The Brick Church School Returns to 62 East 92nd Street!

Dear Brick Family,
 
Welcome to the start of The Brick Church School’s 2020-2021 school year! This year marks the 80th anniversary of our founding in 1940. No one imagined that we would commemorate this milestone with masks on, yet everyone here has risen to the occasion. Once again, the Brick community has proven extraordinary in its generosity of spirit and dedication. This year, our themes are Optimism, Equity, and Community, and you will hear them echoed throughout all of our conversations and communications. 
 
Reopening School
After a long summer of nonstop collaboration and planning, we opened our doors to students on Tuesday, September 1st, for the first time since March, when COVID-19 forced us to shift to remote learning for the remainder of the spring. I invite you all to learn more about our Reopening Plan here. I am extremely proud and deeply grateful to everyone – administrators, faculty, staff, trustees, and parents – for working together as a team to develop a reopening plan that allows for a rich educational experience for our students while keeping health and safety at its core. 
 
Our Community of Educators
Our talented teachers and staff have earned a well-deserved moment of gratitude. They have accomplished wondrous things under extraordinary circumstances, and it is an honor to work beside them every day. This year, 95 percent of our faculty and staff are returning, and we are welcoming seven new teachers. Four faculty members have requested to work remotely, and we have been able to accommodate them on either a full- or part-time basis. To help ensure the health and safety of our community, we have also hired a full-time nurse and temporarily converted the church’s Choir Room into a Health Office. 
 
Our Community of Students
I am pleased to report that we are able to offer our full program to 174 students, and they are all wearing smiles underneath their masks! To accommodate social distancing requirements, we have added one additional classroom (“3 South”) in the Carnegie Room. 
 
Our Community of Parents
I am grateful to our parents for entrusting us with their children and for the integrity that they have shown in abiding regulations to protect the health of our community. Although parents are not allowed in the building this fall, we will be working hard to maintain the strength of our community remotely. This year, we have launched The Brick Church School Parents’ Association to help support these efforts. 
 
Our school is strong because our roots are strong. As we navigate a year unlike any other, I am confident that we will continue to grow stronger and more resilient as a community. Thank you for your enduring support of The Brick Church School, our faculty and staff, our students, and our mission. 
 
With sincere gratitude, 
Amy Warden

The Children’s Fair – Thank you!

Dear Brick Families and Friends,

What a wonderful Children’s Fair on Friday! Thanks to all who attended and helped to organize the event – it was a smashing success! I enjoyed seeing all of the students, families, caregivers, grandparents, and alum return to join in the fun. From spin art and candy necklaces to magic shows and bounce houses, a good time was had by all!

I want to give special thanks to those who made it all possible. Our Co-Chairs Lauren Gilchrist, Esther Lee, Eliza McLaughlin, Lindsey Peers, Jennifer Siegert, and Martha Tedesco were masterful! They were supported by our ever creative Art Studio Teacher Caren Shayne, our class reps, and over 80 parent volunteers and faculty members, who staffed the class booths. 2South families also deserve a special callout for providing over 200 cupcakes for the cupcake booth!

Thank you again! We are so grateful to all of you for making the day a joyful success!

Warmly,

Amy

Day School Director Announcement!

Dear Members of the Brick Church School Community:

The Director Nominating Committee is delighted to announce that Amy Warden has accepted the position of Director of the Brick Church School, effective August 1, 2019.

This announcement caps a six-month comprehensive search process that began in April when Lydia Spinelli announced her intention to retire at the end of the 2018-2019 academic calendar year.  As part of this process, Amy submitted an in-depth application package, interviewed with the eight-person Nominating Committee and with educational consultants, Carney Sandoe.  Informed by the shared values and voices of all Brick constituents, the Nominating Committee received numerous letters of recommendation from current and former parents, faculty and staff, and other educators in support of Amy’s candidacy for the director position.  The community highlighted Amy’s expertise and consistent passion for early childhood education during her five-year tenure as Associate Director as well as in prior roles.  Amy’s knowledge, experience and vision align with the core values of the school and key areas for evolution; hence, she was the enthusiastic and unanimous choice for our next director.

As Associate Director, Amy has prioritized curriculum and professional development.  She has skillfully led a revision of the pre-literacy program, the school’s equity and inclusion initiatives, and focused on the social/emotional development of children.  Amy has collaborated with faculty to integrate more inquiry-based learning in the classroom.  In addition, Amy directed the June Program and was instrumental in developing the new Two’s Program.  Most importantly, Amy has remained steadfast in her dedication to knowing each child individually, partnering with parents on educational growth at Brick and beyond.

Prior to joining Brick, Amy was Head of Schools at Williamsburg Northside Schools in Brooklyn, New York.  In her role, Amy was responsible for all facets of the school’s operation, which included programming for over 300 children ages three months to seven years across 18 classrooms and 80 staff members.  Under Amy’s leadership, Northside implemented the Reggio Emilia approach to early childhood education from infancy through the elementary school years, resulting in a highly innovative, successful program.

Amy has a bachelor’s degree from William Smith College with a major in dance therapy and a minor in education.  She has two graduate degrees from Hunter College: a master’s degree in dance and movement therapy and a MSEd in special education.  Amy and her husband, Doug, have two children, son Henry (age 10) and daughter Audrey (age 5), and reside in Tarrytown, New York.

Thank you to every member of our school community for your investment in Brick and your engagement and participation in our Director search.  A thoughtful transition process in partnership with Lydia Spinelli is underway, and we will soon schedule opportunities for members of the Brick community to get to know Amy even better.  We look forward to Amy’s leadership at the Brick Church School!

Sincerely,

The Brick Church School Director Nominating Committee

Children’s Fair Fun!

Our 2018 Children’s Fair was a blast!  We want to give special thanks to the many parent volunteers that helped coordinate and run this incredible event.  Joy and laughter filled 92nd Street and our school garden.  Thank you to all!