September 14, 2018
Rejoice in the Lord always. I shall say it again: rejoice! (Philippians 4:4).
This is a great opening line for our first Tiger Talk communication. We have so many reasons to rejoice! Our Diocesan theme for the year is “Rejoice in the Lord always.” When you visit our school building, you will see the theme present all over the building. We will be teaching the 10 Commandments which offer us the freedom to know, love, and serve God and one another as we “Rejoice in the Lord.”
We had a wonderful start to the school year. We gathered on the first day in the Kindergarten courtyard, introduced all students to every adult member of our school community, said an opening prayer with our new pastor, Father Mark Wrightson, and then raised our flags for the first time as a community. Students said the Pledge of Allegiance, ending with the words, “God bless America,” an addition we made following the attacks on September 11th, many years ago, before these children were even born. Those words now seem to be a part of the pledge. We celebrated the first day of school with a water ice and soft pretzel treat. We then met with each level and discussed our school mission (our promise), emergency code procedures, the Diocesan theme, and discipline expectations. Those meetings were very well-received.
Mr. Shields and I were so happy to have the students return. The building just doesn’t feel the same without that energy, enthusiasm, and joyful noise of children. We welcomed over 40 new students to our school, and they are a lovely addition to our family. They are no longer “new,” but rather part of a small, close-knit community, where they will grow in faith and a loving learning environment.
This has been a busy week. We began our first set of benchmark testing for all grades, K-8. The students are doing well so far. We will conclude that testing next week. Students and teachers had their individual school pictures taken, as well as class photos.
We had our first of many Friday Masses today. The students were exceptional. I received compliments from the community members who attended this Mass with us about the wonderful behavior. It brought so much joy to see our Church buddies attending Mass together. The older students do a wonderful job helping the younger students with responses and prayers. Please join us on Fridays at 8:00 A.M. in our beautiful church. Students prepare and participate actively in the Mass. It is a wonderful way to start your final work day or your weekend.
A few notes for those who missed the general Home and School Meeting
- Thank you for marketing our school! You are our best marketing tools. We exceeded our enrollment expectations for this year and hope to continue to grow. We have over 40 new students this year!
- Drop-off and Pick-up Safety/Parking reminders – We are asking for all parents/guardians to use the crosswalk at the corner of our school block. Teachers and staff encourage students to only cross at the crosswalk where we have a crossing guard stationed. Students should not be crossing into the middle of the street. Please help us reinforce this important safety lesson.
- Drop-Off – When dropping your child off in the morning, if you plan on walking them into school, please park in the parking lot across the street. The space in front of school is meant to be a “DROP-OFF ONLY” area. Please remember in the morning to pull forward as far as possible when dropping off a child. Do not park your car in front of school if you plan to exit the car, even if simply walking your child into school. This creates a traffic jam and safety issue. If you will be exiting your car, please park it somewhere other than our drop-off zone in the front of the school.
- Pick-up – Please do not park on the city sidewalks when waiting to pick up your children. Use the parking lot and the four city blocks that surround our campus. Across the street is a city bus zone. Please do not park in it. It is a parking violation, and you can be ticketed.
- Kindergarten Courtyard – Students should not be climbing on the stone columns around the Kindergarten Courtyard. It is extremely dangerous. Please do not allow your child or any children in your care to climb on top of the columns.
- If you are not receiving emails from the school when we send out email updates, please contact the main office and let them know. We reserve phone calls and text messages for weather emergencies and school closings.
Family Surveys: Family surveys were sent home on Wednesday. Please fill them out and return them to the office as quickly as possible. The family surveys provide us with important information that helps ensure that we receive quality Title One services for our students. Please return all Family Surveys by September 26th.
- Uniform Socks
- On Gym day, the only dress code approved socks are solid black or solid white.
- On a regular uniform day, solid white or solid navy blue.
- Sweaters/Sweatshirts – Only uniform sweaters/sweatshirts may be worn in school. A navy blue cardigan, with no embellishments, or the school black and orange sweatshirt may be worn any day with the uniform.
- Uniform Socks
- Hooded sweatshirts are not allowed, even when they are for a St. Anthony’s sports team. This is a safety issue.
- Referrals will be given for dress code violations.
October Parish Monthly Social
The first parish social of the fall will be held on Sunday, October 7th, in the Ballad Room of the Grade School, following the 9:00 A.M. and 11:00 A.M. Masses. Stop by for food, fun, and socializing with fellow parishioners and friends. The social, as always, will feature a variety of great donuts and tomato pie from Serpe’s Bakery, delicious breakfast pizzas from Degnars Greenhill Deli, and more! Hope you can join us!
Please follow us on Facebook (St. Anthony of Padua Grade School Families, Alumni & Friends) to see updates, events, and photos from our days. Be sure to check out our website calendar at sapgs.org. It is updated regularly and is where we will be listing all of our events. We have several fun events planned thanks to our incredible Home and School Board.
I am looking forward to a fantastic year! Please don’t hesitate to call me should you ever have any questions or concerns. Stop by the school anytime. I am always happy to meet with parents.
Have a terrific weekend. Stay dry!
Mrs. Judy White
“God loves us. May we discover the beauty of loving and being loved.” ~ Pope Francis