Notes from the Principal's Desk: Gratitude, Farewells, and more
End of Year Wrap Up
We made it! Who would have thought we would not have to pivot to remote learning this year at the beginning of the school year? Certainly not me! As I reflect on how we achieved this accomplishment, it is apparent that any success we have achieved is only through the efforts of the whole community as we rose to the challenge of being "In this Together."
The school community as a whole did an excellent job of adhering to our social contract of mask-wearing, increased handwashing, completing the morning wellness check-in, reporting close contacts, and reporting positive COVID test results.
I am incredibly grateful to the guiding coalition that was the SCMOQ Taskforce for reopening schools. This group of parents represented the broader parent community, and we met regularly beginning last summer to develop a plan to reopen the school to keep everyone safe.
I applaud CASPA and the parent community because teachers felt supported and appreciated throughout the year through your efforts. The faculty and staff are so thankful for the many acts of kindness, such as the frequent lunches and breakfast treats to the notes of gratitude and thanks from the parent community.
We should also give Kudos to the SCMOQ School Board, who, by doubling the frequency with which we met, provided critical feedback, wisdom, and support to the school.
The facilities team did a fantastic job of keeping the school clean and staying one step ahead of any possible sanitation issues. The increased cleaning procedures were critical in ensuring that we could keep the school open. Thank you, Gerard, Myrtle, Camille, Aaron, and Pat Bergin.
To the faculty and staff, you indeed modeled what it means to be resilient in the face of adversity and maintain a growth mindset. From teaching remotely last year, setting up classrooms to maintain physical distancing, and taking on responsibilities that were not necessarily part of your job descriptions, we came together as a team to make sure each student met with success, all while supporting one another. A special shoutout to Mr. Aaron Holman, whose work behind the scenes with the technology ensured we could maintain hybrid instruction and allowed students to learn remotely when necessary.
Finally, thank you to the students. You have done an amazing job wearing the masks, following the safety protocols, pursuing your academic goals, and supporting one another. We could not have done it without your support and buy-in!
Looking Towards Next Year
As the year comes to a close, I would like to share some updates with everyone. The summer work for students can be found on the school website under the STUDENTS tab. It should be updated by Friday, June 11th. We will send out an email when it is complete.
Next year we will return to the regular uniform guidelines. This includes the winter uniform and the acceptable shoes to wear. For boys in grades K-8 and girls in grades 6-8, the acceptable shoes for the winter uniform are Brown TIED shoes (no Wallabies, docksiders, loafers, Mocs, Merrells, or slip-ons). For girls grades K-5 the acceptable shoes are black and white saddle shoes.
Scantron Testing Results
Today your child should be bringing home the results of their Scantron testing conducted during the school year. Students were assessed on Language Arts, Math, and Reading. Students in grades 3, 5, and 7 were also evaluated on Science and Social Studies in the spring. Parents of students in grades 3, 5, and 7 will see the additional Science report in their parent summary. The Archdiocese is working with Scantron on how to share the Social Studies scores within the Parent Summary since the Social Studies test is not a nationally normed assessment for Scantron. We will share the scores with 3, 5, and 7-grade parents over the summer.
Below I share an example of a Reading Performance report to explain how to interpret your child's report.
Scaled Score (SS): The Scaled Score is a reliable estimate of your child's ability, using the statistical Rasch model. It is independent of your child's grade level. Use this score to track progress over time, from fall to spring or year after year, as a type of educational yardstick.
NPR: National Percentile Ranking. The NPR uses the SS to compare the student to members of the Performance Series National Norm Group within the same grade level. For example, an NPR of 98, as shown above, means that this sample student's score is above 98% of his or her peers in the national norm group. If your child has a NPR of 75, they would have performed better than 75% of the students in the nation who took the assessment.
Performance: The Performance Rating represents your child's rating in the context of a district-defined set of performance bands. In this case, the Archdiocese of Baltimore. This grouping may show your child's probable placement against other national peers or another test if the AoB would commission a custom report from Scantron.
Lexile: A Lexile is only given in reading. The Lexile identifies your child's place on a developmental scale that matches his or her reading ability to appropriate books. You can use this score to locate books online at your child's level at www.lexile.com.
Black dotted line: National Average.
Blue Dotted Line & Yellow Box: Archdiocese District Average
Departing Faculty and Staff
The end of each school year is a transition in many ways, and this year is no different. We have three faculty members and three instructional assistants who will not be returning next year as they move onto the next phase in their lives. We want to express our sincere gratitude and thanks to Mr. Bechtel (IA), Ms. Winston(IA), Mrs. Teeters(IA), Ms. Neal (2nd), Mrs. Snyder(4th), and Ms. Terry(7th/8th) for their hard work and dedication this year.
Mr. Bechtel will be returning to school to finish his teaching degree. Thankfully Ms. Winston and Mrs. Teeters will remain a part of the community as substitutes, and we will be excited to see them again. Ms. Neal will be returning to school to pursue a Master's degree. Mrs. Snyder has accepted a Principal position in the Archdiocese of Harrisburg, and Ms. Terry will be moving to California to pursue a Master's degree.
We also want to express our gratitude to Msr. Woy and Fr. Kevin for their dedication and leadership to the school over the years. It is with their support and leadership that our bonds of Parish and school have over the years. We wish you both the best of luck in your new assignments and endeavors.
End of Year Prayer
Finally, I offer an end-of-year prayer for your family. I pray that everyone will have a safe and happy summer and return to school refreshed and renewed. If you need to contact the school this summer, we ask that you do so during our summer office hours between 8 AM and 1 PM, Monday through Thursday. Thank you for a wonderful year, and may God bless you and your family.
May we make our homes places of relaxation,
joy, love, peace, and safety.
May we be generous and considerate,
not thinking only about ourselves,
but helping others enjoy the blessings of the summertime.
Lord God, Creator of all things,
guide our steps and strengthen our hearts
during these months of summer and vacation days.
Grant us refreshment of mind and body.
May we constantly strive to make a meaningful difference
in the lives of our loved ones and in the world around us
as we enjoy the warm days of summertime.
We ask this through Christ our Lord.