News & Events

Remembering Alice Rouleau

IMG_1446It is with great sadness that I write to you that Alice Rouleau passed away on July 10th. Alice was the beloved wife of John Rouleau, our former Head of School, and contributed to our community in many ways over the years. She will be missed by all of us, especially John and their daughter, Becky.

Alice and John moved into Rock Point in 1971, when Becky was just a baby. Alice always had a smile on her face and a sparkle in her eye. When people spoke with her, they always had her undivided attention. Alice had a way of curiously inquiring about people’s lives and perspectives, without being judgmental. We walked away feeling heard, encouraged and affirmed 

Initially, she worked as a dorm staff and English teacher while John taught music. Pretty quickly they both wore many hats as teachers, nurse, dorm staff. In 1972, they moved out of the dorm into the house on the Rock Point property where they raised their daughter, Becky, and lived for nearly 40 years, until 2011 when John retired from his position as Headmaster. During those years Alice branched out to work at Trinity College and then Middlebury College as a detail oriented and caring registrar.

All the while, Alice and John’s welcoming spirits and abilities to share their plethora of interests and skills engaged students and their families for all these decades at Rock Point School. Alice modeled getting outdoors by walking, cross country skiing and biking on the Point and bike path, as well as birding all over. We saw her out and about daily like clockwork.

In addition to provoking interesting and fun conversations with her depth of knowledge about such topics as literature, art, films, and society, Alice also taught many of us how to sew, cook, and preserve food. Those blackberries! Alice loved to pick them, eat them fresh, make pies with them, and especially make blackberry jelly to eat and share broadly.  

We are heading towards the end of July, which means one thing, “It’s Blackberry Jam Season, Buddy!”

For more about Alice, you can read her full obituary here.

Alice was a gift to us all. For those of you who would like to attend, a service of thanksgiving and celebration for Alice will be held at Saint Paul's Cathedral in Burlington, Vermont on Saturday, July 20th at 11 a.m.  

 

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C.J. Spirito, Head of School

A Visit to the Green Monster!

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Rock Point School traveled to Fenway Park last night to take in a Red Sox game! C.J., our Head of School, met up with alumni, former staff, and trustees to see the Sox victory over the Blue Jays. The game ended with a 10-8 score, with lots of hits to keep the crowd happy, including an exciting grand slam! It was a beautiful night to catch up with old friends.

Save the Date: Rock Point School Reunion 2020

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Mark your calendars for June 13, 2020 for the Rock Point School Reunion! All former staff, students, and families are invited to join us as we celebrate, connect, and share stories. The building will be open from June 12-14th, with the main events (BBQ and games) on June 13th from 12 - 5 p.m.

More details and an opportunity to sign up to stay in the building will be coming. In the meantime, mark your calendars and spread the word to fellow alumni!

18595424429_e46e655771_kPhoto from the 2015 Reunion

Summer Reading, July 2019

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Summer is the perfect time to pick up a book and explore some big ideas, escape to a foreign land, or dive into history. We have some reading recommendations for everyone, no matter what your interests!

Born a Crime by Trevor Noah: Read this book if you like memoirs! This one will make you laugh, while revealing truths about what it was like to live under apartheid in South Africa. The eighteen personal essays collected here are by turns hilarious, dramatic, and deeply affecting.

Sapiens: A Brief History of Humankind by Yuval Noah Harari: This book spans over 100,000 years of history, tracing the origin of our species and bringing us through the radical cognitive, agricultural, and scientific revolutions that have brought us to the current moment.

Aurora Rising by Amie Kaufman and Jay Kristoff: The perfect book for sci-fi lovers about a band of misfits bound to become heroes in a futuristic space landscape. Part heist, part adventure, and lots of fun!

Black is the Body by Emily Bernard: UVM Professor Emily Bernard writes deeply personal essays about race in America. From growing up in the South, to attending Yale, to adopting children from Ethiopia and her own marriage to a white man from the North, Bernard explores the complexities and paradoxes of race and racism.

Searching for Sylvie Lee by Jean Kwok: This book is a blend of page-turning mystery and a sensitive portrait of an immigrant family. As Amy searches for her sister, Sylvie, family secrets are revealed and Amy gains a deeper understanding of her own identity.

Look for more book suggestions this summer!

5 Under 50: Get to Know Small Boarding Schools

June 5 Under 50 in New Jersey

Hillary Kramer, our Director of Admissions, has been working with four other small boarding schools in New England to create a group called "5 under 50." These schools are teaming up to spread the word about the huge impact small schools can make in the lives of their students. Throughout the year, representatives from the schools will travel to meet with Educational Consultants to share what makes their schools unique. The next meeting takes place in New Jersey on June 24th.

Where: The Grand Summit Hotel, Summit, NJ

When: June 24, 9 a.m. - 1 p.m.

Who: Hampshire County School, Oxford Academy, Shortridge Academy, The Woodhall School, and Rock Point School

If you are interested in more information, please contact Hillary Kramer at hkramer@rockpoint.org or Helen Waldron, Director of Admission at Oxford Academy, directorofadmissions@oxfordacademy.net  

Congratulations to the Class of 2019!

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On June 8th, we held graduation for the class of 2019. These exceptional students inspired so many people to speak on their behalf during the ceremony, with moving stories of their growth, strength, and talents. We are forever grateful to their families for sharing these wonderful students with us.

Introducing the Class of 2019 (from left to right):

Sasha K. - In his two years at Rock Point, Sasha wanted to share his love of chess with as many people as possible and make genuine connections with peers and adults. This year he won the Vermont high school chess championship and will compete in the national tournament this summer! Sasha was an awesome member of our Maple Ambassadors crew, giving tours of our sugaring operation to elementary school children. We are glad he will be staying nearby as he continues his career in chess!

Josh D. - Josh came to Rock Point for his senior year and spent his time honing his academic skills, as well as his skills in the kitchen. Josh managed the menu and cooking for the art show and prom, demonstrating his excellent organizational abilities. Josh was a steady presence and a good friend to many at Rock Point. In the fall, Josh will be attending Flagler College in Florida.

Ian C. - Ian joined us for his senior year. Although he was only here for a year, he made a huge impact on the community: organizing school-wide reflections, teaching preschoolers about maple sugaring, and being a leader in the scuba and photography clubs. Next year, Ian is seeking adventure at the University of Jakarta in Indonesia.

Alex M. - Alex spent his last year and a half of high school at Rock Point. In his time, he created many works of art, from digital images to hand sewn jackets. He played guitar at nearly every event and stayed active skateboarding, snowboarding, and joining in on any activity. We are proud of Alex for his acceptance to Columbia College of Art and look forward to seeing what he will create next!

Jesse R. - Jesse came to Rock Point School as a sophomore and has grown several inches since then! He has participated in many school activities including writing two plays honored at the Vermont Young Playwright Festivals in 2018 and 2019, acting in plays, running the Vermont City Marathon, Scuba Club, and photography club. In the fall, Jesse will attend Massachusetts College of Liberal Arts.

Rebecca P. - Rebecca joined Rock Point in the spring of 2018 and has contributed so much to our community, including participating in school plays and the trip to Mexico. Her passion for literature, her cheerful work in the kitchen, her sense of adventure, and her playful spirit will be missed. Rebecca has chosen to attend Lawrence University in the fall.

Calvin M. - For the past two years, you could hear Calvin playing music throughout the school. His kindness and steady friendship were a boon to students and staff. Calvin was a leader in the sugaring program as well as in the Burton Chill program. Next year, Calvin will be pursuing a career working with animals and exploring Vet Tech programs.

Allison Z. - Allison’s artwork decorates many rooms at Rock Point. In her three years at the school, Allison poured her creativity into crafts and art projects from painting to sewing. Allison was always willing to volunteer to help at any school event, and even took on a volunteer internship at Burlington City Arts this year. We will miss her greatly next year!

Ana S. - In her two and a half years at Rock Point, Ana explored the arts in stained glass, poetry, and black and white photography. She was dedicated to her academics, earning top academic awards each year and pursuing her academic interests beyond what was presented in class. Next year, Ana will be staying nearby and attending SUNY Plattsburgh!

Josh S. - Josh joined us in 2016 as a sophomore and  was a leader in the community. He participated in tending the Rock Point garden, open mic nights, Maple Sugaring, skiing and snowboarding, last year’s service-learning trip to Nicaragua, helping with admissions, and the Ultimate Frisbee team to name a few. Josh’s academic excellence also earned him a place at SUNY Plattsburgh next year!

Charlotte J. (not pictured) - Charlotte spent her last two years of high school at Rock Point, sharing her love of creative writing and poetry with us. She created zines and even inspired a zine making class! In addition to art and writing, Charlotte had a passion for social justice, which she shared with the school and with her internship at the Peace and Justice center. Next year, Charlotte is planning to attend Lesley University.

Oaxaca, Mexico Trip 2019

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Over April vacation, five students and two staff members from Rock Point School traveled to Oaxaca, Mexico. The trip was in coordination with SURCO, a non-profit grassroots organization combining consulting, academic programs and local activism. While they were in Oaxaca, students did a homestay with local families, visited historical and cultural sites, and connected with local artists and educators.

Other highlights of the trip included a trip to the mountains to visit a local environmental restoration project where the community has spent years resurfacing the hillside and regrowing vegetation. They also visited a historical textile mill, which has since been turned into an art exhibit; and they traveled to see the geological wonder of Heirve el Agua, petrified waterfalls, outside Oaxaca. Finally, they visited a small village called Teotitlán where they worked with a Women’s cooperative and learned more about rural living in Mexico.

Working with SURCO and visiting Mexico was an illuminating and formative experience for our students and we are excited to see how they have been inspired by the people they met there and the work they witnessed.

Vermont Young Playwrights' Festival 2019

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On May 3rd a group of Rock Point School students headed to the Flynn Center for the Performing Arts for a day of theater workshops and performances! Our students have participated in the Vermont Young Playwrights' Project for almost twenty years and we were honored to be part of the festival again this spring. In the fall, students began working on writing original ten-minute plays inspired by workshops with a professional playwright. They continued to edit their plays before submitting them to the festival for selection.

The Vermont Playwright Project invites students from schools all over the state to participate. Selected plays from each school are performed by professional actors at the festival. Sophomore, Jeff Morley, had his play "Air Port" selected for a cold reading and senior, Jesse Ruigomez's play "My Side of the Water Cooler" was selected for a staged reading. Both plays elicited many laughs from the crowd. We are so proud of Jeff and Jesse for creating these excellent plays and sharing them with a wide audience!

Annual Art Show on May 3rd

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Join us for our annual Art Show at the Rose Street Artists Cooperative and Gallery on May 3rd from 5:30 - 7:30 p.m. Students will display art they have created through the school year, including: photography, paintings, mixed media pieces, and stained glass. Enjoy snacks and music while you peruse the beautiful art! 

What: Annual Student Art Show

When: May 3, 5:30 p.m. - 7:30 p.m.

Where: Rose Street Artists Cooperative and Gallery, 78 Rose St. Burlington, VT

Art will be available for purchase with proceeds split between the gallery, the artist, and the school art program. 

 

We Love Drama: One-Act Plays 2019

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On February 20th and 21st Rock Point School students performed the plays they have been working on for the past few months. The process began with playwriting workshops run by a professional playwright with the Vermont Young Playwright's Project. Four students, Yukiko (10th grade), Val (10th grande), Jeff (10th grade), and Jesse (12th grade), continued to edit and develop their plays for production. 

The plays ranged from funny to tragic to searing political commentary. 

  • "823" by Val (grade 10) - A father and daughter struggle to find a way to get closure as their wife and mother dies.
  • "Alice in Cafe Poirot" by Yukiko (grade 9) - Alice wants to tell William that she loves him, but keeps getting interrupted by a series of mishaps in a busy cafe.
  • "Airport" by Jeff (grade 10) - A bumbling duo attempt to board a plane for their mother's wedding, but are held up by the head of TSA, who has a personal bone to pick with them.
  • "Brett is the Best" by Jesse (grade 12) - A satirical look at a corrupt lawyer who has a backwards idea to get his client out of a jam, involving inventing, and then getting him out of, a juicy scandal.
We are incredibly proud of the playwrights (who also acted), actors, and crew who brought these plays to life.