February 17, 2017
Dear St. Joseph Catholic School Community,
After a few weeks away with family as we’ve welcomed and grown accustomed to being a family of four, I’ve been transitioning back into school mode. Though I’ve greatly enjoyed the important time with family since the end of January, I’ve also really appreciated the chance to begin reconnecting with students, parents, and teachers in my various drop-ins and meetings at school this week. I want to offer my gratitude to all of you for your prayers and kind words during this past month. I’d also like to especially thank the staff, especially vice principal Anna Raineri, as they have all stepped up in significant ways during my three-week leave. I will be back full-time beginning Thursday next week and look forward to seeing you all.
Our auction preparation is in its final stages, and we look forward to a wonderful evening with all our attendees next Saturday evening. Special thanks to Peggy DiPrima, Jill Watson, and all our parent volunteers who have been prepping for this event that is so special to our community and its efforts to sustain Catholic education at St. Joseph! If you haven’t purchased your tickets to join us, there’s still time. You can still register on the auction website. We look forward to a great evening with all of you!
As we prepare for Saturday, I want to share with you our plans for the fund-an-item that has traditionally been a part of the auction evening. This year we will have a paddle raise to bring in the funding for an important security measure at our school - exterior door keyless access. It is our intention to install a keyless access system for our school’s exterior doors. This would help us to better secure the building and eliminate the need for keys. There are both security and convenience benefits. Once the keyless access is installed and used we will be able to:
Once the keyless access system is installed, access to the school’s exterior doors will be granted by using an identification card or a special fob, and the breezeway doors enclosed within the school’s fencing will likely be accessed by a PIN so students and families no longer get “stuck” between the two main buildings.
- eliminate the use of keys that can go missing and potentially end up in the wrong hands
- better monitor who is accessing the building at what times
- monitor from the office if there are any open doors that could provide unwelcome access to the school and allow us to immediately correct the problem
- lock or unlock all doors quickly in the case of an emergency
- provide students and families easier accessibility as they move from building to building throughout the school day (currently doors remain locked and students knock on classroom windows so that someone can come out to let them in)
We have already received a $10,000 grant from the Fulcrum Foundation out of Seattle to help with this important safety project, but this money will not be able to be used for this project if we are not able to secure the remaining funding of approximately $40,000. We’re hopeful that you’ll consider supporting this effort as St. Joe’s continues to take important steps to ensure the safety of our building for the sake of the security of all students entrusted to our care. If you’re unable to attend the auction, you can still support our efforts. We are appreciative of any contributions you can make. Donations are now being accepted on our Fund-an-Item webpage. Please share it with others who may be interested in offering their support.
I’ll look forward to seeing our students, staff, and all of you next week. Have an enjoyable three-day weekend!
Joe Manning, Principal
THE WEEK AHEAD
No School - President’s Day
No schoolwide events or activities
Regular Wednesday Start Time - 7:55 am
Mass - 8:10 am
Regular Wednesday Dismissal - 2:10 pm
No schoolwide events or activities
Spirit Wear Day
Building Futures Mardi Gras Masquerade Auction - Marian Hall - Registration Opens at 5 pm
NEWS, UPDATES, & REMINDERS
Seventh Grader places third in National Essay Contest
We have some exciting news to share with the St. Joseph Community. Seventh grader Lauren Stemple has won third place in the 2016 National Veterans of Foreign Wars essay contest. Lauren’s essay, which addressed this year’s theme The America I Believe In, earned awards at the local, district, and state level before being sent on to compete with those written by middle school students across the nation. Lauren’s total award for her winning essay is $4,500. We are very proud of her. Congratulations, Lauren! Click here to read her essay.
Box Top Contest ends Friday
Remember to bring in your Box Tops by Feb. 24. Please attach your Box Tops to the collection sheet and place them in a bag with the student’s name, homeroom teacher and grade. After March 1, we will announce the student and the class that brought in the most Box Tops. Prizes will be awarded to each. Please make sure the Box Tops have not expired, as we don’t receive credit for them!
Penny Drive Results
This morning, we announced the results of our Penny Drive contest and it was an exciting outcome! Surprisingly, two classes tied the contest for the highest weight, bringing in 53.8 pounds each. Congratulations to 4th grade and 6th grade for sharing this prize. The class with the highest dollar amount was 6th grade with $728.45. The whole school brought in 306.2 pounds of coins and a grand total of $3,375.37. Thank you to everyone for your generosity in supporting our sister school in Kenya!
St. Joseph PTO restaurant fundraiser on Tuesday, Feb. 28
Join us on Tuesday, Feb 28 - that’s the date of the Fat Tuesday/Mardi Gras Family & Friends Night at McMenamins on the Columbia. From 5:00 pm until close, 50% of all the night’s proceeds on food and drinks will be donated back to the school. Share with everyone you know, no flyer is required. McMenamins is located at 1801 S.E. Columbia River Drive in Vancouver. See more about our event on the McMenamins website.
Got Spirit? Spirit Wear Day next Friday
Attention all students, parents, and faculty, Friday, Feb. 24 is our next Spirit Wear Day. Join us in wearing any St. Joseph spirit wear shirt with your regular uniform bottoms – this includes any spirit shirt you have acquired from PTO, Jog-a-thon, Sausage Fest, CYO, or even your St. Joseph team jersey. If you don’t have any spirit wear, wearing your uniform is fine.
If you are interested in new spirit wear, you’ll find the latest here. Currently ALL YOUTH SHIRTS are $10 and ALL ADULT SHIRTS are $15. In addition, next week Spirit Wear will be sold at the same time and place as Scrip - TUESDAY 2/21 AND THURSDAY 2/23, in the mornings only at the Church nursery counter from 8:30 am to 9:00 am.
Future spirit wear dates are:
Friday, March 31, Friday, April 28, Friday, May 26, and Friday, June 9
PTO President-Elect Needed for the 2017-2018 school-year
The position of PTO President is a two-year term, and Laura Ashton is approaching the end of her term and will not be available to serve next year. Therefore, we are searching for a President-Elect that can shadow Laura for the remainder of the year in order to hit the ground running next year. If you are interested, please contact Laura at firstname.lastname@example.org.
Upcoming VIRTUS Safe Environments in-person training
All parent volunteers need to be up to date with the Archdiocese of Seattle’s Safe Environments requirements before volunteering. This means that you’ve attended an in-person VIRTUS “Protecting God’s Children” class and have a current background check on file. An online Safe Environments refresher class is required each three years after the initial training is completed. Background checks are required in the first year of volunteering and then every three years after.
We have a local VIRTUS training scheduled in March. This is the only class scheduled in the area at this time, so if you are not yet up to date with training requirements, please plan to attend this class so you will be able to volunteer, help out in the classroom, and drive on field trips.
VIRTUS Safe Environments Training:
Saturday, March 4, 10:00 am - Our Lady of Lourdes, 4701 NW Franklin Street, Vancouver, WA
You will need to pre-register for the training at VIRTUS Online. Begin the registration process by clicking on the “First-Time Registrant” button on the left side of the page. If you have any questions, please contact Sheri in the school office at (360)696-2586.