January 20th, 2017
"Intelligence plus character - that is the goal of true education."
                                                        Martin Luther Ling, Jr.

  • The National Geographic Bee is coming back to Our Lady of Fatima! Under the leadership of Mr. Tsingerliotis, students in grades 4th through 8th grade will have the opportunity to compete in the National Geographic Bee. Grade level winners will be determined in their class during the preliminary rounds on January 26th.  From these class winners, a school-wide Geo Bee winner will be determined at an assembly on February 2nd. The winner will go on to compete with winners across the state in Hartford in the spring. Pull out your globe and Atlas and get your child ready for our Geo Bee!
  • I have great news for all current Fatima Families. At last week's School Board meeting, the school board voted not to raise the total tuition rates (tuition fee plus H.S.A. fee plus technology fee plus registration fee) for the 2017-2018 school year!!  In addition, they changed the payment amounts to make it more advantageous to families. They did this by reducing the registration fee by $250 per child, and raising the tuition by $200 per child. This means each family will no longer be charged such a large non-refundable fee to register, each family's total payments will be spread out over the entire year, and each family will save $50 per child in total during the 17-18 school year. The goal of these changes is to balance our budget and continue to work to increase enrollment.
  • More registration 17-18 news: new this year the Diocese will roll-over the FACTS accounts for returning families. You will not have to set-up a new account. Only new families will have to set-up a FACTS account. Starting in February you will be able to see your 17-18 account in FACTS as "pending." Also, new this year, your registration fee will not be paid through FACTS but by a check written to the school.
  • The 17-18 Registration package is being sent home today for the youngest child in each family of children Pre-K through 8th grade. Please look for it.
  • And finally, for anyone interested in applying for 2017-2018 Bishop Scholarship money, there is paperwork in the registration paperwork for the Bishop Scholarship Fund. Families will need to have all of their registration paperwork turned in, along with this sheet, and all the fees paid to be considered for Bishop Scholarship Fund. Any questions about 2017-2018 registration, please contact Diane or me in the office. 
  • Mrs. Mancusso has our 7th and 8th grade English students, forming book groups, choosing a book, developing discussion questions for each chapter, and then having peer-led book discussions in class. What book is your child reading? How do they like it so far? Great job, Mrs. Mancusso.
  • Teacher Appreciation Day is coming and is the day the community lets the teachers know how special they are. Lara Paschalidis is the point person. You can sign-up to purchase an item at  http://www.signupgenius.com/go/9040b48aea92aa31-teachers1/ Thank you, Lara and thank you, everyone who signs up!
  • Our middle school students just finished a week of midterm exams. I was impressed how seriously they took them and how they even spent time during recess and lunch preparing. The goal of the midterms is to begin to prepare our students for the types of exams they will face in high school.
  • The 10th annual Tyler Ugolyn Tournament began yesterday and is taking place every night at our school and runs through February 3rd. Please plan to come and support our athletes and join the fun. The schedule for games is found on our website and in our lobby. Volunteers are always needed and this is a great way for new parents to participate in a great Fatima tradition. This basketball tournament has taken place at Fatima for thirty-two years; ten years ago it was renamed the Tyler Ugolyn Tournament after a much loved Fatima alumni who tragically lost his young life during the terrorist attacks of 9/11. See you at the games!
  • Calling all Fatima Alumni: you are invited to participate in this year's alumni basketball game. It will take place Saturday, January 28th. Contact Mrs. O'Sullivan at GinaOSullivan11@gmail.com. if you are interested in playing.
  • Tournament Service Project: We are donating new and used sneakers to Big Brothers and Big Sisters charity organization.  Please drop them in the donation boxes located in the school lobby. Thank you, Mara for organizing.
  • January 29th is the beginning of Catholic Schools Week this year. We will have an Open House for new families on Sunday, January 29th between 10:30 a.m. and 2:00 p.m. This is a very important event for us to help attract new families for the 2017-2018 school year.  It would be a great goal for each Fatima family to invite one new family to attend the Open House - You are the most important and powerful ambassadors for our school! Open House signs can be found outside my office. Please pick one up and display on your lawn. Many parents at our October Open House responded that they learned about that Open House from seeing the lawn signs.
  • We are preparing for Catholic Schools Week which is the week of January 30 to February 3rd.
  • Monday, January 30th is PJ Day. Students will also spend time making rosaries to donate.
  • Tuesday, January 31st is the school Basketball Day with games running throughout the day in the gym.
  • Wednesday, February 1st is Summer in Winter Day. Students will spend time reading on beach chairs in the gym.
  • Thursday, February 2nd is Twin and Buddy Day. We will have the school Geo Bee in the afternoon.
  • February 3rd is our Grandparent/Special Friend Day in the morning. It will begin with 9:00 mass and then hospitality in the Parish Center. Grades Pre-K through 5th will host Grandparents and Special Friends in their classrooms. Grades 6th through 8th will be presenting their projects at a Science Fair in the gym until 11:30 a.m. Mark your calendars!
  •  Another important upcoming event: the H.S.A. is having their Spring Gala on April 29th at the Rolling Hills Country Club. This venue can host up to two hundred people, so invite your friends and get ready to party. For more information contact Joanne and Adrian Salageanu or Michael Page.
  • February is Oral Health Month. Dr. Stephen Cagliostro, a Norwalk Orthodontist, will be visiting first and second-grade classes on February 23rd to talk about good dental care.
  • As you know we are a Peanut Aware school. I have attached the link to an article that again reminds us how life threatening this condition can be. Thanks to Mrs. Obermayer for sharing! http://www.today.com/health/after-11-year-old-boy-s-sudden-death-mom-warns-t105529
  • Two new planning opportunities:
  • May 13th is the 100 year anniversary of our Lady appearing at Fatima. Father Reggie, Mrs. Kathleen Rooney, Mrs. Mara Fleming and I are interested in beginning to plan joint parish and school activities to celebrate this important anniversary.
  • Also, I have also been speaking to Mrs. Caroline Feeney and Mrs. Amber Pace about having the First Annual OLF 5K run on one of the first Saturdays in June. If you are interested in helping with the planning of either of these events, just let me know.
Becky Gammardella. As you know, this year Mrs. Gammardella has moved from first grade to the PreK3s and PreK4s classroom. She has brought her love of children, her creativity and her professionalism with her in this transition. Before Christmas, Mrs. Gammardella found plans on-line for a cardboard gingerbread house. She and her assistant, Mrs. Trish Kaczamanski, constructed one in their classroom, much to the delight of their students. Mrs. Gammardella is constantly looking to enrich her class; she recently arranged for a monthly guest reader from the Wilton Public library. In addition, Mrs. Gamardella remains an inspiration in her devotion to the children and families of our school. Great work, Becky!
Gina O'Sullivan, Pete and Jeannie Rubsam, Carrie and Cliff Hancock, Chris Emanuel, and Kerry Greeff. For the past several years this group of eighth-grade parents has been the "core" of an always very successful Tyler Ugolyn Tournament. They have put in countless volunteers hours making this happen. This is their last tournament and we want to acknowledge all their work. Bravo and Thank you!
January 19th to February 3 - 10th Annual Tyler Ugolyn Memorial Basketball Tournament
January 20th - Marks close for the second quarter
January 26th - National Geographic Bee at preliminary round for grades 4-8
January 27th - No Friday mass - church closed for work
                            Report cards sent home
January 29th - HSA breakfast to kick-off Catholic Schools Week
                           Open House for new prospective families from 10:30 to 2:00
January 30th through February 3 - Catholic Schools Week
January 30th - PJ Day
January 31st - Basketball Day
February 1st - Summer in Winter Day
February 2nd - Twin and Buddy Day
National Geographic Bee to determine school 4-8 winner
February 3rd - Grandparent/Special Friend Day
                          First Friday Mass hosted by Grade 6
                            Science Fair in the gym
February 7th - HSA meeting at 7:00 p.m.
February 17th - No School - Winter Break
February 20th - No School - President's Day
February 26th - First Eucharist meeting for second-grade parents
March 1st - Ash Wednesday
March 3rd - First Friday Mass hosted by Grade 7
March 7th - School-wide assembly to prepare for Jump Rope for Heart
                        HSA meeting at 7:00 pm.
March 21st - Jump Rope for Heart during gym class
March 24th - Safe Environment Training for students in grades K-8
March 31st - Marks close for the third quarter
April 3rd - Parent only Eucharist meeting for second-grade parents
April 7th - Report Cards sent home
                   First Friday Mass hosted by Grade 5
                   School Talent Show at 1:00 p.m.
April 10th through April 14th - School closed for Spring Recess
April 17th - School closed for Easter Monday
April 18th - School resumes
April 29th - HSA Spring Gala at the Rolling Hills Country Club
Everyone was right - the tournament is a blast! Go Fatima!

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