The Importance of You

Our community is often recognized as one of the many special features of WES. Research shows that a strong school community can lead to increased engagement, motivation, and a sense of belonging among all students. This is why we work hard to create a school culture that sees, nurtures, and values the individual; where differences are celebrated and not just tolerated.

Our community is more than just our students, faculty, and staff; parents are a significant part as well. You play so many essential roles in the life of the school, from volunteering for field trips and the auction and other needs, to participating in strategic planning and the Parent Diversity Committee and beyond.

The Parent Diversity Committee and Zeena Chi (parent to Corinne ’31) were both instrumental in helping us celebrate the Lunar New Year this year, arranging for a classroom visit in Kindergarten, a discussion in the Early Childhood Chapel on Wednesday, and a traditional lion dance performance for Kindergarten-Grade 8 tomorrow, which will be presented by the Tai Yim Kung Fu School.

The Lunar New Year is one of the most important and festive holidays for billions of people worldwide, celebrating the beginning of spring and the start of a new lunar cycle. A lion dance is a traditional performance often seen during Lunar New Year celebrations. The dance is believed to bring good luck and prosperity to the community.

We are deeply grateful for Zeena’s and the Parent Diversity Committee’s leadership role in promoting cultural awareness and building an inclusive community. Our parents create priceless moments and memories for our students, both in enlarging their understanding of different cultures and perspectives and developing pride in our Dragons in their unique heritages.

The Parent Diversity Committee is bringing back the Global Fair later this spring; more details to come. I look forward to celebrating the distinctive backgrounds, cultures, and customs that make our community so special.

Danny Vogelman

Head of School

Grade 8 v. SCOTUS

On January 19, 2023, our Grade 8 Dragons had the opportunity of a lifetime visiting the Supreme Court. The students got a full tour of the Court as well as seeing the “highest court in the land.” In addition to getting a tour, the students talked with a Supreme Court Justice. The Justice not only taught our students the ins and outs of the Court but also provided our students with important life lessons: 

Be Prepared: Be ready for anything, whether it’s for school or even a sporting event. You’ll always achieve more when you’re prepared. 

Never Be Afraid: Don’t be scared to take a risk in life, because most of the time it leads to something even greater. 

These lessons are something our students will carry with them in the classroom and in life. They are very grateful for this wonderful opportunity.  


Lessons to be Learned From a Unisaurus Rex

I walked into the gym this week to find large numbers of dinosaurs had taken over the stage, including a curious one with sequins and a satin horn. It turns out that particular glitter-loving creature was actually a dinocorn (the offspring of a unicorn and dinosaur). Grade 1 was busy rehearsing Roxy: The Last Unisaurus Rex (based on the book of the same title by Eva Chen) to perform in front of their parents and the rest of the school tomorrow. 

After a pandemic-induced hiatus, we are incredibly excited to bring back these annual grade-level performances that begin in Kindergarten. These 20-minute shows are full productions featuring costumes, a live audience, and a little bit of song and dance. 

They are one of the many ways in which we build confidence and public-speaking skills in our students. Most are original productions written by our teachers based on books with age-appropriate lessons.

As I watched a dress rehearsal for Friday, I realized sometimes the best lessons come in the form of a little glitter, a sparkling mane, and a toothy smile. 

Here are three lessons we can all learn from Roxy:

1. It’s OK to be different. 

At the beginning of the story, Roxy is sad because she feels lonely. All of the other dinosaurs at school stick together according to their “kind.” But Roxy is the only Unisauraus Rex. It takes a different type of dinocorn to help her accept herself. 

At WES, we work very hard to help our students to discover their strengths and develop pride in the unique attributes that make them who they are. We believe differences should be celebrated and not just tolerated. 

2. We’re not as alone as we feel sometimes. 

Roxy thought she was all alone. However, she makes a new friend who is a little bit like her and a little bit different. When we really get to know someone, we will discover our similarities as well as our differences. 

3. People deserve second chances.  

In a nice addition added by our Grade 1 teachers, Roxy and her new friend invite everyone to play a game with them. The other dinosaurs join in and have a lot of fun. They realize it doesn’t matter if someone is different from you; they can still be a great friend. Roxy is excited to play with the dinosaurs who previously excluded her. 

As we cultivate a culture of kindness and attempt to live out our motto “Be kind,” sometimes our students may stumble. But our students can learn from their mistakes and continue to become more inclusive. 

This is a powerful performance with a lot of punch – I look forward to seeing our other Dragons across grade levels take to the stage in the months to come. 


Danny Vogelman
Head of School

WES Hosts 2023 Rainbow Families Conference

Washington Episcopal School (WES) is proud to announce that it will host the 2023 Rainbow Families Conference. 

WES believes that differences– whether of race, cultural heritage, gender, sexual identity, religion, or ability– enrich our community and provide valuable learning opportunities for students. We know that diversity of all kinds helps our students enter the world as kind, confident, and prepared global citizens.

As the world increasingly and rightfully supports the rights of LGBTQIA+ individuals and families, WES  stands alongside in welcoming and supporting the LGBTQIA+ community and their families. 

As an Episcopal school, we are aligned with the inclusive perspective and vision of the Episcopal Church, which supports LGBTQIA+ people and their rights to live a life of love and to be contributors and leaders in society. 

All genders, all races, all orientations, all bodies, and all faiths are welcome and supported at Washington Episcopal School. We look forward to hosting Rainbow Families very soon.