Welcome to the twenty-eighth edition of 
Panther Press, 
a biweekly electronic newsletter sent to families and friends of 
San Joaquin Memorial High School
Our Fall semester is officially concluded and, while it has been an unusual one, our staff, students and faculty rose to the occasion and overcame great challenges. Our spring semester begins on January 11.

We wish you a Merry Christmas and a blessed New Year.
A Message from Head of School Michael Burke

Christmas greetings from the entire SJM staff! We are all preparing for a Christmas like none other, however the birth of Christ is upon us. This has been a very difficult and challenging school year and we persevered through and now Christmas is here. My wish for all of us is that we can spend some time in reflection about what is important in our lives. 

Our SJM community is proud of what we have been able to accomplish in spite of all the challenges we faced this year. With promising news of the vaccines we hope that we are near the end of our ordeal and life will soon return to normal. 

In this issue of the Panther Press there are some announcements about how we will start our January semester. Please take note of the adjusted hybrid schedule. We will begin in a hybrid schedule on January 11th and evaluate each week to evaluate the best course of action. 

Blessings to each of you as we celebrate Christmas with our families. We look forward to a wonderful 2021. God Bless. 
Michael Burke
Head of School
Important Information about the Spring 2021 Semester

Dear Parents,

We will be reopening campus for in person learning with our Hybrid schedule on January 11, 2021. Please see the Hybrid schedule, which is attached. The schedule will explain which group of students attend on a particular day. When students do not attend class on campus they will attend class virtually via zoom. The school was divided using last names A-K and L-Z to determine which students are on campus for in person learning. This was done to minimize the amount of students on campus therefore providing a safe learning environment for the remainder of the semester. In addition, there are some key points of information we need to communicate before we start school next week.  

1.  Hybrid Schedule - NEW hybrid schedule for 2nd semester. See link below.

2. Points of Entry - Students will be allowed on campus starting at 7:30am and may enter through the gate located in the Senior Parking Lot and the Main Entrance off of Fresno Street. These gates will be open from 7:30-9:15am. The Junior Parking Lot will be open from 8:30-9:15am.  

3.  Temperature and Screening - All students entering campus must have their temperature checked and pre-screening completed. The screening app will be accessible for all students and must be completed as they enter campus. 

4.  Face Masks - All students will be required to wear face masks at all times while on campus...NO EXCEPTIONS. Please review the face mask guidelines attached. All face masks must follow school requirements.  

5.  Uniform Guidelines - Please review the uniform guidelines and grooming policies for students as these policies will be enforced. Please refer to pages 48-52 of the Parent Student Handbook for Uniform and Grooming guidelines.

6.  Lunch - Students will need to bring their own lunch as food options on campus will be very limited for safety reasons. Furthermore, food deliveries from outside vendors, parents, friends, siblings, etc will not be allowed. They will be turned away at the gate to further keep our campus safe.  

7.  Transportation - Brandy Rodriguez will be in charge of communicating all transportation questions and protocols. Her email is brodriguez@sjmhs.org

8.  Form Indicating Student Return - Please complete the attached form signifying whether your student will return in our Hybrid model or stay 100% remote learning for the remainder of the semester. This form must be completed and returned by Monday, January 4, 2021, so we can include your student in the return to campus plan.  Please review the Extra-Curricular Policy before completing and returning the Student Return Form.

9. Visitors/Drop-offs - Students will not be allowed any visitors to campus. Parents may drop-off school materials like athletic equipment, books, iPad, etc to the attendance office when those items are needed for students.  


Scholarship and Financial Aid Applications Now Open

Our scholarship application and our financial aid application are both now open. Dozens of scholarships are available for current students, incoming freshman from non-partner schools and incoming students from partner schools.

Applicants interested in applying for scholarships must apply before January 15. No applications will be accepted past that deadline. Learn more about scholarships and the application process at https://sjmhs.org/scholarships

Apply directly for general scholarships (for students grades 9-12) by clicking here

If your student attends one of our Partner Schools, apply for additional scholarships by clicking here

Applicants for financial aid should apply as soon as possible to ensure they receive financial aid, as there are limited funds to go around. Here are a few things to keep in mind:

  • If you intend to apply for a scholarship, be sure to apply for financial aid by January 15, 2021.  
  • If your student is an incoming freshman and you want to know their financial aid award prior to freshman registration night, please apply by January 15, 2021.
  • Your 2019 federal tax return will suffice for documentation when applying. No need to wait until you file your taxes next year!

Learn more about financial aid and the application process at https://sjmhs.org/financial-aid-facts

Don't hesitate! Apply today!

Still have questions about how to apply for scholarships? Download guides to each application below!
San Joaquin Memorial’s All-School Test Day is Back!
Date: Tuesday, January 26, 2021

College admissions test prep is and always has been a priority at SJM. We want to make sure that our students are test-ready and eligible for early scholarship and college admission opportunities.

All SJM juniors will take the nationally distributed PSAT/NMSQT (Practice SAT/National Merit Scholarship Qualifying Test) on campus on January 26.
Sophomores and freshmen will take a practice ACT online through Albert.io.
Seniors will have the day off. (It would be a great time to do a virtual college visit.)
More details will come the first week back to school in January.

SAT/ACT Math Prep for Winter Break
To support our students in preparing for the practice SAT and ACT, the SJM math department has posted SAT/ACT math prep to the Class of 2022, 2023 and 2024 Google Classrooms. Students will use the grade-level codes found in their Google Classroom to access math test prep through Albert.io. Thank you math department!  Click here to download instructions on how to access the test prep.

Naviance Now
Seniors – should make sure their college list is up to date and includes admissions decisions.

All Students - check out the Scholarship applications found under “Colleges” – “Scholarships & Money” – “Scholarship List.”

All Students – looking for a summer experience? Check out Enrichment Programs found under “Colleges” – “Research Colleges” – “Enrichment Programs.”
Financial Aid for College
Class of 2021 – be aware of financial aid and scholarship application due dates. Check your colleges’ financial aid websites for directions.

Complete the FAFSA (Free Application of Federal Student Aid) online as soon as possible at https://studentaid.gov/h/apply-for-aid/fafsa
All Classes Complete Semester Service Projects and Support Community
This semester, our Freshman, Sophomore, Junior and Senior classes each gave back to the community through unique service projects. Through this unprecedented time our students have managed to find ways to serve our community. The service program made changes to the way our students serve others by creating class projects Here is more information about each grade level's project.
The freshman class partnered with Fresno Mission, a non-profit, Christ-centered, evangelical charitable organization with the purpose of meeting the physical and spiritual needs of our area’s destitute. The freshman class learned through their service teachings of Jesus that the least, the last, and the lost will always be in our midst. The Freshman class had 100% participation in the Restock the Pantry for the Fresno Mission service project. Students brought in bags filled with delicious food to help out the Fresno Mission during this unprecedented time. 
The sophomore class partnered with the Marjaree Mason Center, Fresno County's only dedicated provider of domestic violence shelter and support services, including education for victims and youth. The sophomore class learned through their service of creating comic pages about classic childhood stories for the children affected by domestic violence staying at the shelter. The class also created comfort packs to provide the children with hope and love. Through this service students learned to love their neighbor and to gain knowledge of children affected by domestic violence. 
The junior class developed a new partnership with the CalVet Veteran's Home of California, a 300-bed, long-term care facility located in Fresno County. The Junior Class learned through their service of writing Thank You cards to our local Veterans. The cards were created so that the students can show veterans appreciation for all of their sacrifices and that someone is thinking of them during this pandemic. The Class of 2021 also created blessing boxes for the residents to show their appreciation for their rights and freedoms the Veterans provided for them. Through this service students learned to love their neighbor just in time for Veteran's Day when they received their blessing boxes. 

The Senior Class partnered with the Nazareth House of Fresno, a Catholic assisted living facility just 5 minutes from SJM. Through their partnership the senior class wrote letters in solidarity with the residents to provide them with hope and love. Additionally, the class of 2021 created blessing bags and prayer boxes for the residents as a simple gesture letting them know we are thinking and praying for them before the holiday season.
Yearbooks on Sale Now
Yearbooks are now on sale. They will cost $85 until Christmas and $100 after that. Go to yearbookordercenter.com

Senior Ads are also available to purchase and build on the same website. Email Ms. Hathaway with any questions at jhathaway@sjmhs.org
The SJM 2021-2022 Application for NEW incoming freshmen and fall transfers is now open on the SJM website. The application fee will be waived during the priority application period, October 1 to December 31. Help us spread the word by passing this information on to prospective parents and students! For assistance in the application process or to schedule a private, socially distanced tour of the SJM Campus, contact Rainey Lewis at (559) 475-5837 or rlewis@sjmhs.org.

Alumni Contact Update

Panther Alums, even though your time here at Memorial has passed, this is still your home! Please stay connected with us so that you can be part of our exciting engagement opportunities such as our sporting event tailgates, alumni mixers and so much more! To stay connected please fill out this form.

Join our Parent Guild or Booster’s Club!

Interested in getting involved at SJM and supporting the school? Join our Parent Guild or Booster’s Club! Contact Shirley Boujikian for more information regarding the Parent Guild at sboujikian@sjmhs.org, (559) 475-5831 and sjmboostersclub@gmail.com for more information on the Booster’s Club. 

Click here for the application forms: 
San Joaquin Memorial High School | sjmhs.org