’s cool, it’s fun – and it is critically important for their school success.

Fall session begins with the training that is required, and will be on Saturday, September 27 from 9:00am – 3:00pm. The AASK student leadership team provides the training and will cover building teamwork among the tutors, expectations for being a tutor, intercultural factors involved in the work and strategies for teaching. Tutoring begins on September 30 and runs through November 20. If you are playing a fall sport and want to tutor, you would wait to volunteer during the winter or spring trimesters.

AASK can count for on or off campus service hours OR a service learning project.

Please see in Area 51, or contact her at 503-768-3193 for more information. Applications are right outside Area 51.


Homecoming and New Fall Sport Designs are Available in the OES Store!

Homecoming and Spirit Wear has arrived at the School Store!  Come in and find a great selection of Crew Neck and Hooded Sweatshirts, as well as Tee Shirts, Sweatpants, and again this year: girl-cut tee shirts.  We also have 6 new colors of Sunglasses, Stadium seat cushions, Spirit scarves, New styles of hats, Water bottles, Nike socks and much more!

Arriving soon- Spirit wear for Soccer, Volleyball and Cross Country, featuring a new, two color design!  Drop by and place a pre-order to be sure you get the size and color you want!

Regular Store Hours resume on 9/3:  Open 2pm-4pm every weekday, as well as by appointment in the morning. You can always visit us online at www.oes.edu/store.

Questions?  Contact 


Senior Parent College Night
Tuesday, September 9, Great Hall, 7:00-9:00pm. We encourage parents to attend if possible, as we will offer key details and lots of reassurance and perspective. Handouts will be emailed after the event. The seniors are not expected to attend—we will be in touch with them at school and via email.

College Visits at OES
Many colleges will visit OES this fall to meet with interested students. We encourage juniors and seniors to keep a close eye on the college visit schedule in Naviance (juniors will learn how to access and use Naviance during the retreat the first week of school). The schedule will be posted on bulletin boards in the Library and Great Hall and on the OES website (college counseling page). We will do our best to send juniors and seniors an email each week with the schedule for the upcoming two weeks. However, Naviance is the source of the most up-to-date schedule and will change throughout the fall as visits are added. Students are encouraged to sign up for visits on Naviance. This results in an automatic email reminder close to the date of the visit.

Junior College Admission Retreat
Following our retreat with juniors, we will be in touch with parents of juniors via email regarding our activities at the retreat and what we encourage juniors and their parents to do and keep in mind this fall in relation to the college search process.

Sophomore and junior families, please note that the PSAT will be given the morning of Wednesday, October 15. Students do not need to register and will take the test at OES. We will send details in a later email, and early in the school year students will receive practice materials at school.

Octoberim and Seniors
Seniors have the opportunity to visit colleges during Octoberim (October 15-17). Those involved in sports should keep in mind that there may be athletic events scheduled during this time that limit your travel. On Wednesday and Thursday the college counselors will be available to assist students who stay on campus with college applications and essays.

Seniors, please note the following test dates and registration deadlines. Enter the school code when you register (380915) and if you are taking the ACT, it is important to include the optional writing test. There is a late registration deadline for each test date that requires an additional fee. See the testing websites for additional information.

SAT/ACT Dates and (Registration Deadline):

  • SAT Testing
    • October 11 (9/12, late 9/30)
    • November 8 (10/9, late 10/28)
    • December 6 (11/6, late 11/24)
  • ACT testing
    • September 13 (8/8)
    • October 25 (9/19)
    • December 13 (11/7)


https://encrypted-tbn2.gstatic.com/images?q=tbn:ANd9GcSmT8R7ww1hVagTQbK2QW9ivAOdhEp0xYc6nqrd5ppkz7dByLl0Miss the auction 2014, but still want to attend one of the great Easel Parties that was offered?

There is still time to sign up for the Open Doubles Tennis Tournament

Saturday, September 13, 2014
Time: 2:00PM – 5:00PM

Channel your inner Williams or Nadal for this fun afternoon at our very own SPARC. Swag provided for all participants and spectators. Winners walk away with a trophy and a Players Racquet Shop gift certificate. All levels encouraged to sign up!

Don't play but love to watch? Sign up to heckle from the stands! Enjoy delicious Mexican fare from the Ochoas Lupitas Taco Truck. Cool off after your match with a Sunday from Scoop PDX.

Get additional details and sign up.

Class Notes

  • 9th Grade PAL – First meeting is on October 6th at 8am in the Drinkward Volunteer Center. Questions? Contact Jana Reddoch.
    • Upcoming meetings: November 3rd, January 5th, February 2nd, April 6th, and May 4th.
  • 10th Grade PAL – First meeting is on October 13th at 8am in the Drinkward Volunteer Center. Questions? Contact Jane Langley.
    • Upcoming meetings: November 10th, January 12th, February 9th, April 13th, and May 11th.
  • 11th Grade PAL – First meeting is on September 22nd at 8am in the Drinkward Volunteer Center. Contact Kay Pinkava.
    • Upcoming meetings: October 20th, November 17th, January 20th (Tuesday), February 17th (Tuesday), April 20th, and May 18th.
  • 12th Grade PAL – First meeting is on September 29th at 8am in the Drinkward Volunteer Center. Questions? Contact Jan Massaro.
    • Upcoming meetings: October 27th, November 18th (Tuesday), January 26th, February 23rd, April 27th, and May 26th (Tuesday).
  • PAL meeting Calendar (all grades)

Helpful Resources