10 January Letter from Mr. Kelly

Friday after Epiphany

Dear SJS Catholic School Community,

Welcome back to school!  I hope your Christmas break was a time for family and spiritual renewal.  I hope you enjoyed the “3 R’s” of Christmas break—rejoice, relax, and read.  It was nice to have a break to get refreshed and focus on the true meaning of the holidays.  But it’s also nice to get back to the business of Catholic education and making a difference for our students.

It is hard to believe the school year is half over as the second semester has begun.  The first semester went by so quickly, and I remain impressed with the great effort of the staff and students.  Great first semester SJS!

One of the exciting upcoming events is the annual Spring Fling.  This event is sponsored by our Athletic Association and is a fundraiser for the sports teams at SJS.  We are blessed to have a smooth running and active Athletic Association, one that really works to provide sports teams for the students, at a reasonable cost for parents.  Not all Catholic Schools have such a dedicated Athletic Association as SJS’s.  And many schools have to charge their athletes much more for sports participation.  And we all know the benefits of being involved in a sport.  If you have never been to Spring Fling it really is a fun night–great food, music, a live and silent auction.  And the vibe is very friendly and you can sense a love of SJS.  So I hope you consider attending on February 1st.  Further details can be found in the Virtual Backpack.

We also are trying a 2nd semester Uniform Exchange on January 17th.  It will be very similar to the one we held in August.  You can come and see what we have available and make a swap.  If you have nothing to swap you can simply make a donation.  Digiorgio’s Uniform will also be on site to take additional orders if needed.  The exchange will start after school and will end promptly at 4:30.  We hope this will help make the second semester a smooth one.  And, on the topic of uniforms, don’t forget to check the Dennis Uniform website (https://www.dennisuniform.com/schools/P12) before you make a uniform purchase to make sure it meets school requirements.

Please keep an eye out for report cards that will come out today, January 10th.  Report cards provide an opportunity to examine the progress that has been made so far this school year, and then make goals for the remainder of the year.  Areas that I always encourage parents to discuss: test preparation, focus in class, in-class behaviors, homework quality, attendance, and avoiding late work.

Here are a few points to remember when setting a goal for your student:

  • Ask your student to think of the one thing he or she would like to accomplish this year-a goal must be something your student believes in and wants.  Then write it down!
  • A goal must say exactly what the student wants to accomplish.
  • Be sure the goal will stretch the child, but also be attainable.
  • Set a reasonable time frame for achieving the goal.
  • Be sure the goal is really the student’s goal.  Allow for effort and satisfaction, and sometimes even disappointment and frustration.  This is all part of the learning and growing process.  If you need help in setting a goal please visit with our fine teachers.

As I have shared we want the students to know the stories of St. James and St. Elizabeth Ann Seton.  So in the first semester we learned about St. James, and now we are learning about St. Elizabeth Ann Seton.  We want the students to be inspired by these great saints and be able to pull meaning from their lives.  Below are the facts we are asking each student to know about St. Elizabeth Ann, feel free to reinforce at home.

  • First American born saint.
  • Was a wife and mother and converted after the death of her husband.
  • Started the Sisters of Charity-dedicated to the care of the poor and children.
  • Started first Catholic school in America.
  • Set the example that no extraordinary gifts are needed for an extraordinary Christian life.
  • Had a deep devotion to Eucharist, Scripture, and the Blessed Virgin Mary.
  • Feast is January 4th

In early February we will begin the registration process for next school year.  I appreciate your support and a timely return of materials. We open registration to current families first as a courtesy to you, and encourage you to take advantage of that opportunity.  We want to add as many new families as possible so please spread the word about SJS.  And, we are working on new preschool offerings for the upcoming year, more info to come.  You can mark your calendars for our Preschool and Kindergarten Roundup on February 20th.


William Kelly