Eagle's Eye

August 19. 2021

Mission Statement

St. Joseph Catholic School fosters a diverse community of disciples empowered through a rigorous and inclusive Catholic education rooted in Gospel values and service to others.

We Feed Friday

We look forward to celebrating mass together tomorrow at 8:15am in our church. Students are invited to bring a canned food item for Catholic Charities.
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school supply drive

Thank you for your overwhelming generosity in our School Supply Drive for students of Polk County. A portion of the donated items were delivered to Catholic Charities for them to distribute as needed. The remaining items will be delivered to public schools in our area. Thank you!
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masks and lanyards

Mask lanyards were distributed to students earlier this week. Lanyards will be required as part of the uniform. This year we will not require the SJCS lanyard. Any mask lanyard will be acceptable. Extra mask lanyards will be on sale for $5 once they arrive in the office.

Many have asked to purchase a limited number of SJCS face masks. We have ordered youth and adult sizes that are expected to arrive within the next week or ten days. Masks are $10 each and can be ordered and paid for now in the front office.

picture day

Picture Day is Friday, August 20th. Students will wear their mass uniforms for pictures. Families who wish to purchase pictures must preorder using the order form that was sent home with your child on either Tuesday or Wednesday of this week. Please return order forms to your child's teacher by Friday, August 20th.
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altar server training

On Saturday, August 21st at 11am, St. Joseph Catholic Church will host an Altar Server Training class for current and new servers. The training will be held in the church.

This ministry seeks to encourage the youth of our parish to fully engage in our faith through their service to the Church as altar servers. Serving at the altar gives youth a hands-on personal experience of God's work in the liturgy.

Requirements are that the children have received their First Communion. If students are over the age of 14, they will need to complete the Safe Environment Training and Fingerprinting.

Please contact Laurie Spang in the Church Office at 294-3144 to register.

kindergarten teddy bear picnic

Orientation Grades 1-4

Parent Orientation is scheduled for this coming Wednesday, August 25th at 6pm. The format of this Parent Orientation will be a Zoom meeting. All parents of students in grades 1-4 are strongly encouraged to login to their class' Zoom meeting at 6pm on Wednesday. Your child's homeroom teacher will send you a Zoom link.


All families are urged to be very mindful of symptoms that could be related to COVID-19. Here are some important reminders as we continue to navigate the pandemic as a school family/community:

  • If your child isn't feeling well, keep him/her home.
  • If someone in your household is being tested for COVID, students should stay home from school while awaiting the test results.
  • The quarantine period of a person exposed is quite different than the individual that is positive for COVID.
  • If your child is exposed or living at home with someone who has tested positive for COVID, the parent is urged to call the school office and ask to speak with Mrs. Haas. If something develops over the weekend or after school hours, please email Mrs. Haas immediately.

We continue to practice the strongest protocols for handwashing, sanitizing, and disinfecting within the school building. Everyone who enters the school campus is required to wear a mask unless they are on the playground or eating.


Due to the overwhelming success of last year's Read-A-Thon fundraiser, we are excited to add two additional pieces of equipment to our playground. For those of you who were at SJCS last year, you may recall that our fundraising goal for the Read A Thon was $25,000 to be set aside for the replacement of the school roof. Thanks to the amazing support of our community, we surpassed our goal by more than $22,000. The PTO made the decision to add two new pieces of equipment to our playground. The Cocowave was installed for the older students during spring break. Due to some install issues, the new piece geared for our PreK students was delayed and installed over the summer. It's been great to see our PreK students enjoy this new piece of playground equipment.

Once again, we thank you for your strong support of our Read A Thon fundraiser a year ago.

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roof update

Last year, our school and church community was tasked with raising more than $200,000 for a new roof project on our main school building. To no one's surprise, our school and church community came together and met that goal. $25,000 raised from our Read-A-Thon has been set aside for our new roof. Unfortunately, due to a delay in receiving of materials, we haven't been able to meet our timeline for the new school roof. We are still working closely with the contractor. As soon as the materials arrive, we will schedule the work to be done. We thank you for your strong support of this project and will keep you posted.

Air Conditioners and Windows

The SJCS Facility Committee, a adhoc committee of the School Board, has identified the replacement of air conditioners and windows as priority projects. All funds raised this school year will be set aside to replace windows on the north side of the building and aging air conditioning units.


All volunteers must complete Safe Environment training and be fingerprinted for a background check.

The Safe Environment Certification process consists of 2 Steps:
Step 1: Safe Environment video and quiz
Step 2: Fingerprinting

Please begin by visiting: www.orlandodiocese.org . Click on the Safe Environment Certification box at the top of the homepage. Please read instructions and follow the steps carefully.

Step 1: Safe Environment Video and Quiz

1. Watch the Safe Environment Certification video. The video is about 25 minutes long.

2. When the video is complete, read the Diocesan Standards of Conduct and agree to terms.
Proceed to take the quiz.

3. Enter the Entity Code 296 for St. Joseph Catholic School. Choose the role/applicant type: volunteer. Click on “Next” to take the 20 question quiz. Passing scores are 80% and above. If you pass, you may immediately download your certificate. Results will also be emailed to school. If you fail the quiz, you will be directed to Step 1. Once the Safe Environment quiz is complete, a Fieldprint code will appear specific to your entity. Please copy or write down this Fieldprint code as you will need to enter it in the next step.

Step 2: Fingerprinting
Visit www.fieldprintflorida.com to register for your fingerprinting appointment. You will need an email address for this part of the process. Please enter the Fieldprint Code on the “Reason for Fingerprinting” screen when prompted. Continue on to complete the Fieldprint registration and schedule your fingerprinting appointment.

teacher of the year

Congratulations to our 2021-2022 Teacher of the Year, Mrs. Nancy Macphee. Mrs. MacPhee teaches third grade. We are blessed to have her among our amazing team of teachers and staff at St. Joseph.
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veteran teacher

During PrePlanning, some teaching faculty at SJCS were recognized for their years of service in the Diocese of Orlando. These teachers and administrators received a special service pin and were highlighted on a collaborative Diocesan wide video. Congratulations and thank you to the following teachers and administrators:

25 Years - Coach Edwards

20 Years - Mr. Proctor

15 Years - Mrs. Estevez, Mrs. Haas, Ms. Keown

10 Years - Mrs. Murray, Mrs. MacPhee, Mrs. Fedderly, Mr. Reilly

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August Birthdays!

Happy birthday to our students and staff who have August birthdays! Recently, the entire school sang "Happy Birthday" to them and Father Tim gave them a special blessing.
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threatening weather

As the tropics heat up with tropical storms and potential hurricanes, please be reminded that we are required to follow the protocols of the Polk County Public Schools regarding school closures and the like. In the event that a storm is threatening our area, and if Polk County Public Schools are closed, we must also close. Emails and text messages communicating such will be distributed to our community. Also keep in mind that, following a storm, we may reopen before the public schools.


With the increased number of Covid cases in Polk County, we have adjusted Friday Mass attendance from the entire school to smaller groups of students. We will rotate student groups to attend in church.

This week, kindergarten and grades 3 and 8 will attend mass in the church. The remaining classes will watch mass from their classroom, just like last year.


We have made the decision to put middle school sports on pause. Initially we planned on playing against four schools but with the high number of positive cases we are looking at waiting until the end of September to start intramurals. The two sports that will hopefully begin late September/early October are girls’ volleyball and boys’ soccer. I know this is disappointing to students, and we are committed to getting athletics started back up as soon as it is safe to do so.

Middle School Orientation

The Middle School Orientation meeting, originally scheduled for earlier this week, was postponed. The teachers are creating videos with the information that was intended to be shared during that meeting. Parents of students in grades 6-8 will receive a link to the videos in Middle School Newsletters next Thursday. We apologize for this change in format and thank you for your patience and understanding.

Grade 5 Orientation

The Parent Orientation for Grade 5 will be on Thursday, September 2nd at 6pm via Zoom. Parents of fifth graders can expect a zoom link from their teachers when we get closer to September 2nd. Please make every effort to attend this live zoom meeting.

St. Joseph Prayer

O Blessed Joseph, faithful guardian of my Redeemer, Jesus Christ, protector of Mary, the virgin Mother of God, I choose you this day to be my special patron and advocate and I firmly resolve to honor you all the days of my life. Therefore, I humbly ask you to receive me as your client, to instruct me in every doubt, to comfort me in every affliction, to obtain for me and for all the knowledge and love of the Heart of Jesus, and finally to defend and protect me at the hour of my death. Amen.

St. Joseph Catholic School

Principal: Mrs. Haas

Assistant Principal: Mr. Reilly

Assistant Principal: Mrs. Insua

Canonical Administrator: Fr. Tim LaBo

Superintendent: Mr. Fortier