Vol. XXI • Issue 2 • August 17, 2018


Message From The Middle School Principal

Dear Middle School Parents,

With our second successful week of school securely in the books, it’s time to look forward to a short respite with a mid-week break followed by a long weekend. We’ve been busy establishing routines this week as teachers and students alike have started to feel more comfortable with schedules, workloads, and expectations. That said, it will feel great to have a few days off to catch up on family time, get some work finished, and take advantage of opportunities for some relaxation, exercise, and reading. I trust you and your family will do the same.

Here are a few items to be aware of for next week and beyond:

August Holidays: Please remember that there will be no school on Tuesday 21 August for Eid’l Adha, Wednesday 22 August for an additional school holiday, and on Monday 27 August for National Heroes’ Day.

Early Dismissal on Monday 10 September 2018:

Please note that Brent will have a special schedule for classes and an early dismissal at 1 pm from school for students on Monday September 10.

All students will have a lunch period on the day.

There will be no sports or activities after dismissal.

Buses will leave campus at 1:15 pm. All students, including car riders, are required to leave campus no later than 1:15 pm.

Faculty and staff will use the afternoon to take part in an orientation for Brent’s re-accreditation with the Western Association of Schools and Colleges (WASC) from the United States.

Middle School Parent Orientation: On Thursday 23 August there will be a Middle School Parent Orientation from 1:15-3:30 PM. The registration tables open at 1PM. There is no need to register for the Parent Orientation. You can simply show up and take part. At 1:15 PM we have a short organizational meeting in the Lower School Library and will then reconvene in the Atrium at 1:30 PM so students whose parents are attending the Orientation can meet their parents and accompany them for the first four blocks (Blocks A-D). Then, as needed, students can go to their afternoon sports or extracurricular activities at 2:45 PM. We will also follow a regular bus schedule, so students can return home as well.

Your son/daughter has received a letter from me to pass on to you regarding Parent Orientation. In case you don’t get to read that copy, here is the letter in its entirety:

17 August 2018

Dear Middle School Parents,

We are excited to welcome you to Brent for this year’s Middle School Parent Orientation 2018. Please join us on Thursday 23 August from 1:15-3:30 PM to take part in this event. We use a format in which parents attend each of their child’s classes in the two-hour block. We feel this system allows parents to visit classrooms, meet teachers, listen to brief descriptions of each course, and have the opportunity to ask questions.

When you arrive on campus, please go to the registration tables in the Middle School section of the Atrium near the koi ponds to pick up your child’s class schedule and the schedule for the afternoon’s class visitations. The registration will open starting at 1 PM. At 1:15 PM we have a short organizational meeting in the Lower School Library and will then reconvene in the Atrium at 1:30 PM so students whose parents are attending the Orientation can meet their parents and accompany them for the first four blocks (Blocks A-D). Then, as needed, students can go to their afternoon sports or extracurricular activities at 2:45 PM. We will also follow a regular bus schedule, so students can return home as well.

Please be mindful of the purpose of this Parent Orientation: teachers will introduce themselves and speak briefly about the learning objectives and assessment expectations for their courses. Unlike Parent-Teacher Conferences in October when you will discuss your child’s progress with individual teachers, the Parent Orientation is designed primarily to convey essential information about each of your child’s courses and to afford you the opportunity to meet each of his/her teachers.

We look forward to having you join us for “a day in the life of your child” at the Brent Middle School. Please email me with any questions at aohara@brent.edu.ph.

Andy O’Hara

This Week’s Parent Article:  Here’s an interesting article from The New York Timeson Fortnite, the video game you’ve likely heard of but definitely need to know more about. It a guide for non-gamers to learn why this game has taken such a strong hold in the gaming world.

Link Here

Thanks for all your help and support in these first two weeks of school. I look forward to seeing parents on Thursday 23 August.  Please let me know if there is anything we can do to help you. Safe travels during the upcoming holidays.


MS Principal

Andy O’Hara


Here are important sections from previous newsletters that bear repeating

Compilation of Weekly Parent Articles:

Week #1:  I’m continuing this parent education section of the Middle School newsletter after receiving such positive feedback the past two years. Here’s  our first article of the year. Appropriately, it’s about eating and sleeping as important contributors to learning. Please take a few minutes to read this article from The New York Times:

Link Here

Reminder About After-School Supervision: Many middle school students remain after school to attend tutorials or other after-school activities, or they need to wait for older siblings who have extracurricular commitments. All the divisional principals are reminding those students who are not attending tutorials or participating in extracurricular activities or who do not have to wait for a sibling that they need to go home at the end of the academic day. If a middle school student has an academic commitment aside from attending tutorials and wants to stay after school to work with classmates in the library, the student(s) should go the library and stay there to complete the work. Students without after-school commitments are not allowed to remain after school to socialize.

Improvements to the Physical Plant at Brent: You may have noticed a number of changes around campus. We have a newly refurbished theater with increased seating and stage space. The new tennis pavilion is making progress with a projected completion date of 1 September.

A Reminder to Parents Who Travel: If traveling requires you to leave your child/ren in the care of someone else, please complete the Temporary Contact Information form. Sharing it with the office will help Brent better handle any security, medical, or legal concerns that might come up while you are away. The forms are available to pick up in each of the school offices. It can also be printed from our website by visiting the newsletter and school calendar pages. Please give the completed form to the office before you depart for your trip. Thank you!

New Staff: We have a number of new teachers joining the Middle School faculty, including two internal candidates – April Horner and Mark Leatherman – from the ELC. I am pleased to announce the following appointments to our Middle School for this year:

Madee Abala  –  Student Services
Aris Ferrer  –  Student Services
Kara Gabriel  –  Spanish Grades 6-8
April Horner  –  Social Sciences Grades 6 and 7
Jena Jance  –  Science Grades 6 and 7
John Kelley  –  Math Grades 6 and 8
Mark Leatherman  –  Social Sciences Grade 8 and Religious Studies Gr. 6
Zalee Magpily  –  Student Services
Monica Miranda  –  Full-time Substitute
Edwina Paz  –  Student Services


MESSAGE FOR PARENTS OF STUDENTS WITH FOREIGN PASSPORTS: Brent, like all schools in the Philippines, is required to document that ALL students (except for Filipino students) are attending school according to immigration regulations. For this reason, it is very important that we have clear documentation on the visa status for every student.

To this end, we are requiring all students during the end-of-year checkout procedure to fill out the proper form and return it to the school along with copies of their passport’s bio-page, visa page, and latest arrival page. To insure your child can properly enroll for this school year, we need to follow-up on his/her visa status. We have all the support necessary to help with any visa issues, but it is very important we receive the requested information quickly.

Brent International School requires all parents/visitors to sign in and get a visitor’s ID card. Permanent ID cards are available for all parents through the Security Office in the Administration building. When displaying a permanent ID card, parents are no longer required to get a visitor ID card each visit.

Closing of School: Brent International School Manila adheres to the Storm Signal Guidelines established by PAGASA – (the Philippine Atmospheric, Geophysical and Astronomical Services Administration). Accordingly, when storm signals are posted over Biñan, Laguna, classes will be affected as follows:

  • Storm Signal #1 Normal Operation: All Brent classes will proceed as scheduled.
  • Storm Signal #2 No Classes or Activities: No students or teachers are to report, however the school offices will remain open for the day. Administrators and office support staff report as usual if it is safe to do so.
  • Storm Signal #3 and #4 No School: The entire school operation will be closed. No classes, offices or activities will take place.

Please be aware that the storm signal for Laguna is not the same as that of Metro Manila. Weather reports regarding Manila, therefore, may not apply to the conditions at Brent.

Every attempt will be made to contact parents, students and teachers in the event of a cancellation of classes. When available and applicable, we use corporate texts to inform those whose cell phone numbers are registered in our system. If you have not heard from the school, you can assume that classes will happen as scheduled.

If you are still unsure, calling the school at +63-2-779-5140 to 46 or +63-49-511-4330 to 33 after 6:00 a.m. or checking to see if there is a notice on our website (www.brent.edu.ph) may help.

Finally, we realize that parents have the ultimate responsibility for determining whether or not their children go to school. Even if no order for the suspension of classes has been issued, if parents feel that traveling to or from school will place their children at risk, we certainly understand and will honor their decision.