St. Mark School
A National Blue Ribbon School of Excellence
St. Mark School is a Christ-centered learning environment that teaches Gospel values and fosters academic excellence. Aware of the dignity and uniqueness of all students, we are committed to the spiritual, intellectual, moral, social, and physical development of each child.

December 13, 2020
Dear St. Mark Families,

On this 3rd Sunday of Advent, the Gospel reading tells us that John the Baptist was believed by those who heard him because he helped them to recognize Jesus in their midst. As part of a Catholic School community, we hope and pray that we lead one another to recognize Jesus’ presence in our world.

2020 has been a trying and excruciating year in so many ways, it is easy to loose sight of Jesus' presence around us. This week, I encourage our St. Mark community to recall that during the Advent season, we are invited to pay particular attention to the signs of Jesus’ presence in our world. For me, one of the greatest signs of Jesus' presence is the happiness and joy our St. Mark faculty, staff, and I feel each and every day we are greeted with the eager and bright faces of our students.

As we continue on in this school year with the theme of gratitude, let us be grateful that God has protected our students, and ask for His continued blessings on our families.

I wish you all continued good health and God's blessings.

Yours in Christ,
Melissa Warner 

© Loyola Press Sunday Connection

Please do not reply to this email. If you have questions, comments or concerns please email me directly. 
2020-2021 Parent-Student Handbook
Addendum Update

Please be advised that in accordance with the Connecticut State Department of Education Plan (Adapt, Advance, Achieve) Addendum 7: COVID-19 Reopening Considerations for Connecticut K–12 Music Programs found here, St. Mark School's 2020-2021 Parent-Student Handbook Addendum related to the COVID-19 pandemic has been updated to include the following:

  • Face masks will be worn when students are singing.
  • When singing, all students will face in the same direction.
  • Indoor singing will be limited to 30 minutes followed by at least 20 minutes of non-singing time to allow the roof exhaust fan system to provide appropriate air circulation.
  • Hand instruments such as rhythm sticks, shakers, percussion instruments, and other shared items will be used only when the teacher has the time and ability to clean and disinfect each instrument using approved cleaners after each use.
  • There will be no clustering of students in close singing groups.
  • A minimum indoor physical distance of 9x6 feet between each singer/student will be maintained.
  • Larger cohorts that preclude appropriate distancing will meet in a larger area (e.g. gym, etc.) for music class.
  • Use of any outdoor space for singing will meet mandated student distancing requirements of a physical distance of at least 6 feet.

Click here to view St. Mark School's 2020-2021 Parent-Student Handbook Addendum related to the COVID-19 pandemic in its entirety.

Please contact Nurse Frate, RN fratew@stratk12.org with any questions.
Snow Days and Weather Related Cancellations

After ongoing conversations with the Office of the Superintendent of Schools, fellow Diocesan principals, and hearing from several of our current families, I would like to provide additional details on St. Mark School's plan for snow days and weather related closings.

When the Stratford public schools are closed or delayed due to inclement weather, St. Mark School will also be closed or delayed with no distance learning.

If the number of snow days become excessive, we will transition snow days to remote learning from home via Google Meet and Google Classroom. I would like to prevent making up snow days late into June. When we begin to experience weather related school cancellations, I will keep you updated if snow day remote learning will be necessary.

As a reminder, our emergency alert system was tested in early November. In the case of a school cancellation, delay, or unplanned early dismissal, you be contacted by our emergency alert system via phone call, text message, and email to the primary contact information provided to the Main Office. Please contact Mrs. Mannino cmannino@stmarkschool.org with any updates to your contact information.

If there is a delayed opening St. Mark School will open at 9:30 a.m. with class beginning at 9:45 a.m.

If school closes early for weather related reasons, dismissal will be at 11:25 a.m. Parents will be alerted through our emergency alert system. Our After School Program will not be held when there is early dismissal due to weather or emergencies.
Pajama Day

As a Christmas treat, Tuesday, December 22nd will be a free Pajama Dress Down day for students.

Students may come to school dressed down in Pajamas. Pajamas should be school appropriate. Girls are required to wear pants or leggings under night gowns. Patterns and designs must be school appropriate on all pajamas, including shirts and pants.

All students should wear sneakers on Pajama dress down day. Slippers are not permitted. Please contact Mrs. Mannino cmannino@stmarkschool.org with any questions.
In the Classroom

Grade 6 students are the first to use some of the brand new graphic novels from our Scholastic Leveled Library during their Personalized Learning ELA blocks this week. Students worked in small groups, each group reading a different graphic novel. Students were assigned a graphic novel based on the text complexity. During this unit, students will learn how the images and the text of graphic novels work together to deepen their understanding of their book group novel and graphic novels in general!
This week in 1st grade, in-person and distance learning students practiced their math skills in partnership. Students used the math concept of "near doubles" to solve addition problems.
The class of 2021 was busy this week! In keeping with tradition, grade 8 decorated the school Christmas tree in the Parish Center Hallway, and a second tree in the main classroom hallway.

Our 8th graders also participated in one of our annual service projects in collaboration with the Sterling House of Stratford's Great Rake event. The Sterling House provided the address of a neighbor in need of yard work. Students walked from school to the address and cleared the yard of leaves, twigs, and fall debris. Thank you to the Class of 2021 for providing our school community two examples of service to others this Christmas season.
The Power of Prayer

If you have a prayer intention, please submit your request to St. Mark School's prayer line by clicking here. Your intention will be remembered during our Afternoon Prayers and Announcements.
For Parish information, visit: https://www.saintmarkchurchstratford.org/

For important information and updates on COVID-19, visit the
Please visit our school website regularly at www.stmarkschool.org. Important school updates including copies of notices, newsletters, HSA links, and school calendars can all be accessed on the website.

Visit our social media pages for updates on our school community.
  • Monday - Friday, December 14th - 18th: HSA Spirit Week
  • Monday, December 14th: red/green dress down day, $1
  • Tuesday, December 15th: add Christmas socks to uniform, $1
  • Wednesday, December 16th: add Christmas tie or headband, $1
  • Thursday, December 17th: ugly Christmas sweater day, $5
  • Friday, December 18th: add Christmas hat or scarf to uniform, $1
  • Wednesday, December 23rd: Early Dismissal at 11:25am, No After School Program
  • Thursday, December 24th: No School
  • Friday, December 25th: Merry Christmas!
  • Monday-Friday, December 28th - 31st: Christmas Vacation
  • Monday, January 4th: School Resumes
St. Mark School | 203-375-4291 | www.stmarkschool.org
500 Wigwam Lane, Stratford, CT 06614
The secret to happiness is to live moment by moment and to thank God for what He is sending us everyday in His goodness.
Saint Gianna Beretta