Eagle's Edge

St. Therese Family Newsletter - December 2nd

Slow and Steady

I remember my grandmother trying to teach me patience as a young girl; it was no easy task. She would say things like, "Patience is a virtue, Rosemarie", or "A watched pot never boils". My all-time favorite saying of hers was, "Slow and steady wins the race", because she was exactly that - slow and steady. We used to roll grapeleaves together at her little kitchen table, spreading the leaves carefully and stuffing them with the meat and rice mixture she seasoned so perfectly; I remember feeling like I wish she would just go faster. I had things to do, cartoons to watch.

The funny thing? She rolled more grapeleaves than I did. While I fumbled around trying to get my leaves stuffed and filled, she sang and moved her hands so gracefully; so carefully. When the pot of stuffed grapeleaves was cooked and ready to eat, you could tell which ones I'd done in my haste to finish, and which ones were lovingly rolled with her gentle hands, coaxed into perfection by her beautiful voice as she sang her favorite hymns. She was present in those moments, unrushed and focused on the task in front of her. My grandmother prayed through every moment of her life, and I still believe that everything good in my life came to me with her prayers and her blessings, including the delicious stuffed grapeleaves she prepared.

When she passed away, a piece of my heart went with her, but her lessons stayed with me. I've been thinking about her a lot these past weeks as we journey towards Christmas; in a time when so much of what we do is rushed, the memory of her reminds me to slow down. Be present. Pray. Find joy in the smallest tasks, and sing praises to God through each moment. The hustle and bustle of the holidays might look different this year, and although we might be ordering gifts online and staying home more so we aren't as busy physically, that doesn't mean our minds are slowing down at all. In fact, I'll wager that we just get even more mentally busy.

We are all making more decisions per minute than we have ever made before. Even a small decision like going to the grocery store comes with a multitude of other decisions - we consider time of day, how busy, what area, what do we need, do I have my mask, sanitizer, and the list goes on. The decision-making fatigue is real. The worry is real. The struggle is really real. My challenge to you all, and to myself, is to slow down and steady your minds and hearts. My grandmother taught me that slow and steady not only makes the process more enjoyable, it makes the product better too.

This is how we can prepare for the celebration of the birth of our Lord, and prepare for whatever the new year has in store for us. Slow and steady.

God bless you all,

Rosemarie El Youssef

Principal, St. Therese School


Photo Release Authorization

We would love to include photos of our students on our website, newsletter, and on social media. Please complete the photo release letting us know if this is OK or NOT OK. We will keep these permissions on file for the rest of the school year and renew each fall. Please know that this also includes the YEARBOOK - we need your permission for students to be pictured there aw well.

Click here to complete the Photo Release Authorization Form for 2020-2021 school year.

DCS Teacher Inservice Day December 4th - NO CLASSES

There is a Department of Catholic Schools (DCS) Teacher Inservice Day on Friday, December 4th. Teachers will be working together and looking at student data to better serve our students and families.

12/4 Special Drive-thru hosted by St. Nicholas himself!

To honor our St. Therese tradition, St. Nicholas will be at our December 4th drive-thru with treats for all of our students. Mrs. Green has been working so hard to help him get special ornaments ready - please come and see us!

Although we don't have classes on December 4th, teachers will be here working and the office will be open.

We are so excited to see you!

Drive-thru 12/11 and 12/18, 2-4:30 p.m.

In the spirit of Christmas and missing our kids and families, we will be hosting a special drive-thru supply pickup each Friday until Christmas break. Each Friday you will find a special guest waving at you, and a special treat from all of us here at St. Therese (and the materials from teachers, as well).

We encourage you to hop in the car and drive over, even if it's just to say hello and Merry Christmas!

Picture Re-takes December 4th

For those that were not able to get pictures taken at our first picture day, we have retakes scheduled for Friday 12/4. If you purchased pictures and are unhappy with the way they turned out, you may bring those photos in and have them taken again.

We encourage you to only come in for a retake if you haven't taken a photo yet. If you have more than one child, just use ONE slot to sign them all up - photos take only 2 minutes.

To order photos online, go to my.lifetouch.com and enter our school picture code: EVTGN399Z

You may schedule your time by using the signup link below:


25 Days of the Christmas Story

Join us each day for a new chapter in the Christmas story as we count down to Christmas together. You can find the link on our website, and also in the FACTS Family Portal. This one link will take you to the folder in our Vimeo account where ALL of the videos will be stored - it's the only link you need!

Click here to access the 25 Days of the Christmas Story

Merry Christmas!

How to access your new FACTS account - view grades, attendance, and access important family information!

Please watch this video to learn how to create your family portal login:


The password to view the video is: Portal (P must be capitalized)

You will need to use the email address that we have on file for you in order to setup your FACTS Family Portal account.

Many families have a FACTS financial login already for financial aid - this will not work for the family portal. You will need to setup a new login.

The district code is: STS-OR (all caps)

Please give us a call if we can be of assistance!

FACTS Financial Aid - open for applications now!

The other portal you have access to in FACTS is the financial portal, where you will apply for financial aid. In order to be considered to grants and aid for next school year, you are required to have a completed financial aid application. You can find the application by clicking on this link:


The sooner you apply the better - don't wait until the last minute! The deadline for applications is March 1, 2021.

Jack Success Story | Portland Rescue Mission

Portland Rescue Mission - Food and Coat Drive!

Thank you all for your generous donations so far!

St. Therese School is collaborating with the Portland Rescue Mission to collect new or gently used adult coats, hats, gloves, and scarves for those in need. Please bring your donations to the school anytime during regular office hours, or drop off during our drive-thru supply times on Fridays from 2-4:30.

We are also collecting new or gently used warm blankets for their emergency shelter downtown.

If you'd like to purchase something directly off of their amazon wishlist, you can find the link here:


If you, or someone you know, is in need of food assistance, please call Shasta Hatter at the SVDP office 503-253-7566.

Middle School Service: No-Sew Blanket Making Project

Middle school students will be making fleece tie blankets for the Portland Rescue Mission and we need your help!

You can go to any fabric or craft store and purchase a 2-yard length of fleece. You can even purchase pre-cut sets. Any color, any pattern, as long as it is no pill fleece and there are two pieces. You can drop your donations off anytime!

We encourage each middle schooler to purchase two pieces of fleece to make a blanket at home, but will also be distributing the donated fleece to those interested in participating so they can make more than one. Because of the pause in LIP Learning, each middle school student is invited to participate at home during a live class on Google Meet with Mrs. El Youssef. Our goal is to have blankets made and brought back to the school by the December 11th drive-thru.

Donations needed by December 3rd.

Thank you!

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Click on the image to view our Year at a glance

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BottleDrop Thursdays

Our extra 20% matching brought us about $80 more than we would normally generate with our bottle donations. Thank you so much for bringing those bags in and/or dropping them off at BottleDrop on our behalf. We will use that $80 to purchase turkeys for holiday food boxes.

We are so grateful for your generosity! With your donations we purchased a Distance Learning T-shirt for each student and staff member to wear on Fridays, prizes for spirit week, and the pumpkins for our St. Therese Pumpkin Patch. We recently purchased an eagle mascot costume and our new mascot will soon be visiting classrooms to learn what it means to be a St. Therese Eagle!

The school budget is tight this year, but there are some things that we believe students shouldn't go without - your can and bottle donations make this happen!

Parents' Club Corner

Here is the Parents' Club schedule of meetings for the rest of the school year. We will meet on the 3rd Wednesday of the month from 6-7pm via Zoom. Our next meeting will be on Wednesday, December 16, and we will be discussing future fundraisers. The zoom link for that meeting will be sent to you via email on Monday, December 14.







Please contact Melanie Reyna at 503-467-1805 or via email at melanie.reyna@usbank.com with any questions.

Please see the attachment below for the meeting minutes from 11/18.

Parent Obligations for the Year - Fair Share and Fundraising

We know that this is a difficult time, so we worked with Parents' Club to make it simple.

If we all work together, we can make this happen!

Rather than having MANY events with specific obligations, we have one financial obligation for each family.

Dual-parent household - $500 (fundraised or donated)

Single-parent household - $300 (fundraised or donated)

This replaces the auction basket obligation, auction project obligation, jog-a-thon, and raffle.

If we make our goal of $36,000 and everyone pitches in, there is no reason to bill people for what they aren't able to fundraise.

Our goal is to have one BIG fundraiser in the spring - if we can generate enough money to fulfill our obligation to the school our tuition won't go up. Jog-a-thon seems doable with the changing of the metrics and there are MANY ways we can get creative to make it happen.

The key to making this happen is ALL of us working together!

You are not expected to figure out how to fundraise on your own - but come to Parents' Club meetings and share your ideas. We are always better together!


Just as a reminder, all Catholic schools are required to follow the metrics and guidelines set forth by the state of Oregon and the Oregon Department of Education. There are no exceptions.

Our count in Multnomah County has increased since last week, now hovering at 549/100,000. Our two-week case count is up nearly 100/100,000 from last week. We need to be at 100 or less in order to reopen for K-6 students. In the image below, this is the yellow section of the chart. We need to be at 50 or less in order to return as a whole school, K-8. In the image below, this is the green section of the chart.

Thank you for your continued patience, and your partnership through this challenging time. The best we can do is keep our community healthy, and do our part to bring the case count down in our county. And keep the prayers coming!

New ODE Dashboard

ODE’s Ready Schools Safe Learners Page

COVID-19 Rates by County

Oregon Health Authority – epi curve

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We have PHONES!

You can find a list of phone extensions on our website: www.stthereseschool.org or by downloading the pdf attached here.

Thank you for your patience!

School Office Hours - changes in procedure due to COVID-19 safety measures

The school office is open from 8 a.m. - 4 p.m each day. We love it when families drop by, but when the school-year begins we will need to be more careful about how we meet with you.

Effective Monday, August 31st please call ahead if:

* You need to meet with a staff member (Rosemarie, Penny, teachers, etc.)

* You need to pick something up, or drop something off (materials, payment, etc.)

If you are in the parking lot, please just call us from your cell phone, if you can and we will accommodate you if we can safely do so. We will do our very best to meet your needs and appreciate your cooperation as we work to keep our students and staff safe.