The NSC e-Newsletter

November 9, 2022

Big picture

Normandy Students to Premiere Opera November 29

An opera written and performed by Normandy Schools Collaborative students will premiere on November 29 in a unique collaboration with Opera Theatre of Saint Louis, the St. Louis Symphony Orchestra, and the E. Desmond Lee Fine Arts Collaborative at the University of Missouri-St. Louis. The Big Bad Day is an original one-act piece based on the book The True Story of the Three Little Pigs by Jon Scieszka. This is the first student-based arts collaboration of its kind on this scale in the St. Louis metro area.

Based on the national curriculum Music! Words! Opera!, students were led through the creative process of writing and performing their own opera by teaching artist Valerie Smith. In early September, Smith began meeting weekly with NSC Fine Arts Director Suzanne Palmer’s third grade students at Jefferson School.

Once the words were written, Smith, with the students’ input, set the words to music. The music was then shared with local composer/orchestrator Terrence Abernathy who scored the music. This unique project allows students to create an original opera and perform the work in a professional theater along with world-class musicians from the St. Louis Symphony Orchestra.

The Big Bad Day will be performed Tuesday, November 29, in the Anheuser-Busch Theater at the Touhill Performing Arts Center on the campus of the University of Missouri-St. Louis. A 10 a.m. performance will be for student audiences. Students will perform for the community at 7 p.m. Admission is free, and no reservations are required. However, audience members attending the 7 p.m. performance will be invited to make a contribution to the Normandy Schools Collaborative Fine Arts Programs.

Superintendent Search Update

The Joint Executive Governing Board (JEGB) is embarking on a search for the next superintendent of the Normandy Schools Collaborative (NSC) in partnership with the Missouri School Board Association (MSBA). To ensure a strong candidate is identified, a representative from the MSBA conducted focus groups and surveys from September through November to gain input from NSC administrative staff, principals, teachers, parents, and community members.

Input from this outreach identified the following themes for a strong candidate:

  • A focus on student achievement and overall success for students

  • An understanding of the community that encompasses the NSC

  • A strong systems thinker and strategic planner

  • A thoughtful communicator who listens and respects other voices and encourages two-way communication

  • Someone with a long-term commitment to the NSC

  • A unifier who will work to provide stability to NSC and unite the community in their support for the NSC

  • Someone with proven success in their work history

The application period closes on Monday, November 14. All superintendent candidates will be screened once applications are received, after which the JEGB will interview the selected candidates. In addition, a community forum will be scheduled to gather additional input from all stakeholders. After final interviews, the JEGB will select a new superintendent.

The Board will continue to provide updates to ensure transparency throughout the selection process.

NHS Students Make St. Louis All-Suburban Women's Honor Choir

Congratulations to Normandy High School students Cozenna Appleby and Caryln Guthrie on their appointments to the St. Louis All-Suburban Women's Honor Choir! Cozenna and Carlyn auditioned for the honor choir on Saturday, October 5th, at Liberty High School in Lake Saint Louis. After being selected, the two participated in several rehearsals before performing Saturday, November 5th under the direction of Dr. Kevin MacBeth, director of the INUNISON gospel chorus at Powell Hall.

Normandy High School Students Take College Tour

A group of Normandy High School juniors and seniors are hitting the road for a college tour that will take them to schools around the area and show them what life after high school can look like.

Principal Lisa Gray organized the trips that so far have taken about 35-40 students to Tennessee State University, Austin Peay State University, University of Missouri-Kansas City, Rockhurst University, and Harris-Stowe State University. The group plans to visit at least eight more schools, including a cosmetology and barber college and schools that have certification programs like culinary arts, computers, business, etc.

"The goal was to give our juniors and seniors an opportunity to visit the schools prior to them applying," said Ms. Gray. "Many times, if the students can't picture themselves as a student there, why apply?"

The students were selected based on credits, attendance, and discipline. Several staff members also helped chaperone the trips. During the visit to Tennessee State University in Nashville, students were able to connect with recent Normandy graduate Taja Bailey, who was able to share her experience away at school.

"I believe making these connections can be very helpful to the students," said Ms. Gray.

You can see more pictures from the trip on Normandy School Collaborative's Facebook and Instagram.

Job Fair at Normandy High School November 11

Normandy High School and the HSSU Community Impact Network Education Center are partnering for a generational job fair. Parents, family members, as well as anyone in the Normandy community are welcome at the two-day event.

  • Thursday, November 10 - Two sessions of professional development, including resume building and FREE professional dress clothing for all participants at the HSSU Impact Education Center, located at 6850 Normandale Drive. Childcare is also available during the professional development workshops through the Nine PBS Academy for those with younger children.
  • Friday, November 11- The job fair will take place at Normandy High School from 10 am to 2 pm.

Click the link to register for the Professional Development Workshop:

Big picture

NSC Wants Your Feedback

To promote transparency in our district, the Normandy Schools Collaborative has created a vehicle to hear directly from our students, parents, staff, and community. If you have concerns or comments about the school system, we want to hear from you. We value your feedback, positive or negative. Please send us a comment about a recent experience, offer suggestions on how we can improve, or give a shout-out to an employee who deserves recognition for doing a great job. All communications with the district will remain anonymous.

Here is how to connect with us:

Email to have your comment forwarded to the appropriate personnel for acknowledgment within 24 hours.

Call 314-473-0706 to speak with someone directly. This number will be staffed from 8:30 am to 4:30 pm Monday through Friday.

Upcoming Listening Session Scheduled

In an effort to hear directly from families, Interim Superintendent Dr. Crystal Reiter is holding listening sessions. These will be very informal, and a light meal will be provided. All sessions will be held at the district's central office at 3855 Lucas and Hunt Road in either the board room or room 207.

  • November 16- 5:30 p.m. in the Board Room
  • December 8- 8 a.m. in Room 207

We will work to keep these meetings small in an effort to have meaningful conversations and schedule more of these meetings throughout the school year.

Please RSVP to Ms. Lori Thompson if you would like to attend.

Can We Text You? Opt-in For District Text Messages

Emergency school closures? Bus delays? Last-minute schedule changes? It's becoming more common and we can get that information to families & staff quicker via text messaging.

We have to get your permission for you to receive text messages from the district.

Text 'Y' to 68453.

If you have questions, please visit the website or email

*There is no charge to sign up. Your service provider may charge a fee for text messaging depending on your plan.

Normandy Schools Collaborative- Join Our Viking Family Today!

No School- Teacher Professional Development

Friday, Nov. 11th, 7am

3855 Lucas and Hunt Road

St. Louis, MO

Students will not have class on Friday, November 11 due to all-day teacher professional development. Classes will resume on Monday, November 14.