Dear Parents of Freshmen,
On Sunday, September 22, the entire freshman class, accompanied by faculty and the 32 seniors who comprise Senior Forum*, will depart campus for the annual Freshman Retreat at Camp Koinonia in the Santa Cruz mountains. Once there, we’ll hike, participate in a challenge course and evening activities, and spend the night before returning on Monday afternoon in time for afternoon sports and other co-curricular obligations. In anticipation of some tired freshmen, Monday will be a light homework night.
The freshman retreat is an important class bonding event that provides time for the entire class to create a sense of unity and inclusion. Senior Forum leaders ably facilitate much of the retreat, building on the transition and orientation process that began with new student orientation and continues in community forum. Ninth graders practice teamwork, patience, and collaboration on the challenge course, explore new friendships, and learn to be brave by stepping outside of their comfort zone to perform under the stars in a talent show that takes place in a redwood amphitheater. By the retreat's end, students have taken a deeper dive into what it means to practice our school values of safety, respect, trust, inclusion, and belonging.
Please know that all freshmen are expected to participate in this annual bonding experience. Absences will be excused only under extraordinary circumstances and should be cleared in advance with the Dean’s Office. If you have any questions about the retreat, please don’t hesitate to call me at 831-625-8315. The number at Koinonia Conference Center is 831-722-1472 in case of an emergency.
Sunday, September 22
9:30 a.m. Senior Forum leaders assemble on Wilson Field
10:00 a.m. Freshmen assemble on Wilson Field
10:15 a.m. Depart for Camp Koinonia
11:15 a.m. Arrive at Camp Koinonia
11:45 a.m. Lunch
12:30 p.m. Initiatives, activities, challenge course elements, and discussions
5:30 p.m. Dinner
6:30 p.m. Evening Activities
10:00 p.m. Quiet activities in cabins
11:00 p.m. Lights out
Monday, September 23
8:00 a.m. Breakfast
9:00 a.m. Morning Activities
11:30 a.m. Lunch
1:00 p.m. Depart for Stevenson
2:00 p.m. Return to Douglas Hall (approximate time)
- Comfortable clothing for outdoor activities (long-sleeved shirt and jacket for challenge course)
- Layers for warmth – sweater, jacket, sweatshirt (it will be warm during the day and cold at night)
- Tennis shoes
- One change of clothing
Sleeping bag or warm blankets and sheet (if you need a sleeping bag, or have extra ones you are willing to share, please email Sarah Howard at email@example.com)
- Toiletries (keep it simple)
- Medication (prescription or over the counter) should be placed in a labeled package and given to Erik Olson or Aimee Bates
- Playing cards, a book, small board game
- One backpack large enough for all of the above
- Water bottle
- Electronics — Do not bring electronic devices, such as hand-held games, computers, personal music players, or cell phones (Koinonia has no cell reception).
Dean of Students
As part of our Community Forum program, Stevenson has asked all students to participate in this annual retreat. Absences will be excused only under extraordinary circumstances and should be cleared in advance with Erik Olson, dean of students.