School may end in June, but MFS is never quiet; to handle all the happenings at school over summer vacation, Moorestown Friends School has welcomed two new faculty members, Angela Wertner and Martha Cameron, to be co-directors of the summer program this year.
Mrs. Wertner, new this year to MFS as Theatre Director, will expand her role into the summer program as well; in addition to managing Middle School and Upper School productions and teaching theater classes, she will manage the Summer Scholars and Academic Transitions courses.
While Wertner did make some immediate changes to the curriculum, including adding new courses and adjusting the age level for some classes, Mrs. Wertner did not make changes to the basic format of the summer program. She explained, “It is a part of the administration’s goal to keep it very similar and to maintain what has already been produced.”
Wertner further added, “MFS’s camp is unique because it emphasizes academics and a range of educational topics for students to study. MFS’s camp focuses on advancing technology, sciences and mathematics along with some art classes. Students can get more specialized training from great MFS teachers and some insights into one of the top private high schools in New Jersey.”
She also adds that fun summer classes have a unique chance to connect with the youngest students and get them enthusiastic about learning: “Kids can have a lot of excitement when learning academic topics, for example, in ‘cookienomics’, kids can have fun baking breads as well as learning how to earn profits for their own cookie company.”
The other new director, Mrs. Cameron, had previously worked for sixteen years in a private school in central New York. There too, she ran the summer programs, as well as all of the community programs. According to Cameron, her choice to leave that school and come to MFS was motivated by a desire to explore a new environment and nurture a different educational program.
Although Cameron agrees with Mrs. Wertner that it is their job to maintain the program, she also sees a possibility of gradual changes in the future, eventually adding up to large ones. Cameron explained, “It’s one of my goals to see how it’s run this year and to make an assessment of what’s working well, what to keep, what to change and what to offer.”
She said she might make the registration system more user-friendly next year because “a lot of parents are frustrated over the complication of the registration process.” According to her experience, a user-friendly way to register will create better reports and will be easier for parents and administrators.
Cameron would also like to add some classes, filling more time so the children at the camp are always engaged. However, she said “I won’t know that until I see what works and maybe that’s really productive down time and kids need that.”
In addition to managing the MFS summer camp, Cameron is in charge of all other summer programs at MFS, including high classes offered to students for credit. In the past few years, many students have enrolled in the summer chemistry class, offered to rising sophomores, which allows them to get a head start on taking more advanced science courses.
However, since enrollment fluctuates from year-to-year and grade-to-grade, the chemistry class might not always be offered. For now, it seems to be here to stay: “As long as there are more than four people enrolled, I think it’s worth it,” said Cameron.