The Diaspora Potrezebe - Newsletter of the Alumni Association of the American Community School at Beirut, Lebanon.

Reports from ACS

by Catherine Bashshur, Head of School

ACS had 1,003 students registered at the start of the 1996-97 school year.

Letter dated March 21, 1996

We had one of the high school productions on Monday, March 18th, "Crimes of the Heart." The cast was wonderful. One could see a big improvement from the last year -- both the students and faculty have matured. On March 19th, we had the Loud Boom Opera Company presenting "Here Comes Double Trouble." This was an original production written and produced by the third grade students.

Next week we have the Parents' Dinner party at the Commodore Hotel to celebrate the end of the ninetieth birthday year of ACS. The parents have invited all three ministers of education and three other parliamentarians -- the minister of technical education has his son here at school, and we have two other deputies who have children at ACS. Bahia Hariri, who is a deputy in the parliament and also the sister of the prime minister, will also be there. We invited the US Embassy, but they have turned down the invitation because of reasons of security.

We have nine faculty members attending the NESA Teachers' workshop in Egypt -- four of them are presenting workshops.

My recent trip to the US and Canada was a long one but quite productive. The purpose of the trip was manifold. We had a Board of Trustees' meeting in New York on February 9th. Then I spent a week in Canada recruiting teachers from the University of Toronto and the job fair at Queen's University in Kingston, followed by other job fairs in Boston and California. Still can not bring in US citizens.

I also visited with Phyllis and Sam Constan '53 (Trus). Phyllis is the principal of an elementary school in the suburbs of Illinois and I had the opportunity to shadow her for a morning. Sam and I visited two private schools in the Chicago area as well. In addition we had a brain-storming session on school and Board business.

In San Diego I attended the Association for the Advancement of International Education Conference. During the conference all the Regional International Schools throughout the world hold their regional meetings for the Heads of Schools and the Boards of Directors for the various regions. ACS is part of the Near East South Asian (NESA) Council of Overseas Schools. I serve as Secretary of the Board.

In DC I met with the NESA regional officer concerning funding and school-to-school projects (creating an Original Opera for the Elementary School was a NESA-funded workshop which our teachers attended). Also I met with Howard Helman about our ASHA grant. Marianne Buckley '80 arranged a meeting for us with Congressman Lee Hamilton concerning the possibility of obtaining funding for education in Lebanon. The meeting was very upbeat.

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