Principal Notes 02/12/2016

St. Cecilia School

Notes from the Principal

Parent –Teacher Conference Sign Ups-

***Parent –Teacher Conference Sign Ups-Please do by February 15th*** (Your conference times from the Fall 2015 will NOT carryover, so all must sign up for Spring conferences.)

Parent Teacher conferences will be held on February 23rd through February 25th. Please use the link below to sign up. This sign up will be open from February 12th through midnight on February 15th.

Conference Sign Ups

Since conferences are short, and are back to back, please be on time.

Thank you for your prompt attention. If you have any questions or concerns, please contact the school office.

Catholic Schools Week

Thank you to Jessica Loecke, Tiffany Walker, Emily Beaudry, Stacy Anderson, Terri Simodynes, Susan Campbell, Lisa Teske, Angi Nespor, Peg Gaul, Tilda Thompson, Lois Vidimos, Christie Martens, Sara Converse, Lisa Weary, Bev Williams, Cheryl Corns, Amy Arthur, and countless others who made our Catholic Schools Week a success.

The work that goes into the week, the effort of FSA, staff and the parents demonstrates the support we receive year round from our parents, parishioners, and the community. There were many special activities during the week and one of the highlights for the week was the visit and speech from the ISU Coach Prohm and from several athletes to read to our students. Thank you to Coach Prohm and the athletes for sharing their time with our students. I know that when I watch the encouragement my grandchildren hear from sports figures to make reading and school a priority, it helps to the support the parents. I know the parental support for education is key to a student’s success, but encouragement from others reinforces that for the child. Again thank you to everyone for a special week.

The talent show was a huge success again this year as many of our students showed their talents to our St. Cecilia School families and visitors.

Just to show you how much difference we can make in one week, here are the totals from our daily challenges:

Monday/SCRIP: 39 families ordered $8,530 in SCRIP

Tuesday/Box Tops: 9,008

Wednesday/Loose change for Home for Awhile: $498.70

Thursday/Paper products for Food at First: 96

Friday/$1 donation for Catholic Heart Work Camp: $175.05

Thank you again for EVERYONE who made this Catholic Schools Week a huge success!

2016-2017 Tuition Set

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Protection of Children #5

Dear Parent(s)/Guardian(s), As you know, the Office for the Protection of Children of the Archdiocese of Dubuque provides materials for parents/guardians as a means of education regarding the issues and topics related to the abuse of children. In order to make this easily accessible to you, we invite you to access the VIRTUS website at and read the article on the home page. If you do not have access to the internet, you can request copies of articles from the school office. It is our sincere hope that by partnering together we can continually provide the safest possible environment for all our young people to grow into healthy, Christ-filled adults. Additional resources can be found at the VIRTUS website at

Protection of Children Flyer #5

Rice Bowls

This Lent, St. Cecilia School will participate in Catholic Relief Services(CRS) Rice Bowl, a faith-in-action program that will help you experience Lenten spirituality by living in solidarity with people in need around the world.

As we, the global Church, continue our prayerful walk through his Holy Year of Mercy, it is especially appropriate to come together in prayer as a family this Lent, reflecting on how we can live this call to mercy more abundantly.

Use your cardboard CRS Rice Bowl and Lenten calendar to guide your Lenten journey. We will share some CRS stories during our morning prayer time each week with the students.

Be sure to visit to watch videos of the people and communities whose lives your Lenten gifts are changing.

We will be collecting the CRS Rice Bowls on Good Friday, so please send them to school with your student that week.

Thank you for using CRS Rice Bowl with your family this Lent.

Student Tuition Organization (STO) and Tuition Assistance

I want to encourage families that are interested in assistance to open the attached letter that provides more details. Many of our families receive financial assistance to attend St. Cecilia and we encourage these families to apply for this assistance. This year a family of four can earn $72,900 and a family of seven can earn $110,190 and be eligible for STO funding. If STO does not meet your financial needs, you can apply to our local tuition assistance through St. Cecilia Parish. You must apply to STO as our local tuition assistance uses their financial need formula to help base their decision. Your completed application must be post-marked or filed electronically by March 24, 2016.

STO paper applications can be picked up in the school office or you can apply online at If you need assistance completing this application, please call the school office. Please contact Mr. Rowlands if you have any questions. We are hoping that we can make it financially affordable for all families to send their children to St. Cecilia.

Tuition Affordability

2016-2016 STO Letter

2016-2017 STO Letter - Spanish

Erv Rowlands

Ervin A. Rowlands

Principal, St. Cecilia's School

Family School Association (FSA) Sign-Ups

Conference week is just a couple weeks away (Feb. 23-25). During conference week FSA asks parents to help at the book fair and to provide food for meals and treats for teachers. If you are available to volunteer or bring a food item, please sign up at the links below:

Book Fair:

Food For Conference Week:

If you have any questions contact Jessica Loecke at

Jump Rope for Heart

I'm excited to kick off our event at St. Cecilia this year. Heart disease is the number one killer for both men and women in Iowa and we are now seeing many children developing indicators for the disease as well. It is my goal to help your child learn about how they can live a healthy, active lifestyle and learn activities they can participate in for many years to keep their hearts healthy.

Yesterday, Amy Knoll from the American Heart Association presented an assembly to our school about the Jump Rope for Heart activities we will be participating in here at our school. All students will be learning jump rope skills during PE time as well as information on keeping their hearts healthy throughout the month of February. If your family would like to help with our fundraiser for the American Heart Association, please refer to the link below with more detailed information.

Students may collect donations online or in the envelopes that were sent home this week. Our goal for our first year participating in this event is $2500. The American Heart Association provides us with great educational materials and also gives the kids opportunities to earn some prizes. The theme this year is all about dogs, so my dog Carly was happy to greet the students yesterday.

I am pleased to provide this event to our students in memory of my Dad who died of a sudden heart attack at the age of 52 many years ago. Every $50 raised helps to save a life!

Should you have any questions, be sure to send me an e-mail Sally Dubois at

Jump Rope for Heart Flyer

Book Fair

Reading for pleasure inside and outside of school has real and long-lasting benefits. It unlocks the power of information and imagination and helps children discover who they are. Here’s what you can do to help children develop stronger reading skills and a love for reading:

  • Set the example. Let children see you read.
  • Have a collection of books in the home. Update this collection routinely to keep pace with changing tastes and reading skills.
  • Support our school’s Book Fair. Allow your children to choose their own books to read.

Our Scholastic Book Fair is a reading event that brings to school the books kids want to read. It’s a wonderful selection of engaging and affordable books for every reading level. Please make plans to visit our Book Fair and be involved in shaping your child’s reading habits.

Our Book Fair dates: February 23 - 25

Also, check out our on-line bookfair at:

We look forward to seeing you and your family at our Book Fair! Remember, all purchases benefit our school.


Terri Simodynes, Library Associate

Gala News

Silent Auction Help Needed!

Please take a minute to visit this Sign Up Genius to see if there are any businesses you already frequent that you would be willing to ask to support this year's Gala. All the businesses listed, with the exception of two, gave donations to last year's Gala so they are already familiar with it. After you sign up, I will email you a letter you can print out to take with that explains how their donation benefits our school and faith community and how we in turn, may promote their business. The donations collected can then be turned into the school office no later than Monday, March 7.

If you have an idea for a business that isn't on the list or if you have any questions, please email Nancy Fink at Additionally, if you have an item or idea for the silent auction, we would love to have it!


If you work for a company that would be interested in being a corporate sponsor of the Gala, please contact Jessica Loecke at Sponsorship options include an ad in the gala catalog, logo on the gala website and/or posters, and tickets to the gala. Deadlines are approaching soon, so please contact Jessica if you would like more information.

As always, please remember to support the businesses that support Gala and let them know you appreciate them! Thank you for your help.

Younkers Coupon Books

The St. Cecilia Family School Association (FSA) is selling the Younkers Community Days Coupon Books. The coupon books cost $5 and the entire $5 will go to the St. Cecilia FSA. The coupons in the booklet can be used at any Younkers February 26-27 and include several coupons including one that is $10 off a regular or sale price item of $10 or more.

If you are interested in purchasing a coupon book you can stop in the school office during school hours anytime between now and February 25 to purchase or you can return the attached form to the school office and we will send the coupon books home in your child's Friday folder. If you have out of town family or friends that might be interested in purchasing a coupon book and supporting St. Cecilia FSA, they can also be purchased online at: - select Saint Cecilia School when given the option of an organization to support.

If you have any questions, please contact Melissa Bowker at

Coupon Book Form

School Uniforms

Are your child's school uniforms getting a little small by this point in the school year? Here is your opportunity to pass them on to another child at the school and find some uniforms that will fit! We will have used uniforms available for a free-will donation during conference week. If you have uniforms you would like to donate, please drop them off in the school office by Monday, February 22. Money raised from the uniform sales goes toward the school's advertising fund.

Preschool & Kindergarten Reminder

Just a reminder that we are still accepting registrations for 3-year-old and 4-year-old preschool, and kindergarten for the 2016-17 school year. Please contact the office for a registration form. We’ll start reviewing registrations and planning classes on Monday, February 29th, so get your form in asap!

Save the Date!

Sunday, March 6th
St Cecilia School winter event beginning at 3:30 P.M. Watch for details in the near future!
Sponsored by FSA (Family School Association)

School Events

  • Wednesday, 2/17: 9AM All School Mass
  • Friday, 2/19: No School – Teacher InService
  • Monday, 2/22: Normal Preschool & School Day
  • Tuesday to Thursday, 2/23 to 2/25: No Preschool Classes, 1:30PM Early Dismissal for K-5th Grades, Parent-Teacher Conferences and Book Fair
  • Wednesday, 2/24: 9 AM All School Mass followed by 1st Grade Reception
  • Friday, 2/26: No School