SFDS Week of March 29th 2021

Dear Academy Families, 

 

Happy Friday!

 

This coming Sunday is Palm Sunday and marks the beginning of Holy Week.  This most holy week reminds Catholics of the last week of Jesus’ life. He was welcomed as a prophet and wise man into Jerusalem, but by the end of the week, He was forsaken by his followers, arrested, scourged, and crucified. Over the past week many classes began preparing for the closing of Lent and the celebration of Christ’s resurrection through special prayer services and lessons getting them ready for Holy Week. Over the past few weeks, our students participated in a special grade level mass and prayed the Stations of the Cross. As we approach this Holiest time of the year, it is our hope that many families are able to join us for our school-sponsored Stations of the Cross tonight at 7 pm in the schoolyard. 

Please also see links to Holy Week Schedules for both  St. Francis de Sales and Blessed Trinity.

Finally this weekend we hear in the first reading from the Book of the Prophet Isaiah, The Lord GOD has given me a well-trained tongue, that I might know how to speak to the weary a word that will rouse them. This reading describes a willingness to open one’s heart to truly hear the calling of God. It speaks of the continued work to share the word of God with others despite hardships that teachers may endure. This calls to mind the work of teachers throughout our school. While many may be weary of the struggles of the past year, they wake up every morning prepared to continue sharing the word of God. It is through their action that students can engage in knowing and loving Christ, we are blessed through God’s grace with teachers who “morning after morning, open their ears so they might hear.”

Let us continue this week to Thank God for the gift of a Catholic Education. 

 

Now onto the week of March 29th here at St. Francis de Sales Catholic Academy

Passion Play: Please join us for our annual Passion Play on Tuesday 3/30 where many of our 7th-grade students reenact the solemn events that occurred through Jesus’s journey towards death and resurrection. This year’s Passion Play was filmed in advance and will be posted to our school website and our Facebook page on Tuesday 3/30 at 11:30 am. Thanks again Mrs. Hayes, Ms. Mangano, and Mrs. Buckley for coordinating this special event. 

CDC Guidelines: Last Friday news broke that the CDC has begun to change their guidelines of social distancing in a classroom from 6 feet to 3 feet. Of course, this guideline would cause a huge shift in schools all throughout the country. In our own school alone it more than likely would mean students in grade 5-8 would be in person more days each week if not every day in many cases. It also may mean some of our two class cohorts possibly going back to one classroom. However, at this time the school has not received any guidance from the Diocese, State and City Health departments on these new guidelines. If anything changes families will be notified as soon as that information is given. 

Regardless, in preparing for the next academic year, St. Francis de Sales Catholic Academy will continue to prioritize the health and safety of our community as we plan for a full return to the robust classroom experiences that are the hallmark of a Catholic education

 

5th-8th Grade Hybrid Learning Schedules

5th, 6th Grade and 7th Grade are on a Week 2 Schedule

Monday 3/29: Groups 1 and 3 in School; Group 2 Remote Bagel Day for Group 1 and 3 Students

Tuesday 3/30: Groups 1 and 2 in School; Group 3 Remote; ½ Day dismissal at 12 noon

8th Grade is on a Week 2 Schedule

Monday 3/29:  Gold Group in School/Blue Group Remote; Gold Group Bagel Day

Tuesday 3/30: Blue Group in School/Gold Group Remote; ½ day dismissal

 

Financial Aid for the 2021-2022 School Year: Futures in Education is proud to administer several scholarship programs, providing partial tuition assistance for families demonstrating financial need, and who meet eligibility requirements, to attend a Catholic academy or school in Brooklyn or Queens. To apply or get more information please click here. Just a reminder that the deadline for returning families who received an award in the previous academic year is March 31st 2021. The deadline for new families (students who did not receive an award in the previous academic year) is April 30th 2021. Applications will only be considered completed when all required supporting documents have been submitted.  Awards will begin with applications that were completed by the deadline and will continue on a rolling basis as available funding allows.

 

Report Cards Conferences Sign Up: Click Below for Nursery-Grade 8 Appointments.

When signing up for an appointment please leave the phone number the teacher should call.  Please note due to COVID-19 all report card conferences are being done via telephone. Please note that this is the time that the school has blocked off for conferences. Please make every effort to find a time on Tuesday 3/30 to meet with your child’s teacher. These conferences are done via phone call this year due to COVID which does make them convenient for busy schedules or parents who cannot be in the school building physically.  Parents are asked not to ask teachers for another time due to a vacation. Thanks in advance for your cooperation. 

Grades Nursery-Grade 4

  • Please visit the website listed above your child’s class to sign up for a time for your conference. You will need to enter your name, an email address, and phone number to be contacted on but you do not need to create an account.
  • Please sign up for a conference by Monday, March 29th at 12 pm.
  • We will assume that families not signed up by 03/29/21 are not expecting a phone call.
  • You will not be able to confer with your child’s teacher that afternoon or evening.

Grades 5-8

  • You will need to enter your name, an email address, and phone number to be contacted on but you do not need to create an account.
  • Please note in Grade 5-8 your child has 4 to 5 teachers.
  • If your child has failed (under 70) you are required to sign up for a conference with the teacher who teaches that subject.
  • If your child has received a grade from 70-79 it is highly recommended that you make an appointment to receive a phone call from the teacher who teaches that subject.
  • If your child has received a grade from 80-89 and think there may be some valuable points to discuss with the teacher please sign up for a conference.
  • If your child has received a 90 or above in a subject area please only sign up for a conference if that teacher has room in their schedule.
  • Please remember our 5th-6th grade teachers have 120 students and our 7th and 8th-grade teachers have 108 students, due to the fact we need to have conferences remotely with a schedule to accommodate everyone would be impossible. As always all teachers are always available to answer any questions you may have via email. 
  • Please sign up for a conference by Monday, March 29th at 12 pm.

 

State Exam Update: This week we have been given the following guidelines in regards to State exams and Regents exams for our students for this school year. 

Grades 4,6, and 7 ELA and Math Exams will be one day of testing rather than the usual two. The ELA state exam is scheduled now the week of April 19th. The Math state exam is scheduled now the week of May 3rd. 

The Science Exam given in Grades 4 and 8 will only have a written part which will be given the week of June 7th. The performance exam has been canceled. 

Finally, the Regents exams for the 8th graders that take those classes are as follows. Wednesday, June 23rd the Algebra Regents exam will take place at 8:30 am and Thursday, June 24th the Earth Science Regents exam will take place at 8:30 am. 

We anticipate getting further clarification from the Diocese of Brooklyn closer to the Easter vacation. 

 

Easter Recess Travel: Governor Cuomo announced a few weeks ago that domestic travelers will no longer be required to quarantine after entering New York from another U.S. State or U.S. Territory starting April 1st. Mandatory quarantine remains in effect for international travelers.

Please note for students who are traveling outside the United States or U.S. Territories for more than 24 hours:

  • Students must obtain a test within three days of departure, prior to arrival in New York (United States).
  • The student must, upon arrival in New York, quarantine for three days.
  • On day 4 of their quarantine, the student must obtain another COVID test. If both tests come back negative, the student may exit quarantine early upon receipt of the second negative diagnostic test.

If you are planning on international travel please let the school know so we can assist in helping you know when your child can return to school for in-person learning.  Until April 1st the previous travel guidelines are still in effect.  Please note that these guidelines are subject to change at any time. As always any questions or concerns please be in touch.

 

Tablet’s Covid Relief Fundraiser for Catholic Schools: Two weeks ago information went home with all children in regard to the “The Tablet” COVID Relief Fundraiser. The Fundraiser takes place between March 15 – April 16, 2021. We really need your help in trying to make this fundraiser a huge success to our academy. 

The Tablet has organized a subscription drive to help our academy offset the additional cost of COVID compliance. They also wanted to recognize the financial challenges many of our families face as a result of the pandemic.. This campaign will also support The Tablet’s work in reporting important news for Catholics. We believe it’s a win, win, win! You’ll be happy to know that our school can apply all of our students’ sales toward our DeSales Technology Grant requirements. Our participation in the DeSales Technology Grant in the past was one of the main reasons we were able and still are able to provide a device to all students in our school. This was very helpful especially last spring when we had to go to a 100% remote model. We hope that all of our families think to participate in this fundraiser as it helps us keep technology current in our school building. We have asked in the new grant for over 400 devices. 

The program is easy, can be done entirely online, and has great incentives for the schools and students.

https://thetablet.org/CovidReliefFundraiser/SchoolPage/?school=st-francis-de-sales-catholic-academy

Each subscription (new or renewal) helps raise money for an individual student ($10 a subscription after a student sells three subscriptions) and our school ($5 a subscription). Help us reach our goal of 500 subscriptions sold to help us continue to keep our 1:1 I-pad/Chromebook program up to date.

Share the above link with family and friends. Please remember that even a renewal subscription counts. Remember to share the following information with the subscriber and remind them to enter it when placing their order to ensure your school and child gets the proper credit for the subscription:

The student’s first name

The student’s last name

The student’s grade

The student’s ID number (We also included in the information sent home yesterday your child’s ID number, it is not required yet helps in identifying the order)

Financial Aid for the 2021-2022 School Year: Futures in Education is proud to administer several scholarship programs, providing partial tuition assistance for families demonstrating financial need, and who meet eligibility requirements, to attend a Catholic academy or school in Brooklyn or Queens. To apply or get more information please click here. Just a reminder that the deadline for returning families who received an award in the previous academic year is March 31st 2021. The deadline for new families (students who did not receive an award in the previous academic year) is April 30th 2021. Applications will only be considered completed when all required supporting documents have been submitted.  Awards will begin with applications that were completed by the deadline and will continue on a rolling basis as available funding allows.

 

Summer Uniform: Starting on Monday, May 3rd students can begin to wear their summer gym uniforms. This is just a reminder if anyone needs to purchase summer uniforms you should think about ordering them soon. Please note that starting in the fall of 2021 all students will be required once again to wear the dress uniform 4 days a week with them wearing their gym uniform on their gym day. More information on ordering uniforms will come in the following weeks. 

 

Haircuts: Just a reminder from our Family Handbook: Both boys and girls are to have moderate, neat hairstyles. Boys may not have hair covering their ears. Neither boys nor girls may dye their hair. Avoid extremes in hairstyles. A moderate crew cut is acceptable. Lines, designs engraved in hair, Mohawk styles, or dyed hair is not permitted. Extreme contrasts in the length of hair are not acceptable. If a student or parent has any questions about the hair code, they should speak to the schools before getting a hair cut/styled. If there is a question concerning hairstyles, the decision will be up to the principal’s discretion.

 

St. Jude’s Math-a-thon: It is that time of year that St. Francis de Sales Catholic Academy participates in St. Jude’s Math-A-Thon program.  Last year we raised over $16,000. We are happy to announce that we already have raised over $19,000 this year. A lot of children are helped by the generosity of our school community. This year you can do your donations online and order your prizes online and have them delivered to your door or you can send in your donations to Mrs. Foti and she will take care of the paperwork and get the prizes sent to the school.

 

Important dates

All Money is due by 3/30. All students who participate may dress down on Monday, April 19th.

You can also easily register online by clicking below. This is a great way to raise money via Social Media.

https://fundraising.stjude.org/site/TR/Events/Events;jsessionid=00000000.app20122a?pg=entry&fr_id=130889&NONCE_TOKEN=EB137E11109A1501EF05CFFFAA41F243 

Thank you in advance for your kindness and generosity to children in need.  Any questions, please contact Mrs. Foti at sfoti@stfrancisschoolbh.net .

 

Have a great week. Be safe and stay healthy.  Our next email blast will not be until the Week of April 5th. Have a Happy Easter.