October 14, 2018

Mass in the Gym

With it seemingly raining non-stop these days, we even had to make a decision about Mass last Wednesday.  It was raining way too hard to get 400 students and staff into the church without everyone being soaked.  Fr. and I decided to make a last minute change and have Mass in the school gym.

It was an awesome experience, and the the students were incredibly respectful of converting our gym to worship space.  I don’t know if we’d be able to make this type of last minute change every time as there was a lot of scrambling to pull it off, and it disrupts everyone’s schedule, but it sure was worth it on Wednesday.

Are You Registered to Receive Text Messages from JFK?

If you are not registered to receive text messages from JFK (primarily families new to JFK and/or preschool), type “Y” or “Yes” to 67587.  You will not receive text messages from JFK if you do not take action yourself.

There is no action required to receive email or phone messages.

Other Action in the Gym

Mass isn’t the only thing we can do well in our gym.  We just finished the Catholic League girls’ basketball season.  The 8th grade and 6th grade teams were champions.  Seventh grade, with only four players, was mighty!  It’s on to volleyball season now!

                                   

 

Portable Reptile Egg Incubator?

Designing a portable reptile egg incubator is one of the middle school chemistry activities this month.  Do you know how much calcium chloride and baking soda to use to get the ideal temperature for snake eggs?  Lizard eggs?

Special Schedules Coming Up

There are no classes for PS-8th grade students on October 22nd.  It is a full day in-service.  Teachers of science at JFK will receive training from a representative of Houghton-Mifflin-Harcourt, the publishing company of our new science materials.  Other teachers will be involved in a variety of trainings and meetings.

October 26th is the end of the first quarter and has a two hour early dismissal.  K-8 classes will be dismissed at 12:40 with bus transportation.  There are no afternoon preschool classes this day.

We have PS-8th grade parent/teacher conferences in the evening on November 6th and during the day on November 8th.  There are no PS-8th grade classes on November 8th and 9th.  (Classes are normal on November 6th.)

On November 12th, all teachers will be involved in the new catechetical training for the Diocese of Davenport.  There are no PS-8th grade classes on November 12th.

ECLC is in session on all of these days.

Junior Achievement at Every Grade

We are most grateful to our JA volunteers who come to JFK in every grade to help students learn about their community and finances.  This week our 7th graders will go downtown to JA’s facility for a household budgeting activity called Finance Park.  We’d like to thank the many volunteers who make this learning experience possible.

Band’s Butter Braid Bread Sales

The JFK band students are selling Butter Braid Bread.  This hand-braided pastry is a delicious addition to any holiday meal.  The Butter Braid Bread has the following variety of fillings available (includes a frosting packet):  Apple, Cherry, Blueberry with Cream Cheese, Cinnamon, Raspberry, Strawberry with Cream Cheese, Caramel Rolls with Caramel Glaze.  These are sold individually for $14/package.  Also returning this year is the Four Cheese & Herb Bread for $15/package.  The bread comes to you frozen.  When you’re ready to use it, just let it rise 8 – 12 hours and bake about 20 minutes.

Band students are taking orders October 8th-31st.  The bread will be delivered to the school on Friday, November 16th.  The students will deliver the bread to your home in time for your holiday meals.  If you have any questions or would like to order, please call or text:  Melanie Rubemeyer @ 563-505-1080.  The JFK Band appreciates your support.

How Much Fundraising Is There?

JFK’s fundraising is actually quite low when compared to many of our other Catholic schools.  Taking into account the Gala, 8th grade fundraising for their Chicago trip, Home & School, Band Boosters, Drama, and Student Council, we have about $112,000 in revenue from fundraising.  That figure represents less than 5% of our annual budget.  On a per pupil basis, however, it is about $315 per K-8 student.  Thank goodness fundraising allows us to generate revenue from sources other than tuition paying families!

Cost per Pupil

With fundraising bringing in about $315 per pupil and tuition for OLV participating members being $3,370 for the first child, is the per pupil cost of education at JFK about $3,700?  Not even close.  Our K-8 per pupil cost this year is about $5,516.  Approximately $1,671 per child comes from envelope giving at OLV.  With the parish paying for nearly 30% of a student’s education, there is no doubt why parishioners expect JFK students and their families to be in the pews and fully participating in the life of the parish.

Delinquent Tuition

Please help us by making sure your tuition is paid when due, according to your payment plan.  At the beginning of October, JFK’s late tuition, adjusted to match payment plans selected, was about 10%.  We have financial obligations, including payroll, that must be met on a timely basis as well.

Annual Diocesan Appeal

The Annual Diocesan Appeal (ADA) is underway.  The goal provided to us by the diocese went up $9,000, a reflection of our overall parish income having increased.  The ADA is a “mandated goal.”  If we do not meet the ADA goal through the campaign, we would have to cut expenses in order to pay the shortage.  Please support OLV/JFK and the Diocese of Davenport.

Lisa Project:  October 20 and 21st

The OLV Wellness Committee and Health Ministry Team are working with Scott County Kids to bring the Lisa Project to our church community on October 20th and 21st.   This 10-minute, self-guided audio tour educates about child abuse.  It will be available in the Gathering Space Meeting Room on October 20th from noon – 6 p.m. and on October 21st from 7:30 a.m. – 1:00 p.m.  You could make
the difference in a child’s life by being better educated about recognizing the signs of abuse.  The state of California requires all freshmen to attend this program.  Trained staff from the Lisa Project will be on hand to answer questions.  Because the display is rated PG-13, there will be an area set aside for younger children to be entertained while their parents take the tour.

Did You Miss the Parish Directory?

Photos for new parishioners, anyone not included in the last directory and anyone who wants to have his/her household’s photo retaken will be scheduled for the Gathering Space during October.  Photo sessions are October 25th from 2:00 – 9:00 p.m. and October 26th from 2:00 – 9:00 p.m.  Photos will be taken and viewed the same day.  You will receive a free 8 x 10 and have the option to purchase
additional portraits.  If you do not wish to have your photo taken, you can provide us with a photo of you and your family.  (There is a $10 charge for processing a photo submitted this way for the directory.)  You can email your photo to:  lj_barnett1605@q.com.  If the submitted photo is professionally taken, a release from the original photographer is also needed.  Everyone will receive a free directory in 2019.

Annual Progress Report for 2017-18  

The Annual Progress Report for the 2017-18 school year was sent home with the “youngest and only” a couple of weeks ago.  If you missed it, it’s on our website.  Click HERE to view it.

Diocesan Vision 2020

As part of his initiative “Vision 20/20: From Pentecost to Pentecost,” Bishop Zinkula asks each parish to hold a study session and a listening session regarding evangelization based upon Pope Francis’ Joy of the Gospel.  OLV’s study session is October 21st from 1:30 – 2:30 p.m. in the Gathering Space.  The listening session will be led by a diocesan representative, with the parish responses recorded and presented to the bishop.  The listening session is October 28th from 1:30 – 3:30 p.m. in the Gathering Space.  All are welcome to attend one or both sessions.

Save STOs from IRS Proposed Regulation — Action Alert from Iowa ACE

The Internal Revenue Service recently proposed new regulations that would limit the federal deductibility of individual donations to School Tuition Organizations (STOs) in Iowa.  Tell our federal legislators to leave it alone.

Donors to the STO program currently receive a 65% state income tax credit and can deduct the entire amount of that donation on their Federal return. STOs use these donations to give out tuition grants to qualifying families, allowing them to afford tuition at one of Iowa’s nonpublic schools. Under the proposed IRS regulation, donors would only be able to deduct 35% of their donation on their Federal return. This proposed rule would greatly decrease the incentive for STO donors. If donations to STOs go down, the ability of STOs to help families will also go down.

Nearly 11,000 students across Iowa receive financial assistance through the STO program each year. Nationwide, STOs serve more than 250,000 students in 18 states. If this regulation goes into effect, students served by STO programs will suffer.

We are asking that School Tuition Organizations be exempted from the proposed IRS rule, as it will reduce donations to STOs and financial assistance.

Help us voice our objection to this rule by sending a message to Senators Grassley and Ernst as well as your member of the U.S. House, asking them to assist us in this effort. We encourage you to personalize this message – share your perspective on STOs and all they do to provide a choice for Iowa parents and children. Please send this message soon!

Thank you for taking time to stand up for Iowa families – we appreciate your joining in our efforts.

Sincerely,
Iowa Advocates for Choice in Education

ACT NOW – Click here to contact your legislators!

Home & School News

  • Family Fall Fest (on Oct. 27) packets went out recently.  Several volunteers are still needed.  There was a form in the packet, but here’s also a link for the online signup:  CLICK HERE
    • Did you catch that we are combining Trunk or Treat with some of the activities of the former Pumpkin Run evening?
  • Next Skate Night is Monday, Oct. 22

Chad

 

 

 

 

October 7, 2018

Picture Retakes – October 12th

Pictures can still be ordered online.  To order online please visit www.tssorders.com and enter your event number 27055787. Every child will be receiving a free 8 x 10 class composite; you do not need to add this to your order form unless you would like to purchase additional ones (Item 13).  Retakes will be taken on Friday October 12th.

If you would like to pay by credit card, please order online by clicking HERE or using the following link/url:  http://www.tssphotography.com/orgs/179456.  All completed orders will be dropped off at the school.

Are You Registered to Receive Text Messages from JFK?

If you are not registered to receive text messages from JFK (primarily families new to JFK and/or preschool), type “Y” or “Yes” to 67587.  You will not receive text messages from JFK if you do not take action yourself.

There is no action required to receive email or phone messages.

Band’s Butter Braid Bread Sales

The JFK band students are selling Butter Braid Bread.  This hand-braided pastry is a delicious addition to any holiday meal.  The Butter Braid Bread has the following variety of fillings available (includes a frosting packet):  Apple, Cherry, Blueberry with Cream Cheese, Cinnamon, Raspberry, Strawberry with Cream Cheese, Caramel Rolls with Caramel Glaze.  These are sold individually for $14/package.  Also returning this year is the Four Cheese & Herb Bread for $15/package.  The bread comes to you frozen.  When you’re ready to use it, just let it rise 8 – 12 hours and bake about 20 minutes.

Band students are taking orders October 8th-31st.  The bread will be delivered to the school on Friday, November 16th.  The students will deliver the bread to your home in time for your holiday meals.  If you have any questions or would like to order, please call or text:  Melanie Rubemeyer @ 563-505-1080.  The JFK Band appreciates your support.

How Much Fundraising Is There?

JFK’s fundraising is actually quite low when compared to many of our other Catholic schools.  Taking into account the Gala, 8th grade fundraising for their Chicago trip, Home & School, Band Boosters, Drama, and Student Council, we have about $112,000 in revenue from fundraising.  That figure represents less than 5% of our annual budget.  On a per pupil basis, however, it is about $315 per K-8 student.  Thank goodness fundraising allows us to generate revenue from sources other than tuition paying families!

Cost per Pupil

With fundraising bringing in about $315 per pupil and tuition for OLV participating members being $3,370 for the first child, is the per pupil cost of education at JFK about $3,700?  Not even close.  Our K-8 per pupil cost this year is about $5,516.  Approximately $1,671 per child comes from envelope giving at OLV.  With the parish paying for nearly 30% of a student’s education, there is no doubt why parishioners expect JFK students and their families to be in the pews and fully participating in the life of the parish.

Do You Know What Kids Are Doing with Cell Phones?

With about 45% of 10 to 12 year olds in the US having not only their own smartphones but smartphones with a service plan (Nielsen report from February 2017), do you know what the kids are doing with their phones?

  • What apps are they using?  Have you tried them yourself?
  • What social media accounts are they using, how are they using them, and how often do you monitor their activity?  Just because a social media company says that no one under a certain age can have an account, doesn’t mean kids don’t fudge on their age.
  • Are they “roasting” each other or doing “burns?”  How should they respond when they are the target of the burns?  You’d be shocked at the vulgar and vile language that students will use in the “anonymity” of the electronic age.
  • What will they (and you) do when they receive inappropriate pictures taken off the Internet and from people they actually know?  The average age of first exposure to pornography is around eleven.  If 11 is average, what will they and you do when they are even younger?
  • What shows are they watching in an era when family members are watching more and more shows independently on their own Internet connected devices than gathered around a television as a family?  What are the ratings on the shows they watch?
  • What group chats are they in?  Who monitors them?  What will they (and you) do when the chat turns ugly?

So far, the youngest students at JFK we have seen with issues regarding cell phone use have been eight.  Will you be ready?

Annual Diocesan Appeal

The Annual Diocesan Appeal (ADA) is underway.  The goal provided to us by the diocese went up $9,000, a reflection of our overall parish income having increased.  The ADA is a “mandated goal.”  If we do not meet the ADA goal through the campaign, we would have to cut expenses in order to pay the shortage.  Please support OLV/JFK and the Diocese of Davenport.

Lisa Project:  October 20 and 21st

The OLV Wellness Committee and Health Ministry Team are working with Scott County Kids to bring the Lisa Project to our church community on October 20th and 21st.   This 10-minute, self-guided audio tour educates about child abuse.  It will be available in the Gathering Space Meeting Room on October 20th from noon – 6 p.m. and on October 21st from 7:30 a.m. – 1:00 p.m.  You could make
the difference in a child’s life by being better educated about recognizing the signs of abuse.  The state of California requires all freshmen to attend this program.  Trained staff from the Lisa Project will be on hand to answer questions.  Because the display is rated PG-13, there will be an area set aside for younger children to be entertained while their parents take the tour.

Did You Miss the Parish Directory?

Photos for new parishioners, anyone not included in the last directory and anyone who wants to have his/her household’s photo retaken will be scheduled for the Gathering Space during October.  Photo sessions are October 25th from 2:00 – 9:00 p.m. and October 26th from 2:00 – 9:00 p.m.  Photos will be taken and viewed the same day.  You will receive a free 8 x 10 and have the option to purchase
additional portraits.  If you do not wish to have your photo taken, you can provide us with a photo of you and your family.  (There is a $10 charge for processing a photo submitted this way for the directory.)  You can email your photo to:  lj_barnett1605@q.com.  If the submitted photo is professionally taken, a release from the original photographer is also needed.  Everyone will receive a free directory in 2019.

Diocesan Vision 2020

As part of his initiative “Vision 20/20: From Pentecost to Pentecost,” Bishop Zinkula asks each parish to hold a study session and a listening session regarding evangelization based upon Pope Francis’ Joy of the Gospel.  OLV’s study session is October 21st from 1:30 – 2:30 p.m. in the Gathering Space.  The listening session will be led by a diocesan representative, with the parish responses recorded and presented to the bishop.  The listening session is October 28th from 1:30 – 3:30 p.m. in the Gathering Space.  All are welcome to attend one or both sessions.

Save STOs from IRS Proposed Regulation — Action Alert from Iowa ACE

The Internal Revenue Service recently proposed new regulations that would limit the federal deductibility of individual donations to School Tuition Organizations (STOs) in Iowa.  Tell our federal legislators to leave it alone.

Donors to the STO program currently receive a 65% state income tax credit and can deduct the entire amount of that donation on their Federal return. STOs use these donations to give out tuition grants to qualifying families, allowing them to afford tuition at one of Iowa’s nonpublic schools. Under the proposed IRS regulation, donors would only be able to deduct 35% of their donation on their Federal return. This proposed rule would greatly decrease the incentive for STO donors. If donations to STOs go down, the ability of STOs to help families will also go down.

Nearly 11,000 students across Iowa receive financial assistance through the STO program each year. Nationwide, STOs serve more than 250,000 students in 18 states. If this regulation goes into effect, students served by STO programs will suffer.

We are asking that School Tuition Organizations be exempted from the proposed IRS rule, as it will reduce donations to STOs and financial assistance.

Help us voice our objection to this rule by sending a message to Senators Grassley and Ernst as well as your member of the U.S. House, asking them to assist us in this effort. We encourage you to personalize this message – share your perspective on STOs and all they do to provide a choice for Iowa parents and children. Please send this message soon!

Thank you for taking time to stand up for Iowa families – we appreciate your joining in our efforts.

Sincerely,
Iowa Advocates for Choice in Education

ACT NOW – Click here to contact your legislators!

Home & School News

  • Our Freddy’s Frozen Custard & Steakburger night made $350!  (That’s probably more than all our restaurant nights combined from last year.) We did so well that we have set the record for the largest Freddy’s fundraiser across all Iowa store locations! Thank you to everyone who came out to support JFK.
  • BoxTops for Education:  8K was the winner of our recent turn-in contest with over 550 labels! Please remember that you can turn in BoxTops at any time.
  • Family Fall Fest (on Oct. 27) packets went out last week.  The deadline to order shirts is this Friday, Oct. 12th.  Several volunteers are needed.  There was a form in the packet, but here’s also a link for the online signup:  CLICK HERE
    • Did you catch that we are combining Trunk or Treat with some of the activities of the former Pumpkin Run evening?
  • Next Skate Night is Monday, Oct. 22

Chad

September 30, 2018

Second Place in Davenport Library’s Summer Reading Program

JFK students took second place among all of the elementary schools in Davenport in the Davenport public library’s summer reading program.  We had 85 students complete the program!

Picture Retakes – October 12th

Pictures can still be ordered online.  To order online please visit www.tssorders.com and enter your event number 27055787. Every child will be receiving a free 8 x 10 class composite; you do not need to add this to your order form unless you would like to purchase additional ones (Item 13).  Retakes will be taken on Friday October 12th.

If you would like to pay by credit card, please order online by clicking HERE or using the following link/url:  http://www.tssphotography.com/orgs/179456.  All completed orders will be dropped off at the school.

BoxTop Labels Competition

You have until Monday 10/1 to turn in your BoxTop labels for your class.  The homeroom with largest amount turned in wins cupcakes!

Magazine Sales Deadline is Wednesday

Magazine Sale orders are due by Wednesday, October 3rd.  The magazine sale is the second largest fund-raiser with which the school is associated.

How Much Fundraising Is There?

JFK’s fundraising is actually quite low when compared to many of our other Catholic schools.  Taking into account the Gala, 8th grade fundraising for their Chicago trip, Home & School, Band Boosters, Drama, and Student Council, we have about $112,000 in revenue from fundraising.  That figure represents less than 5% of our annual budget.  On a per pupil basis, however, it is about $315 per K-8 student.  Thank goodness fundraising allows us to generate revenue from sources other than tuition paying families!

Cost per Pupil

With fundraising bringing in about $315 per pupil and tuition for OLV participating members being $3,370 for the first child, is the per pupil cost of education at JFK about $3,700?  Not even close.  Our K-8 per pupil cost this year is about $5,516.  Approximately $1,671 per child comes from envelope giving at OLV.  With the parish paying for nearly 30% of a student’s education, there is no doubt why parishioners expect JFK students and their families to be in the pews and fully participating in the life of the parish.

Children’s Liturgy of the Word Has Resumed

Children’s Liturgy of the Word has resumed at the 9:00 and 11:00 Sunday Masses.  Targeting children under second grade (those who have not yet received First Communion), the Children’s Liturgy of the Word breaks the message down into children specific language.  Children sit with their parents until right after the opening of Mass and then are invited to go to the altar servers’ sacristy on the “Mary side” of the church.  The children rejoin their families before Communion.

Do You Know What Kids Are Doing with Cell Phones?

With about 45% of 10 to 12 year olds in the US having not only their own smartphones but smartphones with a service plan (Nielsen report from February 2017), do you know what the kids are doing with their phones?

  • What apps are they using?  Have you tried them yourself?
  • What social media accounts are they using, how are they using them, and how often do you monitor their activity?  Just because a social media company says that no one under a certain age can have an account, doesn’t mean kids don’t fudge on their age.
  • Are they “roasting” each other or doing “burns?”  How should they respond when they are the target of the burns?  You’d be shocked at the vulgar and vile language that students will use in the “anonymity” of the electronic age.
  • What will they (and you) do when they receive inappropriate pictures taken off the Internet and from people they actually know?  The average age of first exposure to pornography is around eleven.  If 11 is average, what will they and you do when they are even younger?
  • What shows are they watching in an era when family members are watching more and more shows independently on their own Internet connected devices than gathered around a television as a family?  What are the ratings on the shows they watch?
  • What group chats are they in?  Who monitors them?  What will they (and you) do when the chat turns ugly?

So far, the youngest students at JFK we have seen with issues regarding cell phone use have been eight.  Will you be ready?

Handbook Sign-Off

Please read the parent and student handbook, available HERE, and on our website:  https://www.olvjfk.com/wp-content/uploads/2018/08/Parent-Handbook-2018-19.pdf.  Then, print off the last page, sign it, and return it to the school office — one per family.  Thank you for helping us to reduce our printing costs.

Breakfast Program Discontinued

The last day for our new breakfast program was September 28th.  There just weren’t enough students participating, and we were losing money each day.  Perhaps in the future we’ll try a different type of configuration of its operations.

Annual Diocesan Appeal

The Annual Diocesan Appeal (ADA) is underway.  The goal provided to us by the diocese went up $9,000, a reflection of our overall parish income having increased.  The ADA is a “mandated goal.”  If we do not meet the ADA goal through the campaign, we would have to cut expenses in order to pay the shortage.  Please support OLV/JFK and the Diocese of Davenport.

Lisa Project:  October 20 and 21st

The OLV Wellness Committee and Health Ministry Team are working with Scott County Kids to bring the Lisa Project to our church community on October 20th and 21st.   This 10-minute, self-guided audio tour educates about child abuse.  It will be available in the Gathering Space Meeting Room on October 20th from noon – 6 p.m. and on October 21st from 7:30 a.m. – 1:00 p.m.  You could make
the difference in a child’s life by being better educated about recognizing the signs of abuse.  The state of California requires all freshmen to attend this program.  Trained staff from the Lisa Project will be on hand to answer questions.  Because the display is rated PG-13, there will be an area set aside for younger children to be entertained while their parents take the tour.

Did You Miss the Parish Directory?

Photos for new parishioners, anyone not included in the last directory and anyone who wants to have his/her household’s photo retaken will be scheduled for the Gathering Space during October.  Photo sessions are October 25th from 2:00 – 9:00 p.m. and October 26th from 2:00 – 9:00 p.m.  Photos will be taken and viewed the same day.  You will receive a free 8 x 10 and have the option to purchase
additional portraits.  If you do not wish to have your photo taken, you can provide us with a photo of you and your family.  (There is a $10 charge for processing a photo submitted this way for the directory.)  You can email your photo to:  lj_barnett1605@q.com.  If the submitted photo is professionally taken, a release from the original photographer is also needed.  Everyone will receive a free directory in 2019.

Diocesan Vision 2020

As part of his initiative “Vision 20/20: From Pentecost to Pentecost,” Bishop Zinkula asks each parish to hold a study session and a listening session regarding evangelization based upon Pope Francis’ Joy of the Gospel.  OLV’s study session is October 21st from 1:30 – 2:30 p.m. in the Gathering Space.  The listening session will be led by a diocesan representative, with the parish responses recorded and presented to the bishop.  The listening session is October 28th from 1:30 – 3:30 p.m. in the Gathering Space.  All are welcome to attend one or both sessions.

Rising Knights Wrestling Club

The signup period for the Rising Knights Wrestling Club has started. For information regarding the club, as well as to register your wrestler, please visit www.risingknightswrestling.com. On the website is a link for online registration, as well as a paper form that can be used instead.  Any questions can be directed to Ben Jobgen (cell 563-370-2495, email bmgjobu@gmail.com)

Chad

September 23, 2018

Picture Day Orders Online

Pictures can still be ordered online.  To order online please visit www.tssorders.com and enter your event number 27055787. Every child will be receiving a free 8 x 10 class composite; you do not need to add this to your order form unless you would like to purchase additional ones (Item 13).  Retakes will be taken on Friday October 12th.

If you would like to pay by credit card, please order online by clicking HERE or using the following link/url:  http://www.tssphotography.com/orgs/179456.  All completed orders will be dropped off at the school.

Sad to See Tree Go – Thanks for the Ideas — More?

Thanks to those who have submitted ideas for what we might do behind the school when the final grading of our drainage project is done in the spring.  If you still have ideas, please send them my way.  Let’s think about how we might utilize the land with which we have been blessed.

Freddy’s Frozen Custard & Steakburgers Fundraiser

Mention JFK or present the flyer for us to receive the donation on September 25th from 4 – 9 p.m.

We’re also in the midst of the magazine sale, which is still the second largest fund-raiser with which the school is associated.  Do you know what the largest one is?  (Answer below.)

Handbook Sign-Off

Please read the parent and student handbook, available HERE, and on our website:  https://www.olvjfk.com/wp-content/uploads/2018/08/Parent-Handbook-2018-19.pdf.  Then, print off the last page, sign it, and return it to the school office — one per family.  Thank you for helping us to reduce our printing costs.

Breakfast Program To Be Discontinued

Our new breakfast program will be discontinued at the end of the month.  Under its present operations with service before regular drop off time beginning at 7:10, the program is only serving about four students per day and losing money.  We started it as an aid to families whose children ride the bus.  All of our morning bus riders were expected to arrive at JFK between 7:04 and 7:06 and could spend as much as an hour on the bus.  We thought a breakfast program might be helpful for these early risers and early arrivers.  Most of our bus riders, however, are not arriving until after 7:10, the same time as those getting car rides in the morning.  It also seems as most students are spending 30 minutes or less on the bus.  The most students we’ve had at school between 7:00 and 7:10 has been 17.  Our break even point for breakfast is approximately 20 students purchasing breakfast.  With the low numbers of actual breakfast eaters and the pool of possible breakfast eaters also being below the break even point, it is not fiscally sound to continue it in its present format.  Our last day of serving breakfast will be Sept 28th.

If your child was a regular user of our breakfast program and you need childcare between 7:00 and 7:10, please contact Mrs. Temming, and we’ll see what we can do.

Children’s Liturgy of the Word Has Resumed

Children’s Liturgy of the Word has resumed at the 9:00 and 11:00 Sunday Masses.  Targeting children under second grade (those who have not yet received First Communion), the Children’s Liturgy of the Word breaks the message down into children specific language.  Children sit with their parents until right after the opening of Mass and then are invited to go to the altar servers’ sacristy on the “Mary side” of the church.  The children rejoin their families before Communion.

Annual Diocesan Appeal

The Annual Diocesan Appeal (ADA) was kicked off this weekend.  The goal provided to us by the diocese went up $9,000, a reflection of our overall parish income having increased.  The ADA is a “mandated goal.”  If we do not meet the ADA goal through the campaign, we would have to cut expenses in order to pay the shortage.  Please support OLV/JFK and the Diocese of Davenport.

Imagine the Amazing Contest Opens Sept 17

Use the following link/url to vote for JFK between September 17 – 30:  unitypoint.org/imaginetheamazing.

All K-12, non-profit public and private state accredited schools within the 99 counties of Iowa and the primary counties served by UnityPoint Health in Illinois, Wisconsin, Nebraska and South Dakota are eligible.  The site isn’t open yet so I can’t tell you what types of information is required of you in order to vote.  You can vote multiple times, and anyone, regardless of school affiliation, can vote.  The winning school receives $25,000 and the next ten schools get $1,000 each.

Largest fundraiser:  Gala

Chad

September 16, 2018

Picture Day on Thursday

Pictures will be taken on Thursday September 20th, with the exception of MWF 3 year old preschoolers and absent students, who will have their pictures taken on Friday.  Retakes will be on Friday October 12th.  It is an out of uniform day, and our out of uniform dress day guidelines do apply (see below).

To order online please visit www.tssorders.com and enter your event number 27055787. Every child will be receiving a free 8 x 10 class composite; you do not need to add this to your order form unless you would like to purchase additional ones (Item 13).

Payment is expected on picture day.  TSS accepts cash, checks payable to “TSS”, and all major credit & debit cards. If you would like to pay by credit card, please order online by clicking HERE or using the following link/url:  http://www.tssphotography.com/orgs/179456.  All completed orders will be dropped off at the school.

Out of Uniform Dress Day Guidelines

Even when there is an out of uniform dress day, certain guidelines are appropriate for the modesty expected in a Catholic school.  These guidelines are not intended to limit the fun of theme days, but they are intended to provide a minimum standard.

Tops:  Modest tops without holes, low necklines, spaghetti straps, or visible undergarment straps.

Pants/shorts/skirts:  Lengths of shorts/skirts must meet the requirements of the above uniform policy.  Loose fitting jeans and loose fitting pants may be worn.  If wearing tightly fitted jeans/pants/leggings, one’s top (shirt, sweater, etc.) must be mid-thigh or longer.

Socks must be worn unless formal attire is worn.

Footwear must be worn.

If a student’s attire is not within these guidelines, the student will be asked to change his/her clothing.  If the clothing cannot be changed, a dress code demerit will be issued, and the student will not be allowed to participate in the next out of uniform day.

Sad to See Tree Go – Thanks for the Ideas — More?

Thanks to those who have submitted ideas for what we might do behind the school when the final grading of our drainage project is done in the spring.  If you still have ideas, please send them my way.  Let’s think about how we might utilize the land with which we have been blessed.

Thanks for Supporting Home & School

I read a week ago that teachers nationwide are spending an average of $652 of their own money on classroom supplies, instructional materials, and professional development.  At JFK, we would like to thank you for your support of Home & School.  Through Home & School’s fundraisers like spirit wear sales, the directory, the magazine sale, the plant sale, Spaghetti Supper, movie nights, etc., H & S provides each teacher with a $300 bonus that he/she can use toward things in their classroom.

The first Home & School meeting is September 20th at 6:30 p.m. in the library.  We have the skate night coming up on the 17th from 6 -8 p.m at the Eldridge skate park, and our first fund-raiser, the magazine sale, begins on the 20th.  There’s also a JFK fundraising night at Freddy’s Frozen Custard & Steakburgers on the 25th from 4 – 9 p.m.

Handbook Sign-Off

Please read the parent and student handbook, available HERE, and on our website:  https://www.olvjfk.com/wp-content/uploads/2018/08/Parent-Handbook-2018-19.pdf.  Then, print off the last page, sign it, and return it to the school office — one per family.  Thank you for helping us to reduce our printing costs.

Social Media Article

I found the following ARTICLE regarding kids’ views of social media to be enlightening:  https://www.usatoday.com/story/tech/columnist/baig/2018/09/10/survey-reveals-what-your-kids-really-think-social-media/1226027002/

Accreditation by Department of Education; Licensure by Department of Human Services

Our four year old preschool through 8th grade educational and extracurricular programs (except for Catholic League athletics) are under the guidelines of the Iowa Department of Education from whom all of the Catholic schools in our diocese receive accreditation.  Our three year old preschool, daycare and after school care programs are licensed through the Department of Human Services.  (I, personally, think it’s ridiculous for two agencies to be involved when all of the operations are within a school, but, essentially, it has to do with the money.  At the state level, education and childcare have separate funding streams.)

On Wednesday, we had our annual unannounced site visit for three year old preschool, daycare, and after school care.  I would like to thank the staff members for implementing such quality programs which allow us to receive such positive comments from the DHS representative.  I would also like to thank all of our parents who utilize these programs and provide us with all of the extra paperwork that is required.  I understand how much of a hassle it can seem to provide separate documents for K-8 and for childcare/after school care.  Believe me, when we use a room from 7:25 – 2:40 for K-8 education and then have to make sure the room meets a separate set of guidelines for 2:40 – 5:30 childcare even when the same ages of children are being served, it seems ridiculous.  Without following the guidelines and enforcing what’s required from parents, however, we could lose our license and not be able to serve anyone.

Sign Up for This, That, and the Other Thing?

The beginning of the school year brings so much paperwork and now emails for parents.  It’s hard for me to preview it all in the Principal’s Post, especially when some things are grade(s) specific.  Lately, we have had the following registrations/permission slips:  Girl Scouts, Boy/Cub Scouts, JFK’s Running Club (gr 2-4), Mock Trial (gr 6-8), CART (tutoring by invitation), and more.  Thank you for being so diligent in checking for papers and emails.  Students in grades K-2 usually manage to get the materials home in their backpacks.  Students in grades 3-5 can sometimes act as a filter, making sure you see the items they want you to see.  Students in grades 6-8 just leave everything at school!

Breakfast Program To Be Discontinued

Our new breakfast program will be discontinued at the end of the month.  Under its present operations with service before regular drop off time beginning at 7:10, the program is only serving about four students per day and losing money.  We started it as an aid to families whose children ride the bus.  All of our morning bus riders were expected to arrive at JFK between 7:04 and 7:06 and could spend as much as an hour on the bus.  We thought a breakfast program might be helpful for these early risers and early arrivers.  Most of our bus riders, however, are not arriving until after 7:10, the same time as those getting car rides in the morning.  It also seems as most students are spending 30 minutes or less on the bus.  The most students we’ve had at school between 7:00 and 7:10 has been 17.  Our break even point for breakfast is approximately 20 students purchasing breakfast.  With the low numbers of actual breakfast eaters and the pool of possible breakfast eaters also being below the break even point, it is not fiscally sound to continue it in its present format.  Our last day of serving breakfast will be Sept 28th.

If your child was a regular user of our breakfast program and you need childcare between 7:00 and 7:10, please contact Mrs. Temming, and we’ll see what we can do.

Children’s Liturgy of the Word Has Resumed

Children’s Liturgy of the Word has resumed at the 9:00 and 11:00 Sunday Masses.  Targeting children under second grade (those who have not yet received First Communion), the Children’s Liturgy of the Word breaks the message down into children specific language.  Children sit with their parents until right after the opening of Mass and then are invited to go to the altar servers’ sacristy on the “Mary side” of the church.  The children rejoin their families before Communion.

Imagine the Amazing Contest Opens Sept 17

Use the following link/url to vote for JFK between September 17 – 30:  unitypoint.org/imaginetheamazing.

All K-12, non-profit public and private state accredited schools within the 99 counties of Iowa and the primary counties served by UnityPoint Health in Illinois, Wisconsin, Nebraska and South Dakota are eligible.  The site isn’t open yet so I can’t tell you what types of information is required of you in order to vote.  You can vote multiple times, and anyone, regardless of school affiliation, can vote.  The winning school receives $25,000 and the next ten schools get $1,000 each.

 

Chad

September 9, 2018

Sad to See Tree Go – What Will Replace It?

To make way for the drainage project behind the school, a large tree had to be removed.  What might we do instead when the final grading is done in the spring?  A rosary garden?  Butterfly garden?  Outdoor Stations of the Cross?  Let’s think about how we might utilize the land with which we have been blessed.  Send me your ideas!

Thanks for Supporting Home & School

I just read that teachers nationwide are spending an average of $652 of their own money on classroom supplies, instructional materials, and professional development.  At JFK, we would like to thank you for your support of Home & School.  Through Home & School’s fundraisers like spirit wear sales, the directory, the magazine sale, the plant sale, Spaghetti Supper, movie nights, etc., H & S provides each teacher with a $300 bonus that he/she can use toward things in their classroom.

The first Home & School meeting is September 20th at 6:30 p.m. in the library.  We have the skate night coming up on the 17th from 6 -8 p.m at the Eldridge skate park, and our first fund-raiser, the magazine sale, begins on the 20th.  There’s also a JFK fundraising night at Freddy’s Frozen Custard & Steakburgers on the 25th from 4 – 9 p.m.  I tried Freddy’s the other night and thought the burger was really good.  Unfortunately, I took my custard home to eat it during the Thursday night football game and fell asleep with it in the freezer.  Frozen custard just doesn’t taste the same as fresh!

Changes to Dress Code

The board made a couple of changes to the dress code on Tuesday.  Two identical logos on each sock will be allowed as long as they meet the size requirement.  The board also changed the policy so that the style and and vendor of girls’ plaid skirts and jumpers do not matter.  The skirts and jumpers just have to be JFK’s blue-colored plaid.  The new wording is on the separate dress code policy on our website under “Policies and Forms.”  It is also contained in the complete handbook also on our website.

Handbook Sign-Off

Speaking of the handbook, please read the parent and student handbook, available HERE, and on our website:  https://www.olvjfk.com/wp-content/uploads/2018/08/Parent-Handbook-2018-19.pdf.  Then, print off the last page, sign it, and return it to the school office — one per family.  Thank you for helping us to reduce our printing costs.

Parish Picnic and Outdoor Mass

September 15th — Outdoor Mass at 4:30

Picnic following:  bounce houses, Iowa/UNI game available, huge pork tenderloins

Price:  $1 and a dish to share.   Please bring a serving utensil and mark all dishes and utensils with your name for return.

Last name ending in: A – H bring Salads
I – P bring Desserts
Q – Z bring Vegetables

6th-8th Grade Mixer with Catholic Schools

There is a “mixer” on Friday, September 14th for Catholic school students in 6th-8th grades at QC Family Entertainment Center (4401 44th Ave, Moline).  The mixer is from 6 – 9 p.m. and costs $20.  The $20 includes two games of Glow Bowl,  one game of Laser Tag, shoe rental, two slices of pizza and pop.  Transportation will not be provided, and an adult must sign the participants in and out with a school staff member/designee.  Parents are also welcome to stay, and additional chaperones are also always appreciated.

Children’s Liturgy of the Word Has Resumed

Children’s Liturgy of the Word has resumed at the 9:00 and 11:00 Sunday Masses.  Targeting children under second grade (those who have not yet received First Communion), the Children’s Liturgy of the Word breaks the message down into children specific language.  Children sit with their parents until right after the opening of Mass and then are invited to go to the altar servers’ sacristy on the “Mary side” of the church.  The children rejoin their families before Communion.

Busy Weekend Coming Up

We have a busy weekend coming up at OLV.  At 4:30 on Saturday, there is an outdoor Mass.  The parish picnic will begin after Mass.  On Sunday at the 9:00 Mass, JFK students will have “Mass parts,” and staff and catechists will receive their commissioning to spread the Word.

 

Chad

September 3, 2018

Campus Safety

Work on campus safety projects should conclude within the next week or two.  All but one camera has been installed, and final wiring is being completed.  Security cameras can help staff monitor the entire campus, serve as a deterrent, provide an early warning to potential suspicious or dangerous situations, be used by first responders should an event be in progress, and help with after the fact investigations.  We received a Scott County Regional Authority grant for this project.  We will soon have approximately 22 cameras covering the outside of the school, the main church entry, and several large common areas/hallways within the school.

Lovewell Fencing should be back this week to finish installing the gates and the fence that goes down the divider.  Yellow sleeves will be placed over the bollards by the concrete barriers as well.  Lovewell also finished the concrete work for two new basketball hoops, but “some assembly required” may slow us down for the rest of the work there.

Phase III of the parking lot safety plan, when funded, will create a new visitor and handicapped parking area off of 42nd Street level with the office entrances.  With all the work we have happening on campus already, however, there is no timeline for phase III.

Sad to See Tree Go – What Will Replace It?

To make way for the drainage project behind the school, a large tree had to be removed.  What might we do instead when the final grading is done in the spring?  A rosary garden?  Butterfly garden?  Outdoor Stations of the Cross?  Let’s think about how we might utilize the land with which we have been blessed.  Send me your ideas!

Thanks for Supporting Home & School

I just read that teachers nationwide are spending an average of $652 of their own money on classroom supplies, instructional materials, and professional development.  At JFK, we would like to thank you for your support of Home & School.  Through Home & School’s fundraisers like spirit wear sales, the directory, the magazine sale, the plant sale, Spaghetti Supper, movie nights, etc., H & S provides each teacher with a $300 bonus that he/she can use toward things in their classroom.

Approved Vendors for Skirts; Logos on Socks to be Discussed Again

We have noticed a few plaid skirts with buckles slip into the building.  Neither one of the approved vendors, Religious Supply and Denis Uniform, sells our plaid skirts with buckles.  Here’s a little history on the skirts.  Years ago, the only place one could get the skirts was through Religious Supply.   Then, we added Land’s End to offer families another option, and the uniform policy was changed to read “or approved vendor.”  (I believe all of the other Catholic schools still only have Religious Supply as the vendor for their skirts.)  A few years later, we added Denis Uniform, in particular, to allow families a good online option.  Over the past year or so, national chain stores started selling plaid skirts, and differences began to be seen here at school:  fit of skirts, types of pleats, base colors of the plaid, exterior buttons or buckles, etc.  (We have enough of a challenge identifying a new approved vendor skirt and an approved vendor skirt that has been handed down from child to child and family to family for years — I don’t know if we every bought a new skirt for any of my three daughters!)  Staff members were left wondering what to do.  When the policy committee met this past spring, the attempt was to put the “genie back in the bottle” and state clearly who the approved vendors were.  No sooner had we stated the three vendors in the policy itself than we discovered that Land’s End no longer sells our plaid, and we had to change the language again to just include Religious Supply and Denis Uniform.  Now, Denis Uniform doesn’t feature our plaid on its website; you have to ask for it.

When the board meets on Tuesday night, I will also ask it to review the issue of skirts and logos on socks at the request of several parents.  We thought we were doing great by adding that socks could have logos.  Now, the question is why can’t socks have two logos on them?  I love dress code!  It always consumes more than it should — can’t you just tell by the amount of space it’s taken up in this Principal’s Post?  (OK, I really do like having a dress code.  The problem is always in the details!)

Handbook Sign-Off

Please read the parent and student handbook, available HERE, and on our website:  https://www.olvjfk.com/wp-content/uploads/2018/08/Parent-Handbook-2018-19.pdf.  Then, print off the last page, sign it, and return it to the school office — one per family.  Thank you for helping us to reduce our printing costs.

Parish Picnic and Outdoor Mass

September 15th — Outdoor Mass at 4:30

Picnic following:  bounce houses, Iowa/UNI game available, huge pork tenderloins

Price:  $1 and a dish to share.   Please bring a serving utensil and mark all dishes and utensils with your name for return.

Last name ending in: A – H bring Salads
I – P bring Desserts
Q – Z bring Vegetables

Spirit Day Snuck Up on Me

I almost forgot about last week’s spirit dress day myself.  I wasn’t even thinking about it for a Thursday.  However, it was the first home football game for our Assumption Knights.  Thank goodness I look at the school calendar regularly!

The Wave on Saturday

No sooner had I spoke about my kids being scattered than Kirsten’s boyfriend came for the weekend, and Tom is taking some vacation time to spend here and probably in North Carolina with Colleen.  I really need to finish the master bedroom remodeling project that I began last Christmas and get the other bedrooms set up for company!

I couldn’t work too hard on Saturday though as I had to catch some important TV.  First, it was services for Senator John McCain.  While there were some political jabs, I couldn’t help but shed a tear as I listened to Meghan McCain talk not about the public life of John McCain but about his private life as a father to her.  It makes me wonder what my kids will say of me.

Then, as I mowed the lawn, I had to hurry so I would finish in time for the Iowa game.  In an add sort of way, though, it wasn’t the game itself that I really wanted to see.  I had to be done in time for the end of the first quarter so I could see the “Iowa Wave” when all the fans, players and coaches of both teams, referees, and everyone in the stadium turn to wave to those watching from the University of Iowa Stead Family Children’s Hospital.  Football is just a game; some things are just more important.

 

Chad

August 26, 2018

Two Days Under Our Belt — Resiliency Abounds

I’d like to publicly thank our staff members, parents, and students for their resiliency as we’ve begun the school year with so many improvement projects still underway.  Every step forward, it seems, has also been made with a half step backwards as another issue emerges.  When working on the drainage project out back, for example, workers hit one of the tubes for the geothermal heating and air conditioning system for the media center and a classroom.  Yet unexplained, however, there doesn’t appear to have been enough liquid in the tube to operate well in the long term, which may be related to why the geothermal pumps are giving us fits.

Even prior to this issue with the geothermal line, however, we were prepared to spend nearly $7,000 on various heating related issues.  These expenses serve as a reminder that replacing the boiler last summer was only phase one of a complete three phase HVAC plan that will resolve nearly all of the heating pipes issues within the building AND provide efficient heating, ventilation, and air conditioning.  We are practically “shovel ready” for this project, and we are thankful for the Gala supporters and OLV Foundation who have contributed toward the funding needed for our HVAC project.

We would also like to thank everyone for your flexibility while the Sturdevant drive is unavailable due to the drainage project.  As you experienced on Friday morning during the rain at drop off times, having many drives available makes everything run so much smoother.  That’s one reason why our campus safety recommendations included having all of the drives open for drop off and pick up times and for funerals.  The drainage project should be completed within about a week.

Actual Bus Times Greatly Improved

We hope to see the actual bus times continue to improve.  On Friday, our last arriving bus in the morning was only about five minutes late while one bus (a different one than Friday) was nearly 20 minutes late to JFK on Thursday.  There are still some issues in the afternoon, and, although improvements were made, the improvements were not nearly as great.  However, we think we’ve identified a transfer issue with Assumption that is delaying a bus from arriving at JFK on time and holding up several other buses from leaving.  On Friday, our latest departing bus left 14 minutes AFTER the first student was supposed to have been dropped off at home!

Morning Drop Off and Breakfast:

As in the past, regular supervision on the blacktop will begin 15 minutes before school begins:  7:10 a.m.  If the weather is inclement, students will be let into the building and wait in designated areas until classes begin.

Students who ride the bus will be allowed to enter the building and wait in the cafeteria until 7:10, when they will join their other arriving classmates either on the blacktop or in other supervised locations.  Our buses were supposed to arrive on campus between 7:04 – 7:06, but we haven’t seen them this early yet.

New this year is a light breakfast program.  Students arriving between 7:00 and 7:10 may purchase a light breakfast of a fruit, milk, and cereal, bagel, muffin, or the like in the cafeteria.  Cost of breakfast is $1.50 and will be deducted from the funds in a student’s lunch account.  Although the time for purchasing breakfast is only ten minutes, students can remain in the cafeteria and finish eating until classes begin.  This new breakfast program is intended to be a service for those early morning bus riders who may be dropped off before 7:10 and those who may have used our previously paid for before school care program.  Other students may also take advantage of the program by arriving before 7:10.  There may be some adjustments to the breakfast program as we see how it progresses.  We have four eaters on Friday, and no eaters on Thursday.

Campus Safety

Work on campus safety projects continues.   Cameras are being installed, and the wiring may be finished this week.  I anticipate the system being operational within two weeks.  Security cameras can help staff monitor the entire campus, serve as a deterrent, provide an early warning to potential suspicious or dangerous situations, be used by first responders should an event be in progress, and help with after the fact investigations.  We received a Scott County Regional Authority grant for this project.  We will soon have approximately 22 cameras covering the outside of the school, the main church entry, and several large common areas/hallways within the school.

We are waiting for Lovewell Fencing to install the additional gates, bollards, and basketball hoops to complete the work on the parking lot.  Phase III, when funded, will create a new visitor and handicapped parking area off of 42nd Street level with the office entrances.

Sad to See Tree Go – What Will Replace It?

To make way for the drainage project behind the school, a large tree had to be removed.  What might we do instead when the final grading is done in the spring?  A rosary garden?  Butterfly garden?  Let’s think about how we might utilize the land with which we have been blessed.  Send me your ideas!

Not Too Many Dress Code Issues

I didn’t notice too many dress code issues during our first two days.  About the only thing I noticed that needs a larger community reminder is that while the board approved logos for socks, it limited logos on all attire to one per item.  Each sock can only have one logo.

Handbook Sign-Off

Please read the parent and student handbook, available HERE, and on our website:  https://www.olvjfk.com/wp-content/uploads/2018/08/Parent-Handbook-2018-19.pdf.  Then, print off the last page, sign it, and return it to the school office — one per family.  Thank you for helping us to reduce our printing costs.

Parish Picnic and Outdoor Mass

September 15th — Outdoor Mass at 4:30

Picnic following:  bounce houses, Iowa/UNI game available, huge pork tenderloins

Price:  $1 and a dish to share.   Please bring a serving utensil and mark all dishes and utensils with your name for return.

Last name ending in: A – H bring Salads
I – P bring Desserts
Q – Z bring Vegetables

Principal’s Post Availability

Principal’s Posts are written each weekend and posted on our website, available off the front page.  I also send a link via email and post it to the school’s Facebook account.  It then gets sent home via hard copy via “backpack mail” with the “youngest or only child” in a family at the beginning of each week.  I use the Principal’s Post to reach the whole school community and sometimes highlight happenings in particular grades.  It does not replace the many communications you will receive from your children’s teachers.

We also utilize a JFK Facebook page, and there is a closed Facebook group, JFK Moms & Dads, where people can post to others in the group.  JFK’s Facebook page can be accessed from the front page of our website as well.  Make sure you “like” us there!  Highlighted Events and Headlines on our website also tend to be updated each weekend.

An Update About Me and My Family

I am beginning my 18th year as principal at JFK.  Each year brings new challenges and has its own excitement.  Prior to coming to JFK, I worked for ten years at Assumption High School where I taught religion and worked in student services for one year.  I grew up in South Milwaukee, WI, and attended Marquette University for my bachelor’s degree in sociology and theology.  I received a master’s degree in religion from the University of Chicago, and my master’s degree in education administration is from Western Illinois University.  My superintendent’s certificate work was done through the University of Northern Iowa.

Lynn and I have been married for 23 years.  She holds two degrees from St. Ambrose and one from Drake University.  Together, we are cash poor but education rich!  Lynn has worked in a variety of roles at Assumption High School, where we met.  She is also a graduate of Assumption and St. Paul’s.

Our four children continue to scatter.  Our oldest, Colleen, moved to North Carolina this past year, and she works at the Y.  She has degrees from Ashford University and the University of Dubuque.  Tom moved to Cedar Rapids during the winter.  He manages three mattress stores in Cedar Rapids, Cedar Falls, and Waterloo.  He has an associates degree from Des Moines Area Community College.  Kirsten is in her last semester at St. Ambrose and doing her student teaching at Lourdes this fall.  She is planning on graduating in December and looking for a teaching position in the Des Moines area.  Caitlin is in her second year at the University of Kansas.  I can’t say it’s her “sophomore” year really as she already had 34 college credits when she graduated from Assumption, and she’s in a program that combines both undergraduate and graduate level work so she can finish with a law degree in six years rather than the normal seven.

The end of summer hit Lynn and me the other weekend at Mass.  Lynn and I were there without any of our children and without upcoming plans for any of them to be around for any more special summer activities.  It was kind of depressing.  We better start planning some fall activities, or at least start working on Thanksgiving plans!

Chad

August 19, 2018

Whirlwind of Activity

There has been a whirlwind of activity at JFK over the summer and, rather than slowing down as the start day approaches, I think we’re getting even busier!

Bell Times:

People are still contacting us to confirm it — JFK will have new bell times this year:  7:25 a.m. – 2:40 p.m.  Wednesdays’ early dismissals are at 1:40.  There will be bus transportation.

While we were creating a new bell time schedule, we were able to adjust our schedule enough to give late morning break to 6th-8th graders.  This recess break will make up for the loss of a 6th – 8th grade lunch time recess that was necessary when we decided to follow the National Council of Teachers of Mathematics recommendation that there be 60 minutes of math instruction each day in grades kindergarten through 12th grade.  By adjusting morning homeroom times and tweaking some transition time around the 6th-8th grade lunches, we should be able to add a late morning recess break while retaining the 60 minutes of math each day and not negatively impacting other instructional time.

All school Masses will begin at 7:40 a.m.  Holy day all school Masses will still be at 8:15 a.m.  Our first all school Mass is Friday.

See below for the new bell times.

K-8

  • MTThF:     7:25 – 2:40
  • W:             7:25 – 1:40

3 yr old PS:

  • 7:25 – 9:55

4/5 yr old morning PS:

  • MTThF:     7:25 – 10:25
  • W:              7:25 – 9:55

4/5 yr old afternoon PS:

  • MTThF:     11:40 – 2:40
  • W:              11:10 – 1:40

After school care:  2:40 (or the end of the school day) – 5:30

ECLC:  7:00 – 5:30

Morning Drop Off and Breakfast:

As in the past, regular supervision on the blacktop will begin 15 minutes before school begins:  7:10 a.m.  If the weather is inclement, students will be let into the building and wait in designated areas until classes begin.

Students who ride the bus will be allowed to enter the building and wait in the cafeteria until 7:10, when they will join their other arriving classmates either on the blacktop or in other supervised locations.

New this year is a light breakfast program.  Students arriving between 7:00 and 7:10 may purchase a light breakfast of a fruit, milk, and cereal, bagel, muffin, or the like in the cafeteria.  Cost of breakfast is $1.50 and will be deducted from the funds in a student’s lunch account.  Although the time for purchasing breakfast is only ten minutes, students can remain in the cafeteria and finish eating until classes begin.  This new breakfast program is intended to be a service for those early morning bus riders who may be dropped off before 7:10 and those who may have used our previously paid for before school care program.  Other students may also take advantage of the program by arriving before 7:10.  There may be some adjustments to the breakfast program as we see how it progresses.

Reduced Rate for After School Care Program:

With after school care beginning 20 minutes earlier, the board decided to change the rates it had just passed in the winter to try and make our program more affordable for families.  Rather than $1.65 for a quarter hour for the first child in a family, and $1.35 for the second child, etc., the rate has been changed to $1.50 for a quarter hour per student.  After school care operates from the end of the school day until 5:30.

Campus Safety

Work on campus safety projects continues as we move into the school year.

When JFK was built in 1963 and opened its doors in 1964, campus safety was not as close to the forefront of people’s minds as it is today.  Back then, the school offices were behind a brick wall that prevented anyone from seeing the entry doors, which were unlocked as well!  Beginning in 2001, explicit steps were taken to improve campus security.  By 2011, new offices were built at the front of the building, and, after tragedy in Sandy Hook in December 2012, another $80,000 or more was spent to increase building security and protocols.  The focus in these earlier stages tended to be on how to keep students safe within the building and keep a potentially unwanted person out of the school.  In the fall of 2017, we began another major safety review.  Meeting with our alderman, city staff, and multiple police officers to discuss the neighborhood and safety protocols, it was determined that there did NOT seem to be a higher probability of danger to our students now than at any other time, and our safety protocols are still strong.  We also conducted a survey of staff and parents to determine what people’s concerns were today.  While the survey was intended to elicit today’s concerns, there were some who responded that they did not have any concerns:

  • “I am currently not worried about the safety of my children while they are at JFK.”
  • “I do feel that JFK does a great job at keeping the school safe as well as keeping us well informed. Obviously it’s a little harder to keep the same amount of security when the kids are on the playground, but their outdoor time is important, and I feel JFK has a vigilant staff. There are just some things that are out of our control, but I feel my child is safe.”
  • “We are very pleased with the safe guards are that already in place, such as the doorbell for ECLC/Preschool, traffic directing cones, sign-in/out process, etc.”
  • “I really do not have any specific concerns regarding safety since the building entrances have been locked and free access to the school from multiple points of entry have been eliminated.”
  • “The plan for dropping off and picking up is very good if the drivers would pay attention.”

The most common theme in the survey for today’s concerns was related to keeping students safe when outside the building but on campus property.  Three key recommendations were made by a safety committee:

  • Separate students from the parking lot. Students should be away from the apartment buildings and from moving cars and parking areas, particularly during recess times.
  • Use something other than cones for making the “safety” area at drop off/pick up times. Cones will not protect students from a car.
  • Add security cameras to both the external and internal school campus, with external cameras being the first priority. Security cameras can help staff monitor the entire campus.  They can serve as a deterrent, provide an early warning to potential suspicious or dangerous situations, be used by first responders should an event be in progress, and help with after the fact investigations.  We received a Scott County Regional Authority grant for this project, and this work finally began last week.  We will soon have approximately 22 cameras covering the outside of the school, the main church entry, and several large common areas/hallways within the school.

When looking at the parking lot, multiple options were discussed, three parish/school listening sessions were conducted, and multiple detailed plans were reviewed and critiqued by the board of education, finance council, and parish council.  The final plan was also submitted to the diocese.

Factors considered included the following, and trying to strike a balance of many interests was challenging:

  • Recess location and student safety
  • Student safety at drop-off/pick-up times
  • Protection of students and the building itself from cars
  • Traffic flow
  • Where students should line up and enter the building
  • Green space
  • Size of a hard surface play area and how often students have to use it for recesses
  • Cost
  • Permanent loss (or gain) of parking spaces
  • Loss of parking spaces on week days
  • Student access to building entrances should there be an emergency for which they need to enter the building quickly
  • Aesthetics
  • Visitor and handicapped parking for the school
  • Access to parking lot entrances
  • Access to the parish center entrance
  • Flexibility of parking in the lot for funerals
  • Snow removal

The final parking lot plan has three phases, and phases I and II have begun.  Phase I provides a permanent, safe barrier on the northeast side of the parking lot behind which students can stand at drop off and pick up times.  (See the red lines on the picture below).  Shortly, there will be yellow bollards installed at each end (yellow dots below) that will allow pedestrians through but be placed too close for vehicles to pass.  Until the bollards are installed, we will be using traffic cones.  Traffic cones will also be placed where they have been in the past (green dots) as we still do not want traffic moving north/south along where student are standing.  School day traffic patterns on the north side of the divider will not change.  The northwest entrance off of 42nd Street is still “enter” only, and the northeast is still exit only.

Phase II moves recesses on the blacktop (when the grass is too wet or covered in snow to be out back) to the south end of the parking lot and utilizes fences, gates, and portable barriers to keep students safe while also allowing for the flexibility needed for funerals and parish center usage.  After morning drop off, the south part of the parking lot will be made inaccessible by closing gates at the Sturdevant Street entrance and near the cooling tower by the rectory drive  (See yellow lines below.)  Access to/from the rectory will still be possible from Division.  In addition to these gates, cables will be drawn across the north/south pass through by the divider, and, thus, seal the south parking lot from vehicular traffic during school hours on most days.  Prior to the end of the school day, the two gates and cable will be opened, allowing for access to both sides of the parking lot again.  To clear the south side of the parking lot from cars during the day, staff will be parking on the north side of the lot.  Handicapped spots and visitor spots remain close to the school.  When there are funerals on school days, we will be using a combination of large portable barriers and special cones to create a safe play area on the south side of the lot while still allowing for the gates to be open.

Other elements of Phase II include putting a series of fences between the trees along the divider (east/west yellow lines below) to keep kids and balls from going from the play area into a parking and traffic area and a fence near the dumpster to keep balls from going too far off the parking lot to the south.  Finally, two new basketball hoops will be installed by the ECLC/PS play area (red dots below), and the old one in the divider will likely be removed.

Phase III, which has not yet been funded, would create a new visitor and handicapped parking area off of 42nd Street level with the office entrances.

While it will likely take us a little bit of time to adjust to the changes, these changes are indicative of the seriousness that OLV and JFK community members take student safety.

Below is a photo showing these campus enhancements:

 

Other Construction
Parking lot safety is not the only work being done this summer.  This week a new drainage system is being installed along the east/west wing and parish center.  (See photo below.)  The older system, which only collected water from two downspouts, has failed.  The new system will be able to handle the water off the roof from all five downspouts as well as surface level run off from the playground and field.  The red below represents what will be underground, and the green dots represent surface level collectors.  This work begins on August 20th and should be done by the 25th.  During this time, the Sturdevant Street entrance will likely be closed.  Once the outside work is done, repairs and renovations will be made to the parish center kitchen, table room, and restrooms.
Still More Repair Work
As if these the drainage and campus safety projects aren’t enough, there was/is more work this summer.  The band room doors were adjusted for better security and more electrical power was brought into the server room in the library.  The mudjacking of several sidewalk sections will take place this week, and about $7,000 in repairs will be made to various heating pipes and the geothermal system that operates in the library and classroom.  Replacing the boiler last summer only solved part of our heating system issues.  That’s why we have a complete Heating-Ventilation-Air Conditioning plan that is “shovel ready.”  We would like to thank the Gala supporters and the OLV Foundation for getting us started on raising the funds needed for the rest of our HVAC project.
No New Staff at JFK
There was a record number of new teachers in the Catholic schools of the Diocese of Davenport:  62.  That’s almost four per building.  I think the highest turnover was at Burlington Notre Dame with between eleven and thirteen new teachers.  Not only do we not have new teachers this year, we also do not have any new support staff.  I can’t remember a year when we did not have any new staff.
.
New K-8 Science and Spanish Exploratory Materials and Expanded 6th Grade Spanish Exploratory
In my last Principal’s Post, I wrote that new K-5 science materials were on order but 6-8 materials depended upon hitting enrollment targets.  I’m pleased to announce that we hit those targets and will be getting the 6-8 science materials as well!
New Spanish exploratory materials have also arrived for 6th-8th graders.  Students will be utilizing a Spanish I textbook in their foreign language exploratory classes.  Sixth graders will also now have their Spanish exploratory class twice per week rather than once.  By the time students finish the 8th grade at JFK, they should have a general overview of all of a Spanish I class.
Used Furniture Donated to JFK
Students in K-2 have benefited the most from this summer’s donation of incredibly high quality used furniture.  Many of the students will have both new chairs and new desks.  If purchased new, the furniture that we received this year was worth nearly $20,000.
New Equipment in the Kitchen
Using restricted funds, improvements are being made to the school kitchen.  The dishwash counter area, dishwasher, stove, and cooling table are being replaced.  We also replaced two handwashing sinks added a mop sink.
Meitler Begins Work for Scott County Catholic School Strategic Planning
Strategic planning for Catholic school education in Scott County moved ahead last week with representatives from Meitler meeting with a steering committee and then pastors and administrators.  Meitler has extensive experience both across the nation and in Iowa.
Strategic planning for Scott County Catholic schools was born out of the diocesan strategic plan for Catholic school education which called for separate strategic planning to be done for Scott and Johnson Counties.  Gone are the days of dramatically falling enrollment and widespread school closures and consolidations.  It’s time to plan for how Catholic schools can be strong and prosper in the future.
School Policies Highlighted
I would like to thank the following parents and staff members who helped review parent/student handbook policies this spring:  Jody Mucciarone, Lucas Roth, Tom Poston, Ashley Neumiller, Mike Kane, Tammy Nagle, Meredith Ash, Kitty Temming, Dianne Siefers, Julie Bauer, Noelle Myers, Rachael Whelchel, Kim Burken, and Kristina Rose.  Each year we review about 1/3 of the policies in our handbook.  Every year the four dress code related policies are reviewed.  Below are highlights to the changes:
  • Added as examples of Level II misbehaviors:  Targeting others on social media or electronic devices, which then affects the school environment; taking a photograph or video/audio recording without permission; unauthorized use of a cell phone
  • Specifically stated that smart watches are in the same category as “cell phones and other electronic devices” and prohibited from use between 7:00 a.m. and until students leave the building.  Because staff members are not able to tell which Smart Watches and FitBits are connected to data plans or phones in one’s locker, all such devices will be prohibited.
  • Emphasized that there are only two approved vendors for uniform jumpers/skirts:  Religious Supply on Jersey Ridge and Denis Uniform Supply (online)
  • Applied the 2″ logo guideline to nearly all apparel and limited logos/words to one per item  (Shirts with logos/words on the front and back, front and sleeve, or front and shoulder, etc. are not allowed under the policy, but socks can now have a 2″ maximum size logo)
  • Changed the belt requirement to grades 4-8 only
  • Defined more specific consequences for issues with hair, particularly for unnatural coloring.  It’s time to get students’ hair back to what is acceptable according to our dress code. 
  • Changed when athletic eligibility is checked
  • Added language regarding student records and video
I always find the annual dress code review to be interesting.  It’s difficult to have 8-12 adults develop common understandings in even 30 minutes of discussion time.  Then, implementing the dress code with 250 families and 50+ staff members trying to have common understandings just by reading the code makes it even more challenging.  At the committee level, for example, our discussion of “true red” probably took us five minutes alone and another ten minutes at the board meeting.  (UnderArmour red is OK.  But watch out for the number of logos/words and locations of the logos on their shirts!)  Please work with us as the last thing staff members want to do is say, “Welcome back to school.  You’re out of dress code.”  No one wants to start the year like that!
Immunization Reminder for Students Entering 7th Grade in 2018-19
The law in the State of Iowa now states that the Meningococcal vaccine (MenACWY) is required before your student starts the 2018-2019 school year in 7th grade.
 Students entering 7th grade need proof of 1 dose of meningococcal vaccine (MenACWY).
 Remember Tdap is also required for students entering 7th grade.
Please call your health care provider or the Scott County Health Department at 563-326-8618 to set up an appointment.
On to Our Mission
I can’t wait for classes to actually start.  Maybe the whirlwind of activity will slow down, and we can move on to the mission of JFK:
“Teaching children to become disciples of Christ by living Gospel values, nurturing gifts and talents, and pursuing academic excellence.”  Let’s have a great year!
Chad

 

July 19, 2018

Busy Summer:

It has been quite the busy summer, and I don’t think I’ve been away from campus for more than a day!  Read below for more information regarding bell times (just a repeat of the June email), morning drop off and breakfast, reduced rates for after school care services, campus safety plans, recess for 6th-8th grade students, new science and Spanish materials, donated school furniture, strategic planning for Scott County Catholic schools, and more.  There’s been so much going on that I haven’t had time to write about it!

Bell Times:

JFK will have new bell times this year:  7:25 a.m. – 2:40 p.m.  Wednesdays’ early dismissals are at 1:40.  There will be bus transportation.  See below for a complete list of the new times.

After the Davenport Community School District changed its bell times and bus transportation schedule, JFK’s board of education looked at several models for providing bus transportation for the faith-based schools without the direct involvement of the DCSD, and, each time, it seemed that the cost was more than what we think our families can bear, especially when compared to “free” bus transportation but at slightly different times.  It was even more challenging when those slightly different times were actually times that a couple of the faith-based schools really like, and they would not receive those times if we ran our own buses.

Thinking from a long-range perspective, I do not believe the bus transportation issue is finished.  Bus transportation, especially how the DCSD provides better transportation than is required by law and provides each faith-based school with bus transportation from one end of the district to the other end, is costly.  The DCSD will likely continue to examine transportation costs in the future.  Several of the DCSD board members want to have follow up next year, for example, so they can know if this decision to change bell times and disrupt everyone’s routine was worth the anticipated savings.

Here, again, are JFK’s bell times:

K-8

  • MTThF:     7:25 – 2:40
  • W:             7:25 – 1:40

3 yr old PS:

  • 7:25 – 9:55

4/5 yr old morning PS:

  • MTThF:     7:25 – 10:25
  • W:              7:25 – 9:55

4/5 yr old afternoon PS:

  • MTThF:     11:40 – 2:40
  • W:              11:10 – 1:40

After school care:  2:40 (or the end of the school day) – 5:30

ECLC:  7:00 – 5:30

Morning Drop Off and Breakfast:

As in the past, regular supervision on the blacktop will begin 15 minutes before school begins:  7:10 a.m.  If the weather is inclement, students will be let into the building and wait in designated areas until classes begin.

Students who ride the bus will be allowed to enter the building and wait in the cafeteria until 7:10, when they will join their other arriving classmates either on the blacktop or in other supervised locations.

New this year is a light breakfast program.  Students arriving between 7:00 and 7:10 will be served a light breakfast of a fruit, milk, and cereal, bagel, muffin, or the like in the cafeteria.  Cost of breakfast is $1.50 and will be deducted from the funds in a student’s lunch account.  Although the time for purchasing breakfast is only ten minutes, students can remain in the cafeteria and finish eating until classes begin.  This new breakfast program is intended to be a service for those early morning bus riders who may be dropped off before 7:10 and those who may have used our previously paid for before school care program.  Other students may also take advantage of the program by arriving before 7:10.  There may be some adjustments to the breakfast program as we see how it progresses.

Reduced Rate for After School Care Program:

With after school care beginning 20 minutes earlier, the board decided to change the rates it had just passed in the winter to try and make our program more affordable for families.  Rather than $1.65 for a quarter hour for the first child in a family, and $1.35 for the second child, etc., the rate has been changed to $1.50 for a quarter hour per student.  After school care operates from the end of the school day until 5:30.

Campus Safety Parking Lot Recommendations

Expect changes to our campus this fall in response to our work to enhance campus safety.

When JFK was built in 1963 and opened its doors in 1964, campus safety was not as close to the forefront of people’s minds as it is today.  Beginning in 2001, explicit steps were taken to improve campus security.  By 2011, new offices were built at the front of the building, and, after tragedy in Sandy Hook in December 2012, another $80,000 or more was spent to increase building security and protocols.  The focus in these earlier stages tended to be on how to keep students safe within the building and keep a potentially unwanted person out of the school.  In the fall of 2017, we began another major safety review.  Meeting with our alderman, city staff, and multiple police officers to discuss the neighborhood and safety protocols, it was determined that there did NOT seem to be a higher probability of danger to our students now than at any other time, and our safety protocols are still strong.  We also conducted a survey of staff and parents to determine what people’s concerns were today.  While the survey was intended to elicit today’s concerns, there were some who responded that they did not have any concerns:

  • “I am currently not worried about the safety of my children while they are at JFK.”
  • “I do feel that JFK does a great job at keeping the school safe as well as keeping us well informed. Obviously it’s a little harder to keep the same amount of security when the kids are on the playground, but their outdoor time is important, and I feel JFK has a vigilant staff. There are just some things that are out of our control, but I feel my child is safe.”
  • “We are very pleased with the safe guards are that already in place, such as the doorbell for ECLC/Preschool, traffic directing cones, sign-in/out process, etc.”
  • “I really do not have any specific concerns regarding safety since the building entrances have been locked and free access to the school from multiple points of entry have been eliminated.”
  • “The plan for dropping off and picking up is very good if the drivers would pay attention.”

The most common theme in the survey for today’s concerns was related to keeping students safe when outside the building but on campus property.  Three key recommendations were made by a safety committee:

  • Separate students from the parking lot. Students should be away from the apartment buildings and from moving cars and parking areas, particularly during recess times.
  • Use something other than cones for making the “safety” area at drop off/pick up times. Cones will not protect students from a car.
  • Add security cameras to both the external and internal school campus, with external cameras being the first priority. Security cameras can help staff monitor the entire campus.  They can serve as a deterrent, provide an early warning to potential suspicious or dangerous situations, be used by first responders should an event be in progress, and help with after the fact investigations.  We received a Scott County Regional Authority grant for this project, and this work will begin in August.  Some additional cameras will be installed to monitor key church and rectory entrances.

When looking at the parking lot, multiple options were discussed, three parish/school listening sessions were conducted, and multiple detailed plans were reviewed and critiqued by the board of education, finance council, and parish council.  The final plan was also submitted to the diocese.

Factors considered included the following, and trying to strike a balance of many interests was challenging:

  • Recess location and student safety
  • Student safety at drop-off/pick-up times
  • Protection of students and the building itself from cars
  • Traffic flow
  • Where students should line up and enter the building
  • Green space
  • Size of a hard surface play area and how often students have to use it for recesses
  • Cost
  • Permanent loss (or gain) of parking spaces
  • Loss of parking spaces on week days
  • Student access to building entrances should there be an emergency for which they need to enter the building quickly
  • Aesthetics
  • Visitor and handicapped parking for the school
  • Access to parking lot entrances
  • Access to the parish center entrance
  • Flexibility of parking in the lot for funerals
  • Snow removal

The final parking lot plan has three phases, and phases I and II are proceeding this summer.  Phase I provides a permanent, safe barrier on the northeast side of the parking lot behind which students can stand at drop off and pick up times.  Phase II moves recesses on the blacktop (when the grass is too wet or covered in snow to be out back) to the south end of the parking lot and utilizes fences, gates, and portable barriers to keep students safe while also allowing for the flexibility needed for funerals and parish center usage.  Phase III, which has not yet been funded, would create a new visitor and handicapped parking area off of 42nd Street level with the office entrances.

Below is a photo showing these campus enhancements:

 

Recess for 6th – 8th Graders?
With changes to our bell times, we believe we can adjust our schedule enough to give a late morning break to 6th-8th graders.  This recess break will make up for the loss of a 6th – 8th grade lunch time recess that was necessary when we decided to follow the National Council of Teachers of Mathematics recommendation that there be 60 minutes of math instruction each day in grades kindergarten through 12th grade.  By adjusting morning homeroom times and tweaking some transition time around the 6th-8th grade lunches, we should be able to add a late morning recess break while retaining the 60 minutes of math each day and not negatively impacting other instructional time.
General Music and Choir for 7th and 8th Graders
Look for an upcoming email from Mrs. VanSpeybroeck that will explain the music options for 7th and 8th graders.  As long as the numbers are fairly even, we will be able to offer students the option of a general music class or a choir class.  Both will include public performances.
New Science and Spanish Exploratory Materials and Expanded 6th Grade Spanish Exploratory
New K-5 science materials are currently arriving for this school year.  Sixth through 8th grade materials may depend upon final registration numbers.  (We still have families for about 20 students who have indicated they are coming to JFK but have not yet returned tuition contracts.)  Our 6th-8th graders will be utilizing a new Spanish I textbook in their foreign language exploratory classes.  Sixth graders will now have their Spanish exploratory class twice per week rather than once.  By the time students finish the 8th grade at JFK, they should have a general overview of all of a Spanish I class.
Used Furniture Donated to JFK
Students in K-2 have benefited the most from this summer’s donation of incredibly high quality used furniture.  Many of the students will have both new chairs and new desks.  Here’s a quick question for you:  how many different sizes of chairs, desks, and tables are needed in a school that serves 3 year olds through 8th graders?
Meitler Hired for Scott County Catholic School Strategic Planning
Strategic planning for Catholic school education in Scott County is moving ahead.  Meitler has been hired to lead the process.  Meitler has extensive experience both across the nation and in Iowa.  Data gathering will begin this summer, and meetings, focus groups, and surveys will begin in late August.
Strategic planning for Scott County Catholic schools was born out of the diocesan strategic plan for Catholic school education which called for separate strategic planning to be done for Scott and Johnson Counties.  Gone are the days of dramatically falling enrollment and widespread school closures and consolidations.  It’s time to plan for how Catholic schools can be strong and prosper in the future.
School Policies Highlighted
I would like to thank the following parents and staff members who helped review parent/student handbook policies this spring:  Jody Mucciarone, Lucas Roth, Tom Poston, Ashley Neumiller, Mike Kane, Tammy Nagle, Meredith Ash, Kitty Temming, Dianne Siefers, Julie Bauer, Noelle Myers, Rachael Whelchel, Kim Burken, and Kristina Rose.  Each year we review about 1/3 of the policies in our handbook.  Every year the four dress code related policies are reviewed.  Below are highlights to the changes:
  • Added as examples of Level II misbehaviors:  Targeting others on social media or electronic devices, which then affects the school environment; taking a photograph or video/audio recording without permission; unauthorized use of a cell phone
  • Specifically stated that smart watches are in the same category as “cell phones and other electronic devices” and prohibited from use between 7:00 a.m. and until students leave the building
  • Emphasized that there are only two approved vendors for uniform jumpers/skirts:  Religious Supply on Jersey Ridge and Denis Uniform Supply (online)
  • Applied the 2″ logo guideline to nearly all apparel and limited logos/words to one per item  (Shirts with logos/words on the front and back, front and sleeve, or front and shoulder, etc. are not allowed under the policy, but socks can now have a 2″ maximum size logo)
  • Changed the belt requirement to grades 4-8 only
  • Defined more specific consequences for issues with hair, particularly for unnatural coloring.  Do not color your child’s hair now.  It may not come out by the time school starts
  • Defined tardies, 1/2 day absences, and full day absences
  • Changed when athletic eligibility is checked
  • Added language regarding student records and video
I always find the annual dress code review to be interesting.  It’s difficult to have 8-12 adults develop common understandings in even 30 minutes of discussion time.  Then, implementing the dress code with 250 families and 50+ staff members trying to have common understandings just by reading the code makes it even more challenging.  At the committee level, for example, our discussion of “true red” probably took us five minutes alone and another ten minutes at the board meeting.  (UnderArmour red is OK.  But watch out for the number of logos/words and locations of the logos on their shirts!)

Registration for Summer Programming at JFK Still Available:

Leaps & Bounds:  Does your child need a little boost as we approach the next school year?  Our Iowa certified staff will provide opportunities for your kindergarten through 5th grade child to grow by Leaps and Bounds.  Sign up for one, two or even both sessions.  The program runs from 8:00 – 11:30 each day.  Two hours are for reading, one hour is for math, and 30 minutes is for recess and other fun.  The ratio is kept at 7 to 1 students per teacher or less.  Cost is $180.

Session III:  July 30 – Aug 10

Math Boot Camp: Math Boot Camp will help to kick start your student’s math skills before school begins in August. Students will work with an Iowa certified teacher to review main concepts learned in the previous grade.  Each day will be an intensive  Math Boot Camp is for students of all learning ability levels entering grades 6-8.  The camp is from August 6 – 10.  The cost is $40 per student.

Incoming 6th graders:  8:00-9:30 a.m.         Incoming 7th graders:  9:30-11:00 a.m.          Incoming 8th Graders:  11:00-12:30 p.m.

Jump Start Kindergarten:  Jump Start Kindergarten provides a review of alphabet letters and sounds, basic math concepts, and literacy skills.  This week long review will also include story times and interactive white board activities.  What a great way for your child to practice instructional routines in a fun, enriching atmosphere!  Jump Start Kindergarten is August 6 – 10 from 8:00 – 10:00 a.m.  Cost is $50 or $55, depending upon eligibility for the early bird registration cost.

Summer Tutoring: Interested in a little one-on-one time for your child to have with a teacher?  JFK teachers are available this summer for tutoring students in a variety of areas.  Tutoring is one-on-one for grades K-8 by the hour ($22) or half-hour ($11).  Dates and times are flexible and can be arranged with the teacher.  Please contact Mrs. Motto for K-2 reading/language arts, Mrs. Lundquist for 3-5 reading/language arts/5th grade math, Ms. Burken for 6-8 reading/language arts, Mrs. Burke for reading/language arts, and/or Mrs. Schott for K-8 summer STEAM projects mentoring.

Instrumental Lessons: Need to get the rust off your child’s instrument or his/her playing skills?  Private lessons can be a great help (especially for younger grades) at retaining the current instrument knowledge.  It can also serve as early preparation for SEIBA auditions, marching band with Assumption, 6th-grade band fests and more. There is no minimum or maximum number of lessons that you can sign up for; everything is based on availability.  Lessons can be arranged weekly or bi-weekly, a certain amount over the course of the summer, or sporadically.  Cost is $22 per hour or $11 per half hour.

Registration forms for any summer programming:  Click HERE or use the following link/url:  https://www.olvjfk.com/for-parents/policies-forms/ for registration forms.

 

Registration and Back to School Sunday
Don’t forget registration and back to school Sunday on July 29th from 10:00 a.m. – 1:00 p.m. on a drop-in basis.  A “forms only” session is from 5:00 – 7:00 p.m. on July 30th.  Both are in the cafeteria.
Immunization Reminder for Students Entering 7th Grade in 2018-19
The law in the State of Iowa states that the Meningococcal vaccine (MenACWY) is required before your student starts the 2018-2019 school year in 7th grade.
 Students entering 7th grade need proof of 1 dose of meningococcal vaccine (MenACWY).
 Remember Tdap is also required for students entering 7th grade.
Please call your health care provider or the Scott County Health Department at 563-326-8618 to set up an appointment.