Parents transporting students to school must not block the school bus zone directly in front of the school. Bus drivers will not load/unload students with cars parked in their area. All students are to be dismissed through the FRONT DOOR. Parents and anyone designated to pick up children should come to the office and identify themselves and that way we know if a child was picked up. Waiting in the hall or down by classroom doors causes a lot of confusion for students and teachers at dismissal time. Students have been known to miss buses. No child will be dismissed with an adult who has not checked into the office. Please do not go to classroom to pick up children, they will come to you. The BACK DOOR OF THE SCHOOL IS AN UNLOADING ZONE for trucks NOT AN ENTRANCE OR DISMISSAL DOOR. These rules are made to safeguard the safety of your children. Please follow them and instruct your children also. Thank You. Any suggestions for child safety, please let us know. All doors at St. Mary’s are locked at 8 A.M. You need to ring the doorbell to enter the school at all times and check in at the office upon entering the building. Upon entering school, children need to go to classrooms by themselves or an older student will bring them – not parents. This is after Open House and everyone is comfortable going to their rooms. This is new for all of us.
Breakfast and Lunch are offered daily. Breakfast is served from 7:20-7:55 a.m. We ask that all free and reduced lunch applications (see packets) be returned by September 18. If you were on last year, your status is the same through Sept. 30th. Regular lunch is $1.75, Milk is $.50, Breakfast is $1.00. Please use the cafeteria. If you pay for meals by the month, please pay on the first day of the month. Children are required to have three things on their tray from the 3 basic food groups. They are not required to eat everything. We encourage all students to try the cafeteria. WE ENCOURAGE FAMILIES TO APPLY FOR FREE/REDUCED LUNCH. New guidelines for our federally funded program Title I (remedial reading and math), now require that a district distribute funds on the basis of the total number of children receiving free/reduced lunches. The greater the number of eligible students the more assured we will be to continue remediation for our students through Title I services. Eating breakfast and lunch will ensure the continuation of the cafeteria. Charges cannot exceed 1 month or we will lose our cafeteria status.
Most of you were sent a dress code with a welcoming letter from your child’s teacher. If you didn’t get one or it is lost, please pick one up at the office. Junior High students (5-8) were told the appropriate dress code last June (khakis and navy blue polo with school emblem). If there are problems with uniforms, please contact Sister Sharon directly. Grades 1 -4 - Boys: Light blue shirt, navy pants and necktie. Girls: plaid school uniform, white blouse with round collar, socks in solid colors. Students need to wear SHOES to school. NO LIGHT-UP SNEAKERS of any kind, they are distracting. No backless sandals or flip flops. No dangling earrings at any time. Safety is our concern always. HAIR CUTS: Boys’ hair needs to be neat, trimmed above the ears and out of the eyes for both boys and girls. No colored hair or tattoos for any student. It is always the discretion of the principal what is appropriate or not. You can go on-line to Flynn & O’Hara for girls plaid uniforms. Lori Clark has our extra uniforms. Call her at 586-2343.
One of the greatest joys that we participate in as a school family is the Mass. All students in grades K-8 pray together as they celebrate the First Friday Masses each month and Holy Days. We will begin the school year with a Mass September 11th at 9 A.M. for the 1st Anniversary of Ronald Hughes by Angela Hughes. We are honored to have Fr. Kevin to celebrate the opening school Mass. Please join us and sit with the students. We are grateful to Anne Charboneau, John Dreimiller and John Breitenbach for their gift of music ministry in planning and participating in our liturgies. Anyone who plays a musical instrument is always welcome. Once a month we will plan a weekend Mass. Please try to attend these and participate. You don’t have to be Catholic to attend. We all have people and things to pray for. We have so many blessings. Many are less fortunate than we are. Many are enduring cancer treatment and need our support and prayers.
Tuition letters and payment books are being sent in your First Day Packet to each family. We strongly encourage families to apply for Tuition Assistance. Tuition Assistance form is in each packet to be sent home Sept. 8th. Applications must be returned by September 14 signed and with income verification. Tuition assistance is available for all students. St. Mary’s is also fortunate to have the Adopt-A-Student Program and Scholarship Program to help families. Please note there is a slight increase in Tuition this year. All students will have student insurance this year. No one is denied an education because of lack of funds. We do ask families to perform some service to the school for this aid. Fundraising is everybody’s business. Tuition cannot be free. We all should be paying something each month starting in September.
Each family is required to pay an insurance/testing/paper supply fee. The fee this year is $30.00 for each child. This fee needs to be paid by Sept 18th. All Pre K and Kindergarten students pay $30.00 twice a year (Sept./Feb.) for supplies and snacks.
Traditional classroom parties (cupcakes and juice) for Grades K-4 may be arranged by contacting your child’s teacher. Students in Grades 5-8 can bring in a treat to be enjoyed at lunch time if they wish. Birthdays of all students and staff are posted monthly on the office hall windows. Students receive free ice-cream or chips and a new pencil/pen on their special day. We also take their picture and place it on the office window. Do not send invitations to school for home parties unless you are inviting the whole class. Children’s feelings are easily hurt, especially if you are the one not invited. Other than birthdays, St. Mary’s encourages healthy snacks when sending in snacks for classroom parties. Please be conscious of allergies. We will also celebrate birthdays with birthday cake served on the last Tuesday of each month. Please do not send in any birthday treats that contain peanuts or peanut butter. Pre K and 1st grade are PEANUT FREE ROOMS. WOW Butter is used instead. All snacks sent into the school no matter what grade should be peanut free.
One of our major fund-raisers for the year began in August when you received your 7 Winner’s Cards to sell. I hope you have done this as this is part of your tuition agreement. By each of you selling 7 or more Winner’s Cards we can make $14,000. Prices of everything have gone up. We are all aware of this. Let’s not leave the job to someone else. We need everyone doing their part. This fund-raiser was started by the St. Mary’s Education Council. A Board member will contact you about your ticket sales. We will draw the first winners and one $300 winner at our Open House (date to be announced). If you can sell extra tickets, please contact the office. If you did not receive tickets or lost them we can reissue your numbers to you.
Our faculty is committed to providing quality education to the children and families we serve in our community. We want to build a strong bond of communication between family and school. We strongly encourage you as parents to contact us whenever you have questions or concerns and we ask for your cooperation when we call upon you. If any parent should need to see a teacher in the morning before school, please call ahead of time to arrange this time. Otherwise, teachers plan to use this time to organize the day’s work and greet students as they enter the classroom for the day. This is an important time for the teacher to be present for all students. Teachers are in school by 7:30 a.m. and in their classrooms by 7:45 a.m. (this is not the time to go visit with teachers). Teachers will meet every Monday after school and will not be available for meetings. At the end of the day some are on bus duty and are here usually until 3:15 P.M. or later. Please, do not try to visit during dismissal. Reminder, if children are brought to school leave them in the hall to find their own way to their classrooms and hang up their own things.
Parents are requested to read carefully all notices that are sent home by the teachers and Sr. Sharon. Weekly notices and monthly newsletters highlight school events throughout the year. Please check the book bag of your child each night and for the brown envelope that will be sent home the first day of school. If you wish to receive newsletters/Friday notes via email please send us that information. Also, parents are required to phone the office by 8:30 a.m. if their child is ill and will not be attending school. A note is still required for absences with the reason stated and signed by a parent (NYS Law) otherwise days missed from school are illegal absences. Tardiness needs a note and reason every time. You are considered late after 8:00 A.M.
HOME AND SCHOOL COMPACT AND HARASSMENT POLICY
Please read and sign the Home and School Compact with your child. Please read the Harassment Policy with your child also.
Collecting what? St. Mary’s School is collecting: Campbell’s Bar Codes, General Mills Box Tops for Education, Returnable Bottles and Cans (leave in the garage), and Pennies for the Playground. Thank you for collecting those pennies we need them! We need help now cleaning up the playground. Would you like to head up this project?
St. Mary’s School continues to add new books to the new Library that has just arrived and is being set up. We believe that the road to success for each child is to be a good reader and to love to read books. If you would like to help out or be a library volunteer please sign up on the Service Commitment Sheet in your packet.