A Message from Head of School Michael Burke
Warm greetings from campus. Even though we are still in 100% remote instruction both faculty and students are persevering to make the best of the situation that we find ourselves living through. Fortunately, there has been some good news in regard to our Fresno County COVID-19 numbers. Over these past 6 weeks our numbers have improved to the point where there are discussions about returning to in person instruction in the near future. We are all working diligently to have our campus ready for when we get the green light to reopen, and are anxious to have our students back in the classroom. While we are optimistic and preparing to reopen, please keep in mind that the plan to reopen is subject to change depending on local health conditions and restrictions.
Next Thursday, October 1st, we will kick off the celebration of our 75th anniversary. We will begin our 75th anniversary with Mass at St. John’s Cathedral at 10:25 a.m. This Mass will be live streamed so that all of our constituents will be able to participate virtually. In 1945, Bishop Scher celebrated the first SJM Mass at St. John’s on October 1st, so it is fitting we are back at St. John’s where it all began 75 years ago!
With the restart of fall sports practices and conditioning this week, it is beginning to feel like we are returning to a somewhat normal school environment. Winter and Spring sports will have the option of beginning on October 19th. In addition, we are working on creating cohorts to bring students back onto campus in small groups, however we have not yet received final approval to move forward on the cohorts.
Over this past summer, we targeted four campus improvements projects. We upgraded the bathrooms in the science building, added four touchless water fountains, added a conference room in Willenger Hall, and established an attractive courtyard between the cafeteria and locker room. It is my pleasure to announce that these projects were all fully funded thanks to the generosity of our SJM supporters. All of these upgrades were designed to enhance the environment for our returning students.
Included in this edition of the Panther Press are instructions on how to reach out to specific staff members at SJM if you have questions about any part of the school. Most of your questions can be answered via the website at sjmhs.org but we have included a directory with contact names and numbers for your convenience and direct response.
Be well and be safe. Go Panthers.