Wednesday, September 21, 2016

News for the Week of 9/21/16




PARENTS AND STUDENTS!
St. Mary's School Day 
at St. Mary 's Parish is coming soon! 

For the first time since a Catholic School's Week celebration MANY years ago,  St. Mary's School students are invited to worship together at Sunday Mass. Father Matera has extended this invitation in the hope that we will present a large body of children and families to give witness to the awesome spiritual life here at the school. 

The date for this grand event is Sunday, October 16th at the 11am Mass. We truly hope that as many people as possible will join us. Although we would truly prefer that this be a “regrets only” event, we would like people to let us know that they plan to attend so that we can plan for seating for the students. Students will sit together and teachers will be here to supervise. PreKindergarten students are more than welcome to attend but they will sit with their families. Students in Kindergarten - 8 should attend in the relaxed uniform (pressed and neat, of course).

As part of the celebratory tone of the day, we would like to plan a simple reception in the Parish Center to follow the Mass. This would be a great Home & School Association activity to sponsor and staff.  A Sign Up Genius will be available soon both to RSVP for Mass and to volunteer to help with the reception.



October School Mass
Our October monthly school Mass will be held on Tuesday, October 4 at 9am in the church.  Please remember that no physical education uniforms should be worn to Mass.






Annual Asbestos Notification - Please check your email for our annual Asbestos Notification.  This information is also available on our school website - click here.




IMPORTANT CHANGE TO PARENT/TEACHER CONFERENCE INFORMATION - Parent/Teacher Conferences for students in grades 1 -8 will be held from Tuesday, October 25 - Thursday, October 27. 


 Each of these days will be a 12:45pm early dismissal for all students.  

PreKindergarten Enrichment is available AND WE ARE HAPPY TO ANNOUNCE THAT AFTERCARE WILL ALSO BE AVAILABLE UNTIL 6PM.  THERE IS A SPECIAL FEE SCHEDULE & RESERVATION FORM FOR STUDENTS IN K-8 DUE TO THE ADDITIONAL LENGTH OF THE AFTERCARE PERIOD.  

CLICK HERE FOR CONFERENCE DAY AFTERCARE FOR STUDENTS IN K-8.  PreKindergarten students should reserve using the regular reservation calendar since they will be transitioning from Enrichment and will not be using the longer care period.

Please click here to schedule your conference(s).

Kindergarten Conferences will be held in January from Tuesday, 1/17/17 - Friday, 1/20/17.  These conferences will be scheduled during the school day and will not be early dimissal days.  A Sign-Up Genius will be provided when the timing is appropriate.

Important Calendar Note - Please note that Friday, October 28 is also a 12:45pm Early Dimissal but will have NO PreKindergarten Enrichment or Aftercare because it is a Faculty In-Service meeting not conferences.


Congratulations! St. Mary's School is pleased to announce that Mr. and Mrs. Jamie and Diana Kalamarides have been selected as the St. John Neumann Award for Volunteer Service recipients for the 2016-17 school year. Both Jamie and Diana have quietly served St. Mary's School for many years in numerous capacities as their children have negotiated the grades here at St. Mary's School. As those who know them will attest, they seek no reward for service, on the contrary they represent so many parents among YOU who give and give of your time, talent and treasure for the benefit of the ultimate treasure, our children! Jamie and Diana will be recognized at next week’s HOPES dinner and we offer our heartfelt congratulations!


Do you know someone wondering if SMS is the right place for their family?  Please encourage them to drop in to St. Mary's School and see the difference a Catholic education makes! There will be a "drop-in" Open House on Monday, October 3rd from 8:30-11:30am.  Walk In Wednesdays will be held on October 12th, 19th and 26th from 9am to 11:30am.  We are currently Accepting applications for PreKindergarten - 8th grade for the 2017-18 school year.  Limited seats are also available for the current school year.

Prospective families are also invited to join us for an evening Open House on Monday, October 3rd from 6:30-8:30 pm. This will be a great opportunity to meet our faculty, staff, parents and alumni and tour our classrooms. Please RSVP to Toni Chagnon,  860-658-9412 or tchagnon@stmarysimsbury.eduk12.net.






The SMS Spirit Wear Shop is open and stocked with lots of newly designed merchandise.  Click here to learn which Spirit Wear items may be worn as part of our daily uniform and which are suitable for recreational wear only.  Photos of the new spirit wear can also be viewed.   Click here for an order form.


Formal Uniform begins on November 1 for students in Grades K - 7.  Formal uniform begins for Grade 8 on December 1. In case you are ready to begin your shopping for the formal uniform, Lands’ End is running 30% off the entire school store – six days of savings. The promo starts tomorrow, Thursday, 9/22 and runs through next Tuesday, 9/27.  Free shipping is always available on orders over $50.
Grade 8 Fundraising - Thanks to everyone who supported our 8th grade's car wash last Saturday and the mum sale!


Home & School Association News - With our new school year well underway, we are looking forward to several Home & School sponsored activity.  In addition to the reception we are hoping to host after St. Mary's School Day Mass (see at top of post), our annual Fall Bookfair will take place from October 25 - 28.  Volunteers are needed for both of these events and sign up information will be available soon.



Just in time for the upcoming holiday season, Home & School will be running a Lyman Orchards Pie & Otis Spunkmeyer Cookie Dough fundraiser.  Order forms will be coming home next week.  The fundraiser will run from Monday, October 3 - Tuesday, October 18.  Pickup information will be confirmed soon.

Supporting SMS -In addition to our school's CHOICE Program, St. Mary's offers several "painless" ways for you to raise money for our school.  Our Home & School Association coordinates our participation in the Box Tops for Education program.  Click here for more information and start clipping!

Stop & Shop A+ Rewards - Click here to register your card and for more information.



Shoprite for Education - Click here to register your card and for more information.




Alumni News -

Remembering 9/11 We are happy to share these pictures of Thomas Howard, SMS Class of '16, at the New York Stock Exchange ringing of the bell and the meal packing service project associated with this year's 9/11 anniversary. Thomas shares a 9/11 birthday with approximately 13,000 other teens  born on Sept. 11, 2001. Many of these teens now celebrate their birthdays with a day of service. Thomas H. had the privilege of ringing the bell because the Joint Chief of Staff couldn't make it. The crew ended up packing 505,738 meals for the needy. 


Northwest Catholic High School has announced their 2016 Advanced Placement Scholars.  Please join us in congratulating the following SMS alumni:

Avery Hatch, Matthew Sottile and Samuel Spak, all SMS Class of '12 have been named AP Scholars with Distinction - Granted to students who receive an average score of at least 3.5 on all AP Exams taken, and scores of 3 or higher on five or more of these exams.

Abigail Herron, SMS Class of '12 & Katharine Jessen, SMS Class of '13 have been named AP Scholars with Honor - Granted to students who receive an average of at least 3.25 on all AP Exams taken, and scores of 3 or higher on four or more of these exams.

Gabriela Doskos, Sarah Jessen and Allyson Voelker, all SMS Class of '13 and Ann O'Meara, SMS Class of '12 have been named AP Scholars - Granted to students who receive scores of 3 or high on three or more AP Exams.


We are also pleased to share that Katharine Jessen, SMS Class of '13,  has also been named a National Merit Semifinalist. Over 1.6 million students in more than 22,000 high schools across the country entered the 2017 National Merit Scholarship Program by taking the 2015 PSAT (Preliminary Scholastic Aptitude Test), also known as NMSQT (National Merit Scholarship Qualifying Test). Katharine is among the esteemed group of 16,000 students awarded the title of Semifinalist and will now compete to become a Merit Scholar. The pool of Semifinalists is comprised of less than one percent of U.S. high school seniors.  Congratulations, Katharine!










Wednesday, September 14, 2016

News for the Week of 9/14/16






Individual photos of students in 8th grade will be taken by Paul Cryan Photography on Thursday, September 15 in the school library.  A group class photo will also be taken.  These photos will be taken in the Library portable. Eighth grade students should wear "business casual" attire representative of their role as our graduating class of 2017 (e.g, Boys should wear a collared shirt and neat trousers. Girls should wear a top that covers shoulders and dresses and skirts should be of modest length.)  All other students should wear their "uniform of the day" on 9/15/16.



Hot Lunch Begins on Friday, 9/16/16, for those that pre-ordered.  Please remember no "cash & carry" lunches are available.  If you did not preorder & prepay for lunches, your child(ren) need to bring a brown bag lunch on hot lunch days.  The next opportunity to order hot lunch will be prior to our Christmas vacation.  Hot Lunch Volunteers are still needed.  If you have completed your Virtus Training, serving hot lunch is a great way to be a part of your child(ren)'s school day.  Click here to access the Sign Up Genius for hot lunch volunteers.





Parents Knight Out -  Book your babysitter!  Our parent/guardian community is invited to gather for a "Parents Knight Out" in the Parish Center at 6:30pm on Friday, Sept. 16th.  This will be a great opportunity to meet families new to our community, get better acquainted and share "back to school" stories.  We hope many of you will join us for a relaxed evening of community building.





FMI Eastern Regional Band - Instrumental music students that have completed one year of study with Mrs. Morse/FMI, are invited to audition for this year's Eastern Regional Band.  Auditions and rehearsals will begin on Friday, October 7th at St. James School in Manchester. For more information about Eastern Regional Band, rehearsal dates and times and concert information, please click here.





Parent/Teacher Conferences for students in grades 1 -8 will be held from Tuesday, October 25 - Thursday, October 27.  Each of these days will be a 12:45pm early dismissal for all students.  PreKindergarten Enrichment is available but there will be NO AFTERCARE.  Please click here to schedule your conference(s).

Kindergarten Conferences will be held in January from Tuesday, 1/17/17 - Friday, 1/20/17.  These conferences will be scheduled during the school day and will not be early dimissal days.  A Sign-Up Genius will be provided when the timing is appropriate.

Important Calendar Note - Please note that Friday, October 28 is also a 12:45pm Early Dimissal but will have NO PreKindergarten Enrichment or Aftercare because it is a Faculty In-Service meeting not conferences.



2016 SMS CHESS CLUB
Chess Club is Back!


OPEN TO STUDENTS IN GRADES 1 THROUGH 8.

Beginning Friday, September 30th and running through Friday, November 18th, the chess club will meet each Friday from 3:30-4:30 in the fourth grade classroom to learn and play the game of chess. Our very own Mr. Markiw, with his two sons, Danylo in third grade and Max in fourth grade, will be working with a limited number of students to pass on the skills of chess.
 Click here to sign up.



H.S.A. News  - Thanks to everyone who has stepped up to help us revitalize our Home & School Association.  Many of you have expressed interest in helping to coordinate several events this year including the Scholastic bookfair and a Lyman pie fundraiser.  Stay tuned for more information about these events and others and, keep in mind, your help is always welcome!









The SMS Spirit Wear Shop is open and stocked with lots of newly designed merchandise.  Click here to learn which Spirit Wear items may be worn as part of our daily uniform and which are suitable for recreational wear only.  Photos of the new spirit wear can also be viewed.   Click here for an order form.


Grade 8 Fundraising - 

Here's another great way to support our 8th grade!  There will be a car wash on Saturday, September 17, from 8:30am-1pm in the North (playground) parking lot.  Thanks in advance for your support of our 8th grade!

Community News



St. Mary's Parish Invites Families to Worship - "Back to School" time is always busy and sometimes Sunday Mass can be tough to coordinate.  St. Mary's Parish invites all families to worship at 5pm Sunday Youth Masses on September 25, October 23, November 20 and December 4.  These "Youth Masses" are open to all and offer an additional opportunity to worship.






Simsbury Scarecrows - The Simsbury Historical Society invites you to build a scarecrow for your family to enjoy throughout the harvest season.  All materials will be provided and you provide the creativity!  $15 for your first scarecrow, $10 for an additional scarecrows.  Saturday, September 24 from 10am-4pm at 800 Hopmeadow Street in Simsbury.  Raindate - Sunday, September 25.  Questions - call 860-658-2500 or email archives@simsburyhistory.org.

Be sure to give our Simsbury scarecrow a big wave whenever you are passing by school.  We were so pleased to be asked by the Historical Society to create and display an SMS scarecrow.

Wednesday, September 7, 2016

News for the week of 9/7/16



Tonight - Wednesday, September 7th is "Back to School Night for Parents".   We are looking forward to seeing you!
This adult evening has 2 events this year. The evening will begin with a meeting for parents with students beginning instrumental music and band lessons for the first time this year.  If you have a student entering grades 4-8 that is interested in beginning instrumental music and band with our Future Musician's instructor, Mrs. Debbie Morse, please plan to meet in the music/art portable at 6pm. NOTE - This meeting is NOT required for parents of students that have previously participated in band.  After the meeting with Mrs. Morse, parents should proceed to the Parish Center for the 6:30pm opening of "Back to School Night for Parents".

  "Back to School Night for Parents" will begin at 6:30pm in the Parish Center.  Mrs. Williamson will have opening remarks and news about our newly revitalized Home & School Association. This will also be your opportunity to visit your child(ren)'s homeroom classrooms, meet teachers and learn more about the school day and this year's expectations for a great school year.

Calendar Reminders



SMS is part of Simsbury Septemberfest from Friday, September 9th - Sunday, September 11th!  Be sure to stop by the SMS booth if your family is enjoying Septemberfest this weekend.  Click here for more information about Simsbury's Septemberfest celebration.

INDIVIDUAL STUDENT PICTURE DAY IS COMING SOON for students in Prekindergarten and grades K-7!
Picture Day: Monday, September 12
Picture Day ID: EJ416010Q0

Informational flyers with an attached order form from Lifetouch Photography were sent home with all students PreK, K -7 on Friday, September 2.  

Portrait Order Forms and payment should be brought to school on Picture Day.

  All students will have a photo taken even if no portrait package is ordered for use in our school yearbook.  Students in PreK, K -7 may wear casual dress appropriate for school and portrait photography on Monday, September 12.   Group class photos will be taken on Wednesday, November 9.

Individual photos of students in 8th grade will be taken by Paul Cryan Photography on Thursday, September 15 in the school library.  A group class photo will also be taken.  These photos will be taken in the Library portable. Eighth grade students should wear "business casual" attire representative of their role as our graduating class of 2017 (e.g, Boys should wear a collared shirt and neat trousers. Girls should wear a top that covers shoulders and dresses and skirts should be of modest length.)




September School Mass - Our first school Mass will be held on Tuesday, September 13th at 9am in the church.  Please note, this is a change to our original school calendar.  There is no school Mass on Friday, 9/9/16.  All are welcome to worship with us.  Please remember that no physical education uniforms should be worn to Mass.

Virtus Training - We hope that many of you will join us as volunteers in supporting our school and students!  All volunteers must be Virtus trained before beginning volunteer activities.  We will host a Virtus training session on Tuesday, September 13th at 6:30pm in the 5th grade classroom.  Please RSVP to the school office if you plan to attend this session. When you arrive for the training, please plan to park in the north (playground) parking lot and enter through the door closest to the portable classroom to access the grade 5 classroom.

It is very important that participants arrive on time for the training session.  In order to receive certification, you must be present from the start of the class.  If this day/time are not convenient for you, there are other training sessions offered through the diocese.  To look for other training sessions in the area, click here.  If you completed Virtus training in a prior year, there is no need to repeat the training.  If you are not sure if your Virtus training is complete, have questions or are unsure if the school has proof of your training, please contact the school office.



Parents Knight Out -  Book your babysitter!  Our parent/guardian community is invited to gather for a "Parents Knight Out" in the Parish Center at 6:30pm on Friday, Sept. 16th.  This will be a great opportunity to meet families new to our community, get better acquainted and share "back to school" stories.  We hope many of you will join us for a relaxed evening of community building.



Teacher Blogs -  Mrs. Mortillaro's 4th grade blog and Senora Jaquez's Spanish Blog are now available.  We encourage parents to subscribe to these blogs to receive all posts to your email.




Grade 8 Fundraising - Every year, our 8th grade students conduct a number of fund raisers to help defray costs associated with their field trip to New York and other graduation related activities.  


8th Grade Mum Sale is Here!!!  Click here for an order form.
--Orders are DUE Tuesday, September 13th--


Here's another great way to support our 8th grade!  There will be a car wash on Saturday, September 17, from 8:30am-1pm in the North (playground) parking lot. Tickets may be purchased on September 10 & 11 after all Masses.  Tickets will also be available at Fitzgeralds on the afternoon of September 11.  Thanks in advance for your support of our 8th grade!


Community News

St. Mary's Parish Invites Families to Worship - "Back to School" time is always busy and sometimes Sunday Mass can be tough to coordinate.  St. Mary's Parish invites all families to worship at 5pm Sunday Youth Masses on September 25, October 23, November 20 and December 4.  These "Youth Masses" are open to all and offer an additional opportunity to worship.










There will be a Fall Festival at the Simsbury Community Farm on Sunday, Sept. 18th from 10am to 3pm. There will be all sorts of activities and an opportunity to learn more about the Farm and Gifts of Love. Click here for more information about the Simsbury Community Farm and Gifts of Love.












First Day Photos

Katarina was all smiles on her First Day in First Grade.




Friday, September 2, 2016

End of Week News & Reminders - 9/2/16



Students in Mrs. Janaskie's Grade 7 Literature Class
began their year with team building exercises in the spirit
of Henry Ford's observation - "....Working Together is Success."





School will be closed on Monday, September 5th, in observance of Labor Day.











CALENDAR REMINDERS FOR THE WEEK OF SEPTEMBER  6TH - 


Book your babysitter! Wednesday, September 7th is "Back to School Night for Parents". 

This adult evening has 2 events this year. The evening will begin with a meeting for parents with students beginning instrumental music and band lessons for the first time this year.  If you have a student entering grades 4-8 that is interested in beginning instrumental music and band with our Future Musician's instructor, Mrs. Debbie Morse, please plan to meet in the music/art portable at 6pm. NOTE - This meeting is NOT required for parents of students that have previously participated in band.  After the meeting with Mrs. Morse, parents should proceed to the Parish Center for the 6:30pm opening of "Back to School Night for Parents".

  "Back to School Night for Parents" will begin at 6:30pm in the Parish Center.  Mrs. Williamson will have opening remarks and news about our newly revitalized Home & School Association. This will also be your opportunity to visit your child(ren)'s homeroom classrooms, meet teachers and learn more about the school day and this year's expectations for a great school year.




Teacher Blogs -  Mrs. Pabich-Phillip's Third Grade Blog is now available.  Click here to visit the blog and to subscribe to receive all posts to your email.



INDIVIDUAL STUDENT PICTURE DAY IS COMING SOON for students in Prekindergarten and grades K-7!
Picture Day: Monday, September 12
Picture Day ID: EJ416010Q0

Informational flyers with an attached order form from Lifetouch Photography were sent home with all students PreK, K -7 on Friday, September 2.  Please be sure to check backpacks!  All students will have a photo taken even if no portrait package is ordered for use in our school yearbook.  Students in PreK, K -7 may wear casual dress appropriate for school and portrait photography on Monday, September 12.  Details regarding individual photos for grade 8 students will be coming soon.  Group class photos will be taken on Wednesday, November 9.






Athletic News - 
PE Club will start next week. PE Club is an after school program that is an extension of the activities and games we play in physical education class. We have a lot of fun and the competition is great!!!

Grades 5-8 meet on Thursdays beginning 9/8 and Grades 2-5 meet on Fridays beginning on 9/9.  Both groups meet from 3:45-5pm.  If you have a 5th grader they can choose to play with the older or younger group.
Basketball Club will start on Wednesday, 9/7 from 3:45-5pm.

The fee is $40 per club per month.  Please make your checks payable to St. Mary School and write the club name in the memo section.
If you participate in both PE and Basketball Club you can pay one fee of $70 a month.
Please send in your payment before the new month begins.

Field Hockey practice starts Wednesday, 9/7, from 3:45-5pm.  Open to boys & girls in grades 5-8. New to the sport? No prior experience required! Contact Toni Chagnon@ tchagnon@stmarysimsbury.eduk12.net if interested in playing.



Grade 8 Fundraising - Every year, our 8th grade students conduct a number of fund raisers to help defray costs associated with their field trip to New York and other graduation related activities.  


8th Grade Mum Sale is Here!!!  Click here for an order form.
--Orders are DUE Tuesday, September 13th--


Here's another great way to support our 8th grade!  There will be a car wash on Saturday, September 17, from 8:30am-1pm in the North (playground) parking lot. Tickets may be purchased on September 10 & 11 after all Masses.  Tickets will also be available at Fitzgeralds on the afternoon of September 11.  Thanks in advance for your support of our 8th grade!

Still shopping for school uniforms?  Lands’ End is running 25% off your entire school store – for 6 full days. The promo starts September 1st and runs through next Tuesday, September 6th.  Please remember that the CHOICE Program has Lands' End gift cards available.  When you shop with these gift cards to make uniform purchases you are working toward meeting your family's CHOICE obligation for this school year.


Back to School - The best part of our first day of school was seeing all our students.  Our building is again full of happy chatter and laughter.  If you have a "first day" photo you would like to share, please email dhatch@stmarysimsbury.eduk12.net.


The "many moods" of Emma M. as she begins grade 2.
Welcome back, Emma!
It was all smiles as Clare (l), Nora(c) & Thomas (r) C.started
their first days in PreKindergarten, grade 1 and grade 3.  We are
looking forward to the day, Daniel, joins his siblings here at SMS!

Greta F. and Noelle F. share some sisterly support
before their first days in grade 2 and PreK.
We love these sunny smiles!

Salla K. (left) and Penelope K. are #uKnighted
with their new logos embroidered on polos as
they begin grades 2 and Kindergarten.
Your smiles are the prettiest part of the SMS uniform!