May 14, 2017

Last Day of K-8 School:  May 31st

JFK’s last day of school will be Wednesday, May 31st.  Dismissal is at 1:00, and bus transportation and before/after school child care are available that day.  This move follows the DCSD’s decision to eliminate a day of school and its impact on bus transportation.  Thank you for responding to the poll.

Field Day remains on the 30th, and the Graduation Mass remains on June 2nd.

Please also continue to check the website calendar and backpack mail for other happenings in May.  It gets very busy this time of year!

Discounted Registration Fee Deadline Expired — Open Registration Now Begins

The deadline for discounted registration fees has passed, and we are also now in open registration.”  Seats are no longer reserved for returning families and parishioners.  If you have not returned your tuition contract for next year, please do so as soon as possible.  You don’t want to be without a seat!  For questions about your tuition contract, please contact Rita Nagle in the parish office (391-4245).

Preschool and ECLC Registration Continues — Childcare Still Available

Registration for preschool and ECLC continues in the school office.  JFK has several options for three and four year olds, and there are still some childcare spots available:

  • T/Th morning 3 year olds
  • MWF morning 3 year olds
    • Both of the 3 year old programs can be combined with full day childcare.
  • M-F morning 4-5 year olds.  This program can be combined with full day childcare.
  • M-F afternoon 4-5 year olds

Register now as waiting lists have started to form.

Summer Programming

JFK has a variety of summer programming options.  Contact the school office for registration details:

  • Leaps & Bounds:  Academically oriented program for kindergarten – 6th graders.  Useful for brushing up on one’s skills or for moving ahead even more.  There are four sessions available throughout the summer with each session being two weeks.  Sign up for one or more sessions!  8:00 – 11:30 a.m., with drop off beginning at 7:45.  Student to adult ratio at ten to one or less.  See the website calendar for the dates of each session.
  • Vacation Bible School:  June 5-9, 8:30 – 11:30, with drop off beginning at 8:00.  Kindergarten through fourth graders will love participating in the skits, stories, singing, and crafts of VBS.
  • Kindergarten Jumpstart:  For incoming kindergartners.  August 7 -11, from 8:00 – 10:00 a.m.
  • Instrumental lessons:  For individual lessons over the summer, please contact Mr. Connors
  • One-on-one Tutoring:  Tutoring from JFK teachers may be available over the summer.  We are still examining staff availability

John Deere Employees Can Double Their Giving

Did you know that effective 5/1/2017, all full-time & part-time employees of John Deere can now have their monetary gifts to JFK school matched 100% from as little as $50 to a maximum of $1000 annually. For more information regarding the John Deere Foundation, simply log into Your link then to register your gift is for all guidelines, forms and corporate contact questions.

What a simple way to DOUBLE your giving and help OLV sustain a model learning & growing Catholic school!

New Part-Time Position

The parish and school are combining to offer a new office position beginning in June 2017.  Duties include maintaining the church and school databases, school personnel files, and calendars.  Ordering and inventorying school textbooks and supplies and assisting with registration, communications, and copying are also included.  The 20 hour per week position requires work in both the parish and school offices and includes work over the summer.  Send letter, resume, and references to, or complete an application in the school office.

Lunch Program Position for the Fall

We are considering an increase to our paid lunch program staff for the fall.  Hours are typically around 9:30 or 10:00 a.m. through about 1:30 p.m.  Duties might include food preparation, serving food, cleaning the kitchen and cafeteria, and stocking food.  If interested, please send a message to me at or complete an application in the school office.

Permanent Memorial for Peg Gooder

Several individuals and groups have inquired about installing a permanent memorial for Peg Gooder out by the playground equipment.  We are now accepting donations for a memorial bench to be purchased and installed in her memory.  If you or your organization would like to make a donation for such a memorial, please send it to the school office in an envelope labeled, “Peg Gooder memorial.”  Checks can be written to Our Lady of Victory.

Fidget Spinners

Fidget spinners are another viral sensation.  On one day a while back, I saw a couple and thought, “Hmm.  Those are interesting.”  The next day, it seems, they were “everywhere,” and students and staff alike were struggling to determine what was appropriate and not and how they might be utilized without actually being the distraction themselves.  In the interests of some degree of uniformity, I will put these spinners in the same category as other “fidgets.”  If parents believe their children need a fidget as an intervention for a diagnosed need, the childrens’ parents should contact Mrs. Schott so the appropriate supports can be determined.  Most likely, we’d be able to determine another type of fidget that a student could use that doesn’t have the sensationalism and distraction that fidget spinners are currently causing.  (We have a wide variety of less obtrusive tools that can be used.)  In the absence of a diagnosed need, fidget spinners will be considered toys and should be left at home.

Can and Should Are Not Necessarily the Same

Last Wednesday, Mrs. Kubalsky (JFK’s 6th-8th grade science teacher) and I were wrestling with the notion that just because one can do something with virtual reality doesn’t mean one should do it as we participated in a demonstration of virtual reality for supplemental science activities for grades 5-8.  There were some amazing elements to the “demo” that clearly only can be done with virtual reality, such as some of the virtual field trips.  Using virtual reality to stand in the Redwood Forest in California is a totally different experience than looking at it in a book or on a 2-D computer screen.  For these types of uses, virtual reality is the way to go!  On the other hand, using the virtual reality headset to do an online quiz/activity by staring at each item for three seconds to select it, drag it, and then staring at its “drop site” for another three seconds all while being a contortionist to be able to “see” all of the quiz items seems a little silly compared to what can be done with today’s mouse and computer that cost thousands of dollars less.  We also saw a virtual reality demo of a science activity that we actually have students do in real life.  Again, I’m not sure that just because one can do it with a virtual reality system costing thousands of dollars means one should do it that way, particularly when students can do it hands-on themselves for probably less than $100.  Let’s hope that as things continue to progress in the future with technology for education a good balance will be struck.