ABS Thursday Notes- October 12, 2023

Published for the Arts Based School Community

October 12, 2023

How We Do It and Why

By Mary Siebert

“At the end it’s not about what you have or even what you’ve accomplished. It’s about who you’ve lifted up, who you’ve made better. It’s about what you’ve given back.”

Denzel Washington 

Years ago, Robin Hollis and I often visited community organizations, sometimes with a choir of 3rd graders in tow, to let people know what ABS was all about. After a Rotary Club lunch where I brought along my guitar, spoke about the school, and performed a few fun songs used for memorizing vocabulary and math terms, a cheerful gentleman approached me and introduced himself. He was Alex Ewing, Chancellor of UNCSA. (He was also a founder of the Joffrey Ballet in New York, a journalist, and an award-winning cattle breeder!)  Alex was so delighted by the light-hearted music and creative ideas combined with the serious nature of our mission, that he volunteered immediately to help the school. He wanted to be a part of it, and he was.

Alex served on the board for many years, He attended many student performances with his wife, Sheila. He showed up at meetings, retreats, and parties. He walked the hallways, astonished by the abundance of art and creativity bursting from the rooms and plastered on the walls. He didn’t have a child or a grandchild who attended our school. He just loved us, and loved what we were doing for children.

Two years before his death in 2017, Alex donated funds to convert the warehouse space at the back of our MLK building into a functional theater and dance studio. He attended an assembly in the newly remodeled theater, where over 300 children cheered and sang for him. They showered him with illustrated thank-you notes, which he treasured until he died. The Alex Ewing theater at our North campus was a gift he gave simply because he appreciated and believed in our impact on the community.

This week, a couple whose grandchild attended ABS but has been gone for years now, and whose daughter now serves as the ABS board chair, heard that we had started our annual giving campaign. They have donated a $10,000 matching grant, simply out of appreciation for what the school has done and continues doing in our area. Again, these are members of our community, giving back.

As we continue the campaign, we invite you to contribute too, to show your support, and match that $10,000. We want to make a continuing and lasting impact, and we need you to help us make that happen.

Annual Giving

After our first week of the annual giving campaign, we’re off to a great start!

Your support goes well beyond helping to bridge the gap between what it costs to operate the school and what ABS receives in state and federal funding—your support is also a vote of confidence and an act of goodwill. Please make it a priority to participate if your family is able to make a gift to the school—and our heartfelt thanks to everyone who has already answered the call! 

Total School Participation to Date: 10%

Total Gifts to Date: $31,145

To make your gift, send a check or visit https://www.artsbasedschool.com/apps/pages/giving

Thank you!

News from Parent Council

Fall fest is coming up on Saturday 10/14 from 12-3pm. Unfortunately, the weather forecast does not look like it is in our favor. We are watching the weather closely and will make a final decision about Fall Fest by Friday afternoon. If Fall Fest is canceled due to weather, we will discuss the best option for a alternative date. Fingers crossed for no rain!

Please join us for the next Parent Council meeting of the school year on Friday, October 13th at 8:30am in the MLK Cafe at ABS North Campus.  All ABS parents, families, and caregivers are part of the Parent Council and are welcome to attend! We look forward to seeing you there! You can also join virtually at Join Zoom Meeting


ABS Book Fairs Oct 16-20

The Scholastic Book Fairs are coming!!  Exciting news! This year we will have a fair set up at both North and South Campus.  The books began arriving today!  We’ll all excited to start shopping and reading!   More information in your child’s Thursday packet today!

Skate Night for ABS

The ABS Builders Club is sponsoring a Skate Night on Thursday, October 19, from 6:30 - 8:00 at Skate Haven, 120 Hood Drive in Winston-Salem. The charge is $6.00, which covers the rental of skates. This event funds many charities the ABS Builders Club supports during the year. Also, put the next Skate Night on your calendar - Thursday, April 25, 2024. 

Halloween is Coming

Please do not send students to school in costumes. We all enjoy the fun and excitement of Halloween but find that costumes and accessories make it very difficult to concentrate. Also we do not want students to bring candy in their lunch bags for snacks. Although it can be delicious, high sugar snacks should not replace a healthy snack. Thanks for your help!


Prospective Parent Tours

School tours for prospective parents begin in October. They are scheduled weekly on Tuesdays at 9:30am at South Campus and Thursdays at 9:30am at North Campus. Each tour is limited to 10 adults in an effort to limit the disruption to our students and teachers in the classrooms. Parents interested in learning more about ABS and how to enroll their child, should contact the front office to sign up for a tour. 748-4116 ext 1023. Applications will be accepted beginning January 1. The lottery will be held the second Tuesday of February. 


Around Town

Join Sawtooth School for Visual Art and Catbird (on the Yadkin) for Good Impressions: Readings from the Press Bed on October 14th from 5 – 6:30 pm, where artist and educator Friedl Dicker-Brandeis will be honored. Friedl studied at the Bauhaus School and later worked as an artist and teacher in Vienna and Prague. In 1942 Friedl Dicker-Brandeis was deported to the Terezin concentration camp, where she taught drawing, poetry, theater, and set design to children. Friedl encouraged children at Terezin to use words and images to “speak the truth” of what they were living and to give what they created back to the world. Guests will have an opportunity to crank the letterpress machine to print Birdsong, a poem written to commemorate the many children she taught and loved at Terezin. 


Ways to get involved and learn more about ABS: