Jim Andersen, Head of Upper School

September 29, 2023

“Home is a people, not a place.”

― Abhijit Naskar

I love this quote because it helps me describe my idea of Homecoming. Ultimately, the memories we build are our experiences with each other. Experience Homecoming at Oakridge this week. Dress in spirit wear, attend the parade, go to the football game, have fun at the Homecoming dance, and enjoy the people in your life!

  • Progress Report 1.2
  • Homecoming Dress and Spirit Days
  • Homecoming Dance
  • HOCO Mum and Garter
  • 9th Grade Trip
  • Last Friday early dismissal at 12:00
  • PSAT & Practice Digital PSAT  
  • Winter Musical Auditions 
  • Debate Results
  • Check out procedures- updated email link
  • Campus policy

PROGRESS REPORT 1.2: The second academic progress report of the year is now on your parent/student portal. To access your child’s grades, log in to My Backpack and click on Marking Period Grades and Comments. Comments are accessed by clicking on the magnifying glass icon for each class. These grades are a benchmark of your child’s academic progress, and it is important to discuss their grades and goals with them. Two weeks remain in the first nine-week marking period.  

HOMECOMING DRESS AND SPIRIT DAYS  Show your spirit during this special week by dressing in the theme of the day. All dress must adhere to our non-uniform dress expectations in the handbook. Students may choose to wear their uniforms. 

Monday- Barbie: Life in the DreamHouse- Country vs. Country Club

Tuesday- Brady Bunch Day- It’s a blast from the past, come dressed in 70’s attire

Wednesday- It’s Bluey Day! Come dressed head to toe in blue

Thursday- ESPN Day- Wear your favorite sport jersey or t-shirt

Friday- HOMECOMING- Wear your homecoming shirt or Oakridge spirit wear

HOMECOMING DANCE: The homecoming dance is Saturday, October 7 in the MAC on campus from 7:00-10:00 pm. Non-Oakridge students need to have a guest form to attend. The guest forms are in the Upper School office. The cost of the dance is $15.00. You may pay online here or in the US office. Join the fun where “Everyone knows your name!” Dances are a great time to spend with friends and meet new ones. Many students have a date, but many more come alone or with friends. Don’t miss this opportunity. For our students’ safety, if a student needs to leave before 9:30pm, Mr. Andersen needs to speak with a parent before departure.

HOCO MUM AND GARTER: Homecoming week is October 2-6. Game day is Friday, October 6. Mumstar is one local vendor for mum and garter needs.  


FRESHMAN CLASS TRIP: We are excited to spend off-campus time together with our wonderful 9th graders! Please note we will spend November 13-16 for terrific team building and relationship-building time at The Outdoor School in Marble Falls. The detailed trip letter is accessed here. The shared stories/experiences and time spent together yield benefits for years to come.  

LAST FRIDAY:  Last Fridays in the Upper School are perfect for programming, fun, and relationship building. Many takeaways our students get from their Oakridge experience do not appear on a transcript but are perhaps even more critical for their futures. Last Fridays are not optional. We dismiss at noon on Friday, September 29. Our Student Council provides pancake breakfast, we have an advisory activity, and our counselor, Jennifer Novoselsky, visits with our various grade levels.  

PSAT: On Friday, September 29, at 12:30 pm, College Advising will offer a practice digital PSAT. Beginning this year, the PSAT 8/9 and PSAT are only given in digital format. On Wednesday, October 11 grades 9-11 take the PSAT.  Seniors who registered take the SAT.  If a senior is not taking the PSAT they do not need to arrive to school until 11:30.  The rest of the day is designed to let everyone decompress.  We will have pizza lunch provided and have our annual dodgeball tournament.

WINTER MUSICAL AUDITIONS: Musical Auditions are next Monday, October 2nd! We will begin auditions at 2:00 for those who have sports after school. If there is absolutely no way to make a time work between 2:00-5:00, please speak to Mr. Stewart. Those wishing to audition should sign up for a time outside the music offices and pick up the audition and rehearsal agreement.

DEBATE RESULTS: Congratulations to Oakridge debaters who performed at the Jesuit Scrimmage on Saturday, September 23, 2023. The following students received TOP SPEAKER points in their victory round:

  • Sofia Greenberg (round 1)

  • Praew Vilawan (round 1)

  • Marie Perdue (round 1)

  • Zachary Rogers (round 3)

Team results were as follows:

  • Oakridge Team Greenberg-Vilawan won their round 1 match on the affirmative as judged by Meredith MacLeod of Plano Sr. High School, accumulating 52 of 60 possible points.

  • Oakridge Team Perdue-Wheeler also won their round 1 match on the affirmative as judged by Aaron Matthew of Lebanon Trail (Frisco) High School, accumulating 54 of 60 possible points.

  • Oakridge Team Rogers-Taylor won their round 3 match on the affirmative as judged by Gavin Watts of Wylie High School, accumulating 57 of 60 points.

CHECKOUT PROCEDURES: Anytime a student needs to leave campus early a parent must email Ms. Halbert- Blake to let the US office know. Once the office knows, the teachers are notified and then the student can dismiss from the class without disrupting the teacher and be on time for their checkout. It is best practice to give 24 hours notice. Giving less than an hour notice may result in classroom disruption and delayed dismissal. 

CAMPUS POLICY: Parents please support us in our updated security policies. All students and families must have a car tag on their rearview mirror, deliveries from outside vendors are not allowed, parents may deliver to the Admissions office and text their child to pick up delivery from the main office as soon as possible. Parents may check into the main office and then proceed to any appointments scheduled on campus. We are a closed campus. This means students may not leave for study hall and return nor may they leave for lunch and return. If they leave campus it must be with prior parental notification. Appointments should be accompanied by a note to return to school as this ensures the absence is excused.

Please note the dates for the US October Calendar:

The  Upper School Team

Geometry Field Trip



Junior/Kindergarten Buddies









Please save the following dates:

  • October 2: Winter Musical Auditions 2-5p
  • October 6: Homecoming, noon dismissal
  • October 7: Homecoming Dance 7-10 p.m. in the MAC

  • October 11:  PSAT 8/9- PSAT- SAT

  • October 11:  Pizza lunch and Dodgeball tournament

  • October 13 - 16: Oakridge Fall Break - NO SCHOOL, School resumes Tuesday, 10.17

  • October 18: Picture Make-Up Day

  • October 20: Pink Out Day

  • October 24: Ring and Pin Ceremony 10am FAPH

  • October 27: Parent Teacher Conferences- (no classes)

  • November 16: Library closes at 4:00- Librarian’s Conference

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