SBS Advisory Board eNewsletter

"Making the future brighter..."

Dear St. Brigid School Advisory Board Members,

I am extremely grateful for all the time, work, and thought you all have dedicated towards the future St. Brigid School. I am happy with the progress that we are making and am constantly energized by your commitment to our faculty, students, and families. Please find below our first advisory board update, outlining the progress of our efforts through the first semester. I look forward to our continued work to address St. Brigid School's vision of becoming a more financially stable, academically rich, technologically infused, educational cornerstone in the East Village.

On behalf of St. Brigid School, I wish you all a Merry Christmas and a Happy New Year! See you in January!


  • In an effort to enhance our Early Childhood Program and make the classrooms UPK ready, we acquired more Pre-K furniture and resource materials from closed schools in the Archdiocese.
  • Teachers were polled in order to determine what they thought would be the best environment to foster student learning. In response, "SBS should be saturated by technology, where everybody is a teacher and learner. The curriculum goes beyond the classroom and there is ample space and time for collaboration."
  • Barriers in achieving this goal include space, professional development time and funding for teachers, resources (iPads, labs), and time in terms of class scheduling that will allow for more collaboration.

The subcommittee met on December 5 to discuss the improvements that would need to be implemented to reach the school's goals for the future.

Next Steps:

  • St. Brigid School will identify and propose five key changes that will promote the vision of the school.
  • St. Brigid School will visit other schools like Good Shepherd that have made enhancements to facilities/programs.
  • The next subcommittee meeting will be held on Monday, February 3, @ 3:30 p.m. (1011 First Avenue).

Budget Update

Current Enrollment: 226

Budgeted Enrollment (FY 2014): 232

Tuition Arrears to date:

  • 16 families are 3 months overdue, totaling $10,087; 5 with balances over $800
  • 22 families are 2 months overdue, totaling $8,752

Budget actuals are not available due to Regionalization; therefore, we cannot provide an accurate up-to-date review of the entire budget.

The subcommittee met on December 11 and discussed possible scenarios to improve tuition revenue.

Next Steps:

  • The subcommittee will further explore the possible implementation of the following:

    1. Upgrade fees (technology, fundraising, registration, graduation, sacramental)
    2. Update the various different tuition rates (that were honored from closed schools) and roll-out plans to bring about tuition uniformity. **There are approximately 40 students NOT on the SBS tuition rate. **
    3. Collapse all fees and charge one "General Fee."
    4. Collapse fees and fold all fees to offer one price: tuition.
  • The subcommittee will project worst-case scenarios that will significantly affect expenditures. One such example will be if several faculty members switched from single to family medical coverage.
  • Next meeting: Thursday, January 23, at 3:30 p.m.

Marketing/Fundraising Update

  • The October Open House update was limited to 3 families. November Open house saw 6 families. In total, 3 families have begun application process.
  • To date, the most successful marketing strategy was through the school's website and Facebook pages. Since September, the Facebook page has gained over 390 followers, who are automatically updated of any posts or announcements made on Facebook.
  • The school has received five new favorable reviews online since October.
  • Grant proposals were sent to five foundations to support our scholarship fund. This is an initiative geared to provide a pool of scholarship money that can subsidize tuition costs for existing families and attract more prospective families through financial aid. Five more proposals will be sent to support the school's operating costs.
  • Met with development staff and Director of Operations of Cornelia Connelly Center and Epiphany School to model some of their best practices.
  • Met with local pastors to improve the school's visibility in neighboring parishes (without an affiliated school).
  • Applied for Project YESS Grant to replace fire doors and exit gate. This project will improve school safety by providing two additional egress routes in emergencies.
  • The school and the subcommittee are planning the first annual gala with a goal of raising $50,000. Details are being considered.
  • The gala date is set for June 20 at St. Brigid Church Hall.

The subcommittee met on December 3 to discuss the initial planning steps for the gala and future online marketing projects.

Next Steps:

  • Select gala theme and catering service, begin soliciting in-kind donations for silent auction, identify possible invitees.
  • Based on results from both online and print ads, marketing will now focus more on online channels by posting videos and for the website and Facebook page.

Other ways you can help? Spread the word!

Moving into the new year, there are several things that the school has identified that would immediately enhance instruction and overall environment.

  • Automated External Defibrillator for the building -- $1500
  • Portable Classroom Sink (Kindergarten) -- $1300
  • iPad Minis for Pre-K teachers -- $975
  • Chess sets and timers for the Chess Club -- $500
  • Center for Differentiated Instruction Kit -- $400
  • Trays, Felt board, Bins -- $170
  • Kelso's Choice (anti-bullying program) -- $500 donated by Jace
  • The Giver (20 books for the 7th grade) -- $120 donated by Donna

If you, or anyone you know, wish to contribute to all or a portion of these items, please contact me at or 718-873-7479.

Upcoming Meetings

  • Subcommittee meetings have been scheduled for the new year.
  • Please let me know if Thursday, February 20, at 3:45 p.m. works for a Full Advisory Board meeting at 1011 First Avenue.

Christmas concert 2013