22 September Letter from Mr. Kelly

Thursday of the Twenty-fifth Week in Ordinary Time

Dear SJS Catholic School Community,

I had the chance to catch up with a friend who teaches in one of our Catholic high schools in Omaha. He said our students are doing well in his Math class and he enjoys having SJS graduates in class.  That made me feel good and is a testament to the hard work of our parents and students.  We want to continue to challenge our students and have placed this expectation upon them: addition and subtraction facts mastered (able to recall the answer quickly) by the end of 2nd grade, and multiplication and division facts mastered by the end of 4th.  Parents may need to help their student reach this expectation.

Every week it seems that I am reminded of one of the challenges of being a parent.  And that is that kids are always watching.  Watching how we react to situations.  Watching how we interact with other adults.  Watching the respect we give to strangers and friends.  Watching what we truly believe about our Catholic values.  This is quite a responsibility because it really comes down to the fact that kids learn much more about what we value through our actions than our words.  So those challenging situations in the parking lot, or if you have a disagreement with a teacher, and how you react to those situations, will truly show your children what you value.

Terra Nova testing will be next week in grades 3-8.  If it is at all possible please make sure your student is present, rested, and ready each of the days of school this week.  Please avoid unnecessary appointments.  We want these tests to be an accurate representation of the abilities of the students.  Thank you for all you do.

As we move into the cold and flu season I would like to remind you of the school’s policy regarding excessive absences.  A copy of the policy can be found in the handbook.  Essentially, the policy is there to emphasize the importance of school attendance and instruction.  Once the specified number of absences is reached a letter will be sent home to notify you of the situation.  The policy will then be followed.  Please remind your students to always wash their hands and we will work hard to keep the school clean.

There have been some colder mornings recently.  And we want to take the students outside for recess as often as possible as the weather gets colder.  To do this the students need to come prepared for the cold weather.  Please make sure you send your student, no matter what grade level, to school with an appropriate coat and accessories like hats and gloves (names printed on those items is helpful).  This will help the students stay safe and help recess to go more smoothly.  Thanks for all you do.

William Kelly