Principal Newsletter 2/15/2018

"Happiness and moral duty are inseparably connected."
 George Washington

OUT AND ABOUT:

  • Guess what day today is? If you guessed the 100th Day of School you are correct. (And I bet you are a parent of a primary student!) Thank you, Primary Teachers for your great work in so many ways making today memorable for our students!
  • Also today, we had the first broadcast of Falcon Vision. This is a morning video news show created by Mr. T and the 8th graders. The money for equipment came from a technology grant from Something Special. A new era has begun in our school.
  • What type of young adult do you want your child to grow into? How about being seen by outsiders as very well behaved. Last Tuesday, our fourth and fifth-grade students visited the Wilton Historical Society. One of the presenters told our teachers, "I love having Our Lady of Fatima students here. They are always so well-behaved."
  • We have been talking both as a faculty and with the Diocese about next year our school being a pilot school to provide more personalized instruction to our students. Personalized Instruction will be defined by us as "every child is educated in an environment that is personalized to meet their needs." This is a theory base that we can all get behind!
  • As a pilot school for Personalized Learning in the Diocese, we will receive funds for additional Professional Development and Technology. More information to follow.
  • Two weeks ago was Catholic Schools Week. We had a range of activities from Literature Character Dress-Up Day to Sports Day. Student Government did a wonderful job planning the week's activities. In addition, they hosted a Sock Hop for the younger graders that was a huge hit. Bravo, Student Government!
  • Last Tuesday, Sister Celine Marie spoke to our seventh and eighth graders about Religious Orders. She emphasized her life-long habit of starting and ending each day with a prayer. This is good advice for all of us.
  • Community Service is an important part of our school. Did you know that in Solidarity's two weeks Sneaker Drive they collected over 400 pairs of new sneakers? Bravo, Youth Group!
  • More community service news: We received a nice thank you letter from Father James Vattakunnel thanking the school for the $250 donation to support the mission of the Navajeevan Home in Andra Pradesh, India. This is just one of a number of charities that we have financially supported this year. Great job, Student Government.
  • More exciting STEM news. Our STEM committee met and we are going ahead with a technology grant from Something Special and purchasing 20 android devices to power our Virtual Reality headsets. How cool is that? Eventually, we see the formation of an afterschool middle school club that will produce this morning news show.
  •  It has been a long, cold winter. It is time for you and your family to have a night out of great food, great entertainment, and great fun. Please mark your calendar and come and celebrate with us at the St. Patrick's Day Dinner on March 17th. It begins at 6:00 and  tickets are $15 for adults and $5 for students. Remember, "We are all Irish on St. Patrick's Day!" To prove this, the driving force behind this year's event is once again our very own Karin "O'Beggan."
  • Coding for Kids is returning this spring as an after-school enrichment program. We will offer programs for six weeks. We will offer three age-group sessions: "Little Coders" for grades K-2 which will meet afterschool on Fridays from 3:15 to 4:15; "Game Development Beginner-Intermediate" for grades 3-5 which will meet Mondays from 3:15 to 4:15;" and "Python Game Development" for grades 6-8 which will also meet Mondays from 3:15 to 4:15.  Classes will begin the week of March 5th so there is still time to sign-up. 
  • Please consider giving a tax-deductible gift to the Fatima Faith Fund. Last year we reached our fundraising goal of $75,000. This year we must raise closer to $100,000 in fundraising to stay in the "black." This week, our Investment Club run by Mrs. Galasso and consisting of middle school students James D., Anais S., Mary Kate D., Lauren D., and Fabrizio P. contributed $120 from the money they earned in the Investment Club to the Fatima Faith Fund. Thank you, Investment Club! Any contribution you can make to the Fatima Faith Fund is greatly appreciated.
  • The support for Mrs. Galasso has been receiving during her health struggles has been tremendous. Monday we had a Crazy Hat Dress Down Day to show our support. This event raised over $320 to support Team Galasso. Mrs. G has six more weeks of treatment and you can still sign-up to provide a meal at https://mealtrain.com/3lnw7y.
  • What can you do to help our school? Register your child for next year.  Registration is vitally important in helping us begin to plan for next year. Thank you to the 17 families that have already registered for next year.
  • Important information on the Bishop Scholarship Fund: new this year the Bishop Scholarship Fund application will be part of the FACTS application!! The window to apply opened on February 1st and closes for returning families on March 15th. Any family seeking financial support with tuition must apply for the Bishop Scholarship Fund. Please, if in doubt, apply. You must apply first to the Bishop Scholarship Fund to be eligible for our Tuition Review Committee.
  • One positive financial development is the new tax law includes the new provision that  college savings plans called 529 Plans can beginning this year be used also for K-8 Catholic education. Please make yourself aware of this important financial incentive.
  • Pulaski Park, our spring musical, has started practices on Wednesday afternoon for all interested students in grades 3-8. New this year we will have freshmen volunteer Meghan Sabino, OLF Alumni Class of 2017 back to help. The play is going to be great.
  • I know you join me in saying a fond farewell to our PE teacher and Athletic Director, Ms. Gabriella Casole. We will miss her and thank her for all she has done for our school.    Bravo, Ms. Casole!
  • Please join me in welcoming Ms. Solange Manco who will be expanding her role and replacing Ms. Casole starting next week. Ms. Manco has been a wonderful and creative part-time Spanish teacher at our school for four years. Previously, Ms. Manco was a PE teacher in Ecuador before coming to our country. We are excited to have Ms. Manco now in this dual role.
  • Congratulations to all our basketball players for an exciting and well-played 11th Annual Tyler Ugolyn Tournament. Special congratulations go out to our Boys Varsity Team for their second place finish and our Girls Junior Varsity Team for the first place finish! Go Falcons! A special thank you to our volunteer parents who were here many nights in the kitchen, at the door, and working the scoreboard and clock. This wonderful tournament could not take place without your help!
  • Sign-up has begun for our summer basketball camp. It is a great camp that focuses on skills and fun and will run for four weeks beginning the week of July 9. It is run by Coach Joe Vazzari from Trinity Catholic and staffed by OLF alumni. The camp runs from 9:00 to 3:00 each day and the cost is $250 per week. Please contact Linda Sweeny at 203-434-3441 at lindasweeny@icloud.com with questions or to register.
  • The Norwalk soccer organization Soccerviza is renting our gym this winter on Saturdays from February 10th to March 24 for children's soccer clinics. They will be offering soccer clinics in 0ne-hour blocks for 4-5-year-olds, 6-7-year-olds, 8-10-year-olds and 11 -14-year- olds. They are offering students from our school a 10% discount to attend these soccer clinics. If you are interested in your child attending, you can sign them up at soccerviza.com.
  • Calling all creative people. We would like to develop a video highlighting our school to put on the school website. Our Marketing Committee is meeting to plan the content and your ideas are needed! Our next Marketing Meeting is Wednesday, February 28th at 7:00 p.m. All our welcome! 

  • Our annual Spring Gala is April 21st and this year it is honoring our own Mrs. Kathleen Rooney. The theme is a Masquerade Ball and it is going to be an unforgettable evening of fun, joy, and memories. Please plan on joining us! Visit our Facebook page for more information. 

 "SHOUT OUT I"

Mary Obermayer.  Besides walking into the building each day with a smile on her face and doing a wonderful job teaching 5th grade every day, Ms. Obermayer helps our school in many ways. She was the point-person in planning the recent third, fourth and fifth grade fieldtrip to the Wilton Historical Society. In addition, she was the lead person in last week's Sikorsky's Assembly. Three engineers from Sikorsky visited our students in grades K-8th grade. During the classroom demonstrations, they explained the dynamics of flight and especially helicopter flight. Students then had a chance to experience a wind tunnel that was set-up in our gym and see how the papers wings they created behaved in the wind tunnel. This was a wonderful engineering experience for our students. Maybe this assembly lit the enthusiasm for a future aeronautical engineer? Thank you for all you do, Ms. Obermayer!

"SHOUT OUT II"

Our great basketball coaches. I was fortunate to be able to attend many of the games during this year's Tyler Ugolyn Tournament. At every game I was impressed by our coaches for their enthusiasm, their supportive way of teaching our young players, and to their commitment to giving all our players a chance to play. (I must say this was not the case for what I observed with some of the coaches from other teams). This week's Shout Out goes to Steve Bonafide and Jon Pace, Girls JJV (3rd/4th/5th); Gerry Davis and Ryan Davis, Girls JV (6th and 7th); Gus Christakos and Brittany Hanavan, Girls V; Don Bembridge and Gus Christakos, Boys JJV (3rd and 4th); Randy Weiss and Kevin McMahon, Boys JV (5th and 6th); and Frank Bonaddio, Randy Weiss, and John Doyle, Boys V (7th and 8th). Bravo, Coaches!

 

COMING EVENTS:

 

February 15th    - Middle School Dance in our gym

February 16th    - No School for Winter Break

February 19th    - No School for President's Day

February 22nd   - Shakespeare Assembly for middle school

February 26th    - S.T.E.M. meeting at 6:00 p.m.

                          H.S.A. meeting at 7:30 p.m.

February 28th    - School Marketing meeting at 7:00

March 12th        - March 23rd - Iowa School-wide testing

March 22th        - Safe Environment Training

March 29th        - No School for Holy Thursday

March 30th        - No School for Good Friday

April 2nd           - No School for Easter Monday

April 6th            - Third Marking Period Ends

April 9th- April 13th - No School for Spring Recess

April 21st           - H.S.A. Masquerade Gala

April 29th           - Open House for New Families

May 4th             - No School for Teacher PD Day

May 17th           - 8th-Grade trip to Boston

May 19              -Spring Musical "Pulaski"

May 20              - Spring Musical "Pulaski"

May 28th           - No School for Memorial Day

June 14th          - Flag Day

June 15             - 8th-Grade Graduation in the Church at 7:00 p.m.

                        (This date is will not change.)

June 25th          - Right now, last Day of School for Pre-K through 7th

                        - H.S.A. Closing School Party

 

And Finally:

Enjoy your four-day Winter Recess and President's Holiday!