Kings students make the Honor Roll at The Gilbert School
Written by Debra LaRoche Walls, Dean of Admissions for the International Program at The Gilbert School.
This fall, two siblings from Mexico City, Ana Karen, Grade 11 and Sebastian Ahumada Villa, Grade 8, joined The Gilbert School. Due to the rise of the corona virus in Mexico this summer, their parents Bogart and Laura Balmori, wanted their children to attend an American school in an area with the smallest effect of the virus. Their search brought them to the international program at Gilbert.
After the siblings were accepted to the program in late August, Ana Karen and Sebastian immediately began their studies online to get on track with their school assignments. Upon arrival to Connecticut in early September, the family remained quarantined for the standard two-week time period and then moved to a home in the Highland Lake area. The family is enjoying the experience together. Last month, the family joined the rest of the international students in Wallingford at the Freight Feast event for Halloween.
The students are doing an amazing job in their classes. When asked how Ana Karen is enjoying her experience at Gilbert she replied,
“I feel so welcomed here. Everyone at the school is super nice.”
She is very excited about her classes. Even though she gets a lot of homework she does not find it a struggle. Ana Karen shared that one day she was going to the cafeteria for lunch and she heard a student say, “I hear there is a new girl from Mexico at our school” and I turned around and said, “hey, that’s me!” Ana Karen joined the girls’ soccer team and was thrilled to play in two of the schools’ final games.
When Sebastian was asked how he is enjoying his stay he said,
“Lunch is delicious here! Back home in Mexico we only get snacks for lunch. I never really liked vegetables either but here, I love them.”
Swedish meatballs seem to be an Ahumada Villa favorite. Sebastian also joined the school soccer team and shared that he felt very welcomed by all his teammates and his coach. His only regret was that he wished the season was longer. Sebastian added that he likes the way the Gilbert teachers teach, “they tell us what we have to do and then trust you to do your own work.”
Both Ana Karen and Sebastian also made the Honors list for this semester, with Ana Karen being awarded High Honors by the school Principal. The Honors list is a list of students who have performed exceptionally well and achieved great grades. High Honors is awarded to students who have grades of 3.6 and higher and no C's, and Honors is awarded to students who achieve 3.2 and no grade below a C-.
Mr. Balmori, father of the children, shared that back home in Mexico when he would ask his children, “How was your school day?” They answered, “Ok.” “But here at Gilbert, it is like a whole new world. They go on and on about all the events of their day.”
Their father added,
“I have nothing but excellent comments about The Gilbert School; it’s facilities, its location, its education program, but more importantly about the excellent staff integrated by extraordinary professionals that care for every need of the students and also of the families making us feel welcome in your institution, in your town and in your country. […]"
The Gilbert School program has it all: on-line and presential learning, very high standard professional staff, excellent facilities, AP courses, PSAT exams, labs, sport teams, in a word, there is not a single aspect that Middle School and High School lacks from the widest diversity of wishes and requirements anyone looks to provide the best education to our children. We are very fortunate to have found The Gilbert School and I am sure it will leave a good educational foundation for college and great memories from all the wonderful people which make The Gilbert School.”
Unfortunately, the family will head back home to Mexico in mid-January, to finish their school year. Their Gilbert teachers, friendships that were made, and welcomed addition to the international program, will all miss the academic performance, joy and school spirit that Ana Karen and Sebastian added to our school. We thank them for choosing The Gilbert School and hope they know the amazing mark they will leave on us and that they will always be welcomed by our Gilbert family.