The Trojan Times
St. Maria Goretti Catholic School August 9, 2020
St. Maria Goretti is a living testament to our Lord's work in His youngest disciples, exemplified by academic excellence, spiritual formation, and compassionate service to others.
St. Maria Goretti Catholic School aims to form what is True, Good, and Beautiful in the souls of our young disciples of Christ.
Dear St. Maria Goretti Catholic School Families,
On behalf of the entire faculty and staff, we are so excited to be welcoming our students back to school this week! Whether your student will be attending school on campus or remotely via Distance Learning, we are ready and look forward to beginning the 2020-2021 school year!
We have been very busy this summer making plans and putting the necessary protocols and procedures in place as we respond to the challenges of the COVID-19 pandemic. As you are aware, we will be offering both On-Campus and Distance/Remote Learning options for our students this fall. We are finalizing class schedules for all students--no matter which learning option you chose-- and will have them available at the Meet the Teacher event tomorrow afternoon/evening.
Speaking of the Meet the Teacher event, in an effort to have smaller groups of people in the building at one time, we created a SignUpGenius, asking families to sign-up to attend during one of three time slots. There are still available slots, so if you haven't signed up please do so by clicking https://www.signupgenius.com/go/30E0D45A8AC2FABFD0-meet. If the time slot that you are available to attend is filled, simply call the front office and let Mrs. Malloy know how many and what time you wish to attend. Meet the Teacher is 3:30PM - 7:00PM. All attending must complete either the screening on the Healthy Together app (see below for details) and show the results to the staff member at the front or back entrance, or complete a paper screening upon entering the building. All (parents and students) will also be temperature checked and all must wear a mask.
The first day of school is Wednesday (8/12)! A few reminders:
- Students should wear their Full-Dress Uniforms
- Please complete the Healthy Together app screening before you enter the morning drop-off line, and be prepared to show the completed screening to the faculty/staff member on duty. All students must wear a mask as they enter the building.
- Students should bring water bottles that are clearly labeled with their names as the water fountains will remain off until further notice. It is also a good idea for each student to keep an extra mask in a ziploc bag in their backpack.
- Mass at 9:30AM; Full-Dress Uniform and mask required
- Lunch Service will be available
- Full school day-Dismissal at 3:15PM
- SMEED (Extended Day begins; After School only on Wednesday)
- All students must have a mask; students in grades 4-8 are required to wear one most of the day, while students in PK - 3rd grade are required to wear a mask when outside of their classrooms (i.e. restrooms, hallways, Mass)
- Please see the information below for Arrival and Dismissal procedures. All students must enter the building in the morning utilizing the car line in the back (west) lot, as parents are not permitted at this time to walk students into the building and to their classrooms.
- Please be patient as many of the procedures are new to all of us and may need to be adjusted as we move forward. Students will not be counted tardy the first three days of school until 8:15AM.
As always, thank you for entrusting your students to our care. We look forward to partnering with you in the education and formation of your children in Truth, Goodness, and Beauty through a Christ-centered environment, challenging academics, and hands-on learning, so that each child becomes a disciple of Christ and is prepared to respond to God's call. May God continue to bless you and your family.
St. Maria Goretti, Pray for Us!
Laura Behee, M.Ed.
COVID-19: Safety Procedures and Protocols
We have been very busy this summer putting protocols and procedures in place, reducing class sizes, adding faculty/staff, cleaning and sanitizing, and preparing our classrooms for the health and safety of all our students, faculty, and staff. All student and teacher desks will have sneeze guards, and cameras have been installed in all classrooms to enable us to continue to provide excellent instruction to our students who will be Distance Learning from home the first quarter. Signage has been placed throughout the school, reminding all to practice social distancing and hygiene, such as hand-washing. Hand sanitizer stations have also been placed by school entrances, all classrooms, and other convenient places throughout the building. Please see the SMG Safe Return to School plan that was sent to all school families last week, by clicking the following link.
Some families may need to continue with the distance learning option due to health concerns. St. Maria Goretti Catholic School is committed to providing the same rigorous, quality education and religious formation delivered in our classrooms, to our students choosing the distance learning option.
Distance learning will include daily live teacher-led instruction along with independent activities through Seesaw in grades PK – 1 and Google Classroom in grades 2-8. All live teaching will be conducted through a video conferencing tool such as Zoom, Microsoft Teams, or Google Meets. A structured schedule will be provided to students at the Meet the Teacher event on Monday, 8/10. The Learning Support teachers will continue to work with students and classroom teachers in implementing Student Academic Plans (SAPs). Our goal is to keep expectations as similar as possible for both On-Campus and Distance/Remote Learning.
Administration will work with families and students to ensure there is adequate technology support, support Catholic Identity through weekly Mass and student engagement, and establish ways of maintaining community while distance learning.
SMG Distance Learning F.A.Q. link
Healthy Together App
Be sure to download the free Healthy Together app (found in the App Store) before the first day of school. Multiple students can conveniently be added to one app. The app is easy to download, easy to use, and should be completed each morning making morning drop-off even easier. Please call the front office if you have any questions about how to install the app.
Other Beginning-of-the-School-Year Details
School Day Schedule and Arrival/Dismissal Procedures
Morning arrival time will remain the same this year, with doors opening at 7:30AM, and afternoon dismissal is at 3:15PM. The Morning Arrival and Afternoon Dismissal procedures will be slightly different from the last couple of years, at least initially, as we work to adhere to the procedures and protocols related to COVID-19. The three biggest differences are: 1.) ALL students (PK - 8th) must be dropped off in the morning using the morning carline in the back (west) parking lot; 2.) Parents/guardians may not enter the building to walk their students to the classroom. We will again have our Junior High Safety Patrol students and plenty of faculty/staff in the back lot during carline to walk little ones to their classrooms. Please understand, this is in an effort to limit the number of people entering and moving through the building for the safety of all our students, faculty, and staff; and 3.) Parents/guardians should download the Healthy Together app on their cell phone. This self-screening app prompts parents to answer a series of questions for each child in their family attending SMGCS, each morning. Parents/guardians must show the completed screening to car line personnel each morning before their children will be allowed out of the car to enter the school.
The entire arrival and dismissal procedures can be found on the link below and is also outlined in the SMG Family Handbook, which is now available on the school website. As well, teachers will have copies of the arrival and dismissal procedure to distribute to parents during the Meet the Teacher event on Monday, August 10th, 3:30PM-7:00PM. Please Note: There may be changes to the Arrival/Dismissal procedures as we begin the school year and adjust to the safety protocols we must adhere to due to COVID-19. Any necessary changes to the Arrival/Dismissal procedures will of course be communicated to parents.
Arrival/Dismissal Procedures: https://smgschool.org/documents/2020/8/Arrival%20%20Dismissal%20During%20COVID%20%20Addendum.pdf
All Kindergarten through 8th Grade students are expected to have completed the summer reading before the start of the school year. There were no additional assignments other than simply reading and (hopefully) enjoying the assigned book for the appropriate grade-level. Books read for summer reading will be discussed in the child's grade-level reading/literature class.
SMG Family Handbook
The 2020-2021 Family Handbook has been updated and has been posted on the school website (http://smgschool.org). Please read the handbook as there have been some changes and updates. Please print, sign, and return the acknowledgement form at the back of the handbook indicating that you have read and understand the handbook. A signed acknowledgement form from each family is due back to the school by Friday, August 28th.
School supplies for those who ordered from our school supply program were delivered to the school and are already in your child's homeroom. Parents who have chosen Distance/Remote Learning for their students may pick-up their orders (of school supplies) during the Meet the Teacher event tomorrow, or by calling the front office to schedule a pick-up time. Families who opted to purchase supplies on their own will find the school supply list is available on the school website.
Food service is available to provide a well-balanced lunch that is offered at a reasonable price. Food service at SMG is provided by Food for Life Catering Services. Service will begin on Wednesday, August 12th. Students who don't wish to purchase lunch are always welcome to bring a sack lunch along with drinks and milk from home. Updated information about the Food for Life lunch program, including news about how food will be packaged to meet COVID safety guidelines, can be found on the school website or by following the link below.
School uniforms should be purchased from Mills Uniforms. The uniforms for the 2020-2021 school year have remained the same. Remember, a red or blue (depending on the grade-level) cardigan sweater is a mandatory addition to the dress (Mass) uniform. While students will not be required to wear the cardigan to Mass while the weather is still so hot, by October they will be required to wear the cardigan to Mass and other days when the dress uniform is required. Please visit the SMG uniform requirements on the Mills Uniforms website for specific SMG uniform requirements (http://www.millswear.com). Use SMG school code 3424. Please see more information from Mills Uniforms, below.
The Used Uniform Sale will take place in the Cafetorium during Meet the Teacher and there is a large inventory available.
Extended Day Program (SMEED)
We offer a before and after school care program on the school campus. SMEED operates from 7:00-7:30AM and 3:15-6:00PM each school day. SMEED will begin on Wednesday, August 12th, but only After School care will be available that day. Before school care will begin on Thursday (8/13). More information about the program can also be found on the school website.
We are looking forward to seeing everyone at the Meet the Teacher event on Monday, August 10th from 3:30PM - 7:00PM. In an effort to limit the number of people in the building at one time, please use the SignUpGenius link below to sign-up for a time frame to attend. Since we can not allow parents into the school building on the first day of school, parents are encouraged to bring any school supplies to their students' homeroom classroom during the Meet the Teacher event. The Islanders Food Truck will also be on campus during Meet the Teacher and will offer delicious refreshments for purchase, with 20% of the proceeds donated back to the school!
The First Day of School is Wednesday, August 12th. We will attend Mass at 9:30AM and students should wear their Dress/Mass day uniform. Dismissal will be at 3:15PM, and there will be lunch service and Afternoon only Extended Day (SMEED) service that day as well.
Back to School Night (also known as Curriculum Night) is tentatively scheduled to take place on Tuesday, August 25th for PreK-8th Grade. This evening is for parents/guardians only. Students should not attend. Please note that this event may change and/or be canceled. More details about Back to School Night, will be communicated in the coming weeks.
Other August Calendar events:
- Thursday, August 18th--Band Parent Meeting @ 6:00PM in Cafetorium
There are many ways to get involved at SMG and earn those Spirit hours! Please visit the school website and check out the volunteer opportunities under SignUpGenius. Many hands make light work--please consider giving of your time and talent!
Communication from your children's teachers, including completed classwork, correspondence, notes and flyers from the office will be sent home each week via a Friday Folder. Please look through the Friday Folders your children bring home over the weekends and send it back, along with any thing that needs returning (i.e. picture orders, Scrip orders, etc.) on Monday mornings. The Trojan Times will continue to go out each week, usually late afternoon on Sundays.
2020-2021 Academic Calendar
Please click on the following link to view the 2020-2021 Academic Calendar. It can also be found on the school website at smgschool.org.
New Faculty Member
In addition to the other new faculty members introduced in the last Trojan Times newsletter, we would like to also welcome:
- Mrs. Kathleen McAnally, 4th Grade: Mrs. McAnally will be teaching 4th & 5th Grade English and 5th grade science. Mrs. McAnally and her family live in Arlington and have been parishoners at St Maria Goretti for 15 years. She graduated from the University of North Texas with a BA in Music Education and has spent the last two years as a teaching assistant with special needs children in Kennedale ISD. Mrs. McAnally and her husband are raising four boys and love to play board games and run races. She is excited to be joining the SMG Catholic School family!
To participate in athletics next school year (Junior High or High School), students will need a physical dated on or after June 1, 2020. If your child plans to participate in sports during the 2020-2021 school year, they must have a current physical examination, and the form below must be completed and on file before the student may participate in school or diocesan sports.
2020-2021 Enrollment & Registration
Registration & Enrollment for the 2020-2021 school year can be found on our school website. There are still spots available at most grade-levels. As a reminder, tuition assistance is available and we are committed to making a Catholic education a reality for any family who wishes one for their child(ren). Please contact Mrs. Behee (lbehee@smgschool) or our Registrar, Mrs. de la Pena (email@example.com) with any questions or concerns.
VIRTUS Safe Environment training for volunteers will begin to expire in September 2020. Parent volunteers will need to renew their VIRTUS training in order to continue volunteering. The VIRTUS renewal program is called "Keeping the Promise Alive" and must be attended in order to keep Safe Environment status current. Our school Safe Environment coordinator will email parents with information for how to register for a renewal session. Please email firstname.lastname@example.org with any questions.
From Mills Uniform Company:
Thank you for your flexibility and feedback as we successfully adapt back-to-school shopping to the realities of a global pandemic. We appreciate your business!
As our markets continue to be impacted by Coronavirus-related restrictions and community spread, we remain focused on serving you safely and effectively online. Mills’ stores targeted to re-open for in-store shopping this month, are in areas experiencing significant case increases so for everyone’s health and safety most remain closed for walk-in business. Parents may check our Locations page for the latest store status and enhanced services offered.
We encourage parents to shop early and online. Millswear.com has clear sizing information and tips, high resolution product photos, product fit videos, a simplified Order Management portal and easy mail-in return instructions. Free shipping is available on orders $75+ as well as Curbside Pick-up and Returns drop-off at select locations – see our Locations page for up to-to-date store status.
For those needing additional help finding the right fit, Mills’ Customer Service and local Retail Store teams are answering sizing and product questions.
Online and Phone orders process Monday through Saturday, and more than 90% of back-to-school inventory is in-stock. There are some exceptions, as factories closed for up to three months during national and international shutdowns. Additional product arrives weekly and we are expediting to the extent possible. Expected product due dates for items not yet on hand are kept current on millswear.com. Parents can check their Order History easily and orders with items on back order will receive regular email updates. We will notify parents if any specific item(s) in their school program is expected to have unusual delays.
Note: the Texas Sales Tax Holiday will be an online only event at millswear.com. We’ll be letting customers know and asking them to plan ahead accordingly.
Please visit the link below for the SMG Uniform Requirements. Our Mills Uniforms School Code is 3424.
Kountry Karnival 2020 Canceled
For the first time in nearly 50 years, we have made the difficult decision to cancel Kountry Karnival 2020 due to the COVID-19 pandemic. This annual event has been a long-standing and a highly anticipated SMG tradition, so the decision to cancel did not come easily. However, we will be working to return next year with an even bigger, better Kountry Karnival 2021!
Box Tops - Earn Money for SMG!
Box Tops makes it easy for families to earn cash for schools and help teachers get the supplies they need. Traditional Box Tops clips are being phased out of production, but may continue to be found on many products throughout the store. Although you may still clip coupons, there is a NEW and EASY method:
2020 Faculty & Staff In Service
Right Start Mathematics Parent Night
Parents of Kindergarten through 5th grade students attended a Parent Information Night on August 4th hosted by Right Start Mathematics representative, Ms. Teresa Foltin. Right Start Mathematics aligns well with the hands-on learning SMG is encouraging, particularly as we adopt a classical curriculum.
This unique hands-on program de-emphasizes counting, uses visualization of quantities, and provides strategies and visual pictures for learning the facts. Understanding and problem solving are emphasized throughout the curriculum.
The primary learning tool is the AL Abacus, a specially designed two-sided abacus that is both kinesthetic and visual. The AL Abacus is grouped in fives and tens for quick recognition of quantities. The second side of the AL Abacus teaches place value to the thousands. Children develop visual strategies as they use this manipulative.
Practice is provided with math card games, minimizing review worksheets and eliminating stressful flash cards. These games provide interesting and varied repetition that is needed for the automatic responses to the facts. More importantly, these games provide an application for new information and create hours of fun learning math facts and concepts. All K - 5 families will need to purchase one Math Kit, which their student(s) will use at home to complete homework. Only one kit is needed per family, though families may choose to purchase multiple kits. The kits will follow the student as they move through the grade-levels, so it is a one-time purchase ($40). Kits will be available at the Meet the Teacher event and at the front desk.
Listen to Teresa Foltin, the Right Start Mathematics school representative, introduce herself and give an overview of the curriculum and services for schools. Due to technical difficulties, we were unable to record Mrs. Foltin's presentation during our Parent Night, but here is a link of a previously recorded presentation for your review.
SMG cheerleaders for the 2020-2021 school year attended summer cheer camp at Rebel Yell and hosted by Ms. Paladini and Mrs. Guinn. The girls learned new cheers and chants while practicing jumps and stunts. We look forward to our first Pep Rally so we can see the results of their hard work over the summer!
- Monday, 8/10: Meet the Teacher - 3:30 -7:00PM; Families Must Sign-Up to Attend; https://www.signupgenius.com/go/30E0D45A8AC2FABFD0-meet
- Wednesday, 8/12: First Day of School; Full-day, dismissal at 3:15PM; 9:30AM Mass Day -Full-Dress Uniform; Lunch Service Begin; SMEED Begins 7:00-7:30AM and 3:15-6:00PM
- Thursday, 8/13: Band Demo 4th/5th Grade Students
- Tuesday, 8/18: 6:00PM Band Parent Meeting in Cafetorium
- Tuesday, 8/25: Back to School Night - Event is Tentative at this time
- Friday, 8/28: Signed Student Handbook acknowledgement form from each family due back to the school
- Monday, 9/7: Labor Day - No School
- Friday, 9/18: Dismissal at 12:10PM - No Lunch Service - Progress Reports Emailed
- Friday, 10/9: 1st Quarter Ends
Catholic Diocese of Fort Worth
Serving the North Texas Catholic community by providing the faithful opportunities to grow in Christian discipleship and strengthen their relationship with Jesus Christ.