Testing Week

Bruin Press October 15, 2019 Edition

St. Bernard of Clairvaux Catholic School

Laurie Senecal , M.Ed., LDT, CALT



Dear Parents and Guardians,

I wanted to take this time to share some important news and updates that are taking place at SBS- there is a lot to celebrate. Last week, I attended the Mindsteps Builders Lab Intensive which focused on the values, mission and vision of the participants’ campuses as well as the “Mindstep Model”. This model focuses on the purpose, people, pathway and plan to build success. I learned some valuable tools to support successful leadership and cannot wait to implement them on our campus. All faculty and staff members attended the UD Ministry Conference and enjoyed a day of fellowship and professional development. A personal favorite was Sr. Miriam Heidland’s keynote speech, “Your Life Matters: Transformation from the Heart”. She was incredibly inspirational. Sr. Miriam’s podcast, Abiding Together, can be found on iTunes and her book, Loved As I Am, can be found on Amazon. If you want to learn more about Sr. Miriam and her mission, check out her podcast and/or book.

The 8th grade students enjoyed a three day retreat at The Pines. They strengthened their relationships with one another and embraced the opportunity to deepen their faith with our Lord. There are loads of pictures on our Facebook page for you to enjoy and see highlights of their trip. We are signed up to participate in PSIA this year. SBS students in grades 6-7 can participate in 4 different competitions. Information about PSIA will be shared shortly by Mr. Gerecke, the sponsor. SBS has started a Flag Club! Pat Thompson and Ashley Appelman have embraced this new club and will serve as leaders. Students in grades 4-8 may join this new club which will meet once a month. More information to come! We are excited to announce that SBS will join Junior Assembly next year. Junior Assembly brings eighth graders together to get to know each other before high school through organized dances and programs meanwhile, on campus the Safety Committee is busy planning to ensure that SBS is the safest campus possible. SBS is hosting “Prepping for High School” on October 22nd. This is a great chance for 7th and 8th grade students and parents to learn more about perspective high schools from SBS alums. Parent conferences are Friday, October 25th . Sign-ups went out earlier this week.

We have a new member of the SB parish, Sister Maria Filotea. Sister Filotea was born and raised in New York City. Her parents are natives of Puerto Rico and she is the fifth of six children in her family. Sister has been a sister with the Servants of the Lord and the Virgin of Matara for 10 years. She has missioned in Maryland and New York before coming to Dallas, TX. Her favorite sports are baseball and football and as a native New Yorker she will remain true to the Pinstripe blue of the Yankees and the blue and grey of the Giants but she is willing to embrace all others of different teams! Please welcome Sr. Filotea to St. Bernard.

We should always make time to celebrate our school- a place where students discover and develop their God-given talents and experience success through learning, faith and service. I hope you will join with me and spread the word about our community and why we are known as the Gem of East Dallas.


Laurie Senecal, M.Ed., LDT, CALT


St. Bernard of Clairvaux Catholic School


Monday, Oct. 14th - Friday, Oct. 18th - ITBS Testing

Thursday, Oct. 17th - 8:00 AM - School Mass, led by 8th Grade - St. Luke

Thursday, Oct. 17th - 9:00 AM, Church - 1st Quarter Awards

Thursday, Oct. 17th - 5:00 PM, Bishop Lynch Gym - Future Friar Night (Volleyball)

Friday, Oct. 18th - Deadline to Register for SBS Golf Tournament

Friday, Oct. 18th - 6:00 PM, Knights of Columbus - Trunk or Treat

Monday, Oct. 21st - 6:00 PM, St. Elizabeth of Hungary - Catholic High School Preview Night


Tuesday, Oct. 22nd - PINK Day for Breast Cancer Awareness

Tuesday, Oct. 22nd - 6:30 PM, Cafeteria - Prepping for High School Night

Wednesday, Oct. 23rd - 8th Grade Visit to Cristo Rey

Friday, Oct. 25th - 8:00 AM, Tenison Park Golf Course - 5th Annual SBS Golf Tournament

Friday, Oct. 25th - 12:10 PM, EARLY DISMISSAL

Friday, Oct. 25th - Parent/Teacher Conferences

Friday, Oct. 25th - Deadline to Register for Basketball

Friday, Oct. 25th - Future Friar Night Clinics & Tours (Cheer, Band, Football)

Sunday, Oct. 27th - 11:00 AM, Church - School Mass

Friday, Nov. 1st - 8:00 AM - School Mass, Holy Day of Obligation - All Saints


KC Trunk or Treat - Friday, October 18th

The Knights of Columbus #799 invites you and your family to the 8th Annual KC Trunk or Treat of Friday, October 18th at 6:00 PM (rain or shine). This event is for all local Catholic school parishes, as a fun, safe party within our Catholic community. You can decorate your car, your kids, and/or yourself for the event. There will be prizes for best costumes/cars, and food and drinks available for a low cost, as well as adult beverages for purchase.

In addition, donations for food pantry, coat drive, shoes, etc. will be accepted, as well as items for the pro-life pregnancy centers. So come on out to the KC, bring those donations, and enjoy a fun family outing!

For more details, please see the KC website: https://www.kc799.org/trunk-or-treat-4/

Pink Day - Tuesday, October 22nd

October is Breast Cancer Awareness Month, and St. Bernard's is showing its support with a Pink Day on Tuesday, October 22nd. Students will be allowed to wear PINK if they donate $1. Donations will go to Bridge Breast Network (https://www.bridgebreast.org), a local organization that provides diagnostic and treatment services to low-income, underinsured, and uninsured individuals. So let's support Bridge Breast Network and all breast cancer patients and survivors with a sea of pink at St. Bernard's!

SBS Golf Tournament - Friday, October 25th

IT'S ALMOST HERE! Have you registered your team or sponsored your student, class, or company yet? We are on our way to our goal of $35,000, but we want to up those numbers, and you can help! Organize your class to sponsor a hole for only $100 - that's less than $10/student! Organize your friends to form a foursome, or register yourself and make new friends. Talk to your company about all the press a sponsorship brings. There are countless ways to contribute to this important fundraiser - find one that works for you this week!

Please click on the link below to register - the deadline is this Friday, October 18th!


Flyers about the golf tournament will be going home with students, so check those backpacks! If you have any questions or issues, please contact David Sutton at (469)682-8495 or Peter Casiano at (214)208-9143.

Join the Future Friar Club

All kindergarten through 8th grade students are eligible to join Bishop Lynch's Club Friar, which is free and grants members special privileges and offers. Besides a free t-shirt and stickers, students also receive complementary admission to on-campus sporting events, half-price admission to shows and musicals, early registration for summer camps, and more. Perhaps the benefit most enjoyed by students is attendance at Future Friar nights throughout the year.

This Thursday will be the first Future Friar night during the Women's JV and Varsity Volleyball games versus Ursuline. Future Friars can obtain autographs, watch the game in a special section behind the team, and go on the court for contests and giveaways. Friday, October 25th is a big evening for Future Friars! Sign up for a Cheer & Dance Clinic (preK - 5th), Band Clinic (6th - 8th), and/or Football Tours (5th - 8th), including running through the tunnel with the team before the football game!

See the links below to register for Club Friar or sign up for the clinics on October 25th.

Club Friar Registration

Future Friar Clinics - Friday, October 25th


ITBS Testing

As a reminder, ITBS testing will be going on all this week. We ask that parents ensure students are well-rested, eat healthy meals (especially breakfast), get some physical activity outside of school, and are generally at their best each day this week.

Parent/Teacher Conferences

Parent/teacher conferences will be held on Friday, October 25th in the afternoon (it's a half day for students). Conferences last about 10 minutes. Please use the SignUp Genius link below to sign up for your desired time slots.


Christmas Fundraiser

Home and School Association is launching their Christmas fundraiser- Poinsettia Sales! Everyone loves Poinsettias! Sales forms are going out to students this week, if you would like to get another order form, you can click HERE . Costs of the plants are $10 each. You may also purchase them online and avoid the hassle of sending in cash or checks to your homeroom teacher. https://www.thesbsstore.com/store

Prepping for High School Night

Parents of 7th - 8th graders, mark your calendars for this important event next Tuesday, October 22nd! The school is hosting a "Prepping for High School" Night with guest speakers including former SBS students and teachers (Mrs. Alvizo will be making an appearance!). Topics will include selecting a high school, taking the ISEE test (Don't know what that is? You definitely need to show up!), dealing with accommodations for high school testing, filling out applications, interviewing strategies and techniques, and more. Parents and students - you can't afford to miss this meeting!

Information will be presented from 6:30 - 7:00 PM, with a question-and-answer session immediately following from 7:00 - 8:00 PM.

Catholic High School Preview Night

Did you miss the first Catholic High School Preview Night? Don't worry - there is a second one scheduled for Monday, October 21st at St. Elizabeth of Hungary Catholic School! Come evaluate all the Catholic high school options available for your child, and take advantage of this opportunity to ask questions about each school, their financial aid and admissions processes, and more.
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Virtue of the Month - Reverence

The virtue of the month for October is Reverance, and we will be focusing on that with our students throughout the month. Visit the link below for suggestions for home projects focusing on Reverance.

Home Projects on Reverence for October


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Basketball Registration is Open!

Basketball registration is now open for all SBS students in Grades 5 - 8. The deadline for registering is Friday, October 25th, and the participation fee is $105 (paid through FACTS). Practices will start November 13th, and current physicals must be turned in prior to the first practice. Registration and physical forms are below.

2019-20 SBS Basketball Information

2020 Basketball Registration Form

SBS Physical/Health Form for Athletics

Cross Country

Cross Country had a bye this past weekend, but is practicing hard for their next meet on Saturday.

NEXT MEET: Saturday, October 19th - Norbuck Park, around 7:30 AM start time

Flag Football

On Sunday, the Flag Football team played Mary Immaculate (6th Grade) in a very close contest, but couldn't quite pull out a victory, losing by a mere one point, 19-18. It was a great effort and we are extremely proud of them. Next week, they will play the Mary Immaculate 5th Grade team.

NEXT GAME: MIS 5th Grade (Home) - Sunday10/20/19, 3:45 PM - STA Football Field

Boys Football

The Boys Football Team played Prince of Peace on Sunday, losing 14-0. There are still two games remaining on the regular season schedule, so let's go, Bruins!

NEXT GAME: St. Thomas (Away) - Sunday 10/20/19, 2:00 PM - STA Football Field

Girls Volleyball - 7th Grade

THE JV LADY BRUINS REMAIN UNDEFEATED! Winning decisively in two sets against St. Thomas on Saturday. What a fantastic season they are having!

NEXT GAME: MIS D2 (Away) - Sat. 10/19/19, 10:00 AM - MIS Gym

Girls Volleyball - 8th Grade

The 8th Grade Volleyball team had a busy Saturday, playing both St. Elizabeth and St. Monica. Although St. Elizabeth ultimately won the first game, it was a hard fought match, with the final score of the first set 24-26. However, our girls bounced back in their second game against St. Monica to take the victory in two sets.

Bye next week!

NEXT GAME: Highlands (Away) - Sat. 10/26/19, 9:00 AM - Highlands Gym

St. Joseph (Away) - Sat. 10/26/19, 10:00 AM - Highlands Gym


ITBS Testing

Do you remember taking Iowa Tests in school growing up? The Iowa Test of Basic Skills (ITBS, now renamed the Iowa Assessments) was first developed and administered in 1935, and is still used today throughout the country as a tool to improve student instruction. Given to students in kindergarten - 8th grades, the tests generate a profile of a student's academic strengths and weaknesses. This profile provides valuable information to teachers, schools, and parents.

But how do you interpret that ITBS report? What do all those numbers mean, and what information do they really provide? Click on the link below to see a document on Interpreting Reports from the Iowa Assessments to get a better understanding of what these tests reveal about a student's abilities and academic performance:

Interpreting Reports from the Iowa Assessments

Now that you know what to expect, remind your student(s) to sharpen those #2 pencils and do their best this week!


Melissa Wortham - Administration

Melissa Wortham grew up in Sherman, Texas, which is 60 miles north of Dallas, and graduated from Southeastern Oklahoma State University. After graduation, she moved to Miami, Florida and worked for Air Florida. She then returned to Dallas and married her husband Mike, who is also from Sherman. They have two children: daughter Hassie, who just graduated with her Master’s in Education from Austin College and is in her first year of teaching at St. Mark Catholic School in Plano, and son Witt, who is a junior at Southeastern Oklahoma State. They also have a dog, 3 cats, 2 ducks, and 2 chickens, and a farm that they visit almost every weekend.

"I was a stay at home Mom for several years until Witt enrolled at SBS and not long after that I began working in the office. People often say “It’s a God thing,” but I truly believe that we were led here by God. SBS made a huge difference in my son’s life and for that I am truly grateful and will always be SBS' biggest fan! And the rest is history!"


What is your favorite book or movie and why?

My favorite movie is Steel Magnolias, because you laugh and cry.

What famous person would you like to meet some day?

I would like to meet Bono from U2 or Bruce Springsteen.

Do you have a bucket list item you would like to share?

I would like to go to the Vatican.

People would be surprised if they knew what about you?

I would like to retire on our farm!


Week 9

This past week saw the 8th graders off to their Pines retreat, which was a wonderful experience for them all. The theme for the retreat was "Seek" as the students explored what it means to seek God in themselves and in others. However, there was plenty of time for ziplining, kayaking, swimming, and relaxing at the end of the day with a nice mud mask. Meanwhile, the rest of the school enjoyed a day off on Friday, while teachers attended the Ministry Conference. Saturday's 70's Disco Social was a blast for attendees, with costumes and camaraderie. Our student athletes were busy all weekend with various sporting events, but hopefully all were well rested to start this week of ITBS testing.



News & Photos

Do you have great photos from a sports event or SBS outing? How about news or announcements you'd like to see in a future newsletter? Please send them to us! You can also email us any additional emails you would like added to our mailing list. Submit to St. Bernard Bruin Press via email sbsbruins@gmail.com.
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