Oct 3 16

Falcons Win Manatee County Championship

golfSaint Stephen’s won the Manatee County Golf Tournament and placed three players on the five-person All-County team on Saturday, Oct. 1 at Buffalo Creek Golf Course. Led by individual champion Ryan Kinkead, the Falcons finished at 286, 13 strokes better than runner-up Lakewood Ranch. Kinkead shot a 3-under 69, two strokes better than any other golfer and three better than last year’s winning score. SSES’s Alan Klenor finished in a tie for second with 71, and Massimo Mbetse (pictured) shot even-par 72 to finish fourth. Kinkead’s day was marked by consistency. He only bogeyed once and dropped in four birdies. Considering wet conditions and an afternoon storm that ended some golfers’ day early, Kinkead was pleased mostly with his putting. He sunk a 25-footer on 16 with a putt that drifted three or four feet from left to right. It was the longest putt of the day for the junior and the cap on a historic day for the Falcons.

Sep 19 16

AP Chooses Mr. Whelan as Video Mentor

patrickA crew from The College Board was on campus Sept. 15-16 filming in Mr. Whelan’s history classroom. Whelan’s ability to connect, combined with a strong love and grasp of history, earned him the honor of being one of only three teachers across the United States – the others are in Texas and California – featured in videos aimed at helping AP world history teachers engage their students with the material. Whelan was chosen by officials who run the curriculum and instruction departments for the Advanced Placement programs, administered to high school students hoping to earn college credit by the College Board. Later this fall, three “modules” filmed with Whelan and students from Saint Stephen’s will be available to help AP world history teachers across the country. Whelan has taught AP for 21 years and has worked with AP before, attending workshops and summer institutes to better both himself and fellow teachers.


Read more about Mr. Whelan and why The College Board chose SSES in the Bradenton Herald.

Sep 19 16

Csubak Wins Venice Invite with Record Time

andrewSenior Andrew Csubak demolished his own personal record by 90 seconds on Saturday, Sept. 17, to win the annual Venice Cross Country Invitational. Csubak toured the 5K course at Venice High School in a time of 16:39.6, nearly 12 seconds faster than Sarasota Military Academy sophomore Alan Romero in second place. Patrick Dougherty of IMG Academy was third in 16:56.3. “I knew it was a fast course, so I expected a little better time than usual,” Csubak said. “But not by this much. It was incredible. This is not what I expected at all. There are a lot of places here where the crowd is with you to cheer you on. So you have constant motivation.”




Sep 19 16

Four Named National Merit Scholar Semifinalists

dsc_0926Four Saint Stephen’s seniors have been named semifinalists in the 2017 National Merit Scholarship program: Alex Siegal, Vanessa Yan, Mary Ann Placheril and Emma Jones. The group is among 16,000 semifinalists nationally. Finalists will be named in the spring for some 7,500 National Merit Scholarships worth more than $33-million. The process of becoming a semifinalist begins during the junior year of high school when students take the Preliminary SAT/National Merit Scholarship Qualifying Test. Those named semifinalists are the highest-scoring entrants in each state — fewer than one-percent of all U.S. high school seniors. About 90-percent of the semifinalists are expected to attain finalist standing, and about half of those will win a National Merit Scholarship. Since 2005, SSES has had 33 finalists.

Sep 12 16

SportsCenter: Falcon Athletics in the News

Read what the local media is saying about SSES teams and student-athletes in this collection of links from the Bradenton Herald, Sarasota Herald-Tribune and more . . .


YanSarasota Herald-Tribune: Csubak Runs Away with Meet

Bradenton Herald: SSES/BCS Renew Dormant Rivalry

Bradenton Herald: SSES QB Fred Billy Visits USF

Bradenton Herald: Billy, Falcons Knock off Clearwater Calvary Christian

Sarasota Herald-Tribune: Vanessa Yan – Student First, Athlete Second

Bradenton Herald: New Wave of Manatee Sailors Shine at Regatta

Sarasota Herald-Tribune: Falcons Cruise Past Hawks, 41-6

Bradenton Herald: Saint Stephen’s Stifles Santa Fe Catholic

Bradenton Herald: Falcons Search for Redemption in Rematch

Bradenton Herald: Saint Stephen’s Football Preview

Floridahsfootball.com: Billy out to Prove he’s Worthy of Scholarship

Naples Daily News: Community School Pulls Away from SSES




Aug 17 16

Students Excel at National Latin Forum

LatinSixteen Saint Stephen’s Latin students joined more than 1,600 of their peers from around the country at Indiana University at the end of July for this year’s National Junior Classical League Forum. By the end of the week, Saint Stephen’s student Kassandra Haakman had won a National Championship in Novice Level Certamen, MaryAnn Placheril and Ethan Leuchter had battled to a second place finish at the Advanced level, and Matthew Thomas and his team finished 4th in Intermediate Certamen. In addition, all 16 SSES students earned at least one top 10 finish in the academic or creative competitions that they entered in their division. Leading the 153 member Florida delegation were SSES students MaryAnn Placheril and Alex Siegal who served as president and secretary, respectively. Teachers Tony Haakman, Alice Revard and Geoff Revard led the SSES students as sponsors and chaperones. Special congratulations to Tony who worked weekly with the Novice Certamen team all summer as their coach and notched his first win at the national level.



Student Top 10 Placements:

Carter Beckstein (Level 2): Reading Comprehension (9), Dramatic Interpretation (2), Sight Latin Reading (3), Essay (4)
Graham Beckstein (Level 2): Greek Literature (3), Latin Literature (5), Roman Life and Customs (5)
Jack Berry (Level 4): Classical Greek (6), Greek Literature (8), Mythology (8), Hellenic History (10)
Annie Class (Level 1/2): Ancient Geography (3), Latin Grammar (3), Latin Vocabulary (5), Mottoes, Abbr. and Quotations (5), Latin Derivatives (9)
Emma Craig (Level 1/2): Latin Grammar (6), Latin Vocabulary (10), Mottoes, Abbr. and Quotations (8), Latin Derivatives (10), Graphic Arts (9)
Astrid Culp (Level 2): Ancient Geography (5)
Kassandra Haakman (Level 1): Reading Comprehension (4), Academic Heptathlon (6), Latin Grammar (10), Latin Vocabulary (10), Latin Derivatives (6), Greek Derivatives (6)
Sidney Knowles (Level 2): Roman History (8), Mythology (9)
Ethan Leuchter (Level 5): Roman History (1st high score), Ancient Geography (3), Hellenic History (4), Roman Life and Customs (5), Latin Literature (6)
Colton Melnick (Level 2): Latin Literature (9), Essay (2)
MaryAnn Placheril (Level 4): Latin Vocabulary (2), Reading Comprehension – Poetry (3), Reading Comp. – Prose (3), Latin Grammar (4), Latin Derivatives (6), Mottoes, Abbr. and Quotations (7), Academic Heptathlon (8), Greek Derivatives (9)
Alex Siegal (Level 4): Roman History (6), Ancient Geography (7), Hellenic History (5)
Anusha Singh (Level 1/2): Roman History (1), Greek Derivatives (2), Latin Derivatives (10), Graphic Arts (2)
Matthew Thomas (Level 2): Latin Grammar (1), Reading Comprehension. (1), Sight Latin Reading (1), Latin Vocabulary (2), Academic Heptathlon (5), Latin Derivatives (7), Mottoes, Abbr. and Quotations (7)
Paul Williams (Level 1): Roman Life and Customs (9)
Mikayla Woodard (Level 1): Greek Literature (4), Hellenic History (4), Classical Art (5), Greek Derivatives (9)

Jun 7 16

Class of 2016 Grads Distinguished Themselves

Grads16On Friday night, June 3, 69 graduates in the Class of 2016 walked across the stage of the Neel Auditorium at State College of Florida to receive their diplomas. The impressive group was the 42nd to graduate from Saint Stephen’s since its founding in 1970 and all will continue on with higher education at a college or university. As has become tradition, the commencement speech was delivered by a 10-year graduate of Saint Stephen’s. This year’s speaker was Dr. Nicholas Mollanazar, who urged the graduates to be open to opportunities, unafraid to fail, and unswayed by “those who will tell you it can’t be done.” The evening also featured another beloved tradition – a musical performance by our pre-kindergarten class.


Class of 2016 highlights:


  • Students received acceptances to 19 of the nation’s 40 most selective colleges (as ranked by Washington Post), including eight of the top 10, and seven of the eight Ivy League schools
  • 86-percent of seniors who identified a first-choice college were accepted to that institution
  • Students earned more than $4.4-million in merit aid, including four graduates who have been awarded their institution’s top full-ride scholarship with additional funds for research and travel
  • Five students were named National Merit Scholarship finalists
  • Two students – of three total in the Sarasota/Manatee area and 141 statewide – were named prestigious Presidential Scholar invitees
  • Six graduates will compete at the collegiate level in football, soccer, lacrosse, sailing, and rifle


Coverage from the Bradenton Herald

Coverage from the Sarasota Herald-Tribune


May 25 16

SSES, Christ Church Agree on Building Collaboration

churchSaint Stephen’s and Christ Church of Bradenton have announced an agreement of cooperation that will allow the school to build a multi-purpose performing arts center on property currently owned by the church.


With no existing space for construction on the school’s 35-acre campus, the Saint Stephen’s Board of Trustees and Head of School Dr. Jan Pullen began discussions last year with Christ Church Rector Fr. Joel Morsch and the church vestry on an agreement that was recently approved. Christ Church has given its more than 67,000-square-foot property west of 41st Street West to the school for the construction of a performing arts center and parking lot to be used by both entities. Saint Stephen’s will also build a 3,500-square-foot facility to replace the church’s existing thrift shop and food pantry, which currently serves more than 1,200 patrons monthly.


This collaboration allows Saint Stephen’s to begin a capital campaign to fund the project. School and church officials recently visited St. Mary’s Episcopal School in Tampa to tour its performing arts center. The multi-purpose Saint Mary’s Hall, which features a reception foyer, raised stage with backstage and technical support, and open floor seating for approximately 500, is being used as a model for the building Saint Stephen’s will create.


Although they are independent entities, Christ Church and Saint Stephen’s have a strong relationship that dates back 46 years. SSES opened its doors in 1970 as an outreach mission of the church. Since its founding, Saint Stephen’s has used the church sanctuary for weekly chapels, graduation, Baccalaureate service, and other special services. Fr. Morsch and a designated parishioner sit on the Saint Stephen’s Board of Trustees.


Photo: (L-R) Fr. Alex Andujar, Christ Church Vestry representative Doug Reiff, Fr. Joel Morsch, SSES Board Member John Neal, Head of School Dr. Jan Pullen, SSES Board Member Garret Barnes, SSES Board President Richard Walter

May 10 16

Falcons Soar at State Track and Field Meet

trackAfter fantastic performances at the regional meet in Clearwater in April, 10 Falcons qualified to represent Saint Stephen’s at the State Track and Field Championships, May 6-7 at IMG Academy. Leading the pack were regional champions Katie Siegel in the high jump and the boys 800-meter relay team of Andrew Csubak, Henry Howell, Hayes Chatham, and Dawson Hamilton. Every Falcon who competed at the state meet placed in the top 10 to medal in their event: Siegel was fifth in the high jump and sixth in the triple jump; Letherio Jones, Fred Billy, Jordon Murrell, and Bobby Harrison placed fourth in the 4×100 relay; Jones, Demetrius Davis, Murrell, and Csubak were seventh in the 4×400 relay; Chatham, Howell, Luke Valadie, and Csubak placed eight in the 4×800 relay; Murrell was seventh in the 200 meters; Csubak was sixth in the 800 meters.

Apr 27 16

Multiple Falcons Receive Post-season Recognition

all-areaboysWinter/spring student-athletes had their efforts on the playing fields recognized with local and state awards. The Bradenton Herald named boys soccer star Antonio Colacci its Player of the Year and he was joined on the All-Area team by Falcons Chris Morrish, Jonathan Boyd, and Alex Virgilio. Four soccer Falcons were also chosen to the Sarasota Herald-Tribune All-Area first team – Colacci, Boyd, and Virgilio, along with girls star Lindsay Leskinen. The Florida Athletic Coaches Association named senior pitcher Nick Runde All-State in Class 3A, as well as All-Academic. Baylee Barker, Emily Hiebner, Katie Pierce, and Kendall Miller from the girls lacrosse team were chosen All-District 17.

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