ESLA Family Newsletter, April 15, 2019

The sun is out, the hills are blanketed in wild mustard, and somehow we’re already halfway through April. Onto your news!


As always, your agenda from today until the end of time is embedded below. Remember, you can always check the ESLA Agenda on this site by navigating to “My ESLA” > “ESLA Agenda” or simply plugging into your navigation bar.

NO AFTER-SCHOOL PROGRAMMING THIS THURSDAY, APRIL 18. All students must be picked up at 3:00 p.m.


The 2019-2020 Academic Calendar

Your 2019-2020 Academic Calendar is live! This includes all the key dates for our next academic year.

You can access this calendar anytime under the “My ESLA” tab.

We Want Your Input!

A message from Peter McCormack, Head of School:

Parents, please save the date: Thursday, May 2, 6:45 - 8:45 p.m. As part of putting together our strategic plan for the next few years, we want to hear from you. We’ll discuss our strengths, weaknesses, opportunities, and challenges in nine different areas.

Please RSVP to if you are available and would like to attend this event. (We will also be doing a version of this with students before the end of the year.)

Areas to be discussed are as follows:

Academic, Arts, and Athletics Programming/Curriculum

  • Middle School Academics and Arts Curriculum

  • Upper School Academics and Arts Curriculum

  • STEM

  • Athletics

Climate and Community

  • Parent Association

  • Diversity, Equity, and Inclusion

  • Episcopal Identity and Service Learning

Enrollment and Communications

  • Communications and Messaging (How to get the word out about ESLA and what we should be saying)

Other Programming

  • After School Program, Lab Days, School Trips, etc.

Annie poster final.jpg

Save the dates for Annie!

April 23, 24, 25, 30     
May 1, 2

4:00 - 6:00 p.m. 
Mears Stage  
First Presbyterian Church of Hollywood

Tickets are $5 for friends and family, and free to ESLA students, faculty and staff.
Tickets will be sold at the door to the theatre, and seating is first come first serve.
Doors open at 3:30 pm. The show runs 2 hours with one 10-minute intermission.

Discipline Survey

A message from Laura Spencer and Amanda Valenzuela, Co-Chairs of the Discipline Committee:

It’s hard to believe that we are already nearing the end of the academic year! It feels as though we were just starting at First Presbyterian Church of Hollywood, and now we are planning the final weeks of school and looking forward to all that next year holds.

As you know, after eighteen months of work, ESLA successfully completed the WASC/CAIS self-study process and visit, earning seven years of full accreditation! While this is certainly a cause to celebrate, the work of growing and improving upon a unique mission-driven school like ours is never complete. Along with the WASC/CAIS stamp of approval, the school received a number of suggested areas in which to delve deeper, being always mindful of the connection between our mission, values, and everyday lived practices. These conversations led to fruitful discussion, and one of the areas of mindful examination the school has identified is student discipline philosophy, policies, and procedures.

This year, ESLA created a Discipline Committee, which is currently working with a group of faculty and staff to examine the alignment between our school’s discipline philosophy and practices in order to both recognize our current strengths and make recommendations to the administration for improvement. Surveys have been developed for faculty, students, and parents to complete in order to gather data on our current discipline policies and procedures; feedback will be analyzed before the committee makes recommendations to school administration at the end of the 2018-2019 academic year.

As a parent or guardian of an ESLA student, your voice and experience with the discipline system matter. At your soonest convenience, we ask that you please take five minutes to complete this digital survey.

Thank you for entrusting us with your children, and for taking the time to help us with this process. If you have any questions or concerns, please feel free to reach us at or

ESLA Circus: Prom 2019!

Saturday, April 27, 2019
7:00 - 10:30 p.m.
Wilshire Boulevard Temple
3663 Wilshire Blvd
Los Angeles, CA 90010

Tickets will go on sale TOMORROW, Tuesday, April 16 and will be sold before and after school at the prorated price of $35.00. The following week tickets will go up to $40.00. We’ll accept cash or checks made out to the Episcopal School of Los Angeles. 

We are allowing each ESLA student to bring up to three guests, making their group a party of four. Please find below both the student and guest behavioral contracts that we will require signed by the respective parties listed on the forms and returned on Wednesday, April 24. A photocopy of guest student/state ID is required; a physical ID will be required the day of the event (mandated by the Temple).

For questions, contact Shelby Bartlett ( or Emily Nuckols (

Notes from the Chaplaincy

Some important notes from your Chaplain, Megan Hollaway:

Parent Council

Monday, April 29, 5:30 - 6:30 p.m.

RSVP here for our first Parent Council Monday, April 29 at 5:30 p.m. Not to be confused with the Parent Association (PA) or parent coffees, this is an opportunity for parents to sit in council (the same circle process we use for Advisory) and share stories about the beguiling journey of raising teenagers. The theme for this council is “transitions” and all parents/guardians are welcome (but I’ve got my eyes on you 12th grade parents). However, space is limited so please RSVP by Friday, April 19. Students are not invited to this council, but may hang out on the green or the Mears courtyard during that time. You may be wondering: Will I have to talk in front of people? No, not if you don’t want to. Do I have to prepare something? Nope, council is all about spontaneity. Will people be sharing feelings? Not really—we speak and listen from the heart in council, but it’s more about storytelling. You can read more about council here

The Sunday Slowdown and Potluck Picnic

Sunday, May 5, 5:30 - 7:00 p.m.

The Sunday Slowdown is the new name for our evening service that blends the ancient and modern with words, music, art, bread, wine, and silence. Ms. Hollaway will preach, we’ll break real bread (not those little wafers) in the celebration of Communion, and Mr. Johnson, Mr. Perrin, and special guest students and parents will serve up some sounds to help us raise our voices in song. Bring a picnic dinner with a little extra to share, and we’ll dine at dusk on the church green. The service will start promptly at 5:30 p.m. Please arrive on time as we have to lock the Mears gate during the service. All are welcome.

8th Grade Rite of Passage Retreat

May 6 - 8 

A heads up that this retreat is coming down the pipeline on May 6 - 8. This year, we’re going to Indian Cove Campground in Joshua Tree. Look for details and permission forms in your inbox during spring break. Also note that later that week (Thursday, May 9) 8th Grade Students and Parents will be in council together following the 8th Grade Rite of Passage Retreat. 

Athletics Update!

The Upper School Track and Field team competed at Washington High this past Thursday. ESLA student athletes had another solid performance including a number of personal bests as well as two school records! The team is now peaking for league prelims on April 25. Coach Jane Hannon is doing a great job putting the team through their paces.

The Middle School Track and Field team competed last Sunday at Palisades Charter. Coach Martha Mauricio is doing a great job with our Middle School student athletes.

The Middle School co-ed soccer team had two hard-fought games this past week. The team looks very strong and features great team work and soccer skill. Coach Stephen Smith is sharing his soccer expertise with a young co-ed squad and they are improving every time they step on the pitch.

Middle School Lacrosse enthusiasts are continuing to drill in hopes of fielding a CIF competitive team next year.

Open Gym continues in both basketball and volleyball as ESLA student athletes are already starting to think about next year as their 2019-2020 schedules are now available.

Sincere thanks to all our parent drivers as well as enthusiastic fans who have attended our contests at venues all over Los Angeles.


Drive Carefully!

Our friends at the Preschool on the FPCH campus would like to remind us to DRIVE SLOWLY AND CAREFULLY during drop-off and pickup. Please be respectful of our neighbors!

The New Third Street EP

Two of ESLA’s very own, Hopkins Henry Hale (AKA “Triple H”) and Peter Colin White III (AKA “Point Break”), Class of 2019, are founding members of the indie rock band Third Street. They just released their second EP, Systems, which consists of four original songs. Hop produced the album soup-to-nuts in his garage, and is planning to major in sound engineering. Hop is also the lead singer and guitarist for the band. Colin is the keyboardist and also features on lead vocals on the song “Distracted.” The album has a diverse range of influences and showcases the breadth and depth of the band’s sound. Give it a listen on bandcamp!

(Please note: if real, physical items like compact discs were still a thing, this one would come with a “Parental Advisory” sticker on it. Don’t tell Hop and Colin’s moms.)

Questions, comments, or submissions? Send them my way:

Until next week,
—Will Litton