Bement Look Ahead

For August 2016


Updated August 17, 2016




We welcome our new and returning families to the beginning of a new school year at Bement! We have a number of new faces (and two returning familiar faces) to faculty and staff positions on campus, including our new head of school, Christopher Wilson P'26, his wife, Stephanie, and daughters, Madeline '26 and Lydia. 


A welcome message for the 2016-2017 school year from Christopher Wilson, Head of School, is here.


In addition to the Wilsons, we also welcome the following new members of our Bement community, with a few returning veterans for good measure!


Linda Brown, Upper and Lower School French

Ellen Carter, Director of Psychological Services

Karen Cullinane, Sixth Grade Mathematics

Ann Dubie, Upper School Mathematics and Science

Elizabeth Emery P'09 '11, Second Grade

Amy Gordon P'99 '03, Upper School English

Daniel Hales, Upper School English 

Rob Kearney and Joseph Aleixo, Dorm Parents, Jiayi House

Katie MacCallum, Fourth Grade

Megan O'Brien '95, Alumni and Development Assistant, Dorm Parent, Jackson House 1

Sandra Perot, Upper School History

Elie Shuman P'10 '14, Health Educator (Sixth Grade)



During the school year, the Look Ahead is emailed on Fridays to the addresses you have provided. Please read the Look Ahead regularly, as it will contain all the important information you will need for the upcoming week. A link to the current edition of the Look Ahead is always posted to the home page of our website. Please contact the communications office by replying to this email if you have any questions about receiving the Look Ahead




2016-2017 Family Handbooks

The new Family Handbooks are in the mail-please keep an eye out for them and be sure to return the enclosed permission form on or before the first day of school.  The Family Handbook is a great resource for questions throughout the school year as well as containing the policies and procedures at Bement. If you do not receive your Family Handbook in the mail by September 1, please contact Toni Costa ( or Meg Clark (



First Day of School and What to Wear  

Classes begin on Thursday, September 8 at 8:10 a.m. Thursday is a regular school dress day. Friday will be a dress-down day due to the All-School Picnic that evening (see below) and Monday, September 12 will be Dress Monday attire.


Regular dress, Monday Dress, dress-down...what do these terms mean? For all the specifics on school dress, check here. Dress code information is also in the Family Handbook.



Blazer Exchange and School Store

Do you need a navy Bement blazer for Monday dress?  Do you have one (or 2 or 3...) that your child has outgrown and you'd like to trade for a new one?  Come to the Blazer Exchange on Wednesday, September 7 from noon to 3:00 p.m.  The School Store will be open, too!



All-School Family Picnic

Mark your calendars now for the annual all-school family picnic on Friday, September 9. Please see the Parents Association section below for more information!



Health Forms Were Due August 1  

All students are required to have complete health forms on file before the start of school.  If you have not yet sent in your child's health forms, click here to download and print the forms.  Return the completed forms to Marty Smith in the business office as soon as possible. Students may not participate in co-curricular activities of any kind, including field trips, PE, and sports, until all required health forms are complete and on file in the Health Office.



A Note from the Business Office

A note from Ken Cuddeback regarding reorganization of the food services department.




As noted in the communications section of the Family Handbook, we take a lot of pictures and video at Bement throughout the school year! These images may be used in our magazine, yearbook, website, slideshows, advertising, social media, or other Bement publications. If you do not want your child photographed, please contact me, Meg Clark, before Wednesday, September 7.  You may simply hit "reply" to this email, call 413-774-7061, x169, or stop by my office in the Polk Building (next to the dance studio). 



Please Be Aware

Bement is a nut and latex-aware campus.  No products containing any form of nuts (including nut oils) should be brought to school or to school activities (i.e. bake sales, picnics, field trips).



Got Stuff?

Ms. Bernard is always happy to accept donations to the Maker Space lab! What might be odds-and-ends to you could make terrific maker materials for our students. Here is a maker space wish list of materials for you to reference. Please contact Ms. Bernard with any questions and drop your donated items with her in the library.  Many thanks! 



Save the Dates!  

The 2016-2017 school calendar is here, and the link is always posted on the home page of our website. Important term dates are posted at the very end of each Look Ahead. The calendar is subject to change, so please check regularly for updates.






A Message from Emily Lent Hemingway, Lower School Head  
Lower School Orientation Day  
Wednesday, September 7 from 12:30-2:30 p.m. is our lower school orientation and open house. Ms. Lent will email the schedule to parents along with class lists later this week.



Class Lists and School Supplies

Families will receive their class lists shortly, with the orientation and open house schedule from Ms. Lent. Lower school teachers will then contact their students directly with a message about the upcoming year and any school supplies families may need to purchase.



Band Information from Jim Snedeker, band director  

Important information regarding instrument choices for all grade 4 students and for new grade 5 students.



Noticing Nature After School Program 

Bement teacher, Louise Smith, will be offering her much-loved after school program, Noticing Nature. Learn more about this program and how to sign-up here.

For fifth graders interested in participating in upper school fall sports, please read this letter from our athletic director, Alex Bartlett.



A Message from Amie Keddy, Upper School Head 

Please read this welcome to the new school year message from Amie Keddy here.


New Student Orientation - Wednesday, September 7

Please note that "new" denotes all students that are new to the upper school This includes each rising sixth grader who was in Bement's lower school last year. The orientation includes a new parent meeting and any parents who are new to the upper school (including parents of sixth graders who attended Bement in the fifth grade) are invited to attend.


The new student orientation is on Wednesday, September 7 from 9:30 a.m. to 2:30 p.m. and includes lunch and snacks. Registration will begin at 9 a.m. under the tent on the front lawn between Barton and Bement Houses.  The orientation schedule is available here.


Academic Class Schedules 

Returning students will receive a fall term class schedule on the first day of school. All students new to the upper school will receive their schedules during the Wednesday, September 7 orientation session. The deans and advisors will help each student outline and highlight their schedule.



School Supplies

Recognizing that many families like to get a head start on the purchase of school supplies, upper school teachers have helped to create this list to help guide your purchases.  Although comprehensive, the supplies do not include items that are unique to an individual teacher's requests. During opening week, all students will learn if there are additional items necessary for a given class.



SSATs on October 15

All upper school families should have received an email earlier this month with the registration information for the October SSAT tests at Bement. The regular registration period is now open, so please register and request any special accommodations before September 19. Registering after September 24 will incur extra fees.



Attention Ninth Grade Families

The ninth grade will be taking an all-day field trip to Morse Hill on the second day of school, Friday, September 9. Students will be off-campus from 8:30 a.m. to 4:30 p.m. and will need to bring a bag lunch. Therefore, it is necessary that all ninth graders return the field trip permission form (part of your Family Handbook packet) by the first day of school AND complete the form at the Morse Hill website here (choose the Fun Day Registration Form). Return that form to Morse Hill per the instructions at their website. Then give yourself a big pat on the back for all the paperwork you have completed so far this year!





Athletics are an important part of each day at Bement.  Please read this letter regarding fall sports from our athletic director, Alex Bartlett.  The fall athletic schedule is also posted on our website.


In addition, please become familiar with Bement's off sports policy, in the Family Handbook (page 35).  The Health Office also has concussion education information available at our website, located below the health forms.






Attention Band and Orchestra Students  

Students in grades 6, 7, and 8 should bring their musical instruments on Friday, September 9. There will be music block rehearsals. (Ninth grade will be on their field trip to Morse Hill, see above.)



Music Selections

If you are a student new to the upper school, please email your musical choice and direct any arts-related questions to Mrs. Stewart-Pettengill, Arts Department Chair, at the following email address:

- Musical choices for sixth grade are band (woodwinds, brass, percussion) or strings (violin, viola, cello, bass).  All sixth grade students participate in one term of choral music, one term of drama, and one term of visual art in addition to their instrumental choice.

- Musical choices for seventh, eighth, and ninth grades include band (woodwinds, brass, percussion), strings (violin, viola, cello, bass), or choral music. These students also have terms of either drama, visual art, art history, or computer art in addition to their musical choice.

We ask that students who are choosing to play an instrument they have never played before have introductory lessons during the summer, so that they will be familiar with the instrument. 

Please email your choice to Mrs. S-P as soon as possible if you have not done so already.





A Message from PA President, Lisa Kittredge  

Hello and welcome back from summer vacation!  At Bement, all parents are members of the Parents Association.  In my family, we encourage team spirit and ask that everyone chip in to help make everyone's job easier and more fun!  One of the assets that Bement offers is a warm family and community environment, so I am asking all parents to please consider helping a little this year to make our school events easier and more fun!  There are many ways to be involved in the Bement community. 


Please join us at our first PA meeting of the year on Tuesday, September 13 at 8:10 a.m. at the head of school's residence, Mary Hawks House.  Monthly PA meetings are open to everyone.  Please join us for coffee, tea, and the opportunity to meet new friends and learn more about how you can share your talents with the PA.  We are grateful for everyone's contribution to making Bement the great school it is for our children.  See you in September!



All-School Family Picnic 

This festive, community-building annual event will be on Friday, September 9 from 4:30-6:30 p.m. on campus, rain or shine.  This is a great time to catch up with old friends and meet new ones!  For more details on the picnic, please look here.



Back to School at Land's End

Did you know you can support Bement with your Land's End purchases? Many standard dress code items are available and Bement earns 3% of eligible purchases made through Land's End's school uniform store.  At the Bement school store webpage, click on the Land's End box and it will take you directly to the Bement list. Happy shopping and thank you!





Ballet at Bement

If your child is interested in ballet, there is an excellent after-school program taught by Julia Chen P'15 '17 in the school's dance studio.  Learn more about the ballet program here.