VIMSIA Participated in Mathematical Association of America

This week four 8th grade students participated in the Mathematical Association of America (MAA) American Mathematics Competition (AMC). Students sat for a 40 minute very challenging test. Tests will be sent off to be scored by the MAA. Congratulations for participating to Zack Edwards, Joaquin Hawkes, Lennon Richman, and Andy Yu. We hope to receive score reports by mid-December. If this is, feel free to change the wording as needed.

VIMSIA Welcomes New Chief Accounting Officer

Charmaine A. Duncan, Chief Accounting Officer


We are pleased to announce that Ms. Charmaine Duncan has joined our team as the Chief Accounting officer. Charmaine is part of the Administrative team and will report directly to the Head of School. 

Charmaine is a parent and former Board Member of VIMSIA. She comes to us from Caribbean Auto Group and TJ Johnson Automotive Group, where she has over 14 years of experience in accounting procedures and reporting. She has served on the Board of Trustees as the Treasurer for several years, thus she has a wealth of existing knowledge of the school. 

Charmaine grew up in St. Thomas and attended St. Peter and Paul Catholic High School.  She attended Howard University after graduation.

Dancing Classrooms


On Wednesday, November 7, 2018 Peter Gruber International Academy (PGIA) 8th grade students stepped into the limelight during Dancing Classrooms VI culminating event!

Dancing Classrooms started in only two schools in 1994 with Piere Dulaine a professional ball room dancer who as a young person, had moved from Palestine over to Birmingham, England and really struggled with self confidence and self esteem. It was through dancing that allowed him to stand a little taller and gain confidence. When he was older and a young professional, Dulaine wanted to give that back to the young people. Today, Dancing Classrooms is in over 30 locations nationally and internationally. Dancing Classrooms VI has been in the Virgin Islands since 2009 and last year served 1,000 student - 5,000 students have participated in program overall.

Dancing Classrooms VI's culminating event was a demonstration of a lectured lesson. It was the students' 19th lectured lesson - keep in mind four of those were before the hurricanes- and conducted under the direction of Mary Capella, teaching artist.

MYP Interdisciplinary Art and PGIA Visual Art & Art Coordinator, Jana Ferguson has participated with Dancing Classrooms for four years. Eighth grade students use their art period to participate in the Dancing Classrooms VI program.  

Aside from teaching our students ballroom dancing, the program challenges them to get out of their comfort zone, respect one another and respect themselves.  The younger students are excited to enter the program and the older students love to watch and dance along, reminiscing on their own experiences.  It has become a tradition at the PGIA.


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AnaPia Brunt

International Baccalaureate Learner Profile Award Winner

Every other month, Virgin Islands Montessori School and Peter Gruber International Academy (VIMSIA) gives out the International Baccalaureate Learner Profile Award to a high school  student who best embodies the traits of the IB Learner Profile: inquirers, knowledgeable, thinkers, communicators, principled, open-minded, caring, risk-takers, balanced and reflective. Nominations are led by students and staff, and finalized with an Peter Gruber International Academy teacher vote. This month's winner is AnaPia Brunt!

“AnaPia is a motivated, fun-loving, kind and creative young lady. She embodies all of the learner profile traits in her actions and words. It is inspiring to see her challenge herself in her artwork and find success in meeting her goals. Simply put, it's a joy to see her each day with her bubbly attitude and contagious smile. Keep on smiling AnaPia, you make our campus abetter place!” -Ms. Ferguson, PGIA Arts Coordinator

“Over the past year AnaPia has shown tremendous growth. She meticulously uses a variety of successful strategies to improve herself in many different areas. She has a kind heart and is always willing to help out. Congratulations AnaPia, you deserve this award!” –Mr. Stocking

“AnaPia is a terrific balance of many great qualities.  She is can easily go between supporting her own needs and the needs of others.  She is determined, yet knows when to take a break.  She knows when to push herself and also when to cut herself some slack.  She advocated for her needs and seeks additional advice when needed.  She has high goals for herself and is motivated to reach them with effort and persistence.  Keep shining!” –Ms. Butler

“AnaPia has shown proficiency in her studies and communication skills. She is a leader in class and has taken noticeable strides to help others at all times. Congratulations!” –Ms. Kessler

“AnaPia is a joy to teach. She is a role model for her peers, always going above and beyond class expectations to achieve her goals. She is kind and considerate to everyone around her. She is more than deserving of this award!” –Ms. Truax

“It has been an absolute pleasure working with AnaPia as her coach/nurse throughout the years. She is a perfect example of all the Learner Profile traits.  Her caring, thinking and open-minded ways are always welcomed when I’m around her.  Congratulations AnaPia, you deserve this!” –Coach Nurse

“AnaPia is an inspiration to other students to be warm-hearted, zealous, analytical and reflective. I am very proud to be her teacher.” –Ms. Ventura

“AnaPia is always kind and there for everyone. She is funny and supportive, and she finds time in her scholarly life to do sports successfully, and spend time with other people. She’s very successful in school and she’s curious about life. AnaPia is one of the most amazing people I know.” –Fellow PGIA Classmate

2018 Interact Induction


On Tuesday, October 30, 2018, seventeen Virgin Islands Montessori School & Peter Gruber International Academy (VIMSIA) students were inducted into this year’s Interact Club, led by Axel Bartsch, President and Mrs. Michele Weichman, Dean of Students and Interact advisor. A beautiful and touching ceremony was held in the music room with guest speakers Rabbi Michael Feshbach, Peter Gruber International Academy Director Gloria Arpasi, and Rotary members Claudia LaBorde and Leonard Bonelli.

Rabbi Michael Feshbach led the invocation touching upon peace, what it means to show civility and respect to others, and respecting our differences as humans - whether it be physical or spiritual. His words resonated and left an impact on the audience especially right after the synagogue shooting in Pittsburg, PA which left 11 dead.

Rotary Club of St. Thomas Sunrise secretary, Claudia LaBorde explained the origins of Interact and its history. “Rotary wanted students to discover new cultures, to become school and community leaders, make friends locally and globally, and have fun while recognizing the importance of Service Above Self” LaBorde explained.


In 1962 Rotary recognized the important need to pay forward the passion that its members had for doing good within their communities to young people, the leaders of tomorrow. They wanted to empower young people to take action through community and international service projects, develop leadership skills and gain a global perspective that fosters world peace and cultural understanding.

On November 5, 1962, the first Interact Club was chartered at the Melbourne High School in Melbourne, Florida. Within a year there were 177 clubs in 24 countries. Today, Interact is open to students between 12-18 years of age, there are currently 20,372 Interact Clubs, and 468,000 members in 159 countries.

In 2010 The Rotary Club of St. Thomas Sunrise sponsored the establishment of an Interact club at VIMSIA. Last year was a challenge for students - as it was for all of the VI- Rotary understood that keeping Interact activities going in the face of all other challenges wasn’t a reasonable proposition. It was a very meaningful day to see new members inducted with the support of their new advisor Ms. Michele Weichman.

Leonard Bonelli Sr, better known as “Brother B” was born and raised in St. Thomas and a graduate of Charlotte Amalie High School class of 1947. Brother B served in the US Army, Korean Conflict. After leaving the army he returned to St. Thomas where he served in various positions in the VI Government and private sector. Bonelli assumed the position of Club President in July 2018. With Bonelli’s help, he led newly appointment Interact Officers through the induction and officially named Axel Bartsch as President, Radiance Peets as Vice President and Kira Mitchell as Secretary.

Axel Bartsch, a senior at VIMSIA, spoke about his goals, visions and mentorship opportunities for the club and thanked his peers for joining the effort. Bartsch thanks Interact members for their efforts and accomplishment on the Breast Cancer Awareness campaign the club led throughout the month of October. Inducted into the club were the following members: Maia Aqui, Baianca Campbell, Tiffany Connor, Trevelle Connor, Devonte Duncan, Isaiah Jarvis, Jessica Paiewonsky, Javyn Potter, Toni Risker, Adia Thomas, Ariana Tyson, Mya Vigilant, Eliza Walker, and Mia Willis.

LaBorde encouraged attendees to always, “live your lives by the 4-Way Test”. When you apply it to challenges that face you, decisions you have to make, it will be your compass that will allow you to head in the right direction.

Is it the truth?

Is it fair to all concerned?

Will it build goodwill and better friendships?

Will it be beneficial to all concerned?



Random Acts of Kindness

For October's random act of kindness, the PTA gave all teachers free tickets to spend at last Saturday's Fall Fest. The tickets had another purpose too, they were entered into a raffle for a gift certificate to Amber Day Spa. Congratulations to our winner, Helen Sidiropolous, we appreciate you and all the hard working teachers at VIMSIA. Thank you! 


Volts Represent USVI at Concacaf

VIMSIA junior Jimson St. Louis and senior Ammiel Maynard.

VIMSIA junior Jimson St. Louis and senior Ammiel Maynard.

Sports fans will want to follow the USVI U-20 soccer team as they compete in a 34-nation tournament that will determine our region’s teams that will participate in the FIFA U-20 championships next year. The team includes current Virgin Islands Montessori School & Peter Gruber International Academy (VIMSIA) students Ammiel Maynard & Jimson St. Louis, alumni Grant Farrell ’18 and Seidon Nemeth ’18, displaced-by-Irmaria student Quinn Farrell, and former student Orion Mills (older brother to current student Jacob Mills). The USVI will play 5 games November 1-9, including meeting the USA team Saturday November 3! Games can be viewed on the concacaf website. Go USVI, go VIMSIA VOLTS!

Cross Country Update

Varsity boys - Volts isaiah, TEagan, Devonte and Axel

Varsity boys - Volts isaiah, TEagan, Devonte and Axel

More in sports!  Unofficially, the Boys Varsity Cross Country team won their meet Tuesday with a 47 point performance.  The boys lost last week with a close second to Antilles, but had a great bounce back this week. Shout out the all JV and Varsity runners on the Cross teams and big ups to their efforts on the field.   

Elementary Cross team nearly swept the meet on Tuesday! Volts took 1st through 4th place unofficially winning the meet - Owen 1st, Khafri 2nd, Pedro 3rd and Malachi 4th. Girls also unofficially won their meet this week with Marianna taking third place.

Mega huge photo credit and thanks to Dionne Sinclair (Tolud) for these great pictures. There are a bunch on this post - click here to see all of her photos from Tuesdays meet. Thanks for sharing, Dionne!

Owen leading the pack

Owen leading the pack

Official results from Tuesday, Oct 16 are in with Elementary Girls and Boys Volts each winning their elementary meet. Owen took first and Malachi taking second for the boys - Devin took third for the girls. Maia won the JV girls race and Varsity boys took a close second for their team race.

JV Girls Volleyball Remain Undefeated

Volts JV Volleyball Team

Volts JV Volleyball Team

Congratulations Leah - tournament MVP

Congratulations Leah - tournament MVP

Our JV girls have been hard at work - winning all of their games thus far. They represented VIMSIA well and won the season opener invitational tournament at Antilles School. PGIA 9th grader, Leah Smith, was named tournament MVP. Kudos, Leah! Check out the team’s great trophy in the front office!

Natalia placing the tournament trophy

Natalia placing the tournament trophy

The Volts took Tuesday’s game with Julius Sprauve in three. Their next game is Thursday, 10-25 at 4:00 here at VIMSIA.

Go Volts! Keep up the great work!

Check the schedule for this week’s games - Varsity Girls, Varsity Boys and JV Girls have teams.

Huge thanks and appreciation to our Volleyball Coaches - Nalani Figueroa, Ivan Figueroa and Ronald Blyden!