Dear Students of Assumption Catholic School,
It is with a heart filled with joy, excitement, and gratitude that I reminisce about our 2020-2021 school year. As my fourth year as principal, I had the most sleepless nights planning to reopen this year. The responsibility of reopening our doors during a pandemic, ensuring every safety protocol and detail was thought about, thinking of student and teacher safety measures was truly overwhelming. I had many projects and ideas in mind that had to wait, and many ZOOM calls to attend and yet deep down inside I somehow knew that we would be okay. As I greeted each of you on the first day of school, I quickly realized that God was in control and the Blessed Mother would protect us. Even though we had to wear masks, deal with tech issues, had to buy enough hand sanitizer for a small army, and had to keep our personal belongings in plastic bins – WE MADE IT HAPPEN – AND MADE IT LOOK EASY!
As the school year started we welcomed new teachers and almost 20 new in-school and virtual students! What a blessing. And more students, means more minds to keep engaged and busy. So, in addition to the existing 21CCLC ACS clubs, your teachers started: Chess, Accelerated Math Club, Gaming, Scrapbooking, Impact Innovators, Knitting and Crocheting. But we didn’t stop there. With our allocated funds, grant money and COVID Relief monies we added nine new Promethean Boards, new access points, 100+ new Chromebooks, rolled out a new science curriculum for grade 6 (wait till next year 7 and 8!), and built a brand new STEM room. Surely, we can’t forget the new windows and shades.
Behind the scenes, ACS teachers attended over 44 hours of professional development– we are all Googled out!
Let’s continue to take a look at the highlights from this year. With the FSA Board at the helm, we raised over to $30,000 with a very successful Virtual Christmas Bazaar, plant sales, donations and candy sales. Despite the limitations, we also sustained our Student Community Outreach projects and focused on raising awareness of those in need. We did the following: School Supplies for the needy, Thanksgiving Food Drive, Easter Food Drive, and Adopt a Seminarian. During Catholic Schools Week our activities also focused on praying for those in need and those affected by the pandemic.
We were able to have small celebrations; unlike any other school year we could not celebrate as a whole school community. Yet, we still took time to rejoice and be grateful for all the good in the world and all Catholic Schools who continue to build our children’s faith and love in Christ.
We also have to mention the beautiful send off to the Class of 2021. They had a Countdown to Grad Lunch, Lawn Signs, Personalized t-shirts and of course their class trip to Great Adventure topped off with a lovely dinner at the Armory. Their Graduation ceremony was celebrated with a beautiful liturgy in their honor and presentation of their diplomas and awards. We also celebrated the Class of 2029 Kindergarten Graduation with family and friends in our school auditorium and what a delight!
It was a very different type of school year and yet, so productive! Throughout it all, we recognize our dedicated Pastor, Father Ivan, who guided administrative decisions with love, allegiance to our school, and our best interests at heart, which made this reopening possible and made this a successful school year. We also thank our Deacon and parishioners for their unwavering commitment to ACS even through this pandemic. This school year would not have been possible without the dedicated teachers who work so hard and give so much of themselves. The changes that ACS has gone through the last couple of years has been possible through their courage and commitment to Catholic School education and our mission. They are the driving force for our success. I thank my school parents, who entrusted their children to us during this difficult time and appreciate you more than words can express.
In closing, to the ACS Class of 2021, as you start high school and continue your academic careers, may God always protect you and our Blessed Mother always offer you her protection. Always remember, ACS is your home and we are your biggest supporters. Congratulations!
To the rest of the ACS student body, have a wonderful summer! Do your Summer assignments to keep the brain sharp and most importantly be kind and keep God in all of your hearts. Your teachers and I wish you the best summer ever – WE HAVE ALL EARNED IT!