September 15, 2019

Catechetical Sunday — Thank You to Those with “Mass Parts”

Thank you to Elise B., Rylie D., Cleary C., Ryan B., Lauren L, Jadyn W., Maggie A., Quinn C., Dominic N., and Heath W. for volunteering to have leadership roles in this Mass.  As the Mass attendance rate of school families seems to reflect that of the general Catholic and OLV community (32% at OLV during the last official attendance weekends last November), it is even sometimes difficult to find students who can volunteer for “Mass parts.”  Thank you also to our altar servers.

Parish Picnic

The OLV parish picnic is Saturday, September 21st after the 4:30 p.m. Mass. Golf carts will be available to take people from the parking lot to the school grounds and handicap seating will be available.  Bring your lawn chairs and your appetite as we will be serving BBQ catered by Smokin’ Butt BBQ, iced tea, lemonade, coffee and water.  Beer and wine coolers will be available for purchase. Music and fun for all!  Tickets are $1 each and free for children 5 and under.  (Children still need tickets so we can get an accurate attendance count.)  Tickets will be sold each weekend until September 14 in the Gathering Space. Tickets may also be purchased at the parish and school offices.  In addition to your ticket you are asked to bring 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 Desserts     I – P bring Vegetables     Q – Z bring Salads

Plenty of volunteers are also needed.  Click HERE or use the following link/url to sign up to help:

Locals Love Us – Do You?

Vote for JFK on  Preschool, childcare, and K-8 Private school categories.


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.

Handbook Sign-Off

Please read the parent and student handbook, available HERE, and on our website:  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.

I would like to thank the parents and staff who helped review parent/student handbook policies this spring or provided feedback on specific policies:  Each year we review about 1/3 of the policies in our handbook, and every year the four dress code related policies are reviewed.

Reminder:  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.

Open Position

We have an instructional aide position available to assist students and teachers in elementary classes and supervisory duties.  To apply, please send a letter of interest, resume, and references or stop in the school office for an application.

Welcome Emma Wolf

JFK is pleased to welcome Mrs. Emma Wolf to the staff as our new student support specialist, a position that will have many duties similar to a school counselor.  Mrs. Wolf is a recent St. Ambrose University graduate with a master’s degree in social work.  She has experience working with youth in several settings.  Mrs. Wolf will be transitioning into the position while Mrs. Weiser transitions out of the position and back into the classroom full time.  We expect to welcome another Wolf in January as Mrs. Wolf is due with their first child toward the beginning of the month.

Portable A/C Experiment

Our portable air conditioning experiment in a classroom yielded little benefit.  Without someone full-time in one of our small interior offices, we utilized one of our portable air conditioning units down the hall in an experiment in Mrs. Kubalsky’s science room.  Compared to Mrs. Whelchel’s and Mrs. Kuehn’s neighboring classrooms, we were only able to lower the temperature by about two degrees when running the portable air conditioning unit at least 9-10 hours per day and dismantling the ventilation at night so the building could be secured.

On another day last week, we experimented with operating our industrial dehumidifier in the science room.  While we didn’t have measurement tools, the room felt no different than the neighboring classrooms.

So where are we with our major HVAC project?  Last week, we also met with Derek Wilson of Ryan & Associates and Russ Meier of Mechanical Sales and parent of a current JFK student and graduates.  They will be working together to update our A/C and ventilation plan.  Now that we are setting aside funds toward this project, it is time to refresh the details.

Back in 2016, we explored a complete HVAC project for the school and looked at ten different options, including one that would “just” add window air conditioning units.  A variable refrigerant flow system with a boiler was recommended.  Heating was the first phase and was completed during the summer of 2017.  We are now looking to see how the air conditioning and ventilation phase can be completed or even have phases itself that can be completed a little bit at a time.

“Magazine” Sale

Home & School’s “magazine” sale begins on Tuesday.  This fund-raiser is the largest one by our Home & School.  Home & School helps provide for the needs of all students.  It is a major contributor toward the annual upkeep of the gym floor and the re-mulching of the two playgrounds.  It provides each teacher with $300 toward the needs in their classrooms.  (Did you know that teachers spend, on average nationally, about $500 of their own money each year on classroom supplies?)  Please support JFK’s Home & School Association.

Provide input to Home & School by attending this Thursday’s meeting at 6:30 p.m. in the parish center.  All JFK families are automatically members of Home & School.

Future Lady Knights Basketball

Registration for Future Lady Knights Basketball is underway, and a special registration night is Wednesday from 6:30 – 7:45 at Assumption.  FLK is fo girls in 3rd to 8th grade who are interested in attending AHS and who want to be part of the developmental and competitive basketball feeder program.  Registration forms and fee information can be obtained by email if you contact OLV parishioner Joe Creen at  If you have questions, please call Debbie Giganti at 563-359-3085 or Joe Creen at 563-343-0781.

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

Makeshift Solution?

On Saturday, Lynn and I used some old pieces of railroad ties and 6 x 6 pieces of lumber we had around the yard to make a patch for the worst part of our failing retaining wall.  We’ll see how well it works and how long it lasts as we save money for a more permanent solution.  I think my kids would recognize and appreciate our ingenuity.  Through every science or other school project, we were always trying to think of what could be done with what we had on hand without spending a lot of money.  Growing up, I remember being a fan of the TV show, “MacGeyver.”  I was always amazed at what could be done with a stick of gum, a piece of lint, and the lens from one’s eyeglasses.