The Spear 2018-19

Scenes from the 2018-19 school year.
Members of the 2018-19 Board of Trustees (L-R): Doug Hargrove, Don Scott, Logan Sharpe, John McDonald, Suzie Roberts, Lisa Kirkpatrick, Benjamin Overby, Lummy Barnes, Elizabeth Hood, Meredith Self, Keela Hyatt, Tony Holt. Not pictured: Doug Adams, Pam Duffy, Rusty Holt, Jonathan Miller, Matt Morrissette, Alan Norton, Anil Patel, David Sellers, Dave Stewart


The 2018-19 school year was a special one at TBS as we opened our new Upper School building, bringing our entire student body to one campus for the first time!

The occasion was marked by a ribbon-cutting ceremony on August 30, 2018. We were proud to welcome members of our board of trustees, parents, family and members of the greater Burlington community to campus for this historic event.

Our new school building has provided greatly-improved space for not only academics, but the arts. We now have a state-of-the-art chemistry lab, a dedicated performance space for our drama and music programs, a college counseling room to host visits from a variety of colleges and universities and well-lit room for our artists to draw, paint and mold pottery.

The day also included a performance by members of the Upper School choir and tours of the building led by our students as seen in photos on the right-hand page. Those in attendance heard from Head of School Ronnie K. Wall, Board of Trustees Chairman Tony Holt and Upper School Academic Dean Killian Barefoot.

Thank you to all who made this building possible!

2019 Graduates


The sixth graduating class of The Burlington School celebrated commencement on Thursday, May 30, 2019, at Elon University’s McCrary Theatre. All 19 seniors have distinguished themselves academically and have made plans to attend colleges or universities. This group of individuals embodies the Spartan mission and they will be missed. We wish them the best of luck in all of their future endeavors.

Scenes from graduation
AAA Awards

As is done every trimester, TBS recognized its final AAA Award winners of the year on the final day of school. During these ceremonies, we honored the success that our students had not only in academics, but in arts and athletics, as well.

In the final ceremony of the year, we presented the Heart Award to the Middle and Lower School recipients. This year’s winner’s were Joshua Leiser and Sophie Seagroves, both pictured below.

At the Upper School’s final honors recognition, awards were also issued for promise and excellence in the core academic subjects. Numerous juniors were presented book awards from various colleges and universities.

Community Feel

For the fifth consecutive year, The Burlington School welcomed a group of students from South Korea to its campus for two weeks in January.

This year’s group of students was able to spend time at TBS, as well as in the greater Burlington community. During their stay, the Korean students had the opportunity to visit Elon University, the University of North Carolina Chapel Hill and Duke University. The students also traveled to the North Carolina Zoo before departing for Washington, D.C., and New York City. The group also faced off with TBS students in a quiz bowl, with the Korean students receiving questions about North Carolina, Burlington and the United States and TBS students answering questions about Korea.

This partnership allows TBS students to learn about Korean culture and life and the visiting students to experience life in the United States. While they were here, each Korean student was paired with at least one TBS student who helped them with everyday activities at the school.

Community service is a large part of life at TBS. Beginning in eighth grade, all students are required to complete at least 20 hours of community service with a non-profit organization.

This year, our students completed over 5,100 hours of service. Projects ranged from helping out at the school, to working with Meals on Wheels, volunteering at church and assisting with a canned food drive.

At the end of March, our students delivered nearly 1,000 cans of food to a local food bank.

Learning Away From TBS

Experiential learning is a key part of the TBS experience. Each fall, our Middle and Upper School students take class trips that allow them to bond as a class, but also to allow them to be exposed to different cultures. Many of these trips feature a service component, including the sophomore class trip to New Orleans where the students spent time at a local food bank (above) and helped to clean up a park.

In the spring, students in grades 8-12 participate in E-mersion term, while students in grades 5-7 take part in WOW Week. These trips and experiences range from scientific exploration at the coast and hiking in the Southwest to movie making, photography, fashion design, cooking and fishing.

Our Lower School students also enjoy various field/day trips throughout the year. They have visited a pumpkin patch, the Duke Lemur Center and the Life and Science Museum.


We incorporate numerous celebrations throughout the academic year at TBS. Among those are the Fall Festival, a Veterans Day performance, May Day and Grandfriends Day.

The Fall Festival was held in October and provided a family-friendly environment that included games, fire truck rides, face painting and a cake walk. Many students wore their Halloween costumes and the Upper School classes each created and ran a different activity at the festival.

November’s Veterans Day program packs the gym annually. This celebration featured choir and handchimes performances as well as drama skits. The first grade’s reenactment of historical paintings was a big hit!

May Day is a TBS tradition that celebrates spring. Our fifth grade students perform the May Pole dance each year and each division of the school is represented on the court. May Day coincides with Grandfriends Day, a time to celebrate our students’ grandparents and special friends.

All About the Arts

December’s annual Holiday Event was yet again a success! Those in attendance were able to hear incredible performances from Broadway’s Melvin Tunstall III and Nikki Renee Daniels. The duo performed numerous hits, including some with our Middle and Upper School choirs, as well as some TBS staff members.

Our students were also able to get time with Melvin and Nikki at school, as the pair worked with groups of students on their acting and singing skills.

The new Upper School building provided a change of venue for our multiple rock ensemble concerts. The gathering space was filled for multiple performances during the year. Both Middle and Upper School students performed pieces during these concerts.

Despite the weather forcing a postponement, the Winter Concert presented by the choral and hand chimes programs was a rousing success.

In a full room, our Middle School hand chimes elective students opened the night with beautiful music. The Upper School choir followed with a mix of winter songs before being joined by the Middle School choir for a medley of Broadway hits.

For the 10th consecutive year, TBS Middle School art students swept all painting awards at the Burlington Women’s Club county-wide student art competition!

Middle School winners in painting were: Ardyn Eggar (1st Place), Walker Black (2nd Place), Taylor Jones (3rd Place), Melanie Hunt (Honorable Mention)

Upper School winners in painting were: Ava Acton (1st Place), Ani Flores-Jasso (3rd Place), Calvin Barefoot-Yeager (Honorable Mention)

In graphics, William Whitley received Honorable Mention recognition.

Art students also racked up 16 awards at the 61st Visual Arts Competition for Young People.

Middle School winners in acrylic painting were: Kaitlyn Colon and Anaya Thomas (1st Place), Taylor Jones and Kaitlyn Colon (2nd Place), Landon Parker and Elizabeth Davis (3rd Place), Melanie Hunt and Ardyn Eggar (Honorable Mention)

Middle School winners in charcoal/graphite drawing were: Mary Alice Massey (3rd Place), Gabrielle White (Honorable Mention)

Best in Show: Melanie Hunt

Upper School winners in acrylic painting were: Ellie Richardson (1st Place), Maddie Reece (3rd Place), Calvin Barefoot-Yeager (Honorable Mention), Andrew Hartle (Honorable Mention) and William Whitley (Honorable Mention)

TBS On Stage

The gathering space in the new Upper School building also allowed for the drama program to hold its fall play on campus. The debut show was “Peter/Wendy” and played to a nearly full house for each performance.

The spring musical was another crowd-pleaser as the drama department put on “Shrek the Musical Jr.” at the Paramount Theater. As usual, this production allowed for school-wide involvement. The cast ranged from grades three through seniors, while fourth grade students spent some time making props. Student artwork was also shown in the lobby the Paramount during the Shrek performance.

Athletic Success

Over the course of the 2018-19 school year, TBS athletic teams garnered six conference titles, six conference tournament crowns and a pair of state championships.

The varsity girls basketball team’s state title was historic as it marked not only the first in program history, but was the first state title in any sport for a TBS girls team. That team finished with a 25-1 overall record and was perfect in conference play. The Spartans won both the regular season and conference tournament titles.

In varsity boys basketball, the team went 24-7 and 10-0 in league play, capturing regular season and conference tournament championships.

In the spring, the girls soccer team gave the school its second state title of the year, completing a 14-3 season with a 3-0 defeat of top-seeded Kerr-Vance Academy. The squad did not allow a goal in the state tournament. The season also included conference regular season and tournament crowns.

The TBS baseball team also captured the regular season and conference tournament titles on its way to a state playoff appearance. The varsity golf team placed third in the state and the track team sent four qualifiers to the combined 1A and 2A state meet. There, Cierra Woods placed second in the discus.

The Middle School boys and girls soccer teams also brought home conference regular season and tournament titles.

At the conclusion of the year, the Spartans Club hands out the Spartan Award to the male and female athletes of the year. In addition, TBS honors a deserving athlete with the Spirit of the Spartan Award. This honor is bestowed upon a student who fully commits to his or her team while staying involved in other areas of TBS life.

Left: Male and Female Spartan Award winners Benjamin Overby and Molina Williams Right: Loryn Payne, President of the Spartans Club; Andrew Hartle, Spirit of the Spartan Award winner and Will Roberson, Director of Athletics

Many of our athletes picked up conference and state awards during the 2018-19 campaign. Below is a list of those students.

Boys Soccer: All-Conference – Connor Gould, Orion McHugh, Benjamin Overby; All-State – Orion McHugh, Benjamin Overby

Volleyball: All-Conference – Molina Williams

Cross Country: All-Conference – Emily Leiser, Keegan Lee, Iain Maxim, Jadon Lewis; All-State – Emily Leiser

Girls Basketball: All-Conference – Elizabeth Rice, Dionne Sampson, Aniyah Vanhook, Molina Williams; Conference Tournament MVP – Aniyah Vanhook; Conference Player of the Year – Aniyah Vanhook; All-State – Aniyah Vanhook, Molina Williams

Boys Basketball: All-Conference – Heath Gulledge (Honorable Mention), Mylyjael Poteat, Ja'Dun Michael, Michael Wade; Conference Tournament MVP – Ji'Lil Michael; Conference Player of the Year – Ja'Dun Michael; Conference Coach of the Year – Will Roberson; All-State – Ja'Dun Michael

Girls Soccer: All-Conference – Mason Connolly, Kaira Cruz (Honorable Mention), Haley Faucette, Allison Mann, Mari' Robinson, Samantha Walker; Conference Player of the Year – Haley Faucette; Conference Coach of the Year – Rick Frampton; All-State – Haley Faucette, Allison Mann, Samantha Walker

Baseball: All-Conference – Tucker Holland, Nate Lutkenhaus (Honorable Mention), Wagner Morrissette, Landon Parker, Cole Powers, Will Stadler; Conference Player of the Year – Tucker Holland; Conference Coach of the Year – Chad Holland; All-State – Tucker Holland, Landon Parker

Boys Golf: All-Conference – Alex Bullis, Will Holt, Connor Massey; All-State – Will Holt, Connor Massey


After capturing a pair of state titles, TBS finished second in the standings for the Wells Fargo Cup for the 2018-19 school year. This matches the school’s best-ever finish in the standings, as the Spartans also placed second in 2014-15. A school must finish in the top eight of a state championship tournament to earn points towards the Wells Fargo Cup standings. The Wells Fargo Cup recognizes overall excellence in high school athletics among NCISAA member institutions.

Athletics at the Collegiate Level

The success of the TBS athletic teams has led to multiple Spartan student-athletes playing intercollegiate athletics. This year, four of our seniors committed to play for colleges.

Dionne Sampson (Salem College), Heath Gulledge (University of Lynchburg) and Elizabeth Rice (Ferrum College) will all play basketball collegiately, while Orion McHugh (USC Upstate) will continue his soccer career.

TBS has now had 21 players continue their athletic careers at the collegiate level.

Field Day

Near the end of each year, the TBS community comes together for Field Day.

This year, the Lower School children competed in a variety of activities, including relays and tug-of-war.

The Middle and Upper School formed teams as grades paired up for contests such as a water balloon toss, dance contest and scooter relays. This year’s Field Day was won by the purple team made up of freshmen and sixth graders.


First grade teacher Stephanie McCabe was honored as the TBS Teacher of the Year for the 2018-19 school year. McCabe is in her second season at TBS. She was also named a finalist for the Excellence in Education Award presented by the Alamance Chamber of Commerce.

Q: Why did you want to become a teacher?

A: During my years as a student at Burlington Day School, I remember being loved, validated and supported. School was my happy place. I developed a passion for learning at the feet of my teachers, who I held in the highest regard, and wanted nothing else than to be just like them. Throughout college, I was encouraged to keep my options open. Nothing seemed to fit and like a bungee cord, I kept coming back to teaching. It was in my soul and part of who I was.

Q: What do you like about teaching at TBS?

A: Two years ago, I returned to my beloved brick school on Greenwood Terrace. While many years have passed from my days as a student, the strong sense of community still resonates throughout each classroom and down every hall. We laugh, love and celebrate all of the big moments together, as well as come together as a family in times of need. The children know that they are loved and supported by every member of the faculty and staff. I also feel fortunate to teach at TBS because of the students and their eagerness to learn. I strive for my students to become independent leaders and learners, and I am able (and encouraged) to teach them on all levels: social, emotional and intellectual. I am so thankful and proud to be part of the Spartan family.

Q: What is something that you did in your class this year that you would like to share with other teachers?

A: My classroom partnered with the Burlington Police Department this year through a pen-pal program we entitled, “Firstie Pals.” My first graders exchanged letters with their buddy each month and were able to meet during a holiday party and an ice-cream social. The positive relationships they created will last much longer than first grade. I feel strongly that serving the community not only exposes my students to the wonderful community in which we live, but also allows them to cultivate pride for their hometown and leave it a better place than it was yesterday.


In February, our Upper School students got to hear from Eric Blaser, an 2011 alumnus of The Elon School who is one of the founders of SalesSync, a voice analytics company. He spoke with the students about his journey and the determination it takes to begin a successful business. After that, Eric provided us with some more information about his company and how his time at The Elon School prepared him for the future.

“We are a voice analytics company that can ingest inbound phone calls and pull anything from them that can be measured. Right now, we’re working in cosmetic medicine – that includes lasik, plastic surgery, dermatology. What we report on are sales metrics. If a doctor spends $10,000 a month on marketing to get people to call in, they have no idea how many new patients are actually calling in. All they see is how many clicks they got on their web site and how many appointments were booked. We report on new patients, conversion rate, what the receptionist does on the phone.

“Those patients are high-dollar. It was a natural step for us because there are a lot of plastic surgeons and dermatologists. The need in the market was felt. A lot of doctors will pay for ‘secret shoppers’ to call in and report on how their staff did. Those are incredibly expensive, but we’re able to do that with all their calls.

“My first year at The Elon School was the first year of the school. Looking back on it, it very much felt like a startup. We were in ninth and 10th grade and writing the honor code. The staff did a really good job of empowering us to take ownership. Most kids there, including myself, really took advantage of that and made it their own. I went from a place where you had the chance to have a lot of impact at The Elon school, to Carolina and the corporate world where it felt like you were a cog in the wheel. I think The Elon School really planted a desire to have a meaningful impact.

“I thought the school had a ton of potential. It was hard because there was an ‘x-factor.’ We didn’t necessarily have the best. A lot of the staff was very qualified, but it was a lot of people who were taking chances. But what they did was structure the school to where you learned time management, you learned to take responsibility for what you were working on. There were a lot of smaller things that you learned that you do not learn in larger environments.”

A Message From Advancement


On behalf of The Burlington School, I would like to say THANK YOU for your generous financial contribution to our students, faculty and staff.

This past year saw the opening of our new Upper School academic building and we celebrated our award-winning visual and performing arts programs. Many of our athletic teams went on to state-level competition and two of our girls teams brought home state titles. TBS is now home to the North Carolina Independent School State Champions in both girls basketball and girls soccer.

The 2018-19 school year finished as we proudly graduated 19 students who received more than $1.8 million in scholarship offers.

The Burlington School is fortunate to have philanthropists such as you who have supported financially the multiple events and causes within the school. Whether you give to our Holiday Event or donated to this spring’s auction, we want to thank you! Thank you to those who support the school’s annual fund campaign, which fills the gaps between tuition monies and actual yearly costs. We are appreciative for your time, talents and dollars. Because of YOU, over 350 students and approximately 50 faculty and staff are afforded the opportunity to come together daily to “Discover, Build and Become” their best at The Burlington School.

With sincere gratitude, WE THANK YOU!!

Marshall M. Qualls, Director of Development / Advancement


Those invested in the success of TBS have numerous ways to show their support throughout the year. Among those are the annual golf tournament and auction. Both events were held in early April.

At the auction, TBS supporters were able to bid on numerous items – including vacation packages and school-specific experiences. The annual Fund-a-Need part of the night helped to raise funds that will make it possible for the school to replace the gym floor this summer.

These events, and the generous support of those who want to see TBS succeed, are very much appreciated by the faculty and staff at the school.

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