|Dear Academy Community,
I hope that your school year is off to a wonderful beginning, and that your children are looking forward to a year filled with many positive learning experiences and exciting challenges. As much as we are at the stage of new beginnings every year, we remain encouraged and fortified by the rich traditions and deep roots of our Catholic faith and our historic SFDS spirit!
I recently read a quote from Archbishop Gomez from Los Angeles, Archbishop Gomez stated, “This is a monumental and historic school year, but God is with us, as always! God is challenging us to a new beginning; we must trust in God and open our hearts.” Hearing those words provided me with the reassurance that we are not alone in this journey. The faculty and staff are committed to doing their utmost in providing a safe, caring and productive environment for all of our students. But in everything we do, we acknowledge parents as being the primary educators of their children, and as such, we look forward to joining with you in partnership to make your children’s learning experience encouraging and rewarding in every way.
To help us reach this important goal, please continue to review the important guidelines once again as we continue to engage our students. This is so important especially at arrival and dismissal. Please note that all parents, guardians, family members, babysitters, etc. who are dropping off children are required to be wearing a mask or face covering. Security will have extra surgical masks for any parent that might have forgotten or left it in their vehicle. Also please remember to make sure to fill out the health screening for every student in your household each morning.
By wearing a mask around the school grounds and filling out these simple health screening, you can help us make sure that our students and faculty are safe and that we can remain open for in person learning. As we continue to embark on this historical return to school, we thank you for your continued support and trust that our academy will provide a quality and safe reopening.
As previously stated, we remain committed to working arduously so that our students can reach their highest academic potentials! As always, good communication is vital to the success of our efforts on behalf of your children. If you have a question, need or concern, please reach out to the appropriate individuals for assistance. It is my daily prayer that we will have the patience, grace and vision to face every challenge which may arise this year with an attitude of faith and understanding. Let us continue to combine our talents, resources, and enthusiasm to make this a fantastic year for our students!
Nursery and Pre-K First Day of Classes: This week our Nursery and Pre-K students start. Just a reminder that Pre-K will attend half day in-school until Monday, September 21.
5th-8th Grade Hybrid Learning: Tomorrow is the first day of classes and we are on a Week 1 Schedule. (See Below)
Monday 9/14: Blue Group in School; Gold Group online
Tuesday 9/15: Gold Group in School; Blue Group online
Wednesday 9/16: Blue Group in School; Gold Group online
Thursday 9/17: Gold Group in School; Blue Group online
Friday 9/18: Blue Group in School; Gold Group online
As stated in our reopening plan (8/11/20) students who are home will live stream all their core subjects using the Meeting OWL camera and Google Meet. (Religion, Math, Science, SS, and ELA) For special classes work will be given via Google Classroom for those students who are at home. Students at home and in the school building will follow their usual schedule. All classes other than Physical Education outside will take place in the cohort’s homeroom.For students to access their Google Meet Link they should login to Google Classroom and pick the subject area as instructed by their grade level teachers. After that they should see their meet link to login on the classroom page.
For classes such as Gym, Art, Spanish, and STEM all remote assignments will be posted on the respected Google Classroom.
Of course, we know this is a new procedure for our students and will be patient and ask for your patience as well. We do hope that any issues will be worked out in a few days so that our teachers and students can do what they do best; “teach and learn.” If your child has any issue please email their teacher. If there is a technology issue please email Mr. Scharbach at firstname.lastname@example.org
We do ask that you review the Online Learning Responsibilities and Expectations with your child if you have not already. Our students will be held responsible for these expectations and not following these expectations will negatively affect their academic progress and grades and could lead to disciplinary action based on the situation.
Just a reminder all 5th-8th graders are asked to arrive in school between 7:45am and 7:55am and will be marked late after 8am.
Welcome Back Information and Digital Forms: It is the belief of the St. Francis community that establishing and maintaining open lines of communication between school and family strengthens the feeling of support all children need to be successful in school. We have assembled some notices and information pertinent to the start of a new school year. On the first day of school traditionally many papers went home with your children; and needed to be returned in a timely manner. This year all those forms are now digital and can be filled out in advance. We do ask that all mandatory forms be filled out no later than Friday September 18th. To access these forms please click here. We thank you in advance for taking the time to fill out these important and mandatory forms.
First Communion: Congratulations to many of our 3rd graders who will receive the sacrament of Eucharist for the first time this upcoming weekend. I am so proud of all of our 3rd graders who are now closer to Jesus. A special thank you to their teachers from last year Mrs. Cronin and Mrs. O’Malley for preparing them for this special moment. Those who do not receive the sacrament this weekend will receive their First Communion next weekend both at St. Francis de Sales parish and at Blessed Trinity Parish.
Spanish Class: On Friday the administration was notified that Mr. Amster (Spanish teacher) will not be returning to teach at St. Francis as he has taken a position in the NYC Department of Education. The school has begun a search for a replacement and we hope to fill quickly so there is a limited amount of distribution in instruction. I would like to thank you for your compassion and understanding during this unexpected transition.
Back to School Night: This year our annual Back-to-School Night will be held virtually on Thursday Night September 17th. More information and links will be shared early this week. Stay tuned!
Summer Reading and Assignments: Just a reminder that all summer assignments are due tomorrow September 14th and can be found by clicking here.
NYC Yellow Bus Service: The latest information we have from the NYC Department of Education is that bus service will, most likely, begin sometime after September 21st. On our end, we are updated and prepared to begin bus service.
For those students who normally take the yellow bus and must take public transportation to school, we have bus passes for those students. Parents must request the bus passes by written note or email to Mrs. Kenny (email@example.com). The note must include: Student Name/s, Student Grade/s, Home Address and parent signature. Realizing that students cannot ride the buses alone, the DOE has also provided contingency bus passes which one parent can use to ride the bus with the student to and from school. If you need a parent contingency bus pass, please include this request with your note or email. You will need to include parent name and parent address.
Again, these bus passes are only for those students who normally take the yellow bus to school and need to take public transportation until yellow bus service starts.
Please get these requests to Mrs. Kenny as soon as possible. Bus passes will be given to the students the day the request is received.
Hand Sanitizer: As stated in our back to school plan, there are over 40 hand sanitizer stations that have been installed in the school. At all entrances, all classrooms, and hallways. It is a suggestion that if a child has a small bottle of sanitizer that they bring it to school to place on their desk. This will help us in two ways. First, it will limit that amount of students who may need to get up to get sanitizer, it will also help us not go through the school stockpile as quickly.
Tuition Accounts: Starting a few weeks ago all families should have begun to pay their families tuition through our FACTS system. Tuition payments for the 2020-2021 school year can be paid online, by phone, or by mail. You may also sign up for auto pay as well.
For those families that have an Invoice Payment Plan, each month, 20 days before your payment due date, FACTS will send you an email or mail invoice letting you know that your invoice is ready. If you want to mail in a payment, you will need to log into their FACTS account and click on the Actions button and choose the Mail In a Payment link.
Any questions please feel free to call FACTS at 1-866-441-4637
Any questions about your account please reach out to our Bookkeeper Mrs. Marguerite Kazalski at firstname.lastname@example.org
Special Education Services: We do anticipate that majority of students special education services will start around September 21st. Please note that if you are new to the school and your child has an IEP or IESP please make sure that is sent in to Mrs. Buckley as soon as possible. Also if any IESP’s were updated over the summer we do ask that an updated copy be sent to Mrs. Buckley as well.
Catechetical Sunday: Catechetical Sunday is when those designated to serve as catechists are called forth to be commissioned for their ministry. Catechetical Sunday is a wonderful opportunity to reflect on the role that each person plays, by virtue of Baptism, in passing on the faith and being a witness to the Gospel. All are welcome to join the Saint Francis faculty and Saint Francis Religious Education faculty at this very special liturgy at 10am on Sunday September 20th.
Save the Date
8th Grade Graduation Meeting: Please remember the special 8th Grade Parent High School Meeting on Monday September 21st via a Zoom Webinar. Please come to ask any last minute questions on the high school admissions process (Catholic High Schools and Public High Schools).
You are invited to a Zoom webinar.
When: Sep 21, 2020 07:00 PM Eastern Time (US and Canada)
Topic: 8th Grade High School Application Meeting
Please click the link below to join the webinar:
Fundraising Meeting: It currently costs in excess of $9,300 to educate each child that attends Saint Francis thus all children receive an excellent education at a discounted rate. Our fund-raising activities are a key component of our ability to provide a Catholic education at an affordable price. It is imperative that all families continue to support our fund-raising although this year may look different. I invite you to attend a fundraising meeting on Wednesday September 23rd at 7pm to discuss new or reinvented fundraising ideas. If you can’t attend, but have an idea please email us at email@example.com
Topic: 2020-2021 SFDS Fundraising
Time: Sep 23, 2020 07:00 PM Eastern Time (US and Canada)
Join Zoom Meeting
Meeting ID: 861 1622 1238