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       "The Messenger"

          January 11, 2019
  Vol. VI, No. 21
St. Michael's Academy
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St. Michael's Academy 
Okay.  It only took a couple of days to "clean up our act" for the morning drop-off procedures.  Not bad.  But don't let it go to your head...we still haven't experienced any weather yet!  That's when we're really going to see what we're made of!  I do plan on hanging out on the corner for awhile to continue monitoring our routine, but there will someday come a day when I (or some designee) won't be there, so I'll just say this...God is watching.  What a great, every day opportunity to model personal integrity for your child. 

We are gearing up for Catholic Schools Week at the end of the month.  The raffle calendars were sent home and we hope that every family will be able to sell five. Hopefully we will see our students return on Monday with lots of pink slips in their hands! Our basket raffle is continuing this year and the grade themes have been sent home as well as requests for grade level basket coordinators. 

And finally our Mangia Mingle (Pasta Supper) will be on Saturday, Feb. 2nd.  More on that next week.

Enjoy a nice weekend. 

Peace and God's blessings,

Ms. Ann E. Dougal 

  Important Dates
Please Make A Note Of These Important Dates 

Banking every 
Violin every Thursday

Thursday, January 17, 2019 at 5:30 p.m.
Home School Excecutive Meeting
2nd Floor Conference Room

Friday, January 18, 2019
Grade 1 - Zoo On The Go
In-house Field Trip

Saturday, January 19, 2019 from 9 a.m. to Noon
SMA Uniform Exchange

Please remember to attend Church as a family

Morning Drop-Off

Please Review!

We are going into our second week of adhering to morning drop-off rules. Things went fairly smoothly this week but this is NOT A TEMPORARY procedure! When we add winter weather conditions into the mix, safety issues will become even more of a concern. Just to refresh your memory if you missed it last week:  
  1. Between 8-8:30 a.m., we need a constant flow of traffic dropping  off children. You pull up, your child unloads on the school side of the street, and you continue on. We know that many parents feel the need to stay until their child enters the school but please know that we have faculty and staff whose job it is to oversee their safe entrance. 
  2. One way traffic around the school block; north on Eddywood, south on Wheeler.
  3. No parking on the opposite side of the street from the school.
  4. No parking on the school side of Wheeler. This is what interferes with the drop-off line.  Please pull up as far as possible!
  5. The only parents allowed to park on the school side of Eddywood Street are parents/guardians of PreK students.
  6. Parents/guardians of PreK students should park starting after the traffic cones at the main entrance of the school forward all the way up to Plumtree Road. Do not park on the opposite side of Eddywood.
  7. Parents of K-8th students: If you need to park and walk your child into school in the morning, please park on another neighboring street (NOT Wheeler, Arvilla or Eddywood) and use crosswalks to access the school block.
  8. The parking lot is reserved for faculty/staff and parishioners of Holy Cross Parish. Parents should not use the parking lot as a drop off route!
  9. St. Michael's Academy works very hard to be a good neighbor to our surrounding residents. If you need to park on the neighboring streets, please do not block driveways, etc.
  10. Please demonstrate patience, courtesy and adherence to the rules as you maneuver through the carlines. Children learn by your actions.
  11. No U turns allowed around the school block.*
These procedures are for the
safety of ALL.
* This is a new addition to the list.

From The Classroom of Ms. Quesnel- Gr. 3
Kicking Off the New Year

Happy New Year! Third grade is ready to kick off the rest of the year and get started on our resolutions. We have many great ideas for what we want to work on, including being kinder, working harder, and staying organized. It seems to me that the students have already been successful with their resolutions. If this is how the new year has started, I cannot wait to see what the rest of the year will bring!

Speaking of the rest of the year, we will continue to master our multiplication facts. We have done many fun activities with our facts including Jeopardy and The Ice Cream Scoop Challenge. The students have come a long way since beginning with multiples of twos. Next thing you know, we will be on to division! Here's to the start of the new year!

 From the Counselor's Office

Social Media Info And Tips For Parents Of
Children and Teens

Keeping your child's use of technology and social media safe and positive is an ongoing process and not a one-time conversation!

1)  Social media/digital tools include cell phones, computers, ipods, ipads, gaming units, television, etc.

2)  95% of children ages 10 and up have access to a smartphone (May 2018 Pew Research Center publication). 45% of teens say they are online almost constantly/latest research reveals 9 hours a day on average.  Many young children are watching YouTube videos and TV without supervision. Parents should regulate social media usage by their children of any age.

3)  Visit different websites and decide which ones you will allow your child to use.  You may require them to share their passwords and accounts with you or another trusted adult.   Require that your child get your permission before using any new type of social media.  Decide in advance what the consequences will be if your child breaks the rules. Be sure to firmly follow through on consequences.

4) Though your child posts something on a website or texts then deletes it, there is still what is called a "footprint"of what was posted/texted.  The delete only removes it from their personal device (even with snapchat). Therefore, remind your child to use social media tools and websites ONLY to build relationships, show their talents/skills, etc. Tell them to NEVER  send hurtful messages to others or show themselves negatively.  Sending hurtful messages is considered bullying especially because it's automatically sent multiple times!

5) College admission reps, activity leaders, scholarship/grant reviewers, employers all check peoples social media usage to make decisions.  Be sure to help your child's media use be only positive for more choices in their future.

6) Set limits on when and for how long your child can use social media. Explain that while social media is a big part of "real life", life away from the tv, cell, computer screen is more important.  Finding a balance is the key. The earlier this starts in a child's life the better because digital tools are attractive, alluring and addicting to many people.

7) Openly check all digital devices for what your child is posting, texting and who they are connecting with.  Have your child fix or remove anything that concerns you and follow through with the discussed consequences. You may consider using an app to monitor your child's phone usage.  Contact your phone carrier to decide which is best.

8) Ensure that your child is turning off all electronics at night to protect their valuable sleep time! Here is a video discussing this: (  Video CBS news re: teens and screen time)

9) If someone is sending hurtful messages to your child, help them use the blocking/reporting tab built into to most sites. Consider contacting your child's school and/or the local law enforcement agency.

10) Model healthy technology usage yourself by giving your children your full attention when at home or out together, not using your cell phone in the car, and limiting the amount of time you spend in general on social media.  Find activities to do as a family that do not involve social media such as card/board games, outdoor games/walks etc.

Video Look Up  - this video reveals the need for us to be mindful about our cell phone/social media usage.  We need to spend more time socializing directly with others rather than through a digital tool.  This is even more important for us to role model for and teach to our children.

Excerpt from Matthew Kelly's new book The Biggest Lie in the History of Christianity sheds light on social media use as well...

"A Latin phrase that was shared with me once has always stayed in the back of my mind: esse quam videri , which translates into " to be rather than to seem to be."   On social media, our egos tempt us to present ourselves how we would like others to see us, rather than as we really are...we are unlikely to come up with original thoughts of our own and develop a true sense of self. One of my greatest hopes is that we will allow (and teach) our children to be comfortable and confident being rather than succumbing to seeming as they embark on whatever journey is ahead of them.  Life is too short to waste time on social platforms. Life is too meaningful to worry about seeming when our children can and should be using that time being ."

Please contact Mrs. Cullen at for further information or resources.

Day Of Giving

Many Gifts, One Nation Day:
 A Day of Giving to Catholic Schools

Save the Date - January 30th!

On Jan 30, 2019, St. Michael's Academy will be participating in Many Gifts, One Nation: A Day of Giving to Catholic Schools, a national campaign focused on giving back to your local Catholic school, sponsored by NCEA and FACTS Management. During this 24 hour period, you will have the opportunity to support St. Michael's Academy online by making a gift by visiting our specially designed web page that day. You may remember that we participated in Valley Gives last year but that event has been discontinued and the NCEA Day of Giving will take its place.
In addition, we are VERY excited to announce we have a $3,000 MATCHING CHALLENGE DONOR. Once, we reach $3,000 in gifts, that amount will be matched by our generous benefactors and it will turn into $6,000!
Please mark this date on your calendar and keep an eye out for more information to follow in the next few weeks!

 Professional Development
A Day Of Learning For Teachers
While the students were enjoying a day off, the faculty and staff had a learning day of their own.  We thank Fr. John Connors from St. Anne's in Chicopee for being with us this morning.  The day started with Fr. John guiding us in scripture study centering around the Wedding at Cana and the multiple take-aways from this passage. Fr. John then celebrated Mass with the faculty and staff.

The day also included a diocesan human resource presentation on 403b opportunities and the day finished with significant work on the school's emergency management plan.

 SMA Uniforms

 Uniform Exchange

Are your child's uniforms getting a little small or showing signs of wear?  Just in time is the second SMA Uniform Exchange on Saturday, January 19th from 9 a.m. to noon in the cafeteria.

"Gently worn" uniforms will be on sale at discounted rates!  If you bring any uniforms, you will receive a 50 percent discount!  (Please drop off at school prior to sale.)

Don't you just love a bargain?!

Girls On The Run

Heart and Soul Returns!
Happy New Year!  The spring season for Heart & Sole will begin mid-March, and registration will open next week.  Please be on the lookout for sign-up information.  

Practices will be held on Mondays and Fridays from 3:30-5:00.  We truly had a great time getting to know the girls last season.  Each one of them grew so much, and we hope to see them return this Spring.

We are looking for additional volunteer coaches to help support our team.  Please consider reaching out to friends and family members who might be interested in this great opportunity to make a positive impact on our girls.  Coaches do not need to be runners and can be male or female.  Girls On The Run provides a one-day comprehensive coach training that will be held in February. They will also need to complete the SMA Safe Environment Training and CORI background check.  Please let us know if you are interested!

Here is a great video wrapping of the fall Heart and Soul season.  Way to go St. Michael's Academy make us proud!

 Catholic Schools Week

  Get Ready For Catholic Schools Week!

Sunday, January 27th through Saturday, February 2nd is Catholic Schools Week!  Again this year, we will be doing the basket raffle at the Pasta Supper on February 2nd. Don't forget to send in your grade specific basket item. Baskets will be on display beginning at the Open House on January 27th and all through Catholic Schools Week.

 Open House and Curriculum Fair

Mark Your Calendars

Mark your calendars for our Open House for prospective students and our Curriculum Fair for our current students on Sunday, January 27th for the beginning of Catholic Schools Week The presentation for prospective students and their families will take place promptly at noon.  We will do a brief information presentation and then have a panel of people made up of teachers, students and parents to answer questions. Tours of the school will follow and visitors will be encouraged to visit the classrooms.

The Curriculum Fair will be open from noon to 2 p.m.  We will also have a representative from Pope Francis Preparatory School present to answer any questions. 

Please help us spread the word to any students or families that might have an interest in attending St. Michael's Academy!

Food For Thought
"If you want God to hear your prayers, hear the voice of the poor. If you wish God to anticipate your wants, provide those of the needy without waiting for them to ask you."
                                    - St. Thomas of Villanova

Parish News
Holy Cross 

The Holy Cross Knights of Columbus  are hosting their 5th annual Sweetheart Dance on Saturday, Feb. 16th in the St. Michael's Academy gym, 153 Eddywood St. Springfield, MA. Tickets are $30 a person; singles welcome! 

Arrive at 6 p.m. sharp for a Cheese & Cracker Social. Gourmet catered dinner is at 7 p.m. with a DJ and dancing until 11:00 p.m. BYOB if you'd like a beverage with dinner. 

Tickets may be purchased securely through Yapsody (click here) using debit/credit/or PayPal by visiting Tickets are limited and will only be on sale until February 10th. Please call Bob Bys at 413-563-1147 for more info.

Prayer Corner
St. Michael the Archangel, pray for us! 

We pray for all St. Michael's Academy students, families, faculty, and staff, and their special intentions.

And we pray in a special way for our recently departed:

Mary I. Ruth
Eternal rest grant unto them, O Lord, and let perpetual light shine upon them. May the souls of all the faithful departed, through the mercy of God, rest in peace. Amen. 

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St. Michael's Academy 
153 Eddywood Street - Springfield, MA 01118
413.782.5246 office 
413.782.8137 fax