News for the Week of 5/7/14

Eighth Grade students joined in reverent solidarity with others across the country on Thursday, 5/1/14, in observation of the National Day of Prayer.  In keeping with this month's homage to our Blessed Mother, the students prayed a decade of the Rosary gathered around our beautiful Mary statue in the front courtyard of the campus.  Our thanks to Mrs. Kerri Work, our Middle School Religion Coordinator and Mrs. Angie Connors, our Advancement Director, for coordinating this meaningful, meditative experience.

The application period for the 14-15 Trust Scholarships is now open. The guidelines for scholarship eligibility are available on our school website. Click here.
The application form has been sent to all families using the SMS Families 13 email distribution list on Monday, April 28, 2014.  It is also available on our school website.  Click here to access the application form.  ALL APPLICATIONS MUST BE POSTMARKED NO LATER THAN MAY 30, 2014.

Grandparents' & Special Person's Day is this Friday, May 9, 2014 - We hope many of our students will have Grandparents or Special People that can join us!  No RSVP's are required.

Spring Vocal Concert - On Tuesday, May 13th, the students of St. Marys School will present "Salute to America", a  concert celebrating our country, its history and culture.  All students in grades Kindergarten through Grade 8 participate in this concert and attendance is required.  Performance is considered part of a student's music grade.  Students should arrive at 6:45 wearing their "Sunday Best."  "Sunday Best" is defined as no jeans for boys or girls.  Additionally, for boys, "Sunday Best" means a collared shirt with walking shorts or slacks, socks and shoes.  For girls, "Sunday Best" means walking length shorts, skirt or skort or slacks and a shirt or blouse that covers the shoulders.  It may also be a modest length dress that covers the shoulders.  No flip-flops or backless sandals and no high heels.  The concert begins at 7:00 pm.  

Spring Band Concert - On Thursday, May 22nd, our Spring Band Concert will be held.  There will be a 2pm dress rehearsal that is open to guests along with the 7pm evening performance.  Additional details regarding student dress and arrival will be available soon.

Art Show - The SMS Annual Art Show will have its opening night at our Spring Vocal Concert on Tuesday, May 13th.  The Art Show will be on display in the Parish Center.  The Art Show will remain up through the Spring Band Concert on May 22nd so there will be plenty of time to enjoy our students' art work.

Students in Kindergarten are getting ready to dive in to the wide open sea this week! They are beginning a month long unit of study on the Ocean.  Students started the unit by making life preservers so that we would be safe during travel.  The class discussed how Jesus is our Savior and can help us in our times of need! Students also downloaded their "Oceanographer Journal" on their iPads into Notability.  The students are becoming oceanographers and will study different types of animals in the sea.  Studnets will report on the animals using  journals on their iPads.  Kindergarten is ready to live life on the wide open sea!

First Grade students have begun a new unit in writers' workshop! It is a non-fiction type of writing called "How To Writing". To kick it off, Mrs. Jehnings chose the topic...How To Blow Bubbles. Well, the best way to experience something is by doing it. So.....yes, you guessed it.....They  blew bubbles in the classroom! 

Friday, May 23, is a 12:45 Early Dismissal.  There will be no PreKindergarten Enrichment or Aftercare.  School is closed on Monday, May 26, for Memorial Day.

Our next school Mass will be the Feast of the Ascension on Thursday, May 29th.  We will worship with our Parish family at the 12:15 Mass.  Everyone is welcome to join us.  Please remember that no physical education uniforms should be worn to Mass.  Please note that there will NOT be a school Mass on Friday, May16th.  This is a change to our school calendar.

Calling all golfers!  Please join us on Thursday, May 29th at Hop Meadow Country Club for a day of golf, fellowship and fun.  The cost of $175 includes lunch, a golf shirt, happy hour and dinner.  You are welcome to register a foursome or an individual and we will be happy to pair you up with another golfer.  Please click here to download a registration form or click here to visit the Golf Tournament website.

We are also looking for sponsorships.  Sponsorships start at tee signs for $100 to lunch sponsors  at $1,000 to golf cart sponsors at $2,000.  Show your support for St. Mary's School and Catholic education by sponsoring this year's tournament.  Click here for Sponsorship form.

Hot Lunch News - Volunteers Needed! Two additional volunteers are needed on each of the dates appearing below.  If you can help, please click here to sign up.

May 14 (Weds) 
May 21 (Weds)
May 28 (Weds)
May 30 (Fri)
June 2 (Mon) - only for PreK--Gr 5 (Grades 6-8 will be at Field Day)

Athletic News - 

Middle School Field Day is scheduled for Monday, June 2nd.  Middle School students will walk to Memorial Field for a softball tournament.  Hot lunch will be delivered to the fields for students that have ordered for this day.  Volunteers are needed.  Please contact Mr. Gangloff  if you can help at  Details for Field Day for grades K-5 will be announced soon.

CHOICE Program News -  

Participation in the CHOICE program is a mandatory part of the tuition obligation for families with students enrolled in grade K-8.  Click here for our school's Tuition & CHOICE Payment Policy.

End of year CHOICE statements are going home to families that have balance due on Wednesday, 5/7/14. Final Choice payments are due in the office on May 16th.

Statements to families with overages will go out by Friday, 5/9/14.  If you indicated on your Family Enrollment Form for 2014-15, that you plan to use your CHOICE overage to pay all or part of your Family Enrollment Fee, you will receive a separate request if your overage did not meet or exceed $250.

Any earnings from cards ordered after May 1st will apply to the 2014-2015 school year.

Questions about the CHOICE program should be directed to Mrs. Budnick at

A Friendly Reminder Regarding Dismissal Changes - In recent days, the volume of late day requests for changes to student dismissals has increased.  Whenever possible, please advise teachers and the school office of dismissal changes before noon.  We realize that unexpected events and emergencies will occur from time to time but dismissal notices that are received after noon and especially those received close to the end of our school day can be challenging to effectively communicate to all interested parties (i.e., the students, the homeroom teachers and the teachers on bus duty).  We are trying to minimize the likelihood that students will be dismissed incorrectly.  Thank you for your consideration.

Home & School Association News - SAVE THE DATES!

The Summer Reading Scholastic BOGO fair is coming soon so mark your calendar for  May 15-19.  Bookfair setup is Thursday, 5/15 from 8-10am. 

Thursday May 15 - Special Sneak Peek for Auction Winner to use his/her "special admission ticket" pick up their box of books!

Bookfair Hours -  Hours of operation appear below.
Thursday, May 15: 11:30AM - 4:00PM
Friday, May 16: 8:30AM - 4:00PM
Sunday May 18: 8:45 AM -1:00 PM
Monday, May 19: 8:30AM - 3:00PM

Class Visit Schedule - Each class will have an opportunity to visit the bookfair.  Below is the schedule.  Once a date/time is picked for PreK and Grade 2 we will share this information -
PreKindergarten :  TBD
Kindergarten: Fri. (5/16)  12:30-1:10PM
Grade 1:        Thurs. (5/15)  1:00-1:30PM
Grade 2:         TBD
Grade 3:        Thurs. (5/15) 2:00-2:30PM
Grade 4:         Mon. (5/19)  1:30-2:00PM
Grade 5:         Fri. (5/16)  9:30-10:00AM
Grade 6:         Thurs. (5/15)  1:20-1:50PM
Grade 7:         Fri. (5/16)  11:45-12:15PM
Grade 8:         Fri. (5/16)   2:35-3:05PM

Box Tops for Education - Have you been clipping your Box Tops?  Don’t forget that you can send them into your child’s classroom at any time!

HSA Air Conditioning Project Update
Dear Fellow Parents,
                 I have been informed by the business manager of St. Mary's that there is a delay in the installation of the air conditioning units in the middle school classrooms. Although the installation was originally scheduled to occur over April break, there have been various contractor issues that have slowed the process.
                I assure you that measures are being taken to push the efforts along, but I cannot give you a definite date of completion.  I have voiced our concerns and will continue to do so.
                                                                           Thank you for your time and patience.
                                                                           Jennifer Pavlonnis

Spring Uniform Spruce-Up - Just in case some of your relaxed uniform items are beginning to look a little TOO relaxed, we are happy to share that Lands End will be having a 25% off sale.  Click here to visit Lands End.  Our uniform code is 9001-3215-0.

Community News

Eagle Scout Project to Benefit SMS!  Ethan Meskill, SMS Alumni, Class of '12, is currently working on his Eagle Scout Project.  Ethan's project will be to construct brand new picnic tables for SMS.  We are grateful that he has chosen to focus his time and energy on a project that will directly benefit the students of SMS. Click here to read a letter from Ethan about this worthwhile project.

 We hope you will consider supporting Ethan's project at a Car Wash and Bake Sale from 8-1 on Saturday, June 7th in the St. Mary’s School Parking Lot.  If you cannot make it to this event, Ethan would also be grateful for a donation. Donations should be made out to Troop 175 with a notation in the memo line that it is intended for Ethan Meskill’s Eagle Scout Project.  Donations should be mailed directly to Ethan at 12 Phelpscroft Rd., Simsbury, CT 06070.

St. Mary's Adult Enrichment Committee  invites you to join them on Saturday, 5/31/14.

Saint Mary's 35th annual Spring Carnival will be held from June 4th - 7th at 34 Hopmeadow Street in Simsbury (Field South of Connecticut Light & Power. Carnival Sponsors are being recruited now. Click here to download and print a sponsorship form.

You are Invited to the Second in the Series of:  The Catholic Church in the Public Square.
Save the Date:  June 8, Sunday 1 - 3:00pm at St. Catherine of Siena Church in West Simsbury
 Featured Panelists: Rev. Msgr. John J. McCarthy, Chancellor, Archdiocese of Hartford; Daniel P. O’Connell, Chairman, Saint Francis Care Board of Directors; Jeff Mateer, Esq., General Counsel of The Liberty Institute
The panelists will address the Affordable Care Act and its moral, legal, and health care implications in light of Catholic Teaching and Religious Freedom.

Vacation Bible Camp is back and registration is NOW OPEN! Wilderness Escape runs Monday through Thursday, June 23rd to June 26th.  Registration and volunteer sign up is now open!  Click here.  If you have questions, email Kerri Work at

Partners in Faith - Click here for this month's edition.

Fishing for Answers in First Grade Students in Mrs. Jehning's first grade used a fishing game to review for Religion. Each student took a turn catching a fish, reading the question and then answering it.  The game is being sent home with students so families can enjoy fishing season, too!

Students in Mrs. Gore's fifth grade class are mapping out the battles of Lexington and Concord and Bunker Hill.  With this activity, students are reinforcing mapping skills and gaining a deeper understanding of these important events of the American Revolution.