December 16th, 2016

"Do not lose heart, I will never forsake you. My Immaculate Heart will be your refuge and the way that will lead you to God."
                                                                        Our Lady of Fatima
  • I want to let you know we are optimistic about hitting our budget this year based on how generous our community was last year. Since my Principal newsletter message on the budget two weeks ago, I have received important feedback from a number of sources. Michael Paige said that the context of our budget is the key to understanding the budget - meaning that we have done this before. Steve Soucy reminded me that last year the school successfully raised the same amount of money that is needed to be raised this year. The difference being that last year the bulk of the money was used to finance capital improvement projects such as the bathroom remodeling, when this year the money is needed to balance the budget. Brent Shaffer added that the situation is basically unchanged from how he originally understood it: until we successfully increase the enrollment, additional fundraising to our larger parish, alumni, and local community will be needed.
  • To address any questions or concerns you may have on the budget, next month's HSA meeting will be held on Monday, January 9th at 7:00 and will focus on budget issues. Steve Soucy, John Doyle and I will again be in attendance to explain the budget and answers any questions. Please mark your calendars! The minute you mention needing to raise money, the rumor mill begins. It is so important that everyone has the correct information, does not draw inaccurate conclusions, and communicates with the correct information. I will always strive to be transparent about any issue affecting our school community. If you have heard a rumor, or have any questions or concerns on the school budget, or any school issue before the January 9th meeting, please know my door is open and I welcome the discussion. Thanks to everyone for their help!
  • As you know the Bishop Scholarship Fund is an important way for families to receive tuition support. I will be sending out how to apply for the 2017-2018 Bishop's Scholarship Fund next week. Please look for it.
  • Any payment for After-School Program that you want to deduct for this year should be sent in to Diane by Wednesday, December 21st. The school office will be closed the last week in December.
  • On December 2nd, we had our first middle school dance of the year. It was highlighted by well-dressed, well-behaved, and excited middle school students! I think they had a blast - thanks to Geri for arranging!
  • How universal are Christmas traditions? On Tuesday, our Pre-K and Kindergarten students left their shoes outside the door to get a treat from St. Nick. Also, on Tuesday, I was skyping with David Bowman and a young man named Costi in Romania. David Bowman is working to bring Costi to our school. Costi was very excited that he had just received a gift of chocolate from St. Nick. How did he get his treat? He left his shoes outside the door to his room.
  • We had our first delayed opening last week. Somehow, the message from the Wilton School System was bounced back from my phone at home. To make sure this doesn't happen again, now Diane is also on their contact list. Lucky her! And thanks for your patience.
  • Reminder our annual Christmas Pageant is next Wednesday, December 21st at 1:00 p.m. Please mark your calendars!
  • On Friday, December 9th, our 4th, 5th, and 7th grade students had a chance to see the Nutcracker Ballet at the Westport Country Playhouse. Three of our own students, Chelsea St. Cloud, Alexandra Fordsman, and Victoria Vizza danced in the ballet. Wonderful job girls!
  • This past week, both Mrs. Fox's sixth and eighth-grade French class presented their version of the Nativity in French. They were well acted, embodied the Christmas Spirit, and the students did a wonderful job telling the Nativity story in French!
  • On Sunday, December 11 th , our boys Varsity Basketball team lost in the Championship game to Trinity Catholic 46-40. It was an exciting game highlighted by great play from both teams.
  • The HSA had their annual Christmas Dinner on Sunday and there was delicious food, the usual great community spirit, and even a visit from Santa Claus!
  • On Wednesday, the HSA hosted their annual teacher appreciation luncheon that was enjoyed by the entire staff. While the staff ate, parents watched the students in their classrooms. A special thanks to Traci Meriwether, Chris Isaacs, Mara Fleming, Afrodite Konstantinidis, Kevin Vallerie, Susan Patrick, Courtney Paige, Marjorie St. Cloud, Bai Ding Wang, Anne Benanti, Joanne Salegeanu, Tracey Bonafide, and Gina O'Sullivan for supervising our students during this wonderful event. In addition, thanks to Michael Paige for answering phones and buzzing people into the school and Carrie Shaffer for helping with the clean-up!
  • To help facilitate better community communication, Courtney Paige is inviting everyone to place up-coming events into an open document she has created in Google Docs. Courtney will be sending out the invite. Thanks for your help!
Lisa Strmecki. Lisa, as you know, is the guiding force behind our annual Christmas Pageant. Besides her music teacher duties, she plans the entire program, prepares the costumes, and plays all the music. Our Pre-K through 8th - grade students having been practicing for this performance which will be held this Wednesday. Lisa has been doing this show for twelve years and we know it will be another unforgettable performance!

Clara Taveras, Norma Gama, and Joanne Salageanu. Due to our long basketball practice schedule Tuesday evening, the HSA parents could not begin setting up the gym for the teacher appreciation luncheon until after 10:30 p.m. This week's second "Shout Out" goes to Clara Taveras, Norma Gama and Joanne Salageanu for staying here to after midnight to set-up for the teachers. The gym looked fantastic for the luncheon!
December 21st - Christmas Pageant at 1:00 p.m.
4th Grade Mass and Breakfast with Bishop Caggiano at the Bishop's home
December 23rd - Noon dismissal for Christmas recess - No After-School
December 26 through January 2 - No school for Christmas recess
                                                                 School office closed
January 3rd - School Resumes
January 6th - First Friday Mass hosted by Grade 8
January 9th - HSA meeting at 7:00 p.m.
January 16th - Martin Luther King Day - No School
January 16/17/18 - Midterm exams for 6th through 8th graders
January 19th to February 3 - 10th Annual Tyler Ugolyn Memorial Basketball Tournament
January 20th - Marks close for the second quarter
January 27th - No Friday mass - church closed for work
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
February 3rd - Grandparent/Special Friend Day
                          First Friday Mass hosted by Grade 6
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 Hearts
                        HSA meeting at 7:00 pm.
March 21st - Jump Rope for Hearts during gym class
March 24th - Safe Environment Training for students in grades K-8
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
Just in time for Christmas, our "Peace Pole" arrived from the Wilton Rotary Club. We placed it on the sidewalk leading to the back entrance and it contains in English, French, Spanish, and Chinese the message: "May Peace Prevail on Earth."  Amen.

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