Thursday Notes – February 12th, 2015

No School – President’s Day

Mon, February 16


How We Do It and Why

By Mary Siebert


  “We left feeling that we had just visited the best school in the nation…a  belief  I am sure we are not alone in having!  The joy of teaching was so apparent in your teachers and staff.  And the students were all so engaged!  We applaud your commitment to respecting the individuality of each child, and to the positive/creative/nurturing way that you help them grow. 

   We saw beauty everywhere.  Not obligatory displays of a talented few, but a celebration of the imaginations of all.  You truly are building healthy, confident, aware and participatory citizens.  Your school stands for the things that we as educators ourselves have committed our lives to.

   We are trying to remain hopeful that (our daughter) will be lucky, that her number might be called to attend ABS, if not this year perhaps the next.”

– Sean Sullivan, Assistant Dean of Dance, UNCSA and ABS applicant, after a school tour.


After Tuesday’s lottery, our school has 428 students on our waiting list. The procedure for the lottery is dictated by the state, and we follow each step with care. We have no influence over who is accepted and who is not, outside of state regulations that place siblings of ABS students, children of full-time ABS employees, and children of board members at the top of the list. It’s exciting for us that our school is beloved and that so many families hope to join our community. It’s also painful that we have to turn many away.

We hope that children who are not able to attend ABS will encounter schools invigorated by the current educational reforms which lean toward the National Education Association’s “Four Cs”: critical thinking, creativity, communication, and collaboration. The arts are a natural conduit for this “21st Century” learning, so our approach is rapidly gaining attention. One organization that helps share ideas and support teachers and administrators who are striving toward arts-based instruction is the A+ Schools program of the North Carolina Arts Council, of which we are a member. From their website, this statement describes the A+ focus:

In A+ Schools, arts education is approached in three ways:

  • through arts integration – bringing together arts and non-arts objectives to create hands-on, experiential, connected and meaningful learning experiences
  • through pure arts education – developing understanding and comfort in the elements, principles, history, processes and works of  each art form
  • through arts exposure – creating opportunities for students and staff to experience artistic works and performances in both their school and their community


We are proud to be a member of the A+Schools network. We hope that all American schools will continue to integrate the arts into children’s learning.


ABS Lottery By the Numbers

Tuesday night, February 10, ABS held the enrollment lottery for 2015-16.  The cafeteria was filled with families excitedly waiting to hear their child’s name called.   Prospective parents will be notified of lottery results via US Post within one week of the lottery.


Total Applications                    454

Total Spots Available                 26

Time for Lottery                        1 hour 30 minutes


School Report Card

NC School Report Cards were released by the state today.  These offer a snapshot of some of the important information about individual schools. The State Board of Education and State Superintendent June Atkinson are committed to ensuring that North Carolina’s schools are preparing students for the demands of college and skilled work in the 21st Century.

The School Report Cards can be found at and is posted on our website. A hard copy is being sent home in today’s Thursday packet.




5th Through 8th Graders…

Do You Want to Share Your Talent?

Builders club will be hosting an upcoming talent show.  Applications to audition are available at the front desk in the 7th St bldg. and must be turned in by February 9th, 2015. Auditions to participate in the show will be held March 4th, 2015 after school. There is no fee to audition, just come prepared. Judges will be present, because there are a limited number of openings for performers. If you are selected to participate in the actual show, it is March 25th, 2015.   Try out or Support the show by attending!


Parent Council Meeting Tomorrow!

Please join us at 8:15am in the Teacher Resource Room of the MLK Building for our February Parent Council meeting.  Principal Hollis will share a draft of the 2015-2016 school calendar as well as review the recently published NC School Report Card results.  A full meeting agenda is attached to this week’s notes.  Hope to see you there!


Parent’s Afternoon Off/Movie Day– March 6th

Friday, March 6th is a scheduled early release day and Parent Council will be hosting a Movie Afternoon for the kids from dismissal until 2:45pm.  Volunteers are needed to help with this event.  Please contact Lindsay Beane ( to help.


Vote for ABS!

Ms. Christian’s Class had entered BJ Novak’s “Book With No Pictures” video contest.  If their video is in the top 5, ABS has the chance to win $5,000 and a personal visit from the author!  Please click on the link and scroll down to find the photo of Ms. Christian reading to her class – all you have to do is click “Vote!”  Thanks for your support!


Around Town….

The UNCSA Preparatory Dance Program will perform “Winter Festival” at the DeMille Theatre on Sunday, February 22nd at 12:30pm and 2pm.  Tickets are $10 and may be purchased by calling the Stevens Center Box Office 721-1945