Parents Association & Parents Council
The Durham Academy Parents Association supports the school's academic, social, fine arts and athletic objectives. Parents Association encourages volunteerism, raises and disperses funds, promotes communication and cooperation, and provides input to the school on issues of concern and interest to parents. All Durham Academy parents are members of the Parents Association.
The Durham Academy Parents Council is the governing board of the Parents Association. This group comprises members of an executive committee; division representatives; members of schoolwide committees on matters such as diversity, wellness and athletics; and parents who organize both community-building and fundraising events. See a list of the parents who serve on Parents Council.
Parents Bulletin Board
For some children, summer isn't filled with opportunities to kick back, relax and just be a kid at camp. In 2006, a group of Durham Academy Upper Schoolers decided to remove that financial hurdle for local families and started a free weeklong camp for elementary school students. SOCK Camp has helped put the fun in summer for hundreds of children in the years since.
More than 40 students from Hope Valley and Forest View elementary schools registered for SOCK (Serving Our Community's Kids) Camp 2014, held from June 16 to 20, and they were welcomed by 29 DA Upper Schoolers, who serve as directors and counselors.
Constance Leder, who graduated from DA in May, is one of the camp's directors. Her sister, Samantha Leder '08, was part of the group that founded the camp eight years ago.
"You think it's just a one-week thing, but the bonds end up just lasting so much longer," Constance said, noting that many campers return year after year. "A lot of these kids wouldn't have the opportunity to do anything like this over the summer if it weren't for SOCK. ... We just give them a chance to be kids and not worry about some of the things that they usually have to think about on a day-to-day basis."
While teacher William Edwards provides some support during the school year as the camp's advisor, he stressed that it's entirely student-led and student-driven. Students fundraise for the program throughout the school year with such events as an In The Pocket concert and bake sales. Durham Academy also offers a $400 grant; in all, the camp runs on a budget of approximately $2,000. Local restaurants — including Chick-fil-A, Jimmy John's, Spartacus and Jimmy's Hot Dogs — donate lunch each day.
Each day of camp centers around a theme, from Science Day to Carnival Day, each with a balance of educational and purely fun activities.
The first day of camp, Game Day, involved plenty of soccer, a name game and free play. A trio of firefighters treated campers to a tour of their truck and offered fire-safety tips.
"Oh yeah, we had a lot of fun today," one camper said at the end of the day, as she proudly held up a florescent pink beach pail and water bottle that she had personalized with dragonfly appliques and colorful pipe cleaners during a crafts session. "I wish we could do this every day this summer."
She was looking forward to filling the pail with water and dousing her fellow campers on the final day of camp, Water Day.
"I can't wait," she added.
See more photos from SOCK Camp on Flickr.