I am getting a day away, off campus today to visit with the 7th and 8th graders up at camp in Julian. I look forward to returning to school tomorrow. The students are having a wonderful time together. Mrs. Zack has kept in contact with me via texts and some great photos.
This upcoming Monday, October 4 at 8:00 AM in the junior yard, Fr. Pat will be available to bless your family pets in honor of the Feast Day of St. Francis of Assisi. Please note the following procedures that need to be followed to keep ourselves and our pets safe.
All animals must be leashed or in pet carriers
Please pick up after your pets
All students without pets must go to their classrooms
All pets must return home following the prayer service. Pets may not remain at school.
All parents must be masked while on campus
This is always a very special day for our students and their “special friends”. If you are unable to attend Monday morning, please check our parish website for information regarding our parish “Blessing of the Animals” this Saturday morning.
Please take some time to visit our school Book Fair next week. It will take place in our school library. The hours of operation are in today’s newsletter.
Thank you for your continued support. As the holidays approach and excitement begins to build, please help support our efforts by supporting our students’ routines to promote the maximum amount of learning possible during the next few busy, joy-filled months.
Please take the time to view the photos of last Friday’s Pep Rally celebration of our 75th anniversary. Many thanks to all who attended this spirit-filled celebration in honor of our wonderful school. We were joined by our pastor Fr. Pat Mulcahy, the Director of Schools for the Diocese of San Diego John Galvan, the Associate Director of Schools and former SMA teacher and VP Dr. Julie Cantillon, our school mascot Rhory, and so many supportive and energetic parents. We heard inspiring messages, gathered in prayer and song, and were challenged to complete 75 Acts of Kindness by November 1st. Our rally ended with our students singing our Stella Maris Academy Alma Mater. I encourage you to watch for regular updates regarding our on-going Acts of Kindness. As you can see in the photo accompanying this message, I was the recipient of one of our 7th grade Acts of Kindness when I walked out to my car after a very long work day and found a very beautiful prayer message from the 7th graders left on my windshield. Keep up the “kindness” SMA!!!
In closing, I ask that all of our families join me in prayer for our 7th and 8th graders as they venture up to Camp Stevens in Julian this coming Monday for their “belated” 6th Grade Camp experience. Thank you to Mrs. Zack and Mrs. Moreau for accompanying our students for their week of fun, outdoor education and team building.
Excitement is growing with our 75th Anniversary just two days away! Please plan on joining us this Friday morning at 8:15 for a Pep Rally to celebrate our wonderful school. Due to the large number of students and guests expected, we are asking that facial coverings be worn while students are present.
The COVID-19 Decision Tree has gone through a few minor changes. I will be sending the new tree home in next week’s newsletter. Please note that we are now sending home a Decision Tree page with the highlighted procedure required by the health department with any student who is sent home with symptoms. It is our hope that this helps to make the process a bit easier. Additionally, public health requires that any COVID-19 testing, except an at-homeantigen test is admissible for reentry to school. As soon as our test kits arrive, we can provide this service free of charge for our students (with parent consent, of course). The latest news is that the tests are backordered for at least 4 weeks. I will continue to keep you updated with all of the latest news.
I hope to see many of you at our celebration this Friday morning, and of course, at our Family Mass at 9:00 this Sunday. Remember, If the students attend the Mass on Sunday in Mass uniform, they can come to me after Mass for a free dress coupon. So much to be thankful for…we are so blessed!
Save the date! On Friday, September 17th, Stella Maris Academy will celebrate our 75th Anniversary! This is a BIG DEAL!!! Please join us at 8:15 on the sports court that morning for a pep rally where we will celebrate this wonderful school with some special guests. We will be “kicking off” an “Acts of Kindness Challenge” to all of our students, sing some of our favorite songs and celebrate with our mascot, Rory the Lion. Even though this is an outdoor event, we are asking all adults and students to wear facial coverings due to the large number of people within the court area. After our event, parents are invited to come over to the office lawn area and join us for refreshments. We plan on carrying this celebration over to our spring Gala. We have so much to be thankful for…God is Good!
As we look forward towards the upcoming 3-day Labor Day weekend, we can celebrate a wonderful beginning to our school year.
Today we had our first fire drill of the new school year. Mr. Guay has also walked many of our classes to visit our three “Rally Points” this week. These are places of safety for our students to go to in case of an evacuation emergency. Some additional excitement is also going on in both our junior and senior yards. Our, long awaited and much anticipated, shade sails are being installed this week. The poles will be set in concrete tomorrow and sails to be installed early next week. A million thanks to our teachers and students for their patience during all of the jack-hammering during the school day in preparation for this project.
Fr. Mark will be our celebrant for this Friday’s school Mass. Please note …we LOVE having parents attend our school Masses. In order to assure the safety of our children, we ask that all parents that choose to attend Mass with us must wear facial coverings while in the church. Students will be sitting 5 to a pew. Therefore, in order to accommodate all students, we ask that parents please sit in the side sections or in the side chapel near the tabernacle. As always, we thank you for your continued support and cooperation.
Too many blessings to count!!! Happy, happy first day of school to all of us! To see parents and grandparents walking students to their classrooms was priceless. The positive energy made my heart happy! I feel a great school year coming on!
One person missing on this special first day of school was our pastor Fr, Pat. His brother is very ill and he had to catch a plane, unexpectedly yesterday. Please keep Fr. Pat’s family and his brother, Mark, in your prayers. Fr. Pat loves the first day of school as much as I do (well almost as much).
Please listen for more update phone calls from me tomorrow and Friday to help get you all through the “reentry” process. After this week the calls will be less frequent, an average of one every one to two weeks. Communication is paramount during these ever-changing times and you can count on us to keep you informed. Please feel free to call or drop by the office at any time. My door is always open to hear suggestions, concerns and commendations regarding how we are doing. We look forward to growing together to make Stella Maris Academy the very best it can be.
Want to come back to school in the fall and attend our ice cream social? What about having the math department serve you pancakes? If either of these options interests you, please take a moment and check out the information below.
Every summer our students are asked to read and complete math assignments (grades 4-8) to help prevent the summer slide. Below you will find the links needed for these assignments.
Middle School Reading (6-8) – We are asking all students to read at least two books, one fiction and one non-fiction, over the summer and choose an activity to complete for each book (Click above or have your child go to the ELA Google Classroom).
Mrs. Zack’s Ice Cream Social Summer Reading Log – Students in kindergarten through second grade are asked to read and record 10 picture books. Students in third through 5th grade are challenged to read 5 chapter books. Middle school students are asked to read 3 books, two for their middle school reading assignment and one additional book.
Summer ALEKS assignments (4th-8th) – Students in fourth through eighth grade are asked to complete 8 ALEKS assignments over the summer with a score of 90% or higher. If students score lower, they can use the Quick Retake option to simply redo the problems they missed. Assignments can be found in the upper left-hand corner of ALEKS by clicking on the three lines and selecting “Assignments”. It is strongly suggested that students complete the 8 ALEKS topics before working on their personal pie if they are close to finishing their pie so as to not lose their work on the assignments.
Thank you! We hope you have a wonderful summer and look forward to seeing you on Wednesday, August 18th!
Well this certainly is an exciting week! So much spirit…so much fun! It is wonderful to celebrate and have fun again!
Our eighth graders have had a week filled with special activities amid graduation practices and many “final” moments with their teachers. This is definitely a bitter-sweet time of the school year. I applaud these young men and women for their strength and tenacity during a year filled with challenges at every turn. Well-played Class of 2021!
As our other students prepare to end their school year next Friday, The article below has some great tips on helping them with this transition. Many children, especially the young ones, become very attached to their teachers. Saying “good-bye” even just for the summer can be upsetting for them. Believe it or not, many teachers and principals have the same feelings!
We all have so much to be proud of. Completing a full year of in-person learning during a pandemic is not a feat for the faint-of-heart! With God at our side…anything is possible.
As we send our 8th graders off this Friday, I ask all of our school families to join us keeping them in our prayers as they continue on their academic journey into high school.
As you are all well aware, there are many conflicting opinions surfacing regarding the multiple COVID -19 restrictions that we have been abiding by over the course of this past school year. We have decided to continue to the “finish line” of the 2020-2021 schoolyear remaining consistent with the safety protocols that have successfully gotten us through this trying time. We have kept the health and safety of our students, staff and school families at the forefront of every decision we have made. Granted, occasionally they may have seemed excessive, but those decisions got us to where we are today…2 ½ weeks until we can claim victory over our COVID-19 year! So I invite you to remain vigilant in the safety practices we have in place for the remainder of this school year. We could not have done this without your support and relying on our faith that God is Good…All the Time!
Please note that in place of an article this week, I am sharing a brief video message from Mr. John Galvan, the Director of Schools for the Diocese of San Diego.
As we prepare to celebrate the Ascension of Jesus into heaven, we focus on the promise of him coming again. This fills us with hope for a future of everlasting life with God in heaven. At a time when we are beginning to see a light at the end of this “pandemic tunnel”, let us cling to our hope for a return to life as we once knew it. Our school year is nearing an end. We have so much to be thankful for. We have remained strong and are a closer community for it. Many thanks to our teachers, staff, parents, parishioners and of course, our students for the Stella Maris Academy… We may be small… but we are MIGHTY! Stay Strong Stella!