Dear St. Joseph Parent,
… has arrived and children are excited! The weather forecast for the weekend is sunny and warm…perfect weather for our parish community festival! We hope you can join us.
End of the Year Activities.
As the end of the year approaches there are events planned for those last days that involve both on-campus and off-campus activities. Each grade level sends home information and permission forms regarding the activities planned for their grade level. We hope for a “no-rain” day on June 3 when most of our students will be on class picnics or at other outdoor activities.
Congratulations and our very best wishes to our graduating eighth grade students. Liturgy and awarding of diplomas will take place at 7:30 p.m. on Friday, June 3. The Eighth Grade Video and Honors’ Assembly are scheduled for Thursday, June 2, at 12:45 and 1:30 p.m.
Kindergarten. As eighth grade students leave St. Joseph to go on to high school, kindergarten students will celebrate the completion of their first year with us Friday, June 3, at 9:00 a.m.
The New School Year.
The 2016 – 2017 school year begins on Wednesday, August 17. Faculty and staff orientation and meeting dates are August 15 and 16.
Enrollment. We have always studied parish data that allowed us to know how many potential students we might have at kindergarten entry level for any given school year within a five year range. That information allowed us to plan for a school that was able to respond to the needs of the parish community for not only more kindergarten space but also for preschool. For the past six or seven years we have seen data that tells us demographics may be changing within our parish. The number of children registered in the parish who are age appropriate for kindergarten has declined each year since 2006. Just as we responded to increased enrollment by adding kindergarten classrooms, our goal is to maintain the three classrooms we currently have for kindergarten. Our enrollment will place 15 – 16 students in a classroom. We close our kindergarten classrooms when enrollment reaches 22. Sixteen students in a classroom are wonderful. It allows us the ability to individualize instruction, integrate technology, and serve the needs of each child. We do, however, have room in kindergarten for additional students and will continue to enroll children during the next two months. New families may contact the school office at 419-882-6670 for additional information or to request a tour.
Faculty Changes. At this time we know of the following changes in faculty for the 2016– 2017 school year:
Second grade teacher, Mrs. Janet Secrest, is retiring this year. Mrs. Secrest joined the faculty in 1983. Replacing Mrs. Secrest is Mrs. Melanie Burns. Mrs. Burns currently teaches at the fourth grade level. When I joined SJS as principal my concentration in education was administration, junior high, math education, and English. Primary teachers, Janet Secrest being one of them, helped me to know everything they knew about primary children. Janet was one of the teachers who offered me, informally, a post-graduate course in the education of young children. She had a wealth of knowledge and she shared it generously.
Mrs. Becky Puffenberger, second grade Teacher Assistant, is retiring. Mrs. Puffenberger joined our staff in 1998. She came to know kindergarten students first and very much enjoyed working with them. After a few years, she moved to second grade, and has been a valuable assistant to Mrs. Secrest and the second grade team. She will very much be missed.
Mrs. Georganne McHugh, sixth grade middle school teacher, will be leaving SJS at the end of this year. Mrs. McHugh joined SJS two years ago. She and her family are relocating to Minnesota. We wish her the very best and thank her for the dedication she demonstrated over the last two years.
Mrs. Mary Ann Wisniewski, librarian for SJS, is saying goodbye at the end of this school year. Mrs. Wisniewski joined SJS in 1991. She has been an enthusiastic supporter of all we do and has offered her support to Right to Read Week, the Christmas Program for grades 3 – 5, Celebrity Readers, World Neighbors, Response to Intervention, and anything else we asked of her. A teacher by degree, Mrs. Wisniewski understood how important literacy is for all students and worked diligently to offer, through the library, books that would have appeal for all students.
Taking Mrs. Wisniewski’s place is Mrs. Patricia Unger. Mrs. Unger has been with SJS since 1998. She is currently a third grade teacher assistant and also holds a teaching license. She is happily “endorsed” by Mrs. Wisniewski who recognizes in Mrs. Unger the same love of books and reading that she has had in her years as librarian.
This is a reminder that fourth grade will present their newly acquired talent of playing the recorder on Thursday, May 26, at 10:00 a.m. Each year I am always surprised and pleased to see the progress these children have made. Please come and enjoy this musical presentation. The fourth graders have a wonderful time presenting their musical skill and everyone who attends applauds not just their skill but the joy they clearly find in music. The fourth grade students are led by music teacher, Mrs. Bess Mass.
Middle School Band and Chorus Concert.
Students in grades 6, 7, 8 will present a concert on Thursday evening, May 26, at 7:00 p.m. Please join us to hear the wonderful music created by both our instrumental musicians and our student chorus.
Have a wonderful weekend and hopefully you will be able to spend some of the time at Festirama!
Sally A. Koppinger