With all construction projects, there are hiccups and unanticipated timeline changes. For the project we are beginning here at North Cross, a truly transformational one, most of the changes thus far have happened behind the scenes, as they hadn’t impacted our anticipated timeline significantly or required a change in our school calendar. However, we’ve recently become aware that the initial construction schedule which included the completion of the interior of Willis Hall (the upper school) during the summer of 2019 is too aggressive. We wanted our upper school students and faculty returning to new classrooms, with new furnishings, in September. For several reasons including lack of subcontractor availability and design process delays, we will need to delay the majority of interior work on Willis Hall until the summer of 2020.
I would be remiss if I did not start my Crossties article off this week by mentioning the events of Monday night and I hope you will be impressed by how I manage to pivot to my intended message highlighting our Three Days of Giving from April 23 to 25. So, here goes…
The jaded among us have long since relegated college athletics to the status of minor league professional sports. We support our teams, buying tickets to see the games, purchasing licensed sportswear in support of the college or university, and/or donating to the school to support the “student athletes.” You notice that I put “student athletes” in quotation marks, as so often the athletes for whom we cheer are remarkably different than the student bodies they represent.
There are few opportunities where we, as an entire school community, can come together as a whole for the benefit of something bigger than ourselves. One of my favorites—and perhaps this is partly fueled by my desire for a good deal—is the Big Flea. Though the physical manifestation of the Big Flea has changed over the years from a field day and white elephant sale to its current ‘day of bargains,’ it remains one of those few occasions when parents, teachers, alumni, grandparents, and yes, even students, can contribute in such a tangible way to their community here at North Cross. The sale has also become a fan-favorite in and around Roanoke. I’m told that the Facebook event alone has over 1,000 people who were ‘interested’ or already planning to attend the sale next Saturday.
I hope you had a chance to read the notes from the PA meeting before Thanksgiving in Crossties. "We are solidly in the planning and preparation phase of the Capital Campaign and I'm thrilled to report that Russ Ellett and Eddie Smith have agreed to serve as Co-chairs for the effort. Russ and Eddie are passionate about the promising future of our school and we are fortunate to have their leadership."
Deborah Jessee has agreed to be our Family Gifts Division Faculty and Staff chair, and has recruited 10 group leaders to lead the faculty staff campaign in January after we get back: Tracy Schaefer, Sandy Patterson, Zack DeMoss, Jimmie Donnini, Emily Brown, Chris Brandon, Amy Holley, Josh Kier, Allison Vagts, and Carolyn Phillips.
Christian J. Proctor, PhD
Dr. Proctor is the ninth Head of School at North Cross and has served as such since 2011. He has more than 30 years of experience in education. He has served as headmaster at Porter-Gaud School in Charleston, South Carolina, St. Martin’s Episcopal School in Metairie, Louisiana, Grace Episcopal School in Monroe, Louisiana, and as Interim Headmaster at Wesley Academy in Houston, Texas. In each location, Dr. Proctor’s tenure was marked by creativity, innovation, and school growth.