September 4, 2019
Greetings families of Presentation of Mary School,
Thank you for the warm welcome you extended at the Open House last week. It was a joy to meet all of you and especially meet your children. Their excitement sets the tone for a great year.
Know that we are honored to serve as your co-principals this year, and we bring extensive experience as Catholic School principals as well as working for the Archdiocesan Education Office. Our schedule is as follows should you need to contact us: Mondays - Wednesdays (Gary), Wednesday afternoons through Friday (Mary). Notice that we overlap on Wednesdays so we can plan, review daily activities for days not in attendance, and conduct faculty meetings. We hosted the first faculty meeting this week and it ran about two hours. Needless to say, we had many discussion and information items that needed our attention. The brainstorming and exchange of information was invaluable as we learn and plan for the weeks ahead.
During our first five days on the job, we hit the ground running on a variety of fronts. We recruited and interviewed candidates for the Middle School English/ Language Arts (ELA) position. Beth Carle has agreed to teach while Ms. Prahl is student teaching. Mrs. Carle is a licensed ELA teacher and has two children in the middle school. Please join us in welcoming her in the days and weeks to come. We have reached out to some of our contacts about in-service opportunities for the new math curricula. This will provide an opportunity for teachers to glean a deeper understanding of the content and the use of the resources and to ask specific questions once they have had some experience with the new program. This week videographers for the Aim Higher Foundation were here shooting footage for their upcoming Gala called, “Night of Light.” Presentation was asked to showcase the behind the scenes planning and preparation for the “Way’s Warriors” T-shirt sale. You may recall that a few students came up with the idea to design a T-shirt that would show support, love, and prayers for their beloved teacher who was battling cancer. As you might imagine the story tugged on the heartstrings of many and in this age of social media gained recognition by the Aim Higher Foundation. The Aim Higher Foundation offers scholarships to students attending Catholic Schools across the Archdiocese. Presentation students have been some of the recipients of said scholarships. The video will be viewed at the gala by hundreds of supporters of Catholic Education who will be asked to open up their checkbooks and donate to the scholarship fund. As you might imagine this is quite a prestigious opportunity for Presentation. Our thanks to Ashley Way for coordinating that shoot. NWEA testing will begin earlier than last year with a start date of Sept. 16. We will ensure that the system is ready for your children to test Sept. 16 - Oct. 4. As with any testing, please make sure your children arrive at school well rested and try to avoid any unexcused absences, as it is difficult for students to rekindle the momentum generated from days of testing. Once completed, the test information will be used to pinpoint the learning needs of grade levels as well as individual students. The school counselor was on-site this Thursday to assess this year’s counseling needs. She will assist with Special Ed scheduling as well as the identification of students who need special accommodations and/or services. Kindergartners met the principal on their first day when they came to the office for a visit. They were quite excited to share stories about their siblings, pets, and everything else that pops into a kindergarteners mind. It was a joy to be their host at the office.
As you might imagine we had a challenge or two to grapple with this week. While we are all very excited about the use of the new chrome books, low and behold, the internet speed and capacity did not respond accordingly. Our tech company will be out to investigate and resolve the issue. In the meantime, teaching and learning will proceed.
As you can tell, we are off to a great start at Presentation. Watch for further updates as they become available. In the meantime thank you for your care, concern, and prayers.
Gary Faust, ED. S.
Mary Kane, Ed. S.