Bernie's Bark
Dear Parents-

Tomorrow is Ash Wednesday and although not a holy day of obligation, please feel welcome to join us on the live-stream for school Mass tomorrow morning at 10:00. The link is in the students’ schoology. The reception of ashes is a symbol of how very sorry we are for our sins, and how we hope to share in the life of Christ. The ashes are also a public expression of our love for our faith. The holy season of Lent is a good time to reflect, and discern what is important in our lives, and eliminate what we have allowed to become part of our lives that is simply noise and distractions. Let go of grudges, don’t waste time and energy on things that don’t matter. Focus on the children and help them become faith-filled followers of Christ. ”Repent and believe in the Gospel.”

During Lent students will meditate on the Stations of the Cross using a digital version we created last spring during the early days of the pandemic. The Stations are so moving and help us to appreciate the magnitude of Christ’s love for each of us, and reflect on whether we are living the life Christ wants for us.

I am very excited to share the news that Bishop Burbidge will celebrate Mass and visit with our students on Friday, March 5. We are blessed to have a bishop who is so committed to the success of Catholic education..and he truly enjoys visiting schools and meeting with students! The Bishop’s visit also brings with it a schedule change and Friday, March 5 will be a half-day of school for students. Students will have an early dismissal.

In our COVID-19 update, Fairfax County has a current 7-day moving average of 8.77% positivity rate. Neighboring Loudoun County has a positivity rate of 11.5%, and Prince William County also has a 11.5% positivity rate. The rates in each of these counties is significantly down since last week, a trend we pray continues. The rates are still well above the rate when school opened in August, and children now make up 13% of COVID-19 cases.

The Virginia Department of Health has identified at least one case of the UK COVID-variant and two cases of the South African COVID-variant in the Commonwealth. The CDC urges extreme caution as we learn more about these strains. The mitigation strategies remain the same …..Wear your mask, keep your distance, please do not gather with individuals outside your household, and wash your hands.

Found at this link is the form to request a change of learning platform for Trimester 3. Fill out this form if you are requesting a CHANGE. The change window is open until Friday, February 19 at noon, and no exceptions will be made for missing the deadline. Please consider the needs of your children, only. At the school, we have been blessed with good health to this point, but there are no guarantees, and the coronavirus can be severe, particularly in cases where there are underlying health concerns. We are in a pandemic, and parents assume the risk of sending their children to school at this time. Mitigation strategies are strictly enforced at school for in-person learners.

Mark your calendar for the upcoming general PTO meeting planned for Wednesday, February 24, at 7:00PM. This will be a virtual event and a link will be provided.

Also, please note below, and as announced last week, that our book club will meet tonight so as not to conflict with Ash Wednesday evening Masses.

Please let me know if you have any questions, or if I can be of any assistance.

Go to Joseph
                              (Gen 41:55)

Denise Rutledge
 Building Wisdom and Faith Through Service to God
Item Drop Off

Please note that if you need to drop off or pick up anything from the school, there are tables inside the lobby to place your items. Please do not put anything on the floor in between the double doors outside the lobby. Items left here will be discarded. Should you need a contactless or curbside drop off, please contact the school office.
40 Days 40 Ways
Join Catholics Across the Diocese this Lenten Season in 40 Days 40 Ways. Sign up to receive daily reflections and challenges, crafted to help you and your family make this your best Lent yet!

“This Lent, I pray that Catholic families and individuals throughout the Diocese of Arlington take a moment each day to reflect on their lives, their relationship with Christ, and how they can grow in faith and virtue. The 40 Days 40 Ways campaign provides a perfect opportunity to engage in that kind of reflection. Please consider signing up for the daily email and join your brothers and sisters in Christ in making this your best Lent yet.” - Bishop Burbidge
Book Club
Mrs. Rutledge and Mrs. Carson invite you to read along and discuss the key elements detailed in
The Power of Showing Up.

Next meeting planned for Tuesday, February 16, at 7:00PM.

Topic: Book Club
Time: Feb. 16, 2021 07:00 PM Eastern Time (US and Canada)

Join Zoom Meeting

Meeting ID: 984 3437 1204
Passcode: ZX99BY

Topic: Chapter 2 Why Do Some Parents Show Up, While Others Don’t?
Once you understand your own upbringing, and are aware of your own narrative, you can use it to create a better bond with your children. Some attachment styles make for better parents.

Topic: Chapter 3 Beyond Helmets and Knee Pads: Keeping Your Child Safe
To Help your children feel safe, protect them from harm and avoid being the source of their fear.

The goal of the book club is building community and helping each other through a pandemic. It is not intended to be therapy or family counseling. Please seek the assistance of licensed practitioners if needed.

General PTO Meeting
Topic: PTO Winter General Meeting
Time: Feb 24, 2021 07:00 PM Eastern Time (US and Canada)

Join Zoom Meeting

Meeting ID: 949 4738 8476
Passcode: Saints

The agenda includes The friends and family raffle drawing and a presentation by Fr. Rufino about St. Joseph, the Holy Family and, his example as a parent.

All Are Welcome!
Job Fair

The Diocesan Job Fair scheduled to take place on Saturday, March 13, 2021 (9:00 a.m. – 12 noon) will be a virtual event this year. 

Click HERE to register and for more details!

Yearbooks will be available to purchase from Feb 10 - March 26 ONLINE only. There will be no extra copies to purchase after yearbook sale. 

Jostens has created an online portal for yearbook sales, click the link to purchase:

Cost for the yearbook is $20
Yearbook Picture Submissions

Looking for Candid Photos for the yearbook.

 If you have pictures that you would like to submit for possible use in the 2021 yearbook, Please submit to this site:

Submissions will be accepted until March 12, 2021
American Heart Month

This is a time when we focus on cardiovascular health. Every person is at risk and it is important that we do what we can to reduce that risk. Below are the list of factors we can & those we cannot control.

Risk Factors That Can Be Managed:
You can control or treat these risk factors with lifestyle changes and your healthcare provider's help:
  • High blood pressure
  • Smoking
  • High blood cholesterol
  • Lack of regular activity
  • Obesity or overweight
  • Diabetes
Risk Factors You Can't Control:
 You can't change these risk factors:
  • Age
  • Gender
  • Heredity (family health history)
  • Race
  • Previous stroke or heart attack

Click on link for infographic on 8 steps to prevent heart disease and stroke:  
Weather Related School Closing and Delays

For weather related closing and delays, we continue to follow Fairfax County Public Schools - FCPS.
Stay Connected!
SJS Mobile App, Twitter and Facebook

Don't forget to follow the official St. Joseph Catholic School Facebook page (sjschoolva), Twitter account (@sjschoolva), and download the mobile app from the App Store (St. Joseph Catholic School, VA)
Weekly Saints Quote
750 Peachtree Street, Herndon, VA 20170
Tel: 703-880-4350 Fax: 703-880-4320