Academics

FAQs & Contact Us

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Frequently Asked Questions

Please contact Susan Long, assistant director of advancement for parent relations, with any additional questions at (908) 362-2033, or longs@blair.edu.

How does my child get to and from the airport/bus station/train station?

All transportation to airports, train stations and bus stops is arranged through the student life office. Blair uses State Shuttle, a 24-hour service that will take students almost anywhere they need to go. Contact Jo Ellen Van Vliet at (908) 362-3120, or vanvlj@blair.edu.

What addresses do I use for mailing and shipping?

For student mail, the address is: Student Name, Blair Academy, P.O. Box 900, Blairstown, NJ 07825.

For mail to business or academic offices, the address is: Blair Academy, P.O. Box 600, Blairstown, NJ 07825.

When using UPS, FedEx and other shipping companies, the address is: Student Name, Blair Academy, 2 Park Street, Blairstown, NJ 07825.

What happens if my child becomes sick while at school?

If your child becomes sick, he or she should go to the on-campus J. Brooks Hoffman '36 Health Center. There are beds available if a child needs to stay over. Blair also uses the services of Dr. Jeffrey Merkle, M.D., a specialist in internal medicine and pediatrics who comes to Blair for appointments. Blair refers emergency cases to Newton Memorial Hospital in Newton, New Jersey, approximately 10 miles away.

What is a community (closed) weekend?

Community (closed) weekends (two in the first semester) are designed to re-enforce the sense of community at Blair. On these weekends, parents are welcome to visit campus (and to take their children out to eat), but are asked not to request permission for their son/daughter to leave campus otherwise. Refer to the school year calendar for the dates of this year's Community Weekends.

What is the dress code?

The Blair Academy Dress Code reflects the School’s belief that personal appearance affects manners, morale, attitude and general conduct in any community. We expect standards of dress and appearance that are conducive to, and supportive of, successful performance and that reflect the appropriate tone for various aspects of School life. At all times, student attire should evidence self-respect and respect for the School; it should not be provocative, disruptive or detrimental to the tone of this educational community. Students are expected to understand and abide by the dress code … and to understand that faculty members have the ultimate say about what is appropriate and what is not.

Class-day attire is most analogous to the “business casual” style in the work world … neat, clean and modest. Students are expected to wear class-day attire from breakfast through the end of the class day each day of the week. Also, whenever they are representing the School in any official capacity – be it on or off-campus – students should wear class-day attire, unless formal attire has been specified. No hats, bandanas, visors, etc. (during inclement winter weather, winter knit hats may be worn outside). Various particulars:

  • Neat and properly fitted solid color slacks (khakis or corduroys … all appropriately hemmed). Pants with elastic waist bands are not permitted.
  • Dresses and skirts of respectable, modest length … must be fingertip length or longer.
  • Appropriate shirts and tops include collared shirts, tailored blouses, turtlenecks, and sweaters. Tailored t-shirts are permitted if accompanied by a sweater or scarf. Both shoulders must be covered during the school day.
  • Sweaters, sweatshirts and fleeces may be worn if accompanied by an appropriate shirt or top.
  • Neat and clean denim jackets, blouses, and dresses may be worn.

Socks and shoes in good condition (leather shoes preferred … clean, neat athletic shoes allowed).
 

Formal attire is worn to family-style dinners and various other formal school functions. It includes coat and tie (and appropriate shirt and pants); skirts, dresses or dress slacks. Students will be asked to change if their formal attire is not appropriate. After the class day and on weekends, students may dress as they choose as long as they are within the limits of good taste and decency. Various particulars:

  • Pants that meet the class day requirement.
  • Button down shirt and tie.
  • Leather dress shoes and socks when appropriate.
  • Blazer or sport coat.
  • Skirts, dresses (with shoulders covered) or dress slacks
  • Dress shirts or blouses that fit neatly, are appropriately buttoned, and cover both shoulders

The following items are never permitted in class-day or formal attire:

  • Plain or imprinted T-shirts, spaghetti straps, tank tops, halter tops, or tube tops
  • Athletic gear including exercise pants, mesh shorts and team jerseys
  • Any clothing that is ripped, torn, or frayed
  • Clothing which exposes the midriff, bares the back, or has a plunging or low-cut neckline. Anything “see-through” or that reveals undergarments
  • Oversized, baggy, or low-hanging pants
  • Denim pants or skirts
  • Casual sandals, shower/sport sandals, flip flops, etc. (casual sandals will be allowed during “shorts season”).
  • Leggings are not a substitute for pants. They must be worn covered by an appropriate top, dress or skirt that is fingertip length or longer.
  • Hats, bandannas, etc., may not be worn during the academic day. (During the winter term, woolen knit hats may be worn outside for warmth.) They may not be worn at ANY TIME in the Dining Room.

Casual attire may be worn after the academic day and on weekends. During these times, students may dress as they choose as long as they are within the limits of good taste and decency. Evening and weekend buffet meals allow for casual attire, but clothing should be clean and inoffensive at all times. Shoes are required in the dining room at all times; no hats, bandannas, etc. are to be worn in the dining room at any time.

Additional Guidelines…

  • No extreme haircuts or unnatural hair colors.
  • No visible piercings other than in ears (a single, modest nose stud permitted).
  • No tongue studs or eye brow piercing.
  • Hair should be neat and clean. All students are to be clean-shaven each day… no mustaches, beards or goatees. Sideburns should not extend below the ear.

How does the Blair banking/debit card work?

Blair Academy student debit/ID cards allow students the ability to purchase items in the school store, the Black Canteen and the athletic supply store without the need to use cash. Students may also use this card to withdraw cash from the Student Bank (located in the School Store). There is an online process through a third party administrator that allows parents to deposit funds into their or daughter's debit card account either with a credit card or an electronic check. Parents may put money in a student’s account by contacting Lori Rybicki in the business office at (908) 362-6121, ext. 5709, or rybicl@blair.edu. Parents can limit how much a student may spend per week, month or term in any particular area. For more information, please click here.

What do I do if my child becomes homesick?

Some children do experience homesickness, especially in the first few weeks of school. If this happens, encourage your child to get involved! You should also encourage him/her to speak with his/her prefect, housemaster, advisor or monitor. You may contact the housemaster or advisor as well. These people often have a more realistic sense of how your child is doing than he/she does. Support your child, but remember, many phone calls and visits home will usually prolong the homesickness.

What activities are available on the weekends?

Weekend activities range from trips into New York City to fast food runs and trips to the mall. There are also various planned activities on campus. To view a list of weekend activities, click here.

Is there a place to store luggage or belongings during the school year? Over the winter?

There is room in most dorms to store luggage during the school year, either in an attic or a basement. There is also limited space to leave a few larger belongings over the summer.

Does my child need to have his/her own computer?

While not required, it is strongly recommended that students bring their own computers to Blair. Most students use laptops due to their flexibility and limited dorm space. Both PCs and Macs are suitable choices. Students may also use the computers located in campus buildings, including the Chiang Center, Timken Library and dorm common rooms. High-speed wireless Internet is available in every campus building. For more information, please click here or contact the technology office at tech@blair.edu.

What is the difference between monitors and advisors?

Each student is assigned a monitor who oversees his or her academic progress. Faculty advisors are chosen by the student (within the first five weeks of the school year) and serve as his or her advocate and mentor.

What is a prefect?

A prefect is a senior leader who helps Blair housemasters run the dorms. Prefects act as liaisons between students and faculty.

What happens if my child has problems with a roommate or in the dorm?

Every effort is made to place students with a compatible roommate. However, roommate issues still arise. Remind your child that good communication is very important, as is respect for each other’s space. If there are still issues, a student or parent can contact the housemaster for further help and guidance on how to deal with problems.

What should my child bring with him/her to school?

Remember that your child will be sharing a relatively small room with another student, so space is limited. View a list of what to bring (and not to bring).

How does my child do laundry? Is there a service?

There are laundry machines in every dorm and there is no charge for their use. All Prep Laundry is an outside service that offers wash and fold, as well as dry cleaning. Pick-up and drop-off days are Mondays and Thursdays. Service can be arranged through the business office. Contact Marivelle Davis at (908) 362-2028, or davism@blair.edu.

What is Blair's cell phone policy?

Students are encouraged to bring a mobile phone to Blair as there are no landline phones in dorm rooms. Additionally, should the need arise, students will be alerted by text of any emergencies on campus. Students must abide by the community standard regarding cell phones. This includes no cell phone usage in the dining hall or while walking between buildings on campus. Freshmen must turn in their cell phones nightly during study hall and before lights out. Parents may contact housemasters for any after-hours emergencies that may arise. AT&T and Sprint coverage is better than Verizon in Blairstown.

Is driver’s education offered at Blair?

A driver’s education classroom course is offered in the fall semester at Blair for New Jersey residents only by an outside organization. Behind-the-wheel training can be scheduled independently after successfully completing the classroom course.

For more information, contact Jo Ellen Van Vliet in the student life office at (908) 362-3120, or vanvlj@blair.edu.

What is the process for getting working papers for my child if he/she wants to get a summer job?

Working papers are not issued through Blair. Students must obtain a work permit through their home public school district, then bring them to Blair for signatures. Ryan Pagotto, associate head of school, and Carm Mazza, dean of students, are authorized to sign working papers.

When does my child find out who his/her roommate is?

Room assignments are not finalized until just prior to the Opening of School. We will endeavor to inform new students of their roommate approximately one week before the start of school. Students who knew each other before coming to Blair are generally not placed together because the experience of learning to live with someone new is both enjoyable and valuable. After their first year, students may choose their roommate for subsequent years.

Can I take my child off campus for dinner?

Yes, as long as the student has no other obligations that he or she will be missing. Students must, of course, let their housemaster know they are leaving campus. Parents are asked to avoid taking children off campus during family-style dinners.

Who decides what classes my child will take?

As a new student, your child’s course load will be determined by the dean of academics based on grades and classes taken at his or her previous school. You and your child will be asked to decide if and what language and art classes he or she would like to take. After the first year, the student will work with his or her monitor, with guidance from teacher recommendations, to choose classes.

Does my child have to be involved in sports or an after-school activity?

Blair does not have a typical physical education program during the class day; instead, all students are required to be physically active during the afternoon sports period. Freshmen, sophomores and juniors are required to participate in a team sport or team sport equivalent (drama, robotics, dance) minimally two out of the three seasons. They may opt for a physical activity offering (weight training, yoga, etc.) one season per year. Seniors have no team sport requirement but must be involved in an afternoon activity. All freshmen—as well as sophomores new to the School—are required to participate in a team sport during the fall season; experience has taught us that such involvement helps significantly with the adjustment to a new community.

Whom Do I Contact?

If you have any questions, we are here to help! Please use this contact list to reach faculty and/or administrators who can assist you.

Please be aware that while faculty are on campus throughout the academic year, many are not on campus during the summer months. If you are unable to reach a faculty member, contact the student life office (908) 362-6121, ext. 5600, or Susan Long, assistant director of advancement for parent relations, at (908) 362-2033, or longs@blair.edu.

Academic Issues,
Course Changes
Nathan Molteni, Dean of Academics, (908) 362-3126
Advisor Concerns Ryan Pagotto, Associate Head of School, (908) 362-3106
Athletic Program Paul Clavel, Director of Athletics, ext. 5651, or Danielle Costantino, Administrative Assistant, ext. 5650
Billing Questions Marivelle Clavel-Davis, Assistant Controller, (908) 362-2028
College Counseling Lew Stival, Dean of College Counseling, (908) 362-3122
Community Service Joanne Brandwood, History Department, (908) 362-9352
Kaye Evans, English Department, ext. 5688
Counseling Lisa Acker, School Counselor, ext. 5609
Day Student Issues Lois Stival, Day Student Coordinator, (908) 432-2352
Dining Hall Questions Ron O'Rourke, Director of Dining Services, ext. 5776
Financial Aid Teddy Wenner, Associate Dean of Admission, Director of Financial Aid, (908) 362-3130
Health Center Tara Parker, Director of Health Services, (908) 362-2010
Housing Issues Carm Mazza, Dean of Students, (908) 362-3118
International Student Matters Ryan Pagotto, (908) 362-3106
I-20/International
Paperwork
Jo Ellen Van Vliet, Administrative Assistant, (908) 362-3120
Lost and Found Carm Mazza, Dean of Students, (908) 362-3118
Late or Absent
from School
Kathy Otinsky, Student Life Office, ext. 0
Religious Services Lisa Durkee, Chaplain, Religion & Philosophy Department Chair, ext. 5687
Student Life Ryan Pagotto, Associate Head of School, (908) 362-3106
Carm Mazza, Dean of Students, (908) 362-3118
Caroline Wilson, Associate Dean of Students, ext. 5668
Andee Ryerson, Associate Dean of Students, ext. 5654
Room Maintenance Housemaster (see list of Housemasters below)
Technology Concerns Sam Adams, Director of Technology, (908) 362-2000
Travel/Transportation Jo Ellen Van Vliet, Administrative Assistant, (908) 362-3120
Tutoring/Academic Help Nathan Molteni, Dean of Academics, ext. 5604
Housemasters

 

Locke & Ivy Hall Caroline Wilson, (860) 462-7746
Annie Hall Tim Devaney, (908) 619-9935
Kathryn Hall Dave Facciani, (702) 818-0883 &
Lian Wang, (702) 818-9034
South Cottage Joyce Lang, (862) 266-0229
Insley Hall Teddy Wenner, (520) 508-2043
Flight Deck Doug Compton, (860) 604-8234
Lakeside Hall Tim Goggins, (413) 447-0991
West Hall Ryan Manni, (609) 923-7143
Mason Hall Caren Standfast, (720) 810-9207
Freeman Hall Michael Russell, (413) 205-7298 &
Shana Russell, (413) 250-0434

Physical and Mailing Addresses

Physical Address & Private Carrier (UPS, Fed Ex, DHL) Shipping Address:

Blair Academy
2 Park Street
Blairstown, NJ 07825-0600
Google Map

Main Phone Number

(908) 362-6121

Student U.S. Postal Service Mail & Shipping

Blair Academy
Post Office Box 900
Blairstown, NJ 07825-0600
Telephone: (908) 362-6121
Fax: (908) 362-5157

All Other Departments U.S. Postal Service Mail & Shipping

Blair Academy
Post Office Box 600
Blairstown, NJ 07825-0600
Telephone: (908) 362-6121
Fax: (908) 362-5157