Bernie's Bark
Dear Parents-
On Saturday, we celebrate the Presentation of the Blessed Virgin Mary. I read that this feast is much more widely celebrated in the Eastern Rite churches, it is nevertheless an important feast that emphasizes the holiness of Mary’s life beginning at the Immaculate Conception and lasting throughout her life. What an honor to be chosen as the Mother of God! And while that is not our callings, we should strive to emulate the Blessed Mother in all we do. If you have a minute, reflect on the Joyful Mysteries and the role of Mary in the Life of Christ.

As we draw near to Thanksgiving, I am struck at the difference a year makes. This time last year we had little knowledge of the coronavirus and we were focusing on the upcoming holiday season, anticipating not only Thanksgiving but also Advent and the excitement of Christmas. This year, we face uncertainty and pandemic fatigue.

With concern, Father Tom and I track the seemingly uncontrolled spread of the coronavirus, and are mindful of the impact that may have on our return to school after Thanksgiving. At this time, SJS still plans on re-opening on December 2, for in-person as well as distance learning. However, there is reasonable concern that the spread of COVID-19 in our area could force a shutdown for in-person learning. Please be prepared for any eventuality, including 100% virtual learning for all students.

The positivity rate in Virginia is now up to 8.1%, with most cases reported in Southwest Virginia. Statewide, Virginia is averaging 1,500 newly-reported COVID-19 cases per day, up from a statewide peak of approximately 1,200 in May. Fairfax County 7-day average test positivity rate is also up, now at 7.41%; neighboring Loudoun County has a positivity rate of 7.8%, and Prince William County is at 8.9% positivity rate. Websites that track the virus indicate COVID in Fairfax County is at risk of an outbreak, and VDH reports 1,666 total cases (4,040 per 100,000) in zip code 20170.

 As always, I remind our families to wear masks, wash hands, keep distance and avoid crowds. Please be careful, and I thank you for your commitment to keeping the school community safe by minimizing social contact.

On Friday, November 20, all in-person learners will bring home with them all of their school supplies. This serves two purposes, the first is that on returning to school, students will move to a new classroom and need their things. Secondly, if we do shut down, all students will be prepared for virtual learning.

School pictures are scheduled for December 9 and 10 for in-person students. Distance learners will have their pictures taken at a distance location. If parents are uncomfortable with pictures being taken at the distance location, you can send in a digital picture for use in the yearbook. More information will be provided as time draws near.

And many thanks to you from Baby Bottles of Hope! Students collected money in baby bottles throughout the duration of the campaign, totaling $3,177.00!! Funds raised allows Hope to continue caring for mothers, babies, and life.

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

Go to Joseph
                              (Gen 41:55)

Denise Rutledge
 Building Wisdom and Faith Through Service to God
Re-enrollment for 2021-2022 School Year
With our 93% retention rate, it is reasonable to streamline our re-enrollment processes. The process is restructured so that current students will be automatically re-enrolled for the 2021-2022 school year. Enrollment fees of $300 per student will be charged on February 1, 2021 from the FACTS account on file. Families in need of an extension payment plan must also contact the Business Office by January 15. Re-enrollment fees are non-refundable and non-transferable. If, for some reason, your student will not be returning to St. Joseph Catholic School, notification in writing is needed by January 15, 2021. We are confident that you will find this expedited and recurring re-enrollment process helpful. If you have any questions, please contact Debbie Millon (dmillon@sjcherndon.orgor 703-880-4355) in the Business Office.
Discover Catholic Schools Week
Next week, we celebrate Discover Catholic Schools Week and we want to hear from YOU! We appreciate all of our families as we know you had a choice in sending your children to
St. Joseph Catholic School.

Help us showcase our Catholic school
and what makes it THE best!

Send a short video of why you chose St. Joseph Catholic School and/or what a Catholic education means to your family. Don't want to make a short video? No problem! We'd love to hear from you so send us an email
with your explanation!

Send your video or email to
any time between now and November 20!
Go Saints!
Dress Out Day - Tomorrow!
Dress Out Day on Wednesday, November 18!

As we celebrate Discover Catholic Schools Week
next week, we want to celebrate our students
with a dress out day!
Jeans are acceptable.

Have questions about attire on Dress Out Days?
Schoology and Kami Update
The World Wide Web...the Internet...Distance Learning...

Distance learning relies on the Internet, but there are times when the connection is lost. Schoology and Kami are web-based software which means nothing is downloaded but the internet is needed for access. The internet works in many directions such as School to Home...Home to Web Based Application...School to Web Based Application and back again. If there is a problem with Schoology, it could be home internet, school internet, or Schoology internet. Likewise for Kami. If you are able to open other sites on the internet then it is not the home or school internet, but the web based application internet. Please realize that distance learning relies on the internet and as much as we hope to have constant connectivity, the internet connection can drop. If there is an internet problem at school that lasts an extended period, you will be notified, but if it is a blip, then please try again. 
SJS Book Fair
Book Fair is OPEN!
The SJS Book Fair is open for business! Click the button below to get a sneak peek of all the great books and gifts you can purchase! Free shipping on orders $30+.....shipped to your home!

The last day to order books and have them arrive by Christmas will be Dec. 6. Happy Shopping!
SJS Spirit Wear - Order Now!
SJS Spirit Wear

The Class of 2021 is now selling SJS Spirit Wear! Show your school spirit and help support the Class of 2021 in fundraising for their graduation activities. We are excited to announce that the black ¼ zip pullover can be worn as part of the winter uniform for 1st through 8th grades. The on-line store is open so please stop in and place your orders before November 22. As a faster and safer delivery option, you can have your items mailed to your home or you can schedule them for pick up at school. Thank you for your support and Go Saints!
Nurse's Corner
Mask use and carbon dioxide
Wearing a mask does not raise the carbon dioxide (CO2) level in the air you breathe

A cloth mask does not provide an airtight fit across the face. The CO2 completely escapes into the air through and around the sides of the cloth mask when you breathe out or talk. CO2 is small enough to easily pass through any cloth mask material. In contrast, the virus that causes COVID-19 is much larger than CO2, so it cannot pass as easily through a properly designed and properly worn cloth mask (CDC). Please click on this link to read more information about wearing masks, click HERE.
Thanksgiving Break Guidelines

Thanksgiving holiday is a long awaited time in which families look forward to spending time with together. And Thanksgiving weekend is a notoriously busy time for travelers. As the COVID-19 pandemic continues to stir personal safety concerns and force travel restrictions and quarantine mandates, we ask you to please think carefully about how you will gather this year.

Our primary goal at the school is to minimize the impact of student/family high risk activity and travel on the community spread of COVID-19. The Center for Disease Control (CDC) strongly discourages traveling for the holiday to curb the spread of COVID-19. Staying home is the best way to protect yourself and others. However, the final decision rests upon you. If you must travel, be informed of the risks involved.

Per CDC, the risk of COVID-19 spreading at events and gatherings increases as follows:

Lowest risk: Virtual-only activities, events, and gatherings.
More risk: Smaller outdoor and in-person gatherings in which individuals from different households remain spaced at least 6 feet apart, wear masks, do not share objects, and come from the same local area (e.g., community, town, city, or county).
Higher risk: Medium-sized in-person gatherings that are adapted to allow individuals to remain spaced at least 6 feet apart and with attendees coming from outside the local area.
Highest risk: Large in-person gatherings where it is difficult for individuals to remain spaced at least 6 feet apart and attendees travel from outside the local area.

If during the Thanksgiving holiday you participate in higher risk activities or think that you may have been exposed during your celebration, please take extra precautions for 14 days after the event to protect others at school. Please do not send your child(ren) to school until you have satisfied the suggested quarantine.

As a reminder, the following are considered high risk activities
specifically during Thanksgiving:

  • Going shopping in crowded stores just before, on, or after Thanksgiving
  • Participating or being a spectator at a crowded event
  • Attending crowded parades
  • Attending large indoor gatherings with people from outside of your household.

It is highly recommend that you visit the special holiday-specific website below as you make your plans for thanksgiving
PTO Fall Fundraiser
Let's do this, Saints! Help us reach 100% participation!!
Can you help?

Don’t want to sell anything, bake anything, buy anything or generally avoid
fundraising of ANY kind? We feel the same way!

This year, you can OPT OUT of a traditional fundraiser by making a donation that will 100% DIRECTLY benefit St. Joseph Catholic School and help us achieve our goals of helping students and teachers at St. Joseph Catholic School.
Let's get 100% family participation by November 18!

Apply for the 2021-2022 School Year
NEW Incoming Students
For any siblings that anticipate attending St. Joseph Catholic School in Fall of 2021, don't forget to submit their application!
We have been blessed with an
enormous amount of interest for the
2021-2022 school year.

Applications are being accepted now and can be emailed to Monique Tuttle at
A non-refundable $125 application fee can be mailed or dropped off at the school. (ATTN: Admissions).

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