Wednesday, August 30, 2017

Welcome to a New School Year! 8/30/17

Great new signage was part of  our welcome to a new school year!
Thanks, Mrs. Chagnon!

Brynn was our first in first grade today!
Salla (l) and Penelope show off their back to school smiles

Emma (r) & Reese share a moment before
their first day begins

Our carpool monitors, Mrs. Gore (l) and Mrs. Work,
deemed day one worthy of tiaras!
"Back to School" smiles waiting for the opening bell

Be sure to scroll all the way to the bottom of this post 
to see even more great photos of our first day!

Calendar Reminders - It is a super busy time of year!  All families are strongly encouraged to regularly check the school's Google calendar.  There is a tab at the top of the blog for the calendar.  Below are some quick reminders about events coming up soon.

Monday, 9/4/17 - School Closed - Labor Day

Book your babysitter!  Wednesday, September 6th is "Back to School Knight for Parents".  
This adult evening has two 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.

"Back to School Knight 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.

The "Spirit Shop" will be open at "Back to School Knight" with samples of many of the items available and order forms.  The tee shirt that is approved as part of our Physical Education uniform is in stock and may be purchased for $15.

Monday, 9/11/17 - Individual Student Photos of students in PreK, K-7 will be taken by Lifetouch Photography. Picture Day order forms will be sent home Friday, September 1 with all students in PreK, and grades K-7.   Even if no pictures are being ordered, a photo will be taken of each student for our school yearbook.  Students may wear casual dress appropriate for school for picture day.  Eighth grade individual student photos will be taken on another date.  Eighth grade students should wear the uniform of the day on 9/11/17. 

Cadet & Advanced Band and Instrumental Lessons will begin on Monday, September 11.  

Tuesday, 9/12/17- School Mass at 9am. All are welcome to join us in worship.  Please remember that no PE uniforms should be worn to Mass.  

Our school will celebrate its 60th anniversary at the 5pm Mass on Saturday,  September 23rd.  Our expectation is that all families will want to attend this Mass.  Our Home & School Association will host a reception following Mass. Please see Home & School News below for more information. Students in Kindergarten - grade 8 are requested to wear their relaxed uniforms.

Back to School Forms - Many thanks to everyone who has already returned their "Back to School" forms.  We know this is a super busy time of year but the timely return of these forms really helps get our school year off to a good and organized start.  Forms of particular importance include:  Student and Field Trip Emergency Cards (these are being sent home with students today - Wednesday, 8/30/17 and should be returned ASAP); forms required for iPad use (these are the Parent/Student Handbook Acknowledgement, the iPad AUP Acknowledgement, and the Electronic Use Agreement); Directory Verification Form (this helps assure our school directory is up to date and should be signed and returned even if there are no changes).  Please also be sure to return your milk order and payment if your child(ren) will participate in the milk program this year.  Milk service will begin for your child(ren) once your order and payment are turned in.

Hot Lunch will begin on Friday, September 8th.  The order period opened on August 21 and will close tomorrow - Thursday, 8/31.  All orders must be placed via the Educonnect Parent Portal.  Your Educonnect User Name and Password were included in your Back to School email packet. Please note that no late orders can be accepted!  If you miss this ordering period, you will have an opportunity to order for the month of October during the latter part of September.  Open Order periods will be announced via an all family email and via the blog.

Hot Lunch Volunteers are NEEDED!  Our hot lunch program depends on the generous service of volunteers that come in to serve lunch to the students and clean up.  Serving hot lunch is a great way to share in your child(ren)'s day! If you are Virtus trained and can help out, even just once in a while, please click here to visit the Sign Up Genius and volunteer.  Training is provided and a lunch room coordinator is always on hand to help with questions.

Virtus Training - Anyone who wishes to volunteer here at school does need to complete Virtus training and fill out a form for completion of a background check.  There will be a Virtus training session here at SMS on Tuesday, September 12th at 6:30pm in the 5th grade classroom.  Please RSVP for this session by emailing  Please include your name and contact information.  If you need to complete Virtus training and cannot make the 9/12 session here at SMS, click here for a list of other training sessions available in the Archdiocese of Hartford.

Used Uniforms -  Click here for an updated inventory of items available from the Used Uniform Exchange.

P.E. Club starts Wednesday, September 13th! 
Note new start date!
Students in grades 2-8 are invited to join this active, fun club. 
 Click here for a sign up form.

Calling all Ski & Snowboard Enthusiasts!  Before you know it, we will be thinking about winter sports.  The SMS Ski & Snowboard Club has long been a popular activity in January each year.  This club is open to students in grades 3 and up.  Participants travel to Ski Sundown for 5 outings on Wednesdays during January and early February.  Lessons and equipment rental are available at an additional cost. Participants are generally dismissed from school at 3pm.  If there are sufficient participants, bus transportation can be explored, otherwise club participants arrange carpools.  At this time, we would like to get a better idea of how many of our students would like to participate this year so that we can determine if the club is still viable.  We are also in search of a coordinator for the club for this year.  Please send an email to indicated the names and grades of students interested in participating and if you are interested in coordinating the club.  Your response is requested NLT Friday, September 8.

Home & School Association News

 H.S.A. will begin the year with planning for representation at the Parish Picnic on Sunday,September 17th from 3-5pm. The school will have a table with information that will need staffing and we need as many school families as possible to attend the picnic. Show our #uKnighted St. Mary’s School pride!

The next important event needing HSA organization is  the reception following our Anniversary Mass on Saturday, September 23. If you are willing to co-chair the reception, please let Mrs. Williamson know as soon as possible.

It's time to plant your mums & support Grade 8 Fundraising - Each year, our 8th grade students conduct a number of fund raisers to help defray costs associated with their graduation and field trip. Click here for an order form for beautiful fall mums & mark your calendars for the 8th grade car wash on Saturday, September 16th from 9:30am-1pm in the North (playground) parking lot.  

Thanks in advance for your support of our 8th grade.

Box Tops for Education -  Have you been clipping this summer?  Our school will continue to participate in the Box Tops for Education program.  Box Tops may be sent into school at any time.  All homeroom classrooms have a collection box.  Our thanks to Doreen Mikan for agreeing to coordinate the Box Tops programs this year.

Community News

Important Safety Information -There has been an update to the state of Connecticut's law regarding car seat use.  Effective October 1, 2017, a new car seat law will be in place. It is the following:

Children must remain rear facing until age 2 AND 30 pounds.

Children must be in a 5-point harness until age 5 AND 40 pounds.

Children must be in a booster until age 8 AND 60 pounds.

Parish Family Picnic! Sunday Sept. 17th!
Calling all School and Church Families to come together on Sunday, September 17th, from 3-5PM for a St. Mary's Parish Picnic, in the North Parking Lot (or the fun will move inside the Parish Center in case of rain.) We will provide the Hamburgers, Hot Dogs and Beverages. You bring a Potluck Side Dish or Dessert to share. Enjoy great food, music, games and a photo booth! Reconnect with and meet new friends. Sign-up at the church doors or click here. Please RSVP by September 13th. "Day of" volunteers needed, please call Rhoda 860-651-4027. Come and celebrate our parish family at the best picnic ever!

Have you always wanted to drive a Corvette? 
 There's still time to purchase tickets in the school office!

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