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Preparing for the School Year

We are thrilled to have you in our Asheville School community!
Please refer to this webpage for answers to questions and essential information for all students and families joining us for the 2024-2025 school year. We hope you find these resources helpful as you prepare for school during the summer months. We are eager to welcome everyone to campus for an incredible school year.

Information for Students & Families

Summer Communications
New and returning families will receive regular communications throughout the summer from various departments to prepare you for the Asheville School experience. You can view our communications timeline here.

  • Be on the lookout for Summer News from Asheville School in mid-June, mid-July, and early August.
    • This communication provides general community updates and consolidates summer departmental communications for a one-stop resource.

School Year Communications
Asheville School issues a weekly Friday News from Asheville School to families to share student achievements and school updates. In addition to this weekly communication, you can expect to receive departmental notices and direct communication from advisors, teachers, and coaches.

Please make sure contact information is up-to-date in the School Portal for each parent or guardian who needs to receive important information from Asheville School. We communicate primarily via e-mail, so we kindly ask that you regularly check school communications to stay informed. If you have any questions about communications from Asheville School, please e-mail [email protected].

Advisor Outreach
Your student’s advisor is the primary point of contact for families, providing a reliable source of information and answering any questions about the school and its programs. Returning students and families can find their student’s advisor listed in the School Portal under their child’s profile, where you can also access their course schedule, advisory group, and activity information.

  • New students and families, to help us make informed decisions about an advisor match, we ask that you complete this brief questionnaire here by June 15, 2024. Your attention to detail will contribute to supporting a smooth transition to Asheville School. Your feedback is invaluable to us, as we aim to provide tailored support, mentorship, and guidance to ensure your students’ well-being and success.

Safesender Emails
We recommend adding the following e-mail addresses to your Safesender e-mail list to ensure you receive important school messages through our communication platforms:

At Asheville School, the Advisor plays a pivotal role as both a mentor and trusted contact for students and their families. Advisors are dedicated to fostering their mentees’ personal and academic growth, offering guidance and support throughout their school journey. Through regular communication and personalized attention, Advisors help ensure that students thrive in the school’s community and that families stay well-informed and engaged in their child’s educational experience. Additionally, all students are part of intentionally small advisory groups that meet weekly with their advisor to build community, ensuring a supportive and closely-knit environment. Advisory time offers students the opportunity to bond with peers, review important school information, prepare for course registration, and engage in other valuable activities.

The School Portal is the hub of school resources for parents and the school community. You will find archives of e-mail communications, calendars, daily schedules, college counseling resources, grades, and more.

Parents

  • You should login to the portal using the same credentials you used to submit your student’s online application.

New Students

  • If you have logged into the portal, please use the same e-mail address and password that you have used previously.
  • If you have not logged into the portal, you will need to set up your credentials (called a “Blackbaud ID”) by following the links in an invitation email that you will receive from Asheville School. If the school does not have an e-mail address for you, please have a parent contact our Admission Office to provide us with an email address we can use for you.
    • Note: Students cannot have the same email address as a parent.
  • New students will receive their Asheville School e-mail addresses once they arrive on campus in August.

Returning Students: 

  • Please login to the portal using your Asheville School student e-mail address.

Blackbaud ID Instructions

  • Click here to view a detailed guide with instructions for setting up your portal login using Blackbaud ID.

Orah
Ensuring student safety and accountability is our top priority for the faculty and staff at Asheville School. To enhance our ability to monitor student movements on and off campus, we utilize a student engagement platform called “Orah.” By combining their software with our existing procedures, we can better care for our students with increased efficiency and oversight. Asheville School uses Orah to complete online forms, monitor student passes, conduct daily attendance rolls, and issue emergency communications via Orah Safeguard.

Parents will interface with Orah to approve various forms and school leave passes. To enable this functionality, each household must have at least one parent connected to the student using a ‘parent account’ within Orah. Ideally, each parent in a household will have their own account registered. Details regarding the registration process for new accounts will be provided in the summer.

Additional information about Orah for Parents can be viewed here.

Orah Safeguard
Orah Safeguard is our emergency communication system through the Orah platform. Orah Safeguard enables us to promptly and effectively communicate important information in the event of emergencies or urgent situations to our school community via e-mail, push notification, and text message. To initiate emergency communications, Asheville School initiates an Emergency Roll within Orah that pushes notifications to students, faculty, staff, and parents informing them of the situation at hand. Simultaneously, the Emergency Roll provides the ability to account for students in real time.

Ordering Textbooks
Asheville School partners with MBS Direct, a subsidiary of Barnes & Noble, to manage and maintain our online bookstore. MBS Direct offers both new and used textbook options, as well as textbook rental options for some titles. The online bookstore and 24-25 textbook course list will be available mid-summer. We will provide details to students and families regarding the ordering process once the store is live.

  • Summer Reading Bookstore: Opens by June 1st
  • 2024-2025 School Year Bookstore: Opens on July 5th
    • Families are not required to purchase textbooks from MBS Direct, but we do strongly recommend that you use this vendor. If you do choose to purchase books from another vendor, you must make note of the correct ISBN numbers for each textbook.

2024-2025 School Supplies List

  • Pens, pencils, erasers (with a pencil bag/pouch)
  • Starter supply of paper (lined and graph)
  • 3-ring binders: D ring with clear cover pocket on front (1.5″)
  • A few spiral notebooks
  • Assignment book or planner
  • Seat cushion for desk chair
  • Ruler
  • Backpack (wide enough to carry a few textbooks and binders at the same time)
  • Index cards (3 x 5) for flash cards or a box of blank flash cards
  • Laptop cover for MacBook Air
  • Calculator – TI-83+, 83+ Silver Edition, 84+, or 84+ Silver Edition

Many of the items listed are available in the School Store for purchase.

Math Department Calculator Policy
Calculators are an essential tool for most math and science courses at Asheville School. All Asheville School students are required to have a Texas Instruments calculator of model 83+ or 84+ (any version of those basic models). Students are required to have the calculators in class with them each day unless otherwise noted by the teacher.

All new Asheville School students receive a 13” Apple MacBook Air with 8GB RAM and a 256 GB Hard Drive on opening day. This computer will come preloaded with Microsoft Office 365, and all students will use it for their classwork. Families will not be asked to pay for these laptops while in use at Asheville School.

If a student would like to bring another computer to use in addition to the school-provided laptop, it must be cleared with the Technology Department. Please contact our Technology Department ([email protected]) with any questions.

It is hard to know exactly what to bring when packing for boarding school. It is important to remember that less is often more. Students stay busy at Asheville School, and fewer items in the room make it easier to keep it clean and organized. Weekly room inspections are a part of dorm life and happen at least twice a week for students. We strongly encourage labeling your student’s items in case they are misplaced, especially jackets or blazers. Additionally, please think carefully before sending expensive clothing or expensive personal items with your student.

You can view a recommended packing list here.

Room Assignments
Students will receive room assignments upon arrival at Asheville School for check-in for the 2024-2025 school year. Each dorm room includes a bed, XL twin mattress, desk, desk chair, trash can, recycling bin, and dresser. The height of all beds can be adjusted. All dorms are equipped with air conditioning.

Room Layouts
For reference, dormitory hall room layouts can be viewed here.

Room Amenities

  • Each dorm room includes a bed, XL twin mattress, desk, desk chair, trash can, recycling bin, and dresser.
  • The height of all beds can be adjusted.
  • All dorms are equipped with air conditioning.
  • The school provides blinds for dorm room windows.
    • Curtains are optional for decorative purposes. The window dimensions are as follows:
      • 1st Lawrence: 96” x 84”
      • 1st Anderson: 48” x 72”
      • 2nd & 3rd Lawrence and 2nd & 3rd Anderson: single – 48” x 63”, double – 96” x 63”
      • Kehaya: inside dimensions – 64” x 64” (rod to floor – 95″)

The Day Student experience differs slightly from the traditional Boarding Student requirements; however, our Day Students are required to partake in activities outside of the academic day. Please view our Day Students FAQ here to familiarize yourself with Day Student expectations.

Student class schedules will be available in the School Portal — usually sometime in July.

Over the summer, our Registrar will be working to build the academic schedule; adjustments to that schedule and to class enrollment will continue right up until the first day of school to ensure that sections are balanced and that students are enrolled in the appropriate courses. For that reason, student schedules are subject to change up to (and even just after) Opening Day.

After classes begin, all students will have the opportunity to modify their schedules if necessary. That process requires the input of the student’s advisor, the relevant teachers, and the student’s parents. The “Drop/Add” window closes after the first mid-trimester grades are released in late October.

The English and History Departments have prepared a selection of thought-provoking books for Summer Reading assignments. These classic and contemporary literary works will set students up for compelling and intriguing discussions upon their return to the classroom this fall. Details about summer reading assignments can be found here.

Each summer, we ask new and returning families to complete a variety of online forms as part of the enrollment or re-enrollment process. We greatly appreciate you taking the time to complete these often tedious forms; we can assure you that they are important and helpful as we work to make your student’s experience at Asheville School safe, productive, and worthwhile.

Annual Forms Summary

Form

Location

Submitted By

Regarding

Fall Activity Preference

School Portal

Student

NEW STUDENTS

Camping Trip Waiver

School Portal

Parent AND Student

NEW STUDENTS

Student Profile Update

School Portal

Parent

NEW STUDENTS

Records Release

School Portal

Parent

ALL 12th GRADE STUDENTS

Parking Application

School Portal

Parent

ALL DAY STUDENTS

Laptop Agreement

School Portal

Parent

ALL STUDENTS

Riding Permissions

Orah

Parent

ALL STUDENTS

Public Transportation Permissions

Orah

Parent

ALL STUDENTS

Driving Permissions

Orah

Parent

ALL DAY STUDENTS

Transportation & Arrival Information

Web Form

(linked from within the School Portal)

Parent OR Student

ALL STUDENTS

(Day & Boarding)

Health Forms

Magnus Health (linked from within the School Portal)

Parent

ALL STUDENTS


Accessing Forms

  • To access the forms that are found in the School Portal, log into your portal account and look for the yellow banner at the top of the page indicating that you have forms that need to be completed.
  • To access the forms that are located within Orah, login your Orah account and click the plus sign (+) in the menu list at the top of the page and select “New Form.”
  • The Magnus Health forms can be accessed by parents from the “Magnus Health” tile on the Resources page within the School Portal.

Should you encounter any issues accessing the forms or require assistance, please contact our Student Life Office ([email protected]).

Magnus Health Portal
Asheville School uses Magnus Health Portal to provide and securely collect all student health forms and information for the school year. The Magnus Health Portal can be accessed from the “Magnus Health” tile on the Resources page within the School Portal.

Insurance
All students are required to have sufficient United States-based medical insurance that will provide health care coverage in the state of North Carolina while attending Asheville School. A copy of the insurance information and insurance card must be submitted to Magnus Health Portal.

For international students, Asheville School partners with Clifford Allen Associates who utilizes the United Health Care network to provide a comprehensive policy to meet insurance requirements. International students must purchase this insurance. Please keep in mind that Supplemental Travel Insurance does not provide sufficient coverage for students. Additional details and instructions to enroll in an insurance plan with Clifford Allen Associations can be found here.

Preseason for invited varsity athletes is designed to give our varsity coaches and Blues athletes time to build team camaraderie, sportsmanship, team dynamics, and prepare for the upcoming fall athletic season. All Blues athletes are expected to fully participate in every aspect of the preseason, which includes attending all practices and required meetings. Invited preseason athletes will receive details from our Athletic Director Ms. Sarah Bednar and their coaches throughout the summer.

Preseason Dates

  • Sunday, August 4: Invited Varsity Football athletes return between 10:00 a.m. – 12:00 p.m.
  • Friday, August 16: Invited Varsity athletes (Boys’ and Girls’ Cross Country, Girls’ Field Hockey, Boys’ Soccer, Girls’ Tennis, Girls’ Volleyball) return between 10:00 a.m. – 12:00 p.m.

Should you have any questions about preseason athletics, please contact Ms. Sarah Bednar ([email protected]).

The school year officially kicks off on Thursday, August 22 with Opening Day and Orientation. Full details about our Opening Day and Orientation schedule will be available in early August.

The Third Form Wilderness Trip is a long-standing tradition at Asheville School that encourages students to get-to-know their new community and embrace their spirit of adventure as they begin their journey here. Third Form students will depart for this backpacking experience Friday, September 6 at Green River Preserve – a privately-owned wilderness area known for its lush, biodiverse forests, granite rock features, and crystal clear Green River near Hendersonville, NC. Students will be in small groups of 10 students and three Asheville School faculty. Students return to campus on Sunday, September 8. The Wilderness Trip focuses on the following goals:

  • Bond with peers and faculty through shared experiences
  • Establish a fun and positive tone for your time at Asheville School
  • Familiarize yourself with Asheville School’s core values, such as being part of an inclusive community and building resilience
  • Enjoy the world-renowned beauty of the Blue Ridge Mountains

Third Form students and families will receive additional details about the trip experience in July. Please review the packing list here.

Should you have any questions, please contact our Director of Mountaineering Ms. Zoe Manickam ([email protected]).

About Green River Preserve
Asheville School has established a partnership with Green River Preserve to provide opportunities for our student community to gain an appreciation for the great outdoors. Green River Preserve inspires environmental stewards by offering high-quality, intentional, experiential learning opportunities that spark diversity of thought and creativity through their enriching summer camps and expeditions. We invite you to learn more about Green River Preserve’s educational philosophy and program offerings here.

On September 7th , the Fourth Form class and Asheville School faculty supervisors will embark on a rafting adventure down the French Broad River organized and run by the Nantahala Outdoor Center. The rafting trip is a required form outing and part of an initiative to give each student an authentically Appalachian experience all while bonding with their classmates. We look forward to setting an energetic tone right from the start of the year!

The fun and splashy five-mile river ride on Class II-III whitewater will take our students down the world’s third oldest river, flowing through the scenic Pisgah National Forest in the mountains of Western North Carolina. Each raft will consist of six paddlers, and while this level of whitewater is considered low-risk and is advisable for children, each boat will be staffed by a guide from the Nantahala Outdoor Center.

Additional details about the trip itinerary will be shared in August. All students should bring a change of clothes and a towel, as well as appropriate shoes that will stay securely on their feet during the trip.Parental and/or guardian permission is required for your child to participate in this activity and must be completed by 9:00 a.m. ET on Monday, September 4, 2024. To grant permission, please log into the School Portal and complete the 4th Form Trip – Rafting Trip Agreement. You can access the form via the yellow banner upon logging into the School Portal. By completing the form, you give permission for your child to participate on the excursion and authorize an Asheville School representative to sign the Nantahala Outdoor Center liability waiver on your child’s behalf.

On September 7th, the Fifth Form class and Asheville School faculty supervisors will light up the Smokies with rides, slides, music, food, and laughter. Dollywood offers more than 50 world-class rides, high-energy entertainment, award-winning dining, and the friendliest park atmosphere in the world! The park is nestled in the shaded beauty of the Great Smoky Mountains in Tennessee. The trip is a required form outing and part of an initiative to give each student an opportunity to bond with their classmates.

Additional details about the trip itinerary will be shared in August. All students should bring a change of clothes, sunscreen, and appropriate shoes, as plenty of walking will occur… or running, depending on how fast they want to get to the next ride!

On September 7th, the Sixth Form class and Asheville School faculty supervisors will venture out on a tubing voyage down the Green River, a tributary of the Broad River, organized and run by Green River Cove Tubing in Saluda, NC. The tubing trip is a required form outing and part of an initiative to give each student an authentically Appalachian experience all while bonding with their classmates.

The fun and adventurous two and a half-mile river ride on Class I-II whitewater rapids will take our students down the dam-release river, flowing through the scenic North Carolina Mountains of Western North Carolina. Additional details about the trip itinerary will be shared in August. All students should bring a change of clothes, sunscreen, and a towel, as well as appropriate shoes that will stay securely on their feet during the trip.

Parental and/or guardian permission is required for your child to participate in this activity and must be completed by 9:00 a.m. ET on September 4, 2024. To grant permission, please log into the School Portal and complete the 6th Form Trip – Tubing Trip Agreement. You can access the form via the yellow banner upon logging into the School Portal. By completing the form, you give permission for your child to participate on the excursion and authorize an Asheville School representative to sign the Green River Cove liability waiver on your child’s behalf.

Helpful Contacts
Sarah Bednar
Sarah Bednar

Director of Athletics and Afternoon Activities

Carl Boland '99
Carl Boland '99

Humanities Department Co-Chair

Ray Edmond
Ray Edmond

Assistant Head of School for Student Life

Caroline Fleming
Caroline Fleming

World Languages Department Chair

Kate Janson Foltz
Kate Janson Foltz

Associate Dean of Students

McNair Johnson
McNair Johnson

Director of Academic Affairs

Christine Jones
Christine Jones

Science Department Chair

Van Kussrow '82
Van Kussrow '82

Registrar

Kellett Letson
Kellett Letson

Director of Health and Wellness Services

Jacob O'Brien
Jacob O'Brien

Math Department Chair

Chris O'Steen
Chris O'Steen

Humanities Department Co-Chair

Nate Sell
Nate Sell

Chaplain

Hanes Swingle
Hanes Swingle

Director of Finance