November 16, 2017

Dan's Blog
By now, you've probably heard how fun and successful the Auction was last Saturday night. Thanks to the Sue Perb (Richards) organization, the hard work of the Auction committee chairs and their teams, the generosity of the Auction donors and bidders, and the support of our teachers and staff, Our School House Rocks! ended up being both unforgettable and prosperous!

The exact revenue figures aren't in yet, but unofficially I can say that the auction bidding brought in much more than budgeted, the Grade Projects sold for more than last year, and I ate a way more expensive Dessert-Dash dessert than last year!

Our Fund-A-Need was the "Paying Down the Construction Mortgage of the New Second-Floor Classrooms" campaign - not a very captivating cause. And yet the audience in the Marriott ballroom didn't disappoint! I asked on Saturday night if we could possibly raise $50,000, and if so, a small group of anonymous, fellow parents was willing to match that amount. Well, the attendees blew my request out of the water - and $95,000 was donated! Combined with the matching $50K, we have instantly cut our $430,000 mortgage to $285K! That is going to save us so much in interest payments, as we now can speed up how quickly the parish and school will be able pay off this loan. 

Please take a look at the Auction article below for more information on the Auction and some follow-up news and tasks - along with a sale of your kids' photos and some mystery wine bottles!

Oh...and one more's the video that kicked off the Auction party last Saturday night. Enjoy looking at the best looking kids on the Eastside! (Thank you to Jon Sharp for producing this video.)
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This time of year is when we pivot in so many ways around school - both in the classrooms and administratively. The teachers are moving from the 1st to 2nd trimester, and as they'll be telling you in Parent-Student-Teacher Conferences this Monday and Tuesday, this often means curricula that pivots away from the fall's reviewing of last year's material and turns toward the winter's presentation of brand new, and more difficult material. And specifically, the religion curriculum is moving into the hopeful season of Advent, which begins December 3. (Do you have your purple and pink candles yet? The teachers are getting their classroom wreaths ready!)
As we wrap up the Auction fund raiser, we pivot to the Admissions season, with our first Open House tonight, and December beginning three months of "Tuesday Tours." Most Tuesday mornings we'll be welcoming prospective school parents to school, giving them the opportunity to observe a teacher, meet with Mr. Fuerte and me to get their questions about the school answered, and have a tour of the school led by an 8th grade Student Ambassador.

Speaking of our Student Ambassadors, they are probably the most impressive things the parent visitors see on Tuesdays. Our 8th graders are so eloquent when they speak and so mature when they present themselves to adults. I can't imagine I would have been able to pull off when I was their age what our 13-14 year-old St. Louisers can do! They are awesome representatives of the quality "products we produce" at St. Louise School.

 Our 2017-18 Student Ambassadors: Elsa, Lydia, Hayden, Joaquin, Rachel, Ellie, Ellie, Erin

You current school parents are our best marketers of St. Louise, and we would appreciate you spreading the word to your neighbors, co-workers, and family living in the greater-Eastside who have upcoming 4-14 year-olds that St. Louise has started their Admissions season! Interested prospective school parents for the 2018-19 school year should contact the school office at 425-746-4220 or email secretaries Mindy/Lola directly to ask to set up a Tuesday Tour date. 

Finally, have a productive conference next week with your education partners, and a blessed Thanksgiving one week from today! May I offer a suggested prayer to read at your family's Thanksgiving table? 

Almighty Father,
We give you thanks for your overflowing generosity to us. Thank you for the blessings of the food we eat and especially for this feast today. Thank you for our home and family and friends, especially for the presence of those gathered here. Thank you for being with us in all our joys and sorrows, for your comfort in our sadness, your companionship in our loneliness. O Gracious God, open our hearts to your love, that we may live this and every day conscious of all that has been given to us.
We ask your blessing through Christ your Son.

Thanks for reading, 
Mr. Fitz
No, this is not a photo of Mt. Rainier. It's our Lost & Found bin, located
next to the 4th and 5th grade classrooms. When you are at school during Parent/Teacher Conferences next week, please stop by and see if your child's missing jacket, sweater, pants, shorts, backpack, bicycle, little brother, etc. is hiding somewhere in this pile. All unclaimed and unlabeled items will be donated to either St. Vincent de Paul or our Used Uniform Sales inventory. (Except for the little brother. We'll return him to his family.)
Upcoming Calendar of Events
  • OPEN HOUSE 6:30-7:30PM; both prospective new school families and current school families are invited

  • Report Cards sent home with each K-8 students; parents are to sign & return the manila envelope (keep the report card itself); please see the article below about "How to Read Report Cards"
  • Thanksgiving Baskets Collection Drive - thanks for your donations!
  • Today is a designated "StL Hat Day"; students with a St. Louise hat may wear it indoors today

Saturday, November 18
  • Speech Team Tournament at St. Louise, 8:00AM
  • Tech Committee Breakfast Meeting, 8:30AM; RSVP to Dan Kirby

Monday and Tuesday, November 20-21 - NO SCHOOL
  • Parent/Teacher Conferences
  • Students in grades 1-8 are to attend part/all of the conferences
  • Students/siblings may watch a movie in the library under the supervision of a teacher while conferences are taking place (no toddlers or babies please)

Wednesday through Friday, November 22-24 - NO SCHOOL
  • Thanksgiving Vacation

Saturday, December 2
Sunday, December 3
  • Advent Begins

Come to Tonight's Open House...Bring a Friend
         We invite three types of families to attend our Open House tonight starting at 6:30PM, taking place throughout the main school building, as well as the north wing and the gym:
  1. First, any families with children who will be entering grades PK-8 next fall are welcome. If you have neighbors, co-workers, or extended family members living on the greater Eastside with upcoming 4-14 year-olds, invite them to our Open House, and better yet, tell them you'll meet them here and give them a tour.
  2. Secondly, we invite any families who have babies and are looking ahead. Over the years, we've even had Open House guests who were pregnant, and some visitors who were simply newlyweds - not pregnant - but just "type A" early planners.
  3. And last but not least, we welcome YOU - current St. Louisers - who would like to meet next year's teachers of your children. You may attend the Open House and stop by the next grade level's classrooms to introduce yourselves.
Thanks for promoting St. Louise School. You are our best advertisement!
Auction News

Thank You!
Thank you for the amazing evening on Saturday. Our School House truly Rocks! We are grateful for the generosity of our donors, bidders, and our awesome volunteers. We're still reconciling our numbers, but things are looking really great. We'll share our revenue figures soon. Credit Cards were run on Wednesday evening, and receipts will be sent out next week.
 Thank you so much for your fantastic support. The St. Louise School spirit was alive and well in the ballroom on Saturday night.

Please Apply for Corporate
If you work for a company that offers matching funds, please apply for matching funds to go with your auction donations. Please also apply for matching funds for Volunteer Hours for those who volunteered for the auction in any capacity. Kindly email Sue Richardsto let her know you're doing matching funds, so she can track the funds. We love doubling our dollars for St. Louise!
Wine For Sale!
We still have Mystery Wine bottles remaining that we'll be selling out of the main school office this week and during teacher conference week. Please stop by today, tomorrow, or Monday & Tuesday, and purchase a bottle for $25 (cash or check only please). This is a GREAT deal since all wines are valued at no less than $30 each and many are for much, much higher! Purchase a special bottle for your Thanksgiving table, a holiday or hostess gift, or simply to add to your own personal collection. All proceeds go toward out wonderful school! Stop by before they sell out.

Please Pick Up Purchased Items
If you have items to pick up that you purchased at the auction, please stop by the Auction Office this week or email Sue Richards  if you'd like your items to go home with your child.

Thank You to Our Volunteers
How do we even begin to thank everyone who helped with Saturday's Auction?! We simply could not have done it without the generous support of each and every one of them!
Thank you to our amazing committee chairs:
Paul McCulloch, Margie Clinton, Jon & Jennifer Sharp, Mike Kirby, Rebecca Ort, Jen Newton, Joni Hoffman, Tom Brennan, John D'Costa, Megan Kirk, Amy Thielman, Teresa Brosche, Christie Allemand, Sara Darboe, Mary Anne Baradi, Mika Walker, Renee Craddock, Peter Newton, Andrea Matt, Diane Sloss, Rich Barth, Laura Leach, Amy Wilken, Anneliese Kertson, Kristy Charles, Jennifer Magnusen, Juan Posada, Esther Magnotti, Todd & Nikki Craig, Nancy Tribolet, Ingrid Flaat, Joy Tran, Mindy Morgan, Elwell Baradi, Rayme Teders, Rebecca Nightingale, Wendy Blank, Ann Marie Sweeney.

As you can see, it takes many hands to help put together an auction. Heartfelt thanks to the following people who volunteered auction weekend in some way. This list includes St. Louise Parents, Alumni Parents, School Alumni, and current students. We thank you sincerely for all of your time and efforts!

Luis Martinez Castillo, Sonia del Toro, Gaby Gonzalez, John D'Costa, Rachel Rivera Wong, Jeff Fontanilla, Maria Kelly-Doggett, Hung Phan, Huong Nguyen Phan, Luis Veloz, Maria Juarez, Ina Canimo, Toby Richards, Sheldon Sequeira, Steve Greene, Nate Clinton, Anna Cruz, Jose Cruz, Esther Stapleton, Michael Grisaffi, Ning Grisaffi, Elaine Nartates, Tarun Ratnam, Kumiko Yada, Marsha Rampersad-Zope, Elizabeth Armenta, Yodit Kebreab, Elsa Masho, Iain Kirby, Tagan Flaat, Sarah Beth Leach, Jack Blair, Jack Richards, Macy Black, Grace Courter, Olivia D'Costa, Natalie Nowak, Jacob Brennan, Paul Munar, William Grisaffi, Sandra D'Costa, Annabelle Gegus, Teresita O'Beirne, Michelle Bomberger, Matt Bomberger, Shiloh Gillespie, Jennifer Magnusen, Lauren Magnusen, Bradley Magnusen, Liz Brandell, Greg Brandell, Matthew Loutsis, Elijah Baradi, Katrina Baradi, Sheila Killeen, Colleen Nowak, Cindy Wagner, Marinell Zevenbergen, Mason Flaat, Paul Canimo, Rey Lagunero, Bryan Veloz, Andrew Widodo, Ashley Santiago, Aracelli Santiago, Angie Olgivy, Renee Craddock, Tom Brennan.
Sign Up Opportunities STILL AVAILABLE to Purchase Online
It's not too late! You can still purchase sign-ups online including Free Dress for a Week, Kidd Valley Hot Lunch, and available spots at a few select parties. But these opportunities will end soon, so go here now to purchase these opportunities.

Photos of Your Kids Available
If you missed the beautiful 11x14 Black & White photos of your children at the auction, there is still one more chance left to purchase! These 11x14" photos will be available online for ordering for $100 each until December 4th only, so click here  to order yours today!  If you already purchased a photo at preview week or at the auction, you will receive an email notification that your photo is ready for pick up in the school office within the next 1 to 2 weeks.   Please contact the Black & White photo team with any questions. 
Memento photos - the photos taken of your children with their St. Louise siblings on Passport Day - were given to auction attendees in a printed copy. The jpegs are available to purchase online here  for $25. These make great Christmas Card photos!

Thank you for all your support! Our School House ROCKS!
~Sue Richards, Auction Director

Wow! We Are So Proud!
          If you were at the Auction last Saturday night, you were no doubt WOWED ! at the Family Honor portion to kick off the evening when we honored the Schoenlein family! Gary and Kris Schoenlein are legendary St. Louise School parents, who were previous recipients of our Volunteer Extraordinaire Award and are still giving their time and talent to St. Louise. We also recognized the Schoenlein children - Casey (St. Louise Class of 2010), Grant (Class of 2008), and Braden (Class of 2006).
          Being that the Auction fell on Veterans' Day, we asked Braden to lead the room in the Pledge of Allegiance. Braden attended the U.S. Military Academy at West Point, was commissioned as a 2nd Lieutenant in the Army, and is currently serving her country as a 1st Lieutenant.
          Prior to leading the Auction attendees in the Pledge, Braden, in her Army dress uniform, gave a remarkable speech that showcased the terrific person she is, the wonderful foundation she received when a student at St. Louise, and the impressive leader she has become due to her training in the military. Following is the speech Braden gave:

Braden Schoenlein, St. Louise Class of 2006
Good Evening.
I am humbled and honored to address you this evening, as St. Louise Parish and Parish School have been such wonderful influences on my life. And it is wonderful to be in the midst of the St. Louise Community. In the spirit of my catholic faith, I don't think it would be inappropriate to start with a confession: Those who know me - know that I love any opportunity to dress up. When I am not 1st LT Schoenlein, I am Diva Schoenlein. So when I received the invitation to speak tonight, my first question to my mom was, "Would I have to wear my uniform?" Obviously, I lost that battle. But after wearing red plaid for nine years, the transition to fatigues Army blues was pretty easy.
My college years were spent at the United States Military Academy at West Point, where my Catholic faith gave me comfort, literally, from the start. During my eight weeks of Cadet Basic Training - more commonly known as Beast, we were allowed to attend religious services on Sunday. Let me tell you, I don't think I've ever been more grateful to sit in Mass for a blissful hour-uninterrupted by being forced to do push-ups or being yelled at for not having shined my low quarters properly. I was sure surprised at how many cadets were Catholics during Beast!
I hold my years at St. Louise close to my heart. I have fond memories of seeing Mr. Fitz with a new, crazy tie during morning carpool; playing with Max, our hamster, in Mrs. Talevich's room; visiting Mrs. Danforth's room with her daughters, Amanda and Ashley, to raid her candy bowl; getting in trouble in junior high for wearing earrings out of regulation; learning Algebra from Mrs. Bannick; winning volleyball championships with my dad and Hugh Carr as my coaches; being a member of the speech team with my mom and Kim as coaches; and graduation rehearsal with Mrs. Williams and Mrs. Herridge. And to this day, I do not think I've had a better history or English Teacher than Mr. O'C and Ms. Ferrer, respectively. A highlight of my 8th grade year was the play Romeo and Juliet which was put on by the entire class.
I was fortunate to have had such experiences at St. Louise, knowing that they don't happen at every other school. Academically, St. Louise prepared me well for the challenges of high school and I left with all the education and study skills I needed to succeed and to excel. But looking back, those were not the most important things I received at St. Louise.
From kindergarten through 8th grade I grew up in a community that instilled in me Catholic values: faith, service, integrity and compassion. I was surrounded by Pastors, teachers, coaches, friends and families - many of which are here tonight - who, by their teachings and in the way they treated me, always reinforced these virtues.
I would be remiss if I did not mention two of the most influential people in my life, Father Phil Wallace and Father Tom Belleque. My class was not just lucky to have such kind and engaged leaders during our years at St. Louise, we were blessed. I'll never forget a family dinner out with Fr. Phil on Good Friday. When our orders were taken, I silenced the table when I ordered a meat dish. Fr. Phil immediately smiled and said that I made an excellent choice. One of my classmates at West Point was also my St. Louise schoolmate, Nick Tengtio, who was also close to Fr. Phil. Shortly after he passed away, I learned that Fr. Phil kept cadet photos of me and Nick up at his home. I vividly remember just crying on my bed in the barracks - feeling sad, honored, and humbled.
At West Point, I was among 1200 cadets who were being trained to be leaders. Now I am an officer in the "real" army where excellent leadership is absolutely essential. And as an officer , I draw strength from those same St. Louise values - faith, service, integrity and compassion, and I recognize those values in the leaders that I admire.
I am proud to represent several St. Louise graduates who are currently serving in our military: Nick Tengtio, CJ Danforth, Alyson Hands, Johnny Harrell, Thomas Morrison, and any others I may have missed. On behalf of all who have served, I am touched and very grateful that you have made Veterans Day a part of this wonderful event.
My experience in the military has exposed me to a great diversity of people from many walks of life. Through these relationships, I realized how blessed I am for having grown up in such a strong family and faith-oriented community. I hope you all understand how special and everlasting it is to be a part of St. Louise. I'd like to end with a quote from a homily Father Phil gave on Memorial Day years ago: "We remember those who have died in the service of this country, so that we might live. To forget to remember is to die spiritually. To remember is to live as disciples, as a people, as a nation."
Go Chargers, and Go Army. Thank you.

How to Read Report Cards
         All grade K-8 students will be bringing home their report cards tomorrow. Your children have been told by their teachers that their job is to discuss their 1st trimester marks and comments with their parents, and then keep the card at home but have mom or dad sign the back of the envelope and return the un-sealed envelope to school (so we can re-use it two more times this year). You may return the envelope to this Monday's/Tuesday's teacher conference, or send it back when school resumes after the Thanksgiving holiday on Monday, November 27.
         With a new trimester having just begun, now is a perfect time to focus on one of our Student Learning Expectations (SLEs): #3.3 - "A St. Louise student is a well-balanced individual who sets goals and implements steps to achieve them."
            After viewing your children's report cards, please help them work on accomplishing this student learning expectation by asking what areas (curriculum subjects, work habits, and/or social skills) they see as needing improvement, and how they will be able to achieve improvement.
            One suggestion for parents might involve rewards and consequences you set up with your child when setting a goal. Parents could set frequent check-ins when they would contact their child's teacher(s) to see how their child is doing on the goal he/she is working on: whether it be getting assignments completed on time; earning higher test scores; participating positively in class; etc. Typically, younger children need shorter timespans before checking-in on progress toward goals and receiving rewards or consequences (daily or weekly), whereas upper grade students may go for a longer period of time before checking-in (weekly or monthly). The key component about using rewards and consequences is they work best if they are pre-determined and agreed to by the parents and child when making a goal and setting up plans. Some parents even compose a written "contract" for both "parties" to sign, stating the goals, the steps, and the rewards/consequences.
            As you read over the marks on your child's report card, it will be handy to refer to the criteria list the teachers use when completing the report card. Immediately below you'll see the "4 to 1" number scale used for some subjects and grading categories on grade 4-8 report cards, and for all grade K-3 report card subjects and grading categories. A student needs to exhibit all or some of the descriptors to earn the corresponding number grade. You can see that a mark of a "4" is truly a unique and rare mark for a student to achieve. Sometimes, parents are disappointed their child doesn't have "4"s but instead only received "3" marks on the report card. But a "3" is actually a great achievement - exactly what teachers are hoping their students can achieve. Similarly, sometimes parents are extremely upset to see "2" marks, but for some students a "2" shows great progress. A "2" means the student is accomplishing some expectations but just needs a little more help or needs to show a little more improvement. Obviously, parents and teachers know the student well, and so for other students, a "2" may be too low of a mark, and they know the student can do better. Finally, if there is a "1" mark on a card, parents and the child's teacher must be in communication, as this is a seriously low mark.
         If parents have any questions about the mark their child earned in a particular area or subject, they are to please talk directly with that subject's teacher. Thank you for partnering with the teachers in helping your children learn and progress.
4 to 1 Number Scale Descriptors for ACADEMIC Marks
4 = Exceeding Grade Level Expectations     
* Exhibits exceptional quality work consistently
* Shows high level of knowledge and understanding
* Shows creative and new ways of thinking
* Applies learning to other subject areas and life situations
3 = Meeting Grade Level Expectations
* Meets requirement for quality work
* Shows knowledge and understanding
* Demonstrates sound thinking
* Applies learning to other subject areas       
2 = Progressing Toward Grade Level Expectations 
* Meets some requirements for quality work
* Demonstrates some knowledge and understanding
* Requires extra time, instruction, assistance, and/or practice
1 = Not Meeting Grade Level Expectations  
* Seldom meets requirements for quality work
* Demonstrates little knowledge and understanding
* Requires an extended amount of time, instruction, assistance, and/or practice
4 to 1 Number Scale Descriptors for BEHAVIOR Marks
4 = Exceeding Grade Level Expectations     
*Always follows school rules
*Listens attentively at all times
*Never disturbs others when working
*Consistently demonstrates a respectful and helpful attitude toward teachers, classmates, and school environment
3 = Meeting Grade Level Expectations
* Follows school rules
* Listens attentively
* Works with minimal disturbance of others
* Demonstrates a respectful attitude toward teachers, classmates, and school environment   
2 = Progressing Toward Grade Level Expectations 
* Has difficulty following school rules
* Needs improvement in listening attentively
* Occasionally disturbs others when working
* Demonstrates some respect toward teachers, classmates, and the school environment
1 = Not Meeting Grade Level Expectations  
* Rarely follows school rules
* Is inattentive when should be listening
* Constantly disturbs others when working
* Demonstrates little respect toward teachers, classmates, and the school environment
Pre-Order Your School Yearbook
          Purchase your full-color, hardback St. Louise School Yearbook from TreeRing in November, and you'll save 5% off the cost. You'll have plenty of time to add your own memories from throughout the year if you choose to customize with personal photos. Every student has the option of getting a one-of-a-kind copy containing two free customizable pages. Your two free custom pages will be in your book only and are optional. (If you choose not to personalize you'll receive the same book, without the two extra pages.) Yearbooks will be distributed on the last day of the school year this June
          To purchase and personalize your yearbook, go to The St. Louise School passcode is 101439484318388. Regular price is $22.50. For questions email TreeRing at or our St. Louise Yearbook volunteer team at


Credit Card Fee-Free Week Ends Tomorrow

If you use your credit card to purchase Charger Cards through tomorrow, Friday the 17th, there will be no fee for the transaction. You may pay in person at the Charger Card office window tomorrow from 8:15-9:00AM, or skip the line and submit your order online or on paper, and then pay by credit card online when we send you an invoice for payment. Email us if you'd like more information on this latter method of paying online.

Before you purchase all the fixings for your Thanksgiving Feast, please get your Charger Cards!

For more information on Charger Cards and online ordering, please visit or contact the Charger Cards chairperson, Megan Kirk.

Partner with Teachers this Monday & Tuesday
        The specialist teachers will be in the library this Monday and Tuesday to supervise siblings while parents and students conference with teachers. (Thank you for finding childcare at home for your babies and toddlers; supervision in the library is only for preschool-age kids and older.)
        Remember, all grade 1-8 teachers have time built into the conference for the child himself/herself to speak and be a part of the agenda, so students in these grade levels are required to attend the conference.
        If you are out-of-town next week, your child's teacher is waiting for you to contact him/her via an email and suggest another date for a before school (7:30AM) or after school (3:15PM) conference. Thank you for being responsible for setting this up.
        The school office is open Monday from 10AM-8PM and Tuesday from 8AM-12PM if you have any administrative needs. The office then closes for the Wednesday through Friday Thanksgiving break. Kids' Club is closed all next week.
Saint Nicholas Will Soon Be Here

Come join us for our annual St. Nicholas Breakfast and Bazaar on Saturday, December 2, from 8:00 a.m. until 11:00 a.m. in the St. Louise Parish Hall.

Start a new family tradition as we welcome the season of Advent! Enjoy a delicious breakfast and take care of some Christmas shopping at our booths that offer unique gifts and treats. Breakfast is $5/kid and $10/adult. From 9-11 a.m., Saint Nicholas himself will be in the Hall to greet the children and will be available for taking pictures with your family!
For more information, contact our St. Nick co-chairs, JT & Janelle Taasan.
Volunteers are needed to help the day before (Friday the 1st) and the day of (Saturday the 2nd). See the various ways you can help and sign-up here. Earn your volunteer hours in fun & festive atmosphere! Thank you!


Live Every Day with Passion & Purpose

        Do you want to thrive rather than just survive? Do you want more energy? How about a deeper sense of purpose? Please join your fellow St. Louise parishioners and any other interested friends and neighbors on the greater-Eastside for Living Every Day with Passion & Purpose, presented by internationally acclaimed speaker Matthew Kelly. This exclusive event will be here this spring, April 13, right here in the St. Louise Church. ...But it's not your typical church event.
      Matthew Kelly has dedicated his life to helping people and organizations become the-best-version-of-themselves! Born in Australia, Matthew began speaking and writing in his late teens while he was attending business school. Since that time, four million people have attended his seminars and presentations in more than fifty countries. His books have been published in more than twenty-five languages, have appeared on the New York Times, Wall Street Journal, and USA Today best-seller lists, and have sold more than 14 million copies. He is also the founder of The Dynamic Catholic Institute, a Cincinnati-based non-profit organization. Since 2010, over 150,000 people in nearly every state have experienced Matthew Living Every Day with Passion & Purpose event.
        Tickets to attend this April 13th event, to be held in our church from 6:30-9:30 p.m, are first come, first served, as it is expected to sell-out. The cost is just $39 each, and can be purchased at  or by calling 859-980-7900. Please g o HERE for more information.

See what's happening on our St. Louise Facebook page