May 17, 2020

Return to Learn Plans for Next Year

This past week, we have been furthering our discussions about “Return to Learn” planning for next school year.  We will likely have three separate plans ready.  One will be a plan for remote learning similar to what we are doing now.  This plan could be used if we could not have students on campus for long or short periods of time.  If we were to start school with students physically on-site, but had to close the school, a grade, or even just a homeroom for several days in February, for example, we would use the remote learning plan.

A second plan is for having students on campus in August.  In this plan, we are looking at how we can promote healthy hygiene practices with hand-washing and the use of hand sanitizer, how we can intensify our disinfection of the building, and how we can encourage social distancing and minimize the mixing of groups.  On Thursday, for example, we set up a typical sized classroom and one of our smallest classrooms too see what 6 feet between student desks would look like and how many students could we accommodate in each room.  One of the things we are blessed with at JFK is large classrooms!  While they may not be set up how we would otherwise like them to be, we can meet suggestions for social distancing within our classrooms.

The third plan is a hybrid plan or something that might be in between everyone working remotely and everyone being on campus.  There are a lot of transportation issues that would have to be considered with a hybrid model so we won’t work too much on that one until we have a better idea of what the DCSD might do for a hybrid model.

No Start Date Yet for Next Year

We still have not heard when the DCSD will start next year, and we won’t set our date until we know theirs so we can consider any bus issues.  It does sound like early August start dates will no longer be considered, however.  Prior to COVID-19, plans were progressing toward an August 24th start date.  I doubt that we would consider anything much earlier than August 17th now, if even that early.

Legislative Alert to Help Nonpublic Schools and JFK

Please take a moment to contact your Members of Congress to ask that emergency aid to nonpublic schools and families be included in the next Covid-19 Legislation package. Our requests include equitable access to K-12 federal funds for nonpublic schools, direct support to families for tuition assistance and additional tax breaks for K-12 tuition payments.

As always, we encourage you to include your personal story in the message to your legislators, as well.

Our nonpublic schools and the families they serve should be included in the COVID-19 relief legislation. Make your voice heard by contacting your Congressional members today. Thank you for your advocacy!

Click the link below to log in and send your message:

How are OLV and JFK Doing?

Fr. Jake, the Finance Council, and I have been operating on a “plan for the worst, hope for the best” mentality.  With nine weeks of no Masses now and large numbers of people unemployed in the community, we were preparing for the loss of church revenue and families having difficulty staying current with tuition payments.  While both of those things have happened, we, at OLV and JFK, have, again, been blessed.  The negative impact hasn’t been as bad as it could have been.  More people have, for example, turned to automated or online “envelope” giving to OLV, and some families have been able to direct some of their stimulus checks toward OLV or toward their JFK tuition bills.  We also have a few families that are working with Fr. Jake to develop personalized payment plans for tuition.  We will make it through the crisis together!

Donations, Payments, and Registration for Next Year

Both the school and the church are still dependent upon your regular contributions and payments.  Donation buttons are located on the front page of both the school (green) and parish (blue) sides of our website.  Tuition payments can be mailed, dropped off at the parish office, or made via debit/credit card over the phone.

We still want to continue the registration process for next school year.  Returned tuition contracts helps us plan for next year as well.  Please return your tuition contract as soon as you can, even without paying the registration fee now.  That can be paid later, if necessary.  At the present time, we are extending the discounted registration fee (discounted to $100) until June 1st.  If you need another copy of your tuition contract, please contact Emily Sanderson at  Emily and Angie Hillebrand are also contacting families via phone to offer reminders and help.

Algebra Aptitude Testing Timeline Updated for 7th Graders

There was an issue with the licensing for 7th graders to use ALEKS software to do an Algebra aptitude test to help make recommendations regarding students who might want to consider taking Algebra at Assumption as an 8th grader.  Seventh grade families should have received a letter from Assumption High School last week with their log in information.  I believe the test opens on May 18th, and we are looking for completion by May 21st.

JFK Graduation

One of the things missing from our 8th graders’ spring has been the opportunity for photos.  There’s been no May Crowning, no big field trip, no dress up dinner at the Outing Club, no 7/8 spring showcase, no Crusader Theater, no Confirmation, and no graduation as we normally have it.  Eighth grade families should have received an email last week about a social distancing-friendly way to do photos by TSS at JFK on Tuesday, May 19th from 3:00-5:20.  We will also be congratulating JFK graduates after the last Mass in May on COZI-TV and have names displayed on a special banner on our property.

At 6:30 p.m. on June 5th, we will do something similar to our reverse teacher parade just for our 8th graders.  Their last stop in the parking lot will be to receive a “goodie bag” of several items, including their 8th grade t-shirt, ribbon/medallion, diploma, special video, and other personalized items.

“Closure” to the End of the School Year for Everyone

To find “closure” to the end of this school year for all students, we will be making a special video for each grade level that will be shared and posted.  We’ll also have some personalized items for our students.  Our distribution method will be set in conjunction with a method to distribute yearbooks and to collect Chromebooks, 8th grade ELA textbooks, JFK and AEA library books, etc.  Details will be shared in a week or two.

OLV parish bulletin:  Click HERE or use the following link/url:

Slight Changes to our Website

We have made a few changes to the home page of our website,  We hope they will help you even more easily find information you are seeking regularly these days.

Reality as Troubling as TV?

My youngest daughter, Caitlin, has been home from college for about two weeks now.  This afternoon we watched an episode of Criminal Minds together.  While it’s certainly not a show for kids, we do enjoy trying to solve the case before the TV team.  After the episode today, I said I needed to turn back to reality and do some work to prepare for Monday’s tasks dealing with COVID issues.  Sometimes reality is as troubling as what’s on TV!

Fr. Jake’s Questions of the Week

Fr. Jake answers two questions this week from students:


Stay well!  Our Lady of Victory,…pray for us.