It is hard to believe that autumn is here and it is almost October! As we finish our first month of school, I want you to know that I am truly amazed by the dedication of our teachers, staff, parents, and students. The learning, growth and activity I witness within the halls of this school inspires me. Thank you everyone for making the beginning of this school year so special!
Fun Things We are Doing
- Middle School students recently returned from their overnight Harmony Confluence at the Powell Butte Retreat Center.
- 5th grade returned from a successful outdoor school at Camp Tamarack!
- 3rd and 4th grades are gearing up to head to Crater Lake for their first field trip of the year.
- Many of the classrooms will be heading to pumpkin patches.
- The students’ work in the school garden has helped us provide over 130 lbs. of produce to the St. Vincent food bank this season.
- The 5th and 6th grades are going to the High Desert Museum on October 11th for a great learning opportunity.
- 6th grade will be learning about energy and the environment by exploring renewable resources like solar and wind power in the context of global climate change.
- 5th grade will be learning about the effects of forest fires on Central Oregon’s ecosystems. The students will be challenged to learn why some trees thrive in fire-prone areas and how forest fires can be healthy for the ecosystem.
Growing in our Faith
- Kindergarten is praying one decade of the Rosary each day during the month of October.
- We are blessed to welcome the Missionary Sisters of the Alliance of the Holy Family International to our parish from Wednesday, September 27th, to Sunday, October 1st. The Sisters will explain the important message that Our Lady of Fatima brought to the world, and how we can live that message today. Our students participate with Mass, saying the rosary, a consecration to the Sacred and Immaculate Hearts, and the Investiture of the brown scapular.
- Wednesday, October 4th - Blessing of the Animals Join us with your pets for our annual St. Francis of Assisi Feast Day Blessing. Dogs are welcome, but are not allowed inside the building and must be on leashes.
- Wednesday, October 4th - Information Meeting for Sacraments of Reconciliation, Conf and First Eucharist for parents at if you have not met with Janet Schwartz.
- Wednesday, October 25th- Called to Protect Parent meeting. One parent from each new family is asked to attend.
- Halloween Costumes for School- Father Jose and I enjoyed seeing the children explore the lives of Saints last year for Halloween. This year we are once again asking our students to dress up as a Saint or representative of a Patron Saint for our school Halloween celebration. The classroom teachers will go over the expectation with the students and reviewing the vast list of Saints that would be acceptable for our theme. Students may be asked to present on their particular Saint or Patron Saint.
- 1st Grade performed a reader's theater play for parents and preschoolers!
- Preschool and PreK are moving and shaking to a variety of musical styles, such as marches, classical, bluegrass and pop music as well as create our own music with our classroom instruments.
- 4th grade is working on their “Flat Stanley” Projects. Soon they will send their projects to different states across the country and learn about the fabulous country we live in!
- 7th grade students are creating their own Roman inspired mosaic projects in social studies.
- The Middle School Yearbook class is selling ad space in the Canticle as well as Personal pages if you’d like to recognize your student personally with a photo of your choice and a nice message. Contact Courtney Macias for more info!
School Advisory Council News
The School Advisory Council (SAC) meets on the second Thursday of every month. The September meeting focused on reviewing the School’s new Mission and Vision Statements which were developed over the summer. The group also focused on future goals for the school and the strategic plan. SAC’s next meeting is October 12th at 5:30 in the school library. That meeting will focus on the National School Lunch Program, Wellness Program, and School Budget. If you are interested in observing the meeting please contact Jamie Griffin by October 7th.
Parents of St. Francis Meeting News
Parents of St. Francis (PSF) is the heart of our school. This group is responsible for a number of fun extra-curricular activities that raise invaluable resources for our school. September’s meeting was full of exciting energy and ideas that is sure to make this school year amazing! Please consider attending PSF’s next meeting.
Volunteers to assist in the lunchroom (Monday, Wednesday, Thursday) are needed and would be greatly appreciated!
Our fabulous volunteer librarian, Joan Tyler, could use help with reshelving books. This is a flexible volunteer opportunity allowing for volunteers to help whenever they have extra time.
St. Francis Club News
MBSEF- Mountain Biking and Community Service Club had an awesome first two weeks of the program! Trail conditions and weather lately have been optimal for riding bikes, getting dirty, and most importantly, having fun. We tend to ride on different trails every time we ride. From there, we have easy access to trails of all difficulties, where there is fun to be had whether it’s your first time on a mountain bike, or you are a seasoned rider looking to challenge your skills. When we ride, we divide our coaches and riders into small groups based on their general ability, so that the kids can ride with others that are at a similar skill level. When riding with MBSEF, one can expect to experience many different types of mountain biking. Whether you love hitting jumps, riding fast exciting downhills, or exploring the forest on longer cross-country trails with varying ups and downs, MBSEF Mountain Biking can teach you how to ride it all.
The St. Francis School Community Service Club is a group of students and parents with a desire to reach beyond the walls of our school and discover how we can help others and our community. We will meet once a month to discuss and plan events. Meetings will be student-led, with an emphasis on discussing and implementing student ideas while also having fun! The first meeting is October 27th. Parents are encouraged to attend the meetings with the students.
Upcoming Event Highlights
Humane Society/Equine Outreach Charity Event
Each year, St. Francis of Assisi Catholic School honors our Patron Saint by raising money and donating food and supplies for animals. All of the donations received go directly to The Humane Society and our local Equine Outreach programs. This year, we are asking students for a $5.00 donation in exchange for a pretzel, ice cream and two free dress days (Oct 12th & 27th). Ideally, the funds will be collected in advance. Each food or supply item a student brings to donate will receive one raffle ticket entry. At the end of the drive, a ticket will be drawn and the winner receives one free dress day for their whole class. Students can also buy raffle tickets 5/$1.00 for opportunity to win free dress day for the whole class.
Harvest Party at the Imwalle Ranch
Bring the whole family to our St. Francis Fall Harvest Party at the Imwalle Ranch for games, treats, hayrides, a haunted house and bonfire. The party will be Friday October 13th from 5:00 p.m. to 9:00 p.m. Costumes are highly encouraged! Admission is 1 can of food per person and cash donations benefiting school will be gladly accepted. Please place your donations in the boxes near the entrance.
Halloween Trunk or Treat
Parents are invited for our annual Trunk or Treat and Costume Parade. Parents who wish to participate in Trunk or Treat, please ensure that all costumes and trunk decorations are “3-year-old friendly.”
Wolfpack Sports Cross Country Team:
Welcome to the 2017/18 school year! We are only a few weeks away from the first day of school and all of us at St. Francis have been busy preparing for another great year. There have been changes made to the Parent/Student handbook, upgrades in the classrooms, curriculum adoptions, and teacher changes to communicate. Below, I have outlined things you should know coming into this new year.
Just within the last week a group of Advisory Council members, staff, and administration began the process of Strategic Planning. We are excited to announce our new Mission and Vision.
- Mission: St. Francis of Assisi Catholic School provides students a Christ centered community, educating the whole child through academic excellence and instilling the virtues that will guide them to be service minded leaders.
- Vision: St. Francis of Assisi Catholic School inspires academic scholars motivated to serve and lead the world with Faith and moral character.
Because of the commitment of our Business Partners, the hard work from our Auction coordinators, and through the graciousness of our parents, alumni, and Parishioners we have been able to ensure:
- Each classroom has a fully functional SMART Board.
- That each student beginning in kindergarten is provided a Chromebook for interactive lessons.
- Teachers have been equipped with laptops for professional use.
- 7th grade science curriculum, IQWST, has been purchased to align with the Next Generation Science Standards.
The majority of our families have been with us for several years and are extremely familiar with our Parent/Student Handbook. I would encourage all of you to take the time to revisit the handbook to avoid any surprises during the school year. Please see attached handbook.
We are grateful for all of Mr. Hopper’s energy and contributions to our school and are excited for his next endeavor at St. Thomas Academy. It is imperative that we continue to support our students, teachers, and families with a special education teacher and with that, we have hired Mr. Dave Wolf to take over our Special Education program here at St. Francis. Mr. Wolf has been a Special Education teacher for 8 years and specializes in helping his students develop and find personalized strategies to help them be successful in their academics. He is dedicated to positively influencing and empowering those around him in order to help them realize what they are truly capable of.
St. Francis strives to maintain a strong sense of community. With that, we have listened to many requests and made the following changes to our day to day and yearly events.
- Drop off begins at 7:45 am, students will go directly to their classrooms. To encourage community, we ask that parents come into the school when the opportunity arises to say hello to your child’s teacher and chat in our new parent hospitality room!
- Students may come to school dressed out-of-uniform on their birthday or half-birthday (if their birthday falls during the summer months)!
- We ask that all of our middle school students attend the Ice Cream Social in order to sign up for their elective courses for Fall term (if your family is unable to attend, please email me directly in order to sign up).
We look forward to a positive year and spending it with your beloved children! Mrs. Frost and I are back in the office full time and hope to see you at the Ice Cream Social, First Day of School, or Back to School Night. If you have any questions regarding this upcoming school year or would like to schedule a meeting, please feel free to email me or call /text my cell phone.
St. Francis of Assisi | Principal
P: 541-382-4701 | E: email@example.com
"St. Francis of Assisi Catholic School provides students a Christ centered community, educating the whole child through academic excellence and instilling the virtues that will guide them to be service minded leaders."
Dear St. Francis of Assisi Catholic School Families,
As we begin our annual observance of National Catholic Schools Week, we’d like to thank you for aiding us in our mission at St. Francis of Assisi Catholic School. Starting tonight, January 27th, with our kick off Family Fun Night, we have a whole week of activities planned to show what our students are accomplishing and to celebrate community we have built to educate tomorrow’s citizens and church leaders.
This year’s National Catholic Schools Week theme centers on community: “Catholic Schools: Communities of Faith, Knowledge, and Service.” The theme highlights the fact that St. Francis of Assisi Catholic School is not only a community within itself but is part of many other communities, including your family, our parishes, Bend, Central Oregon and our country.
The theme also focuses on key elements of Catholic education: faith development, academic excellence, and dedication to service. These elements set Catholic schools apart from other educational options. They are why families make sacrifices to provide their children with a Catholic education.
In the spirit of National Catholic Schools Week, we will be opening our 2017/18 school year registration for our current students and siblings. As a reminder, in order to show your commitment to St. Francis of Assisi School, you will need to register online through your family Sycamore account. Open registration for new families will begin on February 10, 2017, do not loose your child’s spot. Please utilize the “Refer a Friend” form to get tuition discounts, increase our enrollment, and share the good word of St. Francis of Assisi Catholic School!
I am grateful every day for the teachers, staff, Advisory Council Members, Parents for St. Francis (PSF), parents and volunteers who make our school a success. National Catholic Schools Week is a good time for all of us to thank them for their dedication and service.
The Christmas Season is a perfect time to reflect on our blessings. How blessed we are to have such caring, passionate community of students, families, and staff at St. Francis of Assisi. For the generosity, efforts, time and reflection, it is our St. Francis Family that is the true blessing. Some of the blessings that St. Francis has brought to our community are listed below as well as some other important news!
In the past weeks, St. Francis of Assisi students participated in the Box of Joy program, a Christmas gift campaign organized by Catholic schools, parishes and groups nationwide. By packing Boxes of Joy with toys and other gifts, our students blessed children suffering from extreme poverty by sharing the joy of Christmas and planting seeds of hope through the Gospel. This year we blessed 55 impoverished children in the Dominican Republic, Haiti, and Guatemala.
Closer to home, St. Francis students helped to fill Parish Christmas Basket collections which provide food to over 100 needy families through the Christmas season. This year we put on an Empty Bowls Event, which for a first-year reintroduction was very successful! We brought in $200 for St. Vincent De Paul and we fed 15 guests. Our garden has produced 406 pounds of produce that were donated to the St. Vincent De Paul Food Bank. Several of our classes have made visits to Stone Lodge and have written cards to the sick. In November, in celebration of St. Francis, we were able to donate about 1,500 pounds, of pet food to the Central Oregon Humane Society and $700 in cash to three local equine rescues. The community is blessed with the gift of stewardship that our St. Francis demonstrates.
A huge thank you to our beloved Courtney Macias for organizing, creating great costumes, and rallying our families for a great time with donuts and hot cider at the Bend Christmas Parade. Thank you to Matt Cohen for driving the float and the use of his truck, trailer, and handcrafted chimney! It was because the of 43 enthusiastic students dressed as "Whoville" citizens that we won the Mayor’s Award, best entry by a youth group? Did you hear there was even a Grinch on site? You’ll have to guess ‘Who’ it was!
Kids Night Out was a big hit for both the kids and the parents too. We had 39 kids come out for pizza and a movie in their Christmas PJs. We also enjoyed Christmas crafts and a little dance off too. PSF raised over $300 at the event. A few items were left behind and have been placed on the lost and found table. Father Jose decided after meeting with our staff and selected Advisory Council members that he wanted to secure a principal for several years to provide stability to the school and parish. I feel grateful that Father offered me a multiple year contract, which I accepted, with the vision of on-going stability in the administration and revitalization of the school back to a full blown pre-K thru 8th-grade educational institution. I am truly thankful for all of the support and encouragement the staff, parents, and community have given me at St. Francis over the last year and a half and will to continue my efforts in making St. Francis the most sought after private school in all of Central Oregon.
We have hired a new Spanish teacher, Ana Torres. She is currently working towards her degree in education and is very involved in the Spanish Ministries and Religious Education Department. She came highly recommended by Daniel Gutierrez and Father Jose. I truly believe she will be a great addition to our team!
Due to medical reasons our Spanish teacher, Fatima Lopez, had to resign immediately on December 5th.
Starting January 4th, St. Francis of Assisi will be offering band to our 4-6th grade on Monday and Wednesday mornings from 7-8am. The initial class will require parents to attend the first 15 minutes of class for a parent informational session. With over 40 years of performance and teaching experience, Rich Hurdle has taught students of all ages and skill levels with an education in music theory, musicianship, aural skills, improvisation, composition, arranging, stagemanship, and technical training in all genres of music. Mr. Hurdle is very excited to bring band to St. Francis! Please email me directly if your child will be signing up for Band by December 30th!
As many of you know, tuition covers approximately 65% of the cost to educate a student at St. Francis. The remaining operating expenditures are met through our two major fundraising efforts, Annual Giving Appeal, and The Auction. AGA typically runs from August through November. We send out requests to previous donors, stakeholders, and families asking for generous contributions to assist in the financial security of the school. This year we are at 50% of our budget goal of $55,000. Being that we did not make our budgeted projections for AGA, it is going to need to be an all hands on deck situation for the Auction. Our Auction Chairs, Carrie Cohen and Ann Fleck, have made it so grandparents to family friends on the East Coast or wherever they reside can participate and make donations to our Auction. Our goal is to have 200 attendees with the majority of them ready to raise their paddles!
As always, if you ever need to reach me or meet with me, my schedule is on Sycamore and I will always find time to meet with a parent. As we joyfully prepare for Christmas and the coming of Christ, on behalf of the faculty of St. Francis, we wish you all of God’s blessings during this holiday season and pray for all of our students’ safe return to school on Tuesday, January 3, 2017.
St. Francis of Assisi | Principal
P: 541-382-4701 | E: firstname.lastname@example.org
"St. Francis fosters a lifetime of learning with an expectation of excellence"
What a great year!
5th graders at St. Francis School scored at an 8th grade equivalent in Math and 7th grade equivalent in Reading on a nationally normed assessment. Our 8th graders scored at a 12th grade equivalent in Math and a 10th grade equivalent in reading on the nationally normed assessment. St. Francis’s 5th grade students ranked in the 82nd percentile in math and the 68th percentile in reading! St. Francis’s 8th grade students ranked in the 72th percentile in math and the 64th percentile in reading!
St. Francis of Assisi completed the renewal of its Accreditation and is one of two Nationally Accredited Middle Schools and one of five Nationally Accredited Elementary Schools in Central Oregon. In addition, we are one of seven Stewardship Schools for Oregon State University’s Oregon Natural Resource Education Program as apart of our STREAM Program.
This year St. Francis of Assisi had twenty-two Bend Research Inventerprise winners! Seven of our 5th through 8th students participated in the COCC Regional Science Fair and six of those students won awards! The 5th grade Oregon Battle of the Books team competed at the District level. There were ten Catholic Daughter Education Contest Winners ranging from 5th to 8th grade, four of those contestants went on to State. Our 5th grade Robotics team brought home the first place trophy for District level competition. Blessings to the 6 Sacramental Confirmation and to the eleven students who received their First Holy Communion and Reconciliation.
Congratulations to all of our talented student athletes on their performances. All thirty-eight of the track team participated and placed in Districts. The 6th grade girls track team brought home the First Place trophy. There were several personal and season bests achieved at the meet, including a record breaking finish in the 1500m by Michaela Lorenz with a time of 5:33.68. Our Cross Country team had a very successful season with seven student athletes qualifying for districts with three overall ranked!
Our Auction brought in twenty-two percent more than we projected in our annual budget which ended with a net income of $115,000. The Business Partnership Program has three Gold Members and three Frankincense Members! With your support we went from having a projected loss of $58,000 to being in the black by more than $5,000. I would like to thank each and everyone of you who has assisted in the fundraising efforts and your commitment the evangelization efforts of St. Francis of Assisi Catholic School.
I am excited to announce our staffing for the 2016/17 school year for St. Francis School. St. Francis School is important part of the St. Francis Parish and as such the Parish and School Advisory Council want to demonstrate their commitment to our Catholic Faith and the education of our students by committing additional funding for staffing for next school year. With this commitment and the generosity of the Foundation and the great support of Bishop Carey this staffing plan is possible.
Preschool(3)/Tech Advisory Crystal Young
Preschool(4) Sarah Schimmoller
Kindergarten Colleen Petersen
1st Grade/Head Teacher Julie Manion
2nd Grade Brenda Raven
3rd Grade Stephanie Naegele
4th Grade Erika Pakalnis
5th Grade Beth Boswell
Religion Sister Sabina
Religion Karen Laubacher
Spanish Daniel Gutierrez
Music Colleen Rastovich
Physical Education Gale Putnam
Lunch Pattie Marx
Art Now Hiring
Learning Support Now Hiring
MS Science CherylMorgen
MS SocialStudies/Electives TerriLogan
MS LanguageArts/PE/Electives Anna Fanelli
MS Math/Health/Electives MatthewPeters
Administrative Assistant .7fte Cheryl Frost
Administrative Assistant .3fte Renee May
Accounting Jean Neal
Principal (Split between STA & SF) Crystal Nuñez-Mooney
For 2016/17 school year there will be no blends in our elementary and we will be bringing several part time positions back to full time. We will also be offering full time preschool for the three and four-year-old students. We are going to make a strong effort to rebuild our middle school into the thriving education program it has been in the past. The Bishop and the Foundation are in full support of a rebirth of our Middle School. Our 7th and 8th grade classes will be blended in ELA, Social Studies, Science, and other electives. We will separate 7th and 8th grade for mathematics. We feel confident that through recruitment/marketing efforts and our increased commitment to our staff and students, that St. Francis of Assisi Middle School will once again thrive. We appreciate your on-going support and hope you will join us in growing our entire school for next year and in the future. I look forward to a wonderful 2016/17 school year. And again, thank you for your continued support!
-God Bless, Mrs. Nunez-Mooney