Volume 16~ December 29, 2019
St. Joseph's Regional Jr. High School
News & Notes ~ Week of December 29, 2019
Mission Statement: St. Joseph Regional Jr. High School is a Catholic, inclusive school for 7th and 8th grade where students learn and grow in respect for God, themselves, and others, engage in academically rigorous curricula and a wide-range of meaningful service and enrichment experiences. 
A New Year is Before Us!
What Does the New Year Hold for St. Joe's?

In the year 2020, St. Joseph Regional Jr. High students, families and teachers have a lot to look forward to! I don't typically make resolutions, but I do make GOALS! In just the past few months, we've made progress on many of the initial goals I set in August. I continuously "take stock" in meeting each of these goals. The most important goal I had was to improve communication and transparency in both directions to increase engagement and student success. I hope you feel as though we are accessible and listening to the feedback you've provided. I thank you for the time you have invested in your own communications with us.

Going forward, we're excited about the next steps.

  • Bringing parents, students and teachers together in faith, academic pursuit and to build support in the unique middle school years.
  • Enriching and deepen academic experiences of each student by assuring St. Joe's has a diverse and rigorous curriclulum.
  • Elevating the religious identity of St. Joseph Regional Jr. High.
  • Building capacity of our teaching staff to provide dimensional and effective instruction, responding in meaningful ways to each student.
  • Creatung and follow through with conservative, resourceful budget that guarantees financial stability and durability.
  • Increasing community visibility and enrollment for the 2020-2021 school year to 100 students.

Community Development:
In the next few months, we will be holding several opportunities to gather as a St. Joe's community with your families and new families. Keep your eye out for our "Mini-Golf" Tournament in the spring! I will continue to develop the social media presence, send out packed weekly newsletters and I have a few other things up my sleeve! We love the parental involvement you've provided, the visits you make and the conversations we have about your kids. Your presence is EVERYTHING! We are deeply invested in not just the academic aspects of their lives, but in who they are, who they want to be and how we can support that.

Curriculum Mapping/Teacher Coaching : In the second part of the year, teachers and I will be working on tightening the cohesion between 7th and 8th grade curriculum in all content areas. We want to assure that students are engaged in rigorous, continuous and at the same time receiving the individualized feedback they need. I have set up weekly meetings with teachers to support their own growth, learning and curiousity and to share the innovative lessons they're already doing. I can say with certainty, they are amazing people who are motivated about advancing their learning.

Religious Identity:
Sister Mary Joseph, Principal of Cardinal Lacroix Academy, will be spending time as a member of the St. Joseph community. So, so much more to come in this exciting partnership. She is truly one of the loveliest mentors in this faithful journey and I'm delighted to partner with her.

Financial Success:
I promised transparency. It is imperative that we access additional funding sources and wisely use the tuition money to thrive for the long term at St. Joe's.

Therefore, I have written several federal grants (Title 2 and Title 4) to provide additional resources, including professional development). We will continue to seek federal and private grants accessible to Catholic schools. Further, w e received a generous donation from Our Lady of the Cedars Knights of Columbus Council 5260.

I have been tracking the financial interactions to assure that every single dollar goes toward that which advances an essential aspect of our school. I have explored various ways to increase income for financial aid including the Children's Scholarship Fund of NH and potential corporate and alumni donations. This is a long-term goal. Financial aid is essential for some of our students to access this kind of education and it will be distributed with prudence.

Increasing Visiblity and Enrollment: Our Winter Wonderland Registration Celebration will kick off our next enrollment phase. One of the reasons we'd like to use a winter timeline for all rising 8th graders' registration is so we can begin the scheduling process for the 2020-2021 school year. We want to maximize our offerings and balance class sizes to keep our low student-teacher ratio, therefore, we'd like to position each student carefully. Our registration special window will be during Catholic Schools Week special for new and continuing students at just $140! After that week, registration will return to $200 for the next school year. If you know of public middle school students looking for a more refined opportunity, please do not hesitate to invite them to our Winter Wonderland Registration Celebration .

I know I speak for all of us at St. Joe' when I say, we are looking forward to a fantastic second half of the school year.
Peace and Blessings in 2020. Happy New Year!
~ Dawn
St. Joe's Alumni Community
It has been my delight to get to know you all and your kids. One thing I have learned is that many of you attended St. Joe's during your own junior high years. : )

As I look forward to the bigger picture for St. Joe's future, I see tremendous value in connecting alumni with our current students and together again. For several reasons, I am setting up a database of alumni over the past 95 years. Since the first week in this role, I knew that to grow St. Joe's to its once robust presence in Manchester since 1925, I needed to find the alumni. Embracing the past, for St. Joe's, will be as worthy as envisioning the future.

There have been thousands of young people who have walked the halls of St. Joseph Regional Jr. High School with memories of rich architecture, favorite teachers, the first conversations that became lifetime friendships, the development of their personal faith during some of the most critical years of their lives.

I have set up an alumni list for several purposes.

1) I will be inviting them to write letters, submit photos, stories and artifacts for our "Legacy Project" (more to come on this).

2) I would like to invite some to come visit and participate in video conferencing with our students to talk about the role of St. Joe's and the Catholic schools on their own lifes, share their successes, their journeys since they left St. Joe's and provide mentorship in particular ways. I want the kids to see the value of their presence in our schools and envision themselves as highly successful people because of their education.

3) I would like to offer them the opportunity to purchase Spiritwear to share the good news about our school.

These are just a few of the reasons I'd like to reconnect with St. Joe's alumni.

If you were an alumni, I am hoping you will consider putting your information into this spreadsheet and connecting with our St. Joe's Alumni Facebook page.

Spiritwear is Back for a Limited Time!
St. Joe's spiritwear will be available again for just eight days, from January 2nd-10th, in time for Catholic Schools Week! You won't want to miss the chance to get winter hats, cozy sweatpants, snuggly sweatshirts, and more as we'll be holding Spiritwear Days in the last week of January. We will reopen the Spiritwear online store just one more time this school year in late spring.

Parent Engagement News

  • Our Advisory Board meeting will be on January 16th, 6:00pm-7:30pm in the St. Joseph's library. Notes from the November meeting are here. This board has been reviewing outward facing documentation to assure it aligns with our mission. In January, we will be reviewing the St. Joseph Regional Jr. High budget.

  • Please see our new and improved website with Parent Page! I've been workng hard to update our website one piece at a time. Check out all of the new content. I am open to any feedback that could help make it more easily accessible, so please feel free to offer that if you have it.
  • You may visit our Parent Page to pay for the January 31st, 10am-12pm, snowtubing trip to McIntyre, just one of our Catholic Schools Week Activities.
Bears Athletics

  • The Bears are hibernating this week!
Looking Ahead
  • We will be in need of a track coach!
  • If you or someone you know has experience participating in or coaching track and enjoys mentoring students, please ask them let Mrs. Martineau.
Progress Reports will be issued this week. Please note, I am monitoring grades, conduct and effort throughout the quarter. Students must maintain a minimum of C in each class and 3 or better in conduct & effort to be eligible to participate.
Important Dates Ahead

Looking Ahead:
January 7th : Hailey LaPointe Assembly, WMUR, all school
January 13: PTO meeting, 7-8pm, see above for link.
January 16th: Advisory Board Meeting
January 20th: 9am-12pm, 1/2 day retreat for CLA and St. Joe's teachers, Students (No School) MLK Day
January 17-24th: Winter NWEA testing, Quarter 2 grades close 1/24

January 27-31th: Catholic Schools Week!
27th: SPIRITWEAR DAY! Homeroom Games Begin!
28th: Pajama Day! Winter Wonderland "Registration Celebration" for ALL ASPIRING St. Joe's students AND RISING 8th Graders! Please invite 6th graders!
29th: Mass, 8am, wear mass dress code, afternoon retreat with Sister Mary Joseph
30th: Homeroom Games! Wear homeroom t-shirts
31th: SPIRITWEAR DAY! Snowtubing at McIntyre Ski Area, Hot Chocolate Social and Trivia
Enrichment at St. Joseph Regional Jr. High
New Activities ~ St. Joe's Choir ~ We need a pianist!
I was able to acquire $4,136.00 through the Title IV grant for after school enrichment activities. Beginning in January, Mrs. Deignan will be leading a St. Joseph Regional Jr. High School Choir. Not only is Mrs. Deignan an exquisite vocalist, she has experience in ministry, faith formation and leading children's choir. Have you heard her during our masses? Many of our students expressed interest in the fall, and we listened! More details to follow soon!