Help Our Student Radio – Support WKHS!

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Chris Lobely, senior at KCHS and member of the Trojans’ football team

It’s fundraiser time at WHKS radio, the on-air voice of Kent County High School. Beginning Tuesday, Nov. 14 and continuing through Friday, Nov. 17, the student disc jockeys and announcers will be seeking the community’s help to purchase equipment and perform needed upgrades to the station. The fundraiser runs from 9 a.m. to 2 p.m. daily. To make a pledge, call 410-778-4249 or 410-778-8100 or click here.

Station manager and instructor Chris Singleton said on Monday that the station seeks to raise $20,000 to $25,000 for structural renovations and to replace outmoded equipment. Needed renovations include upgrading the soundproofing of studios — including replacing the deteriorating foam on the walls — and bringing in new furniture to make them more “guest-friendly. The radio station has also expanded into the old photographic dark room where students used to develop their own pictures before digital cameras.

Vincent Wilson, KCHS senior and WKHS radio student announcer

Among the equipment needed is a new audio console, at about $10,000. Professional quality microphones can cost $400 each.With these upgrades, and others done this past summer, the station will have state-of-the-art equipment, comparable to that of many medium-market commercial stations, Singleton said.

On air for more than 43 years, WKHS is one of the most powerful student radio stations in the country, boasting 17,500 watts for a clear signal as far as sixty miles away. The station has been an educational platform for students and a labor of love for volunteers who provide on-air talent during the evening.

Alison Rameika, KCHS senior and WKHS radio student announcer

The student disc jockeys present an eclectic mix of music — pop and rock hits spanning 40 years, Singleton said.  Student announcers get the world, national, and state news from the Associated Press as well as local news adapted in part from Chestertown Spy stories.  The students get practice in writing through re-writing news stories in their own words.

In addition to the student hours, local adult volunteers conduct shows daily during evening hours, including the evening programming includes Bill Staples “Big Band,” “Honky Tonk Jukebox,” and “Bluegrass” shows on Wednesdays; Lain Hawkridge’s “Musicology” show, 6 to 8 p.m. Thursdays; Ron Lockwood’s “Thrill of the Night,” 6 to 8 p.m. Mondays, and Bill Wright’s “Road Trippin’,” 8 p,m. to midnight, Thursdays. The station simulcasts the University of Pennsylvania radio station, WXPN, during non-local broadcasting hours. See the station’s website for a complete schedule.

Between 35 and 50 students are involved in the station at any given time. Singleton estimated that some 1,200 to 1,500 students had taken part in the program over the years. Among them are June Fox, a 1982 grad now working with a high school station in Seattle, and Camri McKee, now the floor director at the WBAL TV (Channel 11) morning news show in Baltimore.

Any list of graduates of the program should include Singleton himself, who graduated from KCHS in the early 1980s. He returned to the station as a part time engineer while he was in college. Then beginning in 1989. Singleton became working part-time at the radio station. He stayed on as a part-time engineer until ten years ago, when he became full-time, adding on duties as an instructor. He described his current position as “instructor, station manager, engineer, chief cook and bottle washer – the whole nine yards.”

The last couple of years, WKHS has also had the services of Ken Collins, formerly of WCTR radio, as a part-time fundraiser.

While many students go on to study broadcasting and communications at college, Singleton said that the high school station gives them all the skills they need to get a job in broadcasting. Students also are taught the basics of marketing including branding, reaching an audience, and creating quality content, Singleton said.

But long-term and more importantly, these students are doing more than just having fun while learning career skills. They are gaining a deeper understanding of all communication media – from television, social media, movies, to broadcast news in all its myriad formats.  These students will not be as easily taken in by “fake” news or other scams, in whatever areas of their life they may meet them.  The Kent County High School radio program combines academic skills with hands-on experience that enriches their lives and provides a community service.

The school system pays the basic costs of operating the student radio station such as overhead, maintenance, and consumables but there is no extra budget — especially in these days of monetary constraints — for modernizing the studio and its equipment.  Some of the equipment is 30 years old.  There has been a lot of technological advances in the past 30 years!

B K Saunders, KCHS senior and WKHS radio student

WKHS is owned and operated by Kent County Public Schools. The studios and transmitter are located on the campus of Kent County High School, 25301 Lambs Meadow Road, Worton. The broadcasting program is a Kent County High School Career Technology Education pathway and is staffed with students in grades 10-12 during school operating hours.

 

WKHS Old Radio Equipment that the station hopes to replace with state-of-the-art audio equipment.

WKHS – The first of the new modern radio equipment. This industry-standard equipment was installed last summer just before the start of the new semester.

 

 

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Radcliffe Creek School Launches Founders’ Fund with $1 Million Goal

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Radcliffe Creek School Students

In front of an enthusiastic audience attending its Fall Soirée on Friday, October 20, Radcliffe Creek School  announced the establishment of The Founders’ Fund and its goal of raising $1 million to create an endowed scholarship for students  needing financial assistance.

The Founders’ Fund honors the final year of Radcliffe’s Founding Director, Molly Brogan Judge, as well as the other dedicated original  advisors and investors of the school. Opening its doors 22 years ago with 13 students in grades one through seven, Radcliffe’s goal has  always been to create a learning environment where bright children, who learn differently, could succeed. The school today thrives under  Judge’s visionary, dedicated leadership and with the support from a committed group of staff, parents, grandparents, and friends the  vision continues. The kindergarten through eighth grade program currently enrolls 82 students, while Little Creek, Radcliffe’s preschool,  serves 52 students from infancy through pre-kindergarten.

Radcliffe’s Founding Director, Molly Brogan Judge (right) with Radcliffe Creek friend and supporter Barbara Thomas

Radcliffe Creek has truly changed the educational landscape of the Eastern Shore, and beyond, with students traveling from seven  different counties in Maryland and Delaware to attend the school. Many students come to Radcliffe unsure of themselves not just as  students, but as individuals. Because of the small class sizes, compassionate teachers, and hands-on learning, these students leave  Radcliffe Creek with an understanding about what it takes to succeed. And succeed they do.  Radcliffe alumni go on to college, the  military, graduate school, and beyond. Many alumni point to their Radcliffe Creek School education as the turning point in their  academic career.

“This is the most significant fundraising effort ever undertaken by the School,” said Radcliffe’s Board of Trustees President, Susan  Newton-Rhodes. “The Board of Trustees knows the goal is high, but believes it is only fitting. This new fund will address the Board’s  highest priority – financial aid for worthy students – by creating a lasting fund for those families and children who need Radcliffe the  most.”

For the last 22 years, Radcliffe’s Board of Trustees has allocated as many financial resources as possible to families who cannot afford a  Radcliffe education without assistance. This year alone, $350,000 has been distributed in financial aid to kindergarten through eighth  grade students. As the school continues to grow, so will this need.

“This effort will be a big challenge, but I’m passionate, as well as confident, that we can accomplish this goal to establish a $1 million  legacy in honor of the many creative minds that united together to build Radcliffe Creek School,” said Judge. “My hope is that others will  learn more about our past, embrace the goal of the fund, and continue to develop this endowment for years to come.”

Radcliffe Creek School is an independent day school with the mission of empowering children in a dynamic environment that celebrates  unique learning. For more information about Radcliffe Creek School or Little Creek, the school’s preschool, which includes programs for  children from infancy through pre-kindergarten, please call 410-778-8150 or click here.

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Kent School Launches Fall Mini-Term Classes

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Alyesha Williams and Carter Groh work together on a Nature Buddies lesson

Each academic year, Kent School offers two selections of mini-term classes for Middle School students. The mini-terms, called Explorations last for six weeks and occur in the Fall and Spring Semesters. Explorations offers opportunities for students in Grades Five through Eight to explore an interest, develop a hobby or even discover a potential future vocation. Each Exploration class meets Friday morning to work collaboratively on their project.

Michelle Duke, Assistant Head of School for Academics said, “The Explorations sessions involve a small group, usually six to eight students from across our middle school grades. It is a wonderful way for our students to work collaboratively with students from outside their typical classes. They get to see their peers’ talents and interests and maybe discover a new talent of their own.” Duke continued, “I really value the Explorations Program at Kent School because it reinforces our commitment to multiple modality teaching. It also offers our teachers another opportunity to observe the many ways our students learn. They can take these observations back to the classroom and perhaps incorporate a technique into a lesson or an alternative form of assessment.”

This term, students are exploring their creative side with music, photography, graphic design, painting and more. Students in the Photography session, taught by Michelle Cerino, explore the fine art and techniques of digital photography. They venture into classrooms or around the scenic campus to capture images for use on the school website or in the school yearbook.

Ms. Whitaker holds ukulele song sheet for Ellie Macielag

For those with an interest in music, Amanda Whitaker, Grade Seven and Eight Math teacher, is leading a ukulele class. The students will learn songs as a group and one of their choice to perform at an upcoming school assembly.

Hannah Richardson, Middle School Science teacher leads Nature Buddies. Nature Buddies is a unique, cross-grade session in which middle school students prepare lesson plans for Preschool students and then put those lesson plans into action with those children in nature-themed science projects.

Mural Design allows Grade Eight students the opportunity to design and paint a legacy mural. Throughout two Explorations sessions students select a theme, lay out the design and then get set to paint. Their mural is then installed in a prominent location on campus.

The object of “The Great Escape” is for the students to use logic and sequencing to design and build an escape-proof room. Students are collaborating to develop intriguing clues, designed for the Middle School teachers and students. Unlocking these clues will lead to escape from the room.

For students interested in journalism, video production or graphic design, there are two options. Students may elect to join the Kent School News team to produce a weekly video news segment. Kent School news includes student-led interviews, athletics updates, and the weekly “Word-on-the Street” segment in which students are asked a pertinent question on a current event or upcoming holiday. The second option for media enthusiasts is Yearbook Design in which students take on the job of creating the theme, design, text and layout of the annual Kent School Yearbook.

Finally, Fondant Fundamentals, taught by Librarian Julia Gross, gives interested students the opportunity to learn about the wonderful world of cake decorating. Students learn how to color their fondant to build creative toppings for cupcakes and cakes.

For more information about the Explorations program at Kent School or any other facet of the school visit the school website or call 410-778-4100 ext. 110.  Kent School, located on the bank of the Chester River in historic Chestertown is an independent day school serving girls and boys from Preschool through Grade 8. The school’s mission is to guide its students in realizing their potential for academic, artistic, athletic, and moral excellence. The school’s family-oriented, supportive, student-centered environment fosters the growth of honorable, responsible citizens for our country and our diverse world.

 

 

 

St. Anne’s Episcopal School Offers Merit Scholarships

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St. Annes-Middle-School Outdoor-Chapel

Planning for Middle School in 2018-2019?  St. Anne’s Episcopal School is offering two Merit Scholarship awards of $8,000 per year for each new student thanks to generous donor support. These awards are designed to attract new, engaging 5th to 8th grade students who will benefit from and add to the school’s community.  Each scholarship will be awarded for the term of the student’s enrollment at St. Anne’s, through graduation (up to four years).  Families may learn more at Open Houses this Sunday, November 12 at 1:30 p.m., Thursday, November 16, at 6 p.m. and at weekly Wednesday tours at 8:30 a.m. (call 302-378-3179 option 1 to RSVP).  Merit scholarship candidates may also apply for need-based financial aid.

“We are extremely grateful that our child was a recipient of the generous Merit Scholarship.  It has allowed us to provide her with a truly outstanding educational opportunity,” said the parent of a recent Merit Scholarship recipient.  “St. Anne’s offers a unique educational experience, academically challenging, spiritually conscious and the opportunity to be a student athlete.  She has been embraced by her classmates and is thriving at St. Anne’s.  Each day offers a new learning opportunity.  She has thanked us multiple times for sending her to St. Anne’s.”

St.-Annes-Sports-Boys-Soccer

The school is also seeking nominations and applications for one U.S. Service Scholarship for $7,500 to be awarded to a new student entering 5th to 8th grade who has immediate family in the U.S. Military.  This award is drawn from a donor-supported fund to help make a St. Anne’s education accessible to students whose immediate family member is serving in or retired from any of the five (5) branches of the U.S. Military and their Reserve and National Guard units: Army, Air Force, Navy, Marines, and Coast Guard. It will continue for up to four years while the student is enrolled at St. Anne’s.

The U.S. Service Scholarship recipient must have a demonstrated need for financial assistance in meeting the annual tuition obligation for St. Anne’s. The vision of its donors is to attract new students who may not otherwise be able to attend the school.  Immediate family member is defined as a mother, father, legal guardian, step-mother, step-father or sibling.  Recipients may also qualify for additional financial aid.

“St. Anne’s donors are making it possible for students to enroll in our Middle School program to become part of a small, diverse community where students feel safe to explore challenging academics, athletics, the arts, a spiritual life, and service learning – all part of our Episcopal school tradition,” said Head of School Peter Thayer.

The Scholarship application process includes a family tour, admissions forms due January 3, 2018, and a student visit day at St. Anne’s. Applicants for grades 5-8 must also complete admission exams which are administered at St. Anne’s using the Educational Records Bureau (ERB) CTP Online tests on one of the following Saturday mornings:  January 27February 24, or April 14, 2018.  Details are available on the school’s website.

Candidates for all scholarships may also apply for need-based Financial Aid which requires an online application by February 1, 2018.  Recipients must maintain academic and community standards which will be reviewed annually.

U.S. Service Scholarship candidates must also apply to St. Anne’s Financial Aid program to qualify for the scholarship by no later than March 26, 2018.

There is no area residence requirement for the scholarships.  The St. Anne’s Selection Committee is comprised of faculty and administrators.  Recipients must maintain academic and community standards which will be reviewed annually

Recipients will be notified confidentially by the selection date of Friday, April 27, 2018. Those who are selected will have until Friday, May 11 to make a decision to enroll at St. Anne’s for the coming academic year. St. Anne’s is choosing to keep the selection of the recipient’s confidential due to the young age of the applicants, and the small size of the school.

“My words could never fully express the gratitude I feel when I consider the fact that my son has the privilege to attend such an outstanding educational institution,” writes the parent of another scholarship recipient. “St. Anne’s has challenged him academically, socially, and intellectually beyond all of our expectations, and has greatly contributed to his sense of confidence in his ability to succeed in all his endeavors. In addition, the community in which he receives this excellent level of education is filled with joy and peace.  A place where he feels free to explore his world with ease and excitement.”

For more details about the Admissions Process and our online applications please visit our website.

Sir Roger Scruton on Intellectuals, Conservatism and President Trump

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For many in both Kent and Talbot Counties, Washington College professor Joseph Prud’homme has been a very visible presence in bringing both communities unique public programming in his role as the Director of the Institute for the Study of Religion, Politics, and Culture. So while it wasn’t too surprising that he invited Sir Roger Scruton to Chestertown yesterday, but that doesn’t mean it’s not a big thing. It is.

The reason being is that Scruton is one of those rare endangered species commonly called a conservative intellectual.  Similar to America’s late William F. Buckley, Jr., Sir Roger has reached a similar cultural status in Great Britain for his controversial writing on politics as well as art and music.

The Spy couldn’t resist the opportunity to chat with Mr.Scruton at the Brampton Inn a few hours before his campus visit to talk about a variety of subjects including what many consider to be a war against intellectualism in this country. Sir Roger also shares his thoughts on how the conservative label may also be at risk as the Trump presidency refines the concept itself.

This video is approximately nine minutes in length. For more information about the Institute for the Study of Religion, Politics, and Culture at Washington College please go here

Film About Laotian Refugee at College Nov. 8

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Safoi Babana-Hampton

Safoi Babana-Hampton, whose award-winning film “Hmong Memory at the Crossroads” follows the story of a Hmong-American from Michigan as he traces his past, will visit Washington College for a screening of her film, followed by a Q&A. Babana-Hampton will join one of her producers, Dan Dapkus, on Nov. 8 at 4 p.m. in Goldstein 100, for the film screening and audience discussion afterward. The event is free and open to the public.

“Hmong Memory at the Crossroads” is an award-winning 2015 production of Michigan State University in partnership with the University of Illinois Urbana-Champaign Humanities Without Walls Consortium, funded by a grant from the Andrew W. Mellon Foundation. Babana-Hampton is the producer, executive producer, writer, videographer, and director.

A former Fulbright fellow and a two-time recipient and Senior Principal Investigator of the UIUC Humanities Without Walls Award, Babana-Hampton is an associate professor of French at Michigan State University. She has also written articles on topics relating to conceptions of multicultural citizenship, the postcolonial condition, historical memory in a global context, interfaith relations, and artistic hybridity in the literary and film productions of French cultural minorities, Moroccan Sephardic literature, and other Francophone literary and filmic narratives from North Africa and Québec.

A synopsis of the film: Liachoua Lee, a Hmong-American from Rochester Hills, Michigan, revisits his past as a former refugee and son of Hmong veterans of the French Indochina War (1946-1954), and of the American Secret War in Laos (1961-1975). He travels to places that carry traces of his personal history and the emotional scars left by the war. Lee’s story begins in Detroit, Michigan, then takes him to France, where he and his family sought asylum before immigrating to America, and ends in an emotional return to the homeland Laos for the first time in 40 years. The film documents Lee’s re-reading of key chapters of his refugee history, re-creating memories of wartime as experienced by the child he was then. The film follows Lee’s journey of remembrance, which brings his personal story into conversation with others’ stories in the Hmong community, American Vietnam veterans, French Indochina War veterans, historians and government officials in the Midwest and France. Click here for more about the film.

WC-ALL Holiday Trip to Hillwood Estate Museum

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WC-ALL has planned a special holiday trip to The Hillwood Estate and Museum in Washington, DC, on Thursday, December 7. Participants will journey through cereal heiress Marjorie Merriweather Post’s final home to experience the elegant French dining room, efficient and “high tech” kitchen and pantry, and the many personal touches that make Hillwood one of Washington’s most memorable homes.

A detailed self-guided audio tour will give each visitor an up-close and personal view of the formal dining room, two well-appointed libraries, and an entry hall featuring décor from 18th century Imperial Russia and France. A special exhibition, “Spectacular Gems and Jewelry”’, displays some of the finest examples from Hillwood’s collection. Over fifty pieces belonging to Post will tell the story behind some of the remarkable stones and the jewelry into which they were transformed. After touring the mansion and grounds, which will be festively decorated especially for the holidays, a buffet luncheon will be served at the Hillwood Café with time afterwards to browse the museum shop.

The ADA compliant bus will leave Redner’s parking lot on December 7 at 8:15 am and return at approximately 4:30 pm. The mansion has an elevator and benches and chairs throughout for seating. The cost of the trip is $75. for WC-ALL members and non-members alike, and includes the bus ride, self-guided audio tour of the mansion and gardens, luncheon buffet, and driver tip.

Reservations are due by Tuesday, November 21 by sending a check payable to WC-ALL to WC-ALL, 300 Washington Ave., Chestertown, MD 21620. Please include names, phone numbers, and email addresses for all who plan to attend. Questions should be directed to WC-ALL at 410-778-7221.

Gunston Students Sent Balloon to Near Space

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Balloon looking down on Gunston launch team

On Friday, Oct. 20, the Gunston Science and Engineering Club launched our fifth mission to “near space”—the region above where aircraft fly, but below the orbits of satellites. The payload included cameras, tracking devices, and instrumentation to measure temperature and pressure. A weather balloon was used to carry the payload to the stratosphere. The balloon then burst as expected and the payload returned gently to Earth by parachute. The balloon was launched from the Gunston campus and landed near Laurel, Del. a little more than 2 hours later.

The balloon reached an altitude of 19.44 miles, a record high altitude from past missions. The lowest pressure measured was less than 1% of the barometric pressure at the Earth’s surface. Preliminary results indicate that the science payload detected the tropopause with a temperature around -70 degrees Fahrenheit. The balloon was approximately 6 ft in diameter when launched and 20+ ft in diameter when it burst.

Dr. Mariah Goodall and Mr. Tom Chafey led two chase cars that beat the payload to its landing site, enabling them to observed the payload descending on its parachute—another Gunston first. Mr. Dale Wegner, father of Gunston alumni Jay Wegner, set up the tracking for the chase cars and several tracking stations for students who were not part of the chase.

The science and engineering club is led by Alli Webb ‘18 President, Jack Morrison ‘18 Vice President, and Garrett Rudolfs ‘18 Secretary. The Mission Commander for the balloon launch is Brynne Kneeland ‘19. In total, 21 students assisted in preparing the payload, launching the balloon, and recovering the balloon. They divided up into seven teams for different jobs: launch, payload, imaging, science, trajectory, tracking, and recovery. The club mentors are Dr. Ken Wilson and Dr. Mariah Goodall.

Centreville as seen by the Gunston balloon

Kent Island viewed from the troposphere

School Board to Meet With Facilities Planning Committee

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The Kent County Board of Education is holding a work session with the Facilities Strategic Planning Committee on Monday, November 13 from 4 to 6 p.m.  The meeting will be held at the Kent County Board of Education Administration Building, 5608 Boundary Avenue, Rock Hall.

The regular November monthly Board of Education meeting is also scheduled for November 13, 2017 at 6:30 p.m. There will be a closed session meeting from 6 to 6:30 p.m.