It is a time of turmoil but also of triumph. We pray for peace in our world and we celebrate the milestones of students who represent our bright future.
Dear St. Rose School Families,
Congratulations to our Preschool and Kindergarten graduates! These children bring light to our lives and teach us many important lessons such as seeing the blessings in each day and staying hopeful. We celebrate how much they have learned and grown this year and ask God to watch over them always.
On Thursday morning Connecticut Senator Richard Blumenthal visited virtually with our 8th graders. My thanks to Monsignor for arranging this special activity since we could not meet in D.C. The discussion was informative and our 8th graders represented St. Rose School with great poise.
Thursday evening our 8th graders had a virtual Class Night with parents and faculty in attendance. As always there was a great spirit of camaraderie among the group; congratulations to all award recipients. A special shout out to Sylvia Pinheiro who received the St. Thomas Aquinas award this week from Dr. Steven Cheeseman, Diocese of Bridgeport Catholic Schools Superintendent. She was selected for this award because she exemplifies his characteristics of service, moral virtue, and academic commitment. I am proud of all the 8th graders for their hard work, wonderful spirit and myriad of talents.
I hope you had the chance to view Dr. Cheeseman's video message to parents earlier this week in which he shares the approach to school in the Fall. I am attaching it here for your viewing. As he mentions, each school will make its own decision so we plan to do a thorough assessment and keep in touch over the summer as our specific school plan takes shape. Our top priority is the safety and education of your children. Click here for video message.
As they prepare for the new school year the Diocese is asking for family and teacher input via surveys. I would appreciate it if you would take some time to complete these surveys and return them by June 9th. Thank you.
We are rapidly approaching the last day of school which is June 10th. Please communicate with teachers about your materials drop off/pick up plans. Details are included in the newsletter. We appreciate your cooperation with the safety measures that are paramount to everyone's well being.
Report cards, honor roll certificates and summer work will be sent out by mid to late June. Any questions can be directed to teachers. Thank you.
We are encouraged that so many new families will be joining St. Rose School in the Fall. Enrollment is open so please tell your friends and family to visit our website for a virtual tour and contact Mrs. Coppola, firstname.lastname@example.org, with questions. A warm welcome awaits all who come to our school.
Have a happy, healthy weekend. Let us join our hearts in prayer for healing in our world.
Mr. Bardhyl Gjoka
8th Graders Have a Virtual Meeting
with Senator Blumenthal
It was a capital idea by Monsignor Bob -- invite Sentator RIchard Blumenthal to speak with 8th graders virtually and it happened Thursday morning, June 4th. The conversation was lively with questions such as what is his advice for going to high school, how can students serve the community, what are his proudest moments as Senator and what is a work day like for him. Senator Blumenthal said that Newtown and Monsignor Bob are close to his heart and invited all students to come visit him in D.C. some time.
Smiles, Tears and Cheers ...
8th Grade Virtual Class Night
What is traditionally a dinner dance became a zoom fest on Thursday June 4th as the 8th grade class, their parents and the St. Rose faculty came together to recognize, celebrate and remember. Monsignor started it off with a prayer and then donned 2020 glasses to get the party started. Subject teachers announced awards with the help of parents who presented the pins they had secretly received in sealed envelopes prior to the ceremony. Tributes were made by Mr. G, Mrs. B, Monsignor, Sister Thaddeus , Mrs. Petrillo and all teachers who unanimously agree that the class of 2020 is a unique group of individuals who are talented, kind, strong, motivated and resilient. In spite of these difficult times, they have risen above to bring hope and light. They will be remembered and are very much loved. Everyone implored them to come back often and keep in touch about their high school endeavors. The moving video prepared by Mrs. Christos reminded us that whether they joined St. Rose School in Preschool or later each member of this class leaves a lasting mark on the school family.
They are little but they have done mighty things and are destined for bright days ahead. This week our Preschool and Kindergarten teachers drove to their students' homes to deliver diplomas, gifts, balloons and lots of love in recognition of their graduations. Kindergarten students donned the traditional blue caps and gowns and Preschoolers dressed in their Sunday best, all jumping and clapping for joy to see their teachers and receive their goodies. Mr. G sent a congratulations message via video to all the families remarking about how these little learners taught us all big lessons in finding the joy in each day and holding on to hope. Hip! Hip! Hooray! and blessings for healthy, happy adventures ahead.
Congratulations to Sylvia who was chosen for this honor because she exhibits St. Thomas' characteristics of service, moral virtue, and academic commitment. This award is usually presented at the Breakfast of Champions with Bishop Caggiano but this year it was sent via a special letter from Dr. Cheeseman.
What grade/subject do you teach and how long have you been at St. Rose School?
I currently teach ELA, Religion, and Social Studies for fifth grade and am the Dean of Student Life. I have been a part of the St. Rose community for 23 years.
What is your favorite aspect of teaching this age/grade?
I absolutely loved teaching first grade; the years of Busy Bees in the Beehive hold many, many fond memories for me! I taught fourth grade for 6 years and moved up with my class this year to teach fifth grade for the first time. I love that 4th/5th age group too; they are so ready with all they learned in the primary grades, but not quite ready for all the independence of middle school; so, you watch them take and use their skills in so many ways, solve problems, and dig deep with their inquisitiveness; it is inspiring and it is many times that a class discussion or a question ends up as an activity or project that they produce something and "knock it out of the park"! At this age, they understand so much, but they still have that bit of awe in everything and that's what makes lessons take off into directions and results no one expected!
I have to say this year held extra blessings, as trying as these last months have been. My crew has been the calm in the storm. Their perseverance and showing me that they are ready for their trip to Middle School have made the days pass quickly! Daily chats and learning even more about them; days when no one wants to leave the Google Meet, when they stop by office hours to just say hello or play the piano for me; the other day they asked if we could have meetings during the summer! We shared history together, that we will always remember.
Tell us about your family
Mr. B and I just celebrated our 35th anniversary and we have two children, Zachary and Elyse. Zachary is 28 and the Video Production and Graphics Manager at the University of Rochester, Office of Advancement. In the fall, Zachary will also be an adjunct professor at RIT (his alma mater). Elyse is 26 and the Digital Marketing Manager for WORX in Prospect, CT. They are both St. Rose alumni! Two other members of the family...Coconut, our dog and Larry, our cat.
What is your favorite book?
I have so many well loved books (my overflowing bookshelves attest) I would have to pick Tuesdays with Morrie
What is your favorite movie?
You've Got Mail! Really anything with Tom Hanks is my favorite!!
What is your favorite color?
What is your favorite season?
I love snow; but, fall wins out!! The best time of the year to be outside in sunshine with a bit of a chill in the air, and the landscape on fire with beautiful colors!
What is your favorite prayer?
Prayer of St. Francis, both in prayer and song.
Writing is my all time favorite hobby; journaling, blogging, stories, just about anything! I find it calming and peaceful! Photography is a close second, I love catching the emotion of a moment in a picture; I also like to photograph nature. In April I ventured out on my deck to try and get a picture of the black bear rummaging in the garbage can...that made me think maybe someday I'll go on safari to get some great pictures!!
What about the St. Rose School community has made the biggest impact on you?
Experiencing faith and service through the eyes of a child! When I taught first grade, I loved the awe and wonder they had about Jesus and our world. They bring you back to the simplicity of what it is to believe, wholeheartedly, without reservation. With the 4th and 5th graders they question a bit more, but in a way to try and understand why people did what they did, why they doubted, why they went against what is good; they have an understanding of what it is to be faithful followers. As you watch the children work on service projects, or come up with ideas; they don't look at anything as impossible, for them it is all doable because it is the right thing and what we should do. Throughout all the years, it is definitely the children and how they see things that have had the biggest impact on me.
What advice can you give to students and families as we live through these uncertain times?
Pause! As simple as it sounds, just take a pause here and there; let go of everything, every worry, every thought and let Christ fill you and remind you that in nothing are you alone. He will take you through every flowered path, as well as every storm; He won't abandon you, for in everything we live there is a purpose and He will be by our side. Sometimes it could be weeks, months, or years before we realize what the purpose is but, we will see it and He will help us understand.
As the last few days of the year wind down, we are excited for summer but sad to bid goodbye as our 8th graders and their families as they graduate. We wish the students continued success in high school and look forward to hearing about their achievements. Please come back and visit!
Thank you so much for your votes on the two items we discussed at last week's HSA meeting; both of the items passed and we will move forward with presenting a check to Mr. G for $20,000 to support the school in the repayment of the portables buy-out loan. We will also formalize the changes to the HSA By-Laws and will upload the new version to the school website over the summer.
We are thrilled to let you know that two individuals heard our pleas for help and have agreed to take on the open HSA Board positions. We need your support to officially elect Isabel Almeida as our next Vice President and Meg Lampazzi as our next Secretary. Please visit this link to vote: https://www.surveymonkey.com/r/PHYMV7X
It's time to thank our teachers and staff for an incredible job, especially these last few months. Families are encouraged to use SCRIP to purchase e-gift cards for teachers, which can be emailed instantly. Please visit shopwithscrip.com to set up an account and/or purchase - St. Rose receives a percentage of every purchase. Don't know what to get? Teacher preferences are available via this link: https://drive.google.com/drive/folders/1aRluP7ndDisWeps7k2Ik3mjpqNV0Ny-R. Remember, notes/cards and gifts can be brought to school for drop-off on the day you pick up your child's belongings (Grades pre-K through 7 on June 11 and 12.) Heartfelt notes of appreciation are always treasured.
Enjoy the last few days of school!
Your HSA Board
DATES TO NOTE
June 5th -- Kindergarten graduation
June 9th -- Grades 1-7 Moving Up Day
June 9th -- New Family Virtual Meet & Greet
June 10th -- Last day of school Grades 1-7;
If you have a student in Grade 1 and 2, your sign up was sent out via the teacher for drop off/pick up items at school. On this day, you will also get and return items for any older siblings.
June 11 & 12th -- Drop off/pick up day for grades 3-7. Please go to the link below if you haven't selected a time yet.