St. Mary Catholic Middle School

News Update: September 8th, 2021

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Compassion is an action word with no boundaries

A note on the words above...

During our back to school preparations, SMCS staff identified two values of great importance to our system: integrity and compassion. As we focus on those values as a staff, we're going to be sharing them with our middle schoolers daily in the form of quotes to end our afternoon announcements.

We'll share these quotes with you in our newsletter. We hope this will spark conversation in your family about what integrity and compassion mean to you!

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All Aboard: One Night. One Event. To Ignite Giving.

Our SMCS community is gearing up for a first of its kind event to celebrate and support our elementary and middle schools. You won't want to miss this evening of food, live entertainment, cash raffle, and more.

First stop: Registration! Click here to sign up.

Next up: Check out a few ways you can show your support before All Aboard:

  • Out of Dress Code Passes: purchase passes for your kids, their teachers, and other students in the SMCS community
  • Teacher Wish Lists: help our amazing educators enhance your child's learning.
  • Cash Raffle: NEW this year! Be on the lookout for information coming home with your student next Friday 9/17. One student at each school will receive a $500 tuition voucher!

Interested in sponsoring? Click here to join our incredible sponsors in supporting academic excellence at SMCS and enhancing our Catholic mission and values.

Thank you to our Diamond and Platinum Sponsors!

Out of Dress Code This Friday

Students who turned in ALL required back to school forms by September 3rd may be out of dress code THIS FRIDAY, September 10th. Students who did not meet the Friday deadline will be reminded tomorrow to report to school in dress code on Friday.

Middle School After School Care

Saint Mary Catholic Middle School will offer after school care for the 2021-2022 school year from 3:15pm-5:15pm. Students will use this time to work on homework and assignments in the commons.

The fee for after school care will be $5.50 per hour per student. Please send a check to the school office to be credited to your after school care account (much like we do for hot lunch.) We will let you know when your balance is close to 0. Please preregister your student 24 hours in advance to participate.

Middle School students are not permitted to be on campus without adult supervision. If a student is still on campus after 3:30pm, they will be signed into After School Care.

Hot Lunch Help Needed!

Our hot lunch program runs smoothly thanks to the generosity of our parent volunteers! Volunteers are needed to help hand out trays, serve food, and sanitize tables.

The volunteer shift this year will run from 11:00am-12:30pm. Volunteers must wear closed toed shoes and a hat or hairnet. If you are able to help, click here to reserve your spot.

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Out of Dress Code for a Cause

As a school community, SMCMS operates very much like a family. And when part of our family is hurting, we want to do what we can to show our support. Earlier this year, Eric Hasz, father of 7th grader Caruso, received a terminal cancer diagnosis.

Eric is a big fan of Aloha Friday, wearing a Hawaiian shirt to end every work week for the past 20 years. What better way for our SMCMS family to show our support than to take up the Aloha Friday banner this Fall? Beginning September 17th, our students and staff will be invited to bring a dollar each Friday and wear a Hawaiian shirt with out of dress code bottoms. The money we will collect will go to help the Hasz family with their needs.

Please join us in praying for the Hasz family and thanks for considering showing your family's support in this festive way.

Scrip Sale Next Week!

ThankScriping Day is coming September 16th and 17th. Mark your calendar and get ready to shop businesses offering bonuses. This is a huge earning event that only happens 4 times a year, with some brands offering bonuses up to 20%!

ThankScriping Day sales apply to egift cards and reloaded gift cards only. Physical cards are not included in this sale. Click here for more information.

SMCS Basketball Options

Basketball season is right around the corner, and it’s time to sign up!

Here are the options available for SMCS students:

SMCS School Ball

SMCS School ball is offered to students in grades 5-8 only. This is offered through the middle school basketball program and run via SMC’s athletic department

  • Boys season runs from late October through early January. Girls season runs early November through mid-January.
  • We play other local Catholic and small schools in the area.
  • -Competition level is not as intense as ZBC basketball teams and competition.
  • -Games are played mostly during the weeknights so your weekends are free.
  • -School ball is geared toward “everyone plays” model (amount varies on grade level.)


ZEPHYRS Basketball Club (ZBC)

ZBC Basketball is offered to students in the grades 3-8. This is offered through our ZBC Program. It is not run via our schools athletic department.

  • We play weekend tournaments. Each grade gets more tournaments the older they are.
  • Competition level is more intense than School Ball league because you are playing much larger schools.
  • ZBC Basketball does not “cut” players, but playing time is not always going to be equal. Some teams may have an “A team” that only take the top players to some tournaments.
  • Fees: 3rd-4th grader fees - $100

NEW IN 2021 -2022, two TIERED OPTIONS for grades 5-8 are offered. The objective is to allow some players who are still new to basketball and/or that play other sports to still participate in ZBC for a shorter time frame, while also allowing those who are more serious to extend their season and play in higher level tournaments at the end of the season. More detailed information regarding practice frequency, number of tournaments, playing time philosophy is available here.

ZBC Tier 1

This will tailor to more local, small school tournaments with equitable, not equal, playing time equally determined by skill, attendance, and attitude. Season will go from early January to mid-February.

Practices will be 1hr. 30 mins. each

- 5th & 6th Grade ~2-3 times weekly

- 7th & 8th Grade ~3-4 times weekly


- 5th – 6th graders – $80 (includes 3 weekend tournaments)

- 7th – 8th graders – $100 (includes 4 weekend tournaments)

ZBC Tier 2

Competitive; may tailor to “A” Level and State Tournament or appropriate competitiveness level for team, playing time will be less equitable and more based on skill. Season will be from mid-February to late March with same practice schedule as Tier 1.


- 5th – 6th graders – Additional $60 (includes 2 more tournaments)

- 7th – 8th graders – Additional $80 (includes 3 more tournaments)


Shop the Spirit Stop!

SMCS is fortunate to offer a variety of SMCS apparel for our students, parents, grandparents, alumni, and friends. We are so grateful for each and every purchase, as it supports the co-curriculars in our school system. At times trying to navigate the ordering system online can be confusing. The Spirit Stop is run by a dedicated group of volunteers.

Please review the FAQ's below to help understand the process.

When and where can I purchase SMCS Zephyrs apparel?

High School: Friday 7:30-8:15 on school days only, First and Third Thursday of the month from 11-noon, all home athletic events

Middle School: All home athletic events

Elementary School: Open during normal school hours

By Appointment: Contact Tara Gagne at (Please allow 24 hours for a response.)

Online 24/7: Shop online

Please do not show up at the high school to shop when the store is not open or without an appointment; we will be unable to open the store for you.

Why does some apparel come immediately and other apparel I have to wait for?

The Spirit Stop carries generic Zephyrs apparel on hand and that is available within days to be picked up. Occasionally there are backorders. Refer to the ordering system for notes regarding backorders.

Specific sports apparel works very differently and can be confusing. We use a system for ordering, which is awesome but does allow the flexibility of putting in delivery dates that are accurate. We take orders to ensure we have the sizes each person would like. Sports apparel is ordered prior to the season starting and takes approximately 3-4 weeks to come in. The delivery date is listed in each item description as well as in the heading of the specific sport.

The biggest reason you are waiting for apparel is at the high school your child does not come to the office to pick it up when called. Another reason is the apparel pieces are in cars, lockers, backpacks, or bedrooms and the parent is not aware.

Why does the delivery date not match up with the actual delivery date?

Our ordering system chooses a delivery date which is the same for all items in our system. Generic Zephyrs apparel will arrive close to the delivery date. Sport-specific items will arrive as listed in the description of the item when you order.

If you choose to have your item delivered to the elementary school, once the order has been processed you will receive an email stating it is ready. The email really means your order has been put together and will take up to two days to arrive at the elementary school. Your order will then be sent home with your child.

Sport-specific apparel will produce an email stating it is ready several days after the order deadline; that email means your order has been processed. The delivery date is still what is listed in the description item (3-4 weeks) after the order deadline.

Why does it take 3-4 weeks for my sport-specific apparel to arrive?

At this time, orders are taking 3-4 weeks due to limited quantities of apparel pieces by vendors. There is also a significant shortage of printers in the Fox Valley. It also does take the volunteers a considerable amount of time to process orders.

What do I do when I miss the deadline to order sport-specific apparel?

Extra pieces are ordered and available for purchase. Feel free to order on the website. It is recommended that you order right away, as many times the extra pieces are all sold even before we take delivery of the items.

My order is a gift. How do I let the Spirit Stop know that?

In the checkout process, there is a notes section. Please let us know there. We do our best to ensure your order doesn’t go home with your child.

My order has a mistake, who do I contact?

Every effort is taken to avoid errors in orders, but they do happen. Please contact Tara at within 1 week of taking delivery.

If your error is I received an adult small instead of a youth XL, nothing will be done. They are essentially the same size; typically a youth XL is a little longer and narrower. In order to keep prices down, we do substitute these sizes.

What are the refund and exchange policies?

The Spirit Stop is an ALL SALES ARE FINAL store. Please understand the store is a fundraiser for our co-curriculars. Exchanges can be made for full-price items within one week of receiving your items (tags must be on items) for the same exact item. Exchanges will only be done by Tara at We reserve the right to deny any exchanges.

Who creates the designs?

Generic Zephyrs designs are created by recommendations from the SMCS community. Please share your ideas. We love to hear them! Keep in mind we do have a very specific brand style guide we must adhere to. Our goal is to ensure our families are looking their Zephyrs best each and every day.

Sport-specific apparel is designed by the senior leaders of each sports team. Our student-athletes take initiative to show strong leadership skills. Our vendors then take the designs, fit them to the SMCS brand style guide, and choose current apparel pieces based on the recommendations of the teams.

How can I help the Spirit Stop?

  1. The Spirit Stop appreciates each and every one of your sales. Please keep buying.
  2. Share your ideas.
  3. Sign up to work the Spirit Stop.
  4. Encourage sales by wearing your Zephyrs apparel, especially to sporting events.
  5. Volunteer in Spirit Stop. Contact Tara at

Call to Action Speaker Series: Featuring SMCS Superintendent Dan McKenna

The SMCS community is invited to attend the St. Gabriel Parish Call to Action Speaker Series beginning Monday, September 13 at 7 p.m. at St. Gabriel Parish. SMCS Superintendent Dan McKenna will be the featured speaker on September 13 and discuss Catholic schools, Catholic education, SMCS, and his Catholic faith journey.

This is a free event. All are welcome to attend. No RSVP required.

All Newsletters

Please know you can find all of our newsletters posted on our website.

Looking Ahead

For a complete calendar listing, view our Calendar online

9-09 Mass 9:30am FAEC

9-10 Out of Dress Code day if forms turned in

09-16 Mass 9:30am FAEC

09-17 First Aloha Friday Out of Dress Code

09-20 Picture Retake Day

09-21 SMCMS Back to School Night

09-24 No School Teacher Professional Development