Dear HRA Families and Friends,
We have now completed an entire month of school! The students are flourishing and enjoying the time to grow in friendships and in wisdom. As always, it was an eventful week!
The week began with exciting news. At the Monday Assembly, I learned that Mrs. Amparo Manuel (mother of Amarisa and Belicia) gave birth to her fifth daughter, Stephanie. Mom came by to show us her beautiful new daughter. She has more hair than most one year old babies! She is beautiful and already dearly loved by her older sisters. We are so happy for the Manuel family and can’t wait till Stephanie is in Mrs. Shaut’s class!
The elementary took their first SCANTRON tests in language arts, reading, and math this week. The results will be sent home with the mid-quarter reports next Wednesday. We use this first test as a marker to watch for improvement throughout the year. The students will take the same tests in January and in May. Sometimes we don’t see real improvement until the spring. These computer based tests help us measure our students against the nation and assess ourselves throughout the year. Grades 7,8,9 will take the tests next week during their respective English, history, and math classes.
This week, I gave each of the teachers an updated EMERGENCY PROCEDURES packet to be hung in their classrooms. This packet contains all the information they need in case of an emergency fire, earthquake, or lock-down situation. The packet on the wall has a map that directs the students to an option A exit door and an option B exit door in case the first option is blocked. Soon the students will have an announced fire drill to begin their monthly practice of fire drill procedures. Homeroom teachers will practice earthquake drills and lock-down procedures with the students as well. In order to keep the students safe, we do not publish the lock-down procedures but the teachers know exactly what is expected and practice with their students so that the students know exactly what to do. Be assured that the students will be well versed in proper procedures throughout the year. Last year, the students exited all the buildings in less than thirty seconds when our fire alarm went off unexpectedly! It was heartening to see the students and teachers handle the situation with maturity, poise, and speed! Thank you to Mrs. Maureen Klump who made up and delivered Comfort Care Packages for every single student. It is filled with water, snacks, heat warmers, and other small necessities should there be an emergency situation in which the students cannot leave the campus for a long period of time after a disaster.
On a much lighter note, the upper school soccer team had another great week of play. Tuesday they defeated one of their hardest competitors, Wasilla. Lee Cookson scored all three goals and the HRA defense kept Wasilla to a score of zero goals. Bravo Knights! The junior varsity soccer team defeated the Anchor Lutheran School 7-0 on Thursday. Andrew Cookson had three goals, Joseph Bjelland scored two goals, and Mary Tappel and Evangeline Dooc one goal apiece. Congratulations Knights. Good luck on Saturday as you take on Cook Inlet at 4 P.M. at Whisper Kowatch field!
Thank you to the faculty for hosting an excellent Back-to-School Night for the parents on Thursday. The upper school had the parents rotate every five minutes through their children’s classes while the teachers introduced themselves and shared the goals of the classes. It was a fun way for the parents to step into their children’s shoes for a brief peek at the day-to-day lives of their children in the halls and classrooms of HRA. The elementary teachers reported to me how much they enjoyed the chance to speak with the families who stopped in to see them. The student work and the great progress the students have already made is certainly exciting for me. A huge thank you goes to Mrs. Lisa Cookson for being on hand to answer parent questions and to Mrs. Rosa Salazar-Sanchez who met parents as they stopped in and answered many questions about how to fulfill the auction responsibility this year. It gave parents a chance to sign up for what they want to contribute in terms of time or treasure. Great job Rosa!
Thank you to Mr. Shaut and Mrs. Theis for taking their students on field trips this Friday. Mr. Shaut took the fifth grade to the Alaska Museum to finish up his unit on Alaskan history. Mrs. Theis took her students to a fish hatchery. The students returned with big smiles on their faces. What a rich education these students are receiving.
The upper school took off on Friday afternoon for their first day of community service. A huge thank you goes to Mrs. Erin Furby for coordinating this great day. The students went to help at the FISH pantry, Pioneer Home, Holy Family Cathedral, and Serendipity Adult Day Center. A wonderful group of students stayed on campus to help me with school stewardship. Students helped Mrs. Pearce with art classes, mowed, raked, and swept grassy sidewalks, helped Miss Neumayr with the uniform store, and coordinated to move materials from the bookkeeper’s old office to the new business office in the Bosco building. Further, some students helped make copies for teachers and added school prayers to the inside of the Adoremus hymnals. I could not be more grateful to the students for their unselfish efforts. In particular I must thank my new teacher, Mr. Haggard, for sacrificing himself to mow some really tall grass in his dress attire! Watching his tall, lanky figure in a tie doing some tough manual labor was an inspiration to me and to the students. Thank you, Mr. Haggard, for walking alongside the students in stewardship for the school. Thank you to all the teachers for chaperoning the students around all of Anchorage. It is such a beautiful extension of our faith to reach beyond HRA in charity.
Finally, I wish to thank Mr. Stankewich (father of seventh grader, Laura) who has been indefatigable in work for the school this week. Thank you for fixing our heating in the kindergarten classrooms, for fixing the battery issue with the green bus, for fixing the toilet in the elementary girls’ bathroom, for mowing the lawn in between rain downpours, and for car repair work for a faculty member. Your expertise and generosity have been a source of great relief for me and my all female staff. Bless you!
- The auction is just five weeks away! The time is now to mobilize and determine what your contribution will be especially if it is part of your discounted tuition obligation. We would love many parents to purchase tickets for their friends. You may sponsor a whole table for $1,000.00 or purchase individual tickets for $100.00 apiece. Parents who do not make up a whole table may ask to be seated with other families they know will be going. Please stop in at the office to purchase your tickets or contact Mrs. Jacki Rose or Mrs. Rosa Sanchez. Other opportunities are to help with data entry on the day of the event, supervise silent auction tables at the event, or help with all the set-up of the event. Of course, any one who brings in a donation equivalent to a $500.00 value or any sum works away at their obligation. Don’t forget that calling and procuring events is another fun way to complete your obligation. Don’t let this event creep up on you. It is one of the loveliest nights of the year. We hope to exceed our $240,000.00 record breaking success last year. Please ask for an invitation at the front office if you wish to invite someone you think will definitely donate to the school or want to purchase live or silent auction items to support the school. Help us draw in a wonderful and generous crowd. Information on the event can be found on the school website under About Us.
- Grades 7,8,9 will take SCANTRON tests on Monday, Tuesday, and Wednesday in reading, language arts, and math.
- Parent, Mrs. Majewsky is looking for a carpool for her son, Jasser. She asked me to share the following request:
I am a parent of 7th grade student Jasser Majewsky at Holy Rosary Academy. I am looking for someone who is able to share transportation to school. I am able to drop off in the mornings however need assistance with pick up after school. We live near Providence Hospital near Tudor and Lake Otis. If you are interested or able to assist in a ride-share opportunity, please contact me as soon as possible at 907-444-7745.
- Mid-quarter reports will be distributed this Wednesday in sealed envelopes to your children. They are to bring them home and have them signed by you to assure us that you have seen the grades. As always, grades will be on Sycamore. We continue to work at having the homework up and timely on the website to assist you parents in your desire for your child to be academically successful.
- Mrs. Verbout will be out for a small medical procedure on Wednesday and the Shaut’s will be taking personal leave for Thursday and Friday, September 19 and 20. Mrs. Barbara Doerner will substitute for Mrs. Verbout and for Mr. Shaut while our former first grade teacher extraordinaire, Mrs. Allison Linear will take over for Mrs. Shaut on Thursday and parent teacher, Kathy Tappel will teach on Friday. The kindergartners and fifth graders will be in expert hands! Thank you to all of our substitutes in advance!
- Friday is the Mary Schedule 1,2,3 for the upper school. The afternoon activity is a special guest speaker.
- Anyone who has not yet picked up their raffle tickets are encouraged to do so in the front office. We have extended the time to sell the tickets until January 31st. We will have a spaghetti feed at St. Patrick’s Hall hosted by parent, Mr. Yabyabin (father of first-grader, Tadeo) that evening for the drawing. All HRA parents and those who purchased tickets are invited to attend!
- SHARE HOUR OPPORTUNITIES ABOUND.
- I have need of parents to help me to clean out the offices under the chapel.
- I need someone with a truck to help take materials to the dump.
- I also need help to fix the big fence near the basketball court that has come unhinged due to heavy wind.
- I need someone who can help me to keep the Kolbe and Bosco doors from slamming by adjusting the spring to close more slowly.
- Anyone with electrical savvy is needed to help me to replace light bulbs. If you are willing to be on call, I would love to be able to call you. We have a light bulb out in the girls’ bathroom in Bosco. I never know when a new ballast must be put in with the light bulb and thus do not do it myself.
- Our teachers are always in need of someone to help make copies for the weeks and months ahead. Thank you to the parents who have already helped.
- Many of the teachers would love a break for recess or lunch supervision. Parents who are willing to help need to finish the Safe Environment certification and complete a form for Pinnacle Investigation to tell us that you have no felonies on your record. The process is easy and the staff in the front office will gladly walk you through it. Your efforts are good for two years.
- In years past, parents have volunteered to make a lunch for the faculty once a month. I know that our busy faculty would be so delighted to enjoy a home cooked meal once a month. Please contact Miss Neumayr if you are interested in taking a month.
Have a wonderful and restful weekend.
Miss Neumayr, Principal