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Community Update for February 18

Dear ISA Families,


Seven years ago today, the ISA community experienced the indescribable tragedy of losing one of our own. Brad Dehart was a mentor, teacher, and friend to students and colleagues on the LEE/ISA/NESA/STEM campus. Brad loved everything about our work with students at ISA. Brad’s thoughtful, loquacious, and sometimes irreverent commentary on life and teaching brought smiles, relaxed tension, and pushed our thinking about equity, fairness, and tolerance in our world and in our work. Brad lived the ISA mission by the way he encouraged students and colleagues to realize and pursue our potential as learners, leaders, and global citizens. Brad’s students remember a simple question he often asked, “What do you burn for?” Brad knew that encouraging students to think deeply about the pursuits that drive their passion can result in them becoming the best version of themselves. The grief of Brad’s loss can feel far away seven years on, and yet he lives through colleagues and students who daily consciously and subconsciously recount their experiences with him. Our work at ISA asks students to be curious about their world, understand the multiple perspectives that exist in every circumstance, communicate their ideas about the world, and take action to effect positive change.


Brad’s commentary left another phrase still spoken by a few of us in the halls. “What a world.” Indeed, Brad. What a world. I want to encourage everyone to consider, in fact, what a world we are privileged to share and what each of us burn for? I want to encourage all of us to envision that reality, and act in ways to realize our best possible self to impact positive change in our world. If that seems too big, start small by saying “hello”, “good morning”, “good evening”, or “I see you” to someone new. Brad modeled that for all of us too. Also, in honor of Brad Dehart, I want to encourage our community to wear plaid on Tuesday, February 20th. Brad wore plaid…a lot. We miss him everyday.

Yesterday, more than 84 ISA visual art students showcased 149 entries at the Regional Visual Arts Scholastic Event (VASE). Of the entries, 82 ISA visual artists earned a total of 137 regional medals. Additionally, 17 entries created by 14 ISA visual artists are advancing to the State VASE competition in the Spring! Congratulations to all of our students who submitted an entry, to ISA art teacher, Andrea Puentes, for guiding our students, and to ISA staff and families who chaperoned and attended yesterday’s event!

LEE Dance will be hosting a virtual tryout meeting on February 21, 2024, at 6:30 p.m. Drill and Dance tryouts will be on March 19-22. Students may click HERE for a flier with more information and a QR for the virtual meeting. Please contact Christina Alanis at with any questions.

Looking ahead, ISA junior and senior families are invited to junior and senior student exhibitions on Thursday, February 29, 2024! ISA students exhibiting their learning is an important way for students to Communicate Ideas. These exhibitions are also an especially valuable way for families to see what our students are learning and how they are making meaning of the world around them. Here are the details for next week:

  • Senior Public Policy Presentations:

    • When: 5:30 p.m. to 7:30 p.m.

    • Where: ISA Main Hallway

    • What: Seniors will present their proposals in a “science fair/open house” style. The event is open to the public, and students are encouraged to invite those they’ve identified who may be interested in their proposal. It’s an exciting event!

  • Juniors Multi-genre Projects:

    • When: 5:30 p.m. to 7:15 p.m.

    • Where: ISA Flex Space (S-103)

    • What:  Juniors will present a social justice topic inspired by their travel experience to Alabama! 

Finally, Monday, February 19, 2024, is a student and staff holiday. We look forward to seeing students and staff--donning their best plaid attire--in the halls again on Tuesday, February 20th.

Have a wonderful week!  




Steve Magadance and the ISA Faculty