25 February Letter from Mr. Kelly

Friday of Seventh Week in Ordinary Time

Dear SJS Catholic School Community,

The recent cold weather reminds us of the importance of wearing the appropriate winter attire and accessories.  We want to send the kids outside as much as is reasonable and appropriate, so please send your student in coats with mittens and hats when necessary.  Also, the students are not allowed into school until 7:40, so if they are dropped off earlier it means they are out waiting in the cold.

One of the tools that has helped several students stay in school has been the COVID vaccine.  This comes from the guideline that if exposed a vaccinated student with no symptoms can still stay in school.  And, Pope Francis has called receiving the vaccine an “act of love.”  To make the vaccine as easy as possible we will host a vaccine/booster clinic here at SJS on March 11th.  It will run noon to 4:00, and all that an individual needs to do is fill out the form that is attached to this week’s vbp.  This is open to students, parents, family, and friends.  If you need help coordinating the shot for your student during the day contact the office.  If SJS is a convenient spot for your family to receive the shot feel free to spread the word.

I have heard SJS described as a “hidden gem.”  The gem part I like.  The hidden part, not so much.  We want the school to grow and thrive.  We want to add new disciples.  So, we need your help in spreading the word.  Attached to this week’s Virtual backpack are a few items that may be of some help to you.  But, a personal recommendation by a current parent is a very powerful tool for recruiting new families.  There are some simple things that you can do to help.  One is to spread the word about our school to the families that would be a good fit.  Secondly, put up or provide literature about our school in your workplace (contact the school office for materials).  Thirdly, continue to support SJS School financially through tuition, but also please support the parish through the use of Sunday envelopes.  The tuition charged to a SJS family covers about half the cost to educate a child at SJS—the remaining funds come from the parishes.  And of course, continue to pray for our students and staff.  If you have not turned in your registration forms for next year please do so as soon as possible.

We are now nearing the 4th quarter, and this gives us the chance to think about progress being made in Math. As you know, at SJS we also have an expectation that the addition and subtraction facts will be mastered by the end of 2nd grade, and multiplication and division mastered by the end of 4th grade. Mastery means the ability to recall the answer very quickly. If your student does not reach that expectation yet, we will continue to work with them, but your help will be needed, practice goes a long way.  Just a reminder, our teachers use the data from STAR testing, Terra Nova testing, our own SJS benchmark tests, and the curriculum, to make decisions that drive instruction.  Thank you, SJS teachers and staff.

William Kelly