Summit School Newsletter


February 4, 2022

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From the Head of School...

Dear Summit School Community,

There is so much happening at Summit School!

We are excited to be moving forward by reviewing the academic data of our students. Student Support Team Meetings have been taking place both before and after school for the past two weeks to set up opportunities for students to receive enrichment or intervention in math and reading. We are working to build in as many of these academic experiences as we can this year, as we look forward to a solid plan in 2022-23. If your child will be working with Mrs. Danforth or Miss Jones, you will be contacted.

We will continue to review our data on a regular basis so that we can be sure everyone has the opportunity to make a year's worth of growth. We will start 2022-23 strong with enrichment and intervention in place.

We are also celebrating our amazing athletics, activities, and events this winter. Our flag football and volleyball teams are working hard and having fun with their seasons. Our Robotics program is looking forward to upcoming state tournaments. In addition, Summit School is opening up our campus on Saturday, February 12 for a pop-up playground event. We hope to see many current and future families join us.

Enrollment is open! Don't forget that you have until February 15 to receive tier 1 tuition rates for 2022-23. Spread the word that we have new programs including toddlers and preK.

Thank you for all you do.


Dr. Stephanie Nardi

Enroll Now

Tax Credits

Summit Parents,

The Institute for Better Education, IBE has released their 2022-23 Application. In order for IBE to send processed tax credits to Summit during the 2022-23 school year, please complete and return directly to IBE at or you may complete the application online at prior to June 1st. IBE cannot send processed tax credits to Summit for July’s tuition until the application is submitted.

In addition, please see the attached flyer for the upcoming IBE Tax Credit webinars. Below is the link to IBE’s registration for their webinars on February 10th.

IBE 2.10.2022 Tax Credit Webinars The link is for all three webinars, although anyone can join in at any time once registered if they do not need all three.

They will present the following webinars at the times below:

  • Planning for Private School (5:30 pm): This webinar is for families who are not already in private school but would like to solicit Recommended Funds prior to attending. Great for potential families!
  • Tax Credit 101 (6:30 pm): This is the life of a tax credit, from donation through scholarship. Great for everyone!
  • Soliciting Funds (7:30 pm): This takes a deeper dive into how to solicit for Recommended Fund Scholarships. Great for anyone who wants to focus on Recommended Funds!
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Pop Up Playground at Summit

Join Summit School for a morning of open ended creating, tinkering, building and play as we open up our field and fill it with items big and small that can be transformed into fabulous creations with the power of play, collaboration and creativity. Families with children of all ages are welcome to explore the materials, use them to build out their ideas and dreams and see how many open ended materials are used in Summit’s Art program and classrooms. This event is open to the public and is the perfect opportunity to see what makes Summit such an exceptional community
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Staffing Updates for 2022-23

  • Colleen Eckles will reduce her teaching load to grades 3-8 and Summit School will be hiring an additional art teacher for PS-2.

  • Andrea Yocum will return to Summit School faculty as the full-time grade 5 teacher.

  • Christine Odenkirk will become our Summit School Reading Specialist beginning in 22-23.

  • Rachel Jones will move into a preschool teaching position in PreK.

  • Kat Glover will move into a first grade classroom.

  • Ashley Poole will be moving on to her next teaching adventure and the middle school math position is posted.

  • We currently have openings for MS math, MS language arts, grade 1, kindergarten, PS-2 visual art, and a full-time toddler teacher.

  • There are also other support positions posted on our Summit School website.

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Go Sabrecats!

The middle school flag football team is ranked #1 in their division and are currently 5-0!
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Come check out kindergarten at Summit School!

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Preschool Field Trip

The Summit Preschool Lemonade Bunch got one step closer to their Lemonade Stand. Today with the help of their parents they took a field trip to our local Safeway. We got a tour of the store and met all the department managers. Then we took our shopping list and went shopping!! We wanted yellow table clothes, and they were out. We discussed what we could do and decided to go with Summit blue and white!

End of the Day Safety Reminder

It is incredibly important that Summit School is a safe and supervised environment from the beginning to the very end of our day. If you are coming to school to pick up multiple children, please do not allow your children to play unsupervised on the playgrounds. Our staff is not scheduled to monitor these areas and we don't want any of our students to be injured. We appreciate your help.

In addition, please be sure to check your emergency contacts and pick up lists on FACTS. It is incredibly import that these stay current. Thank you.

Green Screen Time!

Summit School fourth graders had a great time working with green screens in technology class.

TAB Speaker Coming Soon!

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We Make Summit Amazing!

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Rachel Jones, Reading Teacher

My name is Rachel Jones and I am the Reading Teacher here at Summit. I have my Bachelor’s degree in English Literature from Grand Canyon University and my Master’s degree in Early Childhood Education from Arizona State University. I was fortunate to be assigned to Summit School for my practicum hours (interning and student teaching) and to come to Summit as a full-time teacher this past fall!

I love everything about early childhood, but my favorite subjects to teach are Reading, Language Arts, and Social Emotional skills. I have always had a passion for working with young children and I am very much looking forward to being a classroom teacher again this upcoming school year!

Outside of school, my hobbies are kickboxing, hiking, reading, and cooking. I also love to travel and spend time with my family and friends. At home, I have an adorable pet rabbit named Fig and an outrageous number of houseplants.

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Erin Vosseller, Kindergarten Teacher

This is my 23rd year of teaching and I’m proud to be a Sabrecat! I began teaching here when it was called TesseracT, teaching in a third grade classroom. I moved to kindergarten soon after and haven’t looked back! Kindergarten has been my favorite grade to teach because there is just something so magical about their curiosity, their excitement for learning, and the growth they make during the year. I graduated Magna Cum Laude with my bachelor’s degree in Elementary Education with minors in Fine Arts, French, and Social Sciences from the University of Arizona.

I enjoy learning so I am always pursuing continuing professional development opportunities. I am passionate about incorporating project work with children and have spent many hours with Dr. Judy Harris Helm to learn how to incorporate it into the classroom.

Last March, I adopted what I thought was a puppy, but it turns out I adopted a baby moose instead. His name is Orion and he just turned 1 in January. When I’m not working or spending time with my friends, family, or my mini-moose, I enjoy crafting, reading, tap dancing, traveling, and paddle boarding and kayaking on lakes and rivers around Arizona.

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David Preston, Grade 3 Teacher

Hi my name is David Preston, one of the 3rd grade teachers at Summit. This is my first year at Summit but my 15th year in education. I am an Arizona native and graduated from Northern Arizona University with my bachelor’s in Elementary Education. I have two amazing kids, Ben who is 7 and Lily who is 3. Both attend Summit. I have a beautiful wife Jennifer, who is a practicing physician at Banner University.

I grew up knowing I had passion for kids at a young age and even after 15 years in the education field that passion still exists. I love helping students set and achieve goals they didn’t know were possible. Watching my students grow and become more confident in their abilities makes teaching enjoyable and exciting every day.

Outside the classroom I enjoy spending time with my family, being outdoors, and woodworking. I have a particular interest in coaching my kids in sports, rock climbing, guitar, and golf.

Committee Membership Opportunities

Sabrecat Athletics Committee

If you are interested in being a part of the planning, marketing, and support of our Summit Sabrecats Athletics Program, please consider joining our Sabre Athletics Committee. Current members include Mr. Pray, Mr. Hough, Mr. Moreno, Dr. Nardi, and Heather Thomas. We are seeking one or two new members. Please reach out to our athletic director, Mr. Moreno, at

Diversity & Inclusiveness Committee

Summit School is hoping to create a committee of volunteers to work on supporting a diverse and inclusive school environment at Summit School. If you are a professional in a related field, an interested community member, or just have great ideas for diversity and inclusiveness opportunities please reach out to Dr. Nardi or Mary Oakley We would like to meet monthly with a committee of 5-7 members.

Camp Summit Returns in 2022!

Find All-New Adventures at Camp Invention in 2022

STEAM Opportunities for Grades 1-8

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A complex, but fun, example...

Rube Goldberg Soap Challenge
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COVID-related Absences

Please communicate all COVID-related absences to both and your child's homeroom teacher. The teacher will then reach out to you within 24 hours to set up a plan for your child's academic success during the absence.

Masking at Summit School

Face coverings should be 2-ply masks that cover the mouth and nose, and fit snugly. Any images or messages on masks must be school-appropriate. Masks with exhalation valves, neck gaiters, bandanas, or face shields are not approved, per the CDC and not approved for use at Summit. (Health and Safety Guidelines, p. 4). Please be sure that your child has a mask and a spare at school each day. Masks frequently get lost, wet, or damaged. A back-up is a good idea.

Summit Apparel Store

Gear up with back to school apparel! Check out the Summit apparel store for customizable shirts, pants, and accessories with your favorite Summit logos!


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Referral Credits

Our families are Summit’s best advocates and we appreciate when you share your Summit story with family and friends. We ask for your help in continuing to spread the word about Summit School!

In addition to helping create a thriving community of learners, Summit School has temporarily increased the Referral Credit from $500 to $1,000 as a credit toward your tuition liability for each newly enrolled student of a new family. This temporary increased referral credit amount is for new students (not applicable for siblings of current students or for returning students) that enroll between April 12, 2021 and March 11, 2022. Each credit is applied to your FACTS tuition account after the new family makes two tuition payments for the new student(s). During these stated dates there are no limits to the number of referral credits you may earn by supporting our school! Please contact Summit Admissions or Business Office if you have any questions regarding the family referral program.

Note: Referral credits of $600 or more require the completing of a W-9 form claiming the income. Referral credits are not applicable for voting members of the Board of Trustees.

Follow Chips and Salsa @chipsandsalsa_tortoise

Follow Sabrecat Athletics @summitathleticsaz

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