SIA Graduation & Conclusion of a Successful Year

Students after graduating from SIA School

As the Strelitz International Academy graduates ascended the stage on June 8, 2021 for their special graduation ceremony, parents and supporters all cheered with joy and pride!

The 2020-2021 school year commenced with an unsettled beginning of the global pandemic, and graduation signaled the light at the end of the tunnel. Parents beamed with pride and smiles of gratitude knowing that their students had been in the best place possible – at the Strelitz International Academy with their friends as well as the support and guidance of the school and nurturing teachers.

In her opening remarks, Heather Moore, Head of School, thanked the community for their support which helped to ensure the success of the school year.

“Our goal for this school year was to provide in person instruction for all SIA students while ensuring the health and safety of our entire school community. We have been so fortunate this year and it is clear, our adherence to health mitigation strategies and recommendations from the CDC and VDH have kept our children and school personnel healthy and safe at school. I could not be more proud of our school. Thank you to our incredible community of teachers, staff, parents and students for working together to create a successful school year! And today we are able to come together to celebrate the Class of 2021!”

In their final essays, the graduates reflected on learning about the global pandemic, elections, democracy and the importance of community service and social action. Fifth grade students also recognized how much they have grown and matured during their time at the Strelitz International Academy – one of the leading IB primary schools in Virginia Beach. As an IB Candidate School®, students learn through inquiry, research and reflection. Fifth graders complete a special exhibition highlighting the growth outlined in their final school essay.

SIA graduates will be attending the following middle school programs this fall:

Cape Henry Collegiate, Great Neck Middle School, International Baccalaureate Middle Years Program at Plaza Middle School, Kempsville Middle School, Lynnhaven Middle School, and Old Donation School.

During the graduation ceremony, each student was recognized with one or more special awards highlighting their talents and contributions to their class community. The graduates of SIA will take with them all of the love and wisdom they have received during their time at SIA as they proceed with confidence to middle school and beyond.

For information on enrollment or to schedule a tour of one of the best affordable private schools in Virginia Beach, please contact Carin Simon, Admissions Director, at or 757.424.4327.

*Only schools authorized by the International Baccalaureate can offer any of its four academic programmes: the Primary Years Programme (PYP), the Middle Years Programme (MYP), the Diploma Programme or the Career-related Programme (CP). Candidate status gives no guarantee that authorization will be granted. For further information about the IB and its programmes, visit

**Mission Statement from the IB The International Baccalaureate aims to develop inquiring, knowledgeable and caring young people who help to create a better and more peaceful world through intercultural understanding and respect. To this end the organization works with schools, governments and international organizations to develop challenging programmes of international education and rigorous assessment. These programmes encourage students across the world to become active, compassionate and lifelong learners who understand that other people, with their differences, can also be right.

Strelitz International Academy Students Return To School on Campus!

First Day of School After Pandemic COVID-19 Lockdown

SIA students returned to campus for in person learning on August 24. After almost 6 months away from their school campus and their friends, SIA students were so excited to come back to school!

It was a very unique and busy summer as the Strelitz International Academy prepared to return to campus. After going virtual on March 13 along with every school in Virginia, SIA Head of School Heather Moore was determined to open school safely on August 24 as planned to be able to better meet the educational, social and emotional, and childcare needs of the Strelitz families.

As word spread that Strelitz was opening, the admissions department became flooded with inquiries. Many families who had previously been satisfied with their neighborhood public schools applied for admission to SIA. The International Baccalaureate Program, Jewish Education and face to face learning made the decision to switch an easy one for many families in Tidewater. By mid summer, many classes had waitlists.

Opening school safely is not an easy task. It requires many safety measures to be implemented, including no parents or visitors on campus, mask wearing, social distancing, desk screens and a daily health screening done by parents along with student temperature checks during carpool drop off.

Heather Moore explains, “Our COVID team began meeting in May to begin researching and planning a way to open school safely this fall. The team met regularly and developed safety protocols and ordered equipment to ensure we could open school. Once we had a plan to safely open, we opened summer childcare p for early years on July 6 to help our families who had been in need of childcare for their little ones. We created a COVID parent handbook to help everyone acclimate to the new rules that parents, faculty and children would need to follow to maintain a safe environment.”

A virtual meet and greet was planned for the Friday before classes started so that students could meet their teachers and see their classroom before the first day of school. Parents and students were so grateful to be back on campus and didn’t seem to mind this unusual start.

On the first day of school, students were ready for school with their personal assortment of cute masks to express their style, parents were patient in the drop offline, and even our littlest learners were happy to be handed off to their teachers. The students have been amazingly resilient and parents were thrilled and grateful.
SIA parent Jasmine Amitay wrote on the SIA Facebook page, “Thank you for everything you did (and keep doing) to keep our kiddos safe! The boys had the best 1st day ever!”

SIA is looking at the year a little differently and creatively planning to come together virtually for parent and family events. Many SIA community highlights such as Shabbat Singalongs and parent coffees will not be possible this school year due to SIA’s safety protocols. The Parent Volunteer Committee has met virtually and is working on a schedule of enticing virtual events for parents and families.

After 5 long months of being apart, SIA is back on campus! Students are happy to be able to see their friends, learn with their classmates and enjoy a normal routine. And their parents could not be happier!
To learn more about the Strelitz International Academy, please contact Carin Simon, Admissions Director, or 757.424.4327

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