The Sentinel

September 10, 2014

Principal’s Message

The safety of your children is always a top priority at All Saints.  In recent years, in accordance with national initiatives and diocesan policy, we have taken additional steps to do our part to ensure that your children are in a safe place when they are participating in a program at All Saints Catholic School.  For example, all of our faculty, staff and volunteers are required to complete a background check as well as training.  As an additional measure, nine years ago we implemented the Formation in Christian Chastity Program to help your children recognize the steps they can take to keep themselves safe.

The Formation in Christian Chastity Program serves as an additional measure to assist us in establishing and maintaining a safe environment for our students.  As outlined in the materials, information is provided primarily to parents as a resource to be used in the formation of their children.  There is one classroom lesson for students in grades one through four and two lessons for those in grades five through eight.

We will be integrating the objectives of the program into our religion lessons in these grades during the last two weeks of September.  The entire curriculum can be accessed through the diocesan website: www.arlingtondiocese.org.  (Click on the Child Protection tab found under the heading of Education.  To view the grade level lesson plans, click on Training Programs followed by the tab for the Formation in Christian Chastity Program.)

You are encouraged to spend some time reviewing this information yourself and to then share pertinent aspects with your children.  Each of the “rules” contains some application to common sense safety tips that you may share with your children.  Other parts of the “rule” apply to some of the decisions that you make as parents for the safety of your children.  A question and answer segment provides some suggestions as to how you might best address these concerns with your children.  Our goal is to equip both you and your children with the knowledge that can help to keep them safe.

The essential point is that parents need to be involved with their children.  The more you know about the daily events of your child’s life, the better you are able to spot any danger signs that may surface.  The more regular communication you have with your children, the freer they are to come to you with their concerns.

Should you have any questions about the Formation in Christian Chastity Program or about the classroom lessons, please do not hesitate to let us know.  In the event that you would prefer to not have your child participate in the classroom training, please contact the front office to request an opt-out form.

*********************************************************************************

The Design for Excellence re-accreditation process is officially underway at All Saints!  Over the course of the next several months the faculty will complete a thorough self-study process by which they will respond to a series of questions and document many aspects of our program.

In support of this process, tomorrow the office will distribute an electronic survey to each family, requesting feedback on a range of topics.  Although we estimate that completion of the survey will only require 5-10 minutes, please know that the information you provide will be very important as we review our current program and plan for the future.  We ask that parents respond to the survey no later than Friday, September 19th.  Check your inbox tomorrow for this special survey.

Middle School Back to School Night (Classrooms/7:00 p.m.)

Back to School Night for parents of students in grades 6-8 will take place tomorrow evening beginning at 7:00 p.m.  Please note:  Parents are asked to report directly to their son or daughter’s homeroom classroom rather than the Parish Activity Center.

Take-Home Forms ~ Revised Process

This year important forms to be sent home will be distributed via the youngest child in a family.  Parents are reminded to check their child’s take-home folder for forms and periodic flyers.

Picture Day – Dress-Up Day Code

On special days designated by the principal, such as our Fall Picture Day, students may dress out of uniform.  The following code is intended to encourage individuality and style within the framework of the virtue of modesty.  Girls: Dresses/skirts (no bare shoulders or sleeveless) with the length no shorter than two inches above the floor when kneeling or dress slacks. The skirts and dress slacks may be worn with a white or colored blouse, or sweaters that are not form-fitting.  Not permitted:  Jeans or jeans-style slacks, jeggings, leggings, tight fitting blouses or blouses that expose any part of the midriff.  No athletic shoes other than the school style. No flip flops, sandals or high heels. Toes and heels must be covered.  Jewelry worn must be in accordance with uniform guidelines, such as only one pair of post earrings.  Boys: Shirts with a collar, sweater or sweater vest, dress pants in the style of the uniform trousers, belt, dress shoes.  Not permitted: Jeans or pants that resemble jeans, shorts, sweats, sneakers or t-shirts.

When it is determined that a student has reported to school dressed inappropriately, the student will be sent to the assistant principal who will contact the parents and request that they provide a school uniform for the student prior to his/her returning to class.

TARGET proceeds benefit All Saints!

Thanks to the support of those families registered to participate in TARGET’s rewards program, last week our school received a check in the amount of $1,917.90.  Thank you parents and friends of All Saints!

Grocery Store Programs

Now thru October 28th, Harris Teeter is giving the opportunity for us to earn double credits!  When parents, family, and friends who have VIC cards linked to All Saints purchase Harris Teeter brands, our school earns double the credit.  Also, when you shop their online Express Lane, All Saints will earn 10% of the order total.  This is a tremendous way to further support our school!

The Giant A+ School Rewards program begins on October 3rd and runs through March 19th.  This is another way to support All Saints while doing your regular grocery shopping.

You can register yourself via the Harris Teeter, Giant, and Target websites.  If you would rather the coordinator to register your Harris Teeter or Giant card, simply fill out the registration form in the links section of The Sentinel or in the Grocery Program section of the school’s website.  As the Target REDcard is an actual credit or debit card, we ask that you register yourself for that program.

Parents, Teachers and Students…It’s BoxtopsTime!

Please turn in all your collected boxtops. They do not have to be neatly trimmed, they do not have to be glued or taped to a paper…just put them into a Ziploc bag and turn them in! Please remember to put your student’s first/last name, grade, and teacher (A or B) with a sharpie. A welcome back to school package complete with coupons to come home next week!

2014 All Saints Casino & Auction

The 2014 All Saints Casino & Auction is looking for donations from businesses or families for our live and silent auction as well as our raffles and prizes.  Timeshares, travel miles, sports tickets, or gift items are desired.  Attached please find more information on how to make a donation to make the event a huge success or please contact the planning team at solicitations@allsaintsvaschool.org

Attention All Boys in 1st Through 5th Grade

Cub Scout Dens are now forming for the 2014/2015 Scouting year!  Pack 1188 has been proudly serving the All Saints community for 40 years and sponsored by the Knights of Columbus George Brent Council #5332.  Cub Scouts offers a range of age-appropriate programs that provide fun and adventure while helping build your son’s leadership, teamwork, faith, physical/mental fitness, and spirit of service and duty, helping him grow into a competent, caring, adult of good character.  Boys can start at any level and no prior experience is required. Our next pack meeting is in the Knights of Columbus Hall at 7 PM on Tuesday, September 16, 2014.  If you have a Scouting-age boy who might be interested, give us a call.  He can come to a Pack meeting, see what’s going on, and decide if it’s something, he wants to be a part of.  No pressure. No obligation.  To get the details call or e-mail Cubmaster Randy Waddy at(703) 283-0717 / rrwaddy@yahoo.com

Knights of Columbus Soccer Challenge

All boys and girls between the ages 9-14 are invited to participate in the 2014 Knights of ColumbusSoccer Challenge sponsored by our George Brent Council.  The challenge will be held on Friday September 19 at 6:30pm at All Saints Church Engstrom Field (near the playground behind the school).  There is no cost to participate, no equipment is needed, and no team to join.  This is our 3rd annual penalty kick competition that challenges youth on the soccer ball’s placement in the goal.  Local winners will be awarded prizes and will be eligible to compete in District, State, and International levels of the competition.  Two years ago our very own “All Saint” Nicholas Foeckler was the International Champion for 11 year old boys.  I encourage you to come by and see if you can match Nicholas Foeckler and be the next Champion from All Saints!  All participants must have written parental consent on the entry form.  Entry forms will be available at the event.  If you would like additional information please contact Tommy Reynolds at tommy.reynolds@verizon.net . tommy.reynolds@verizon.net .

IMPORTANT REMINDERS

School Messenger Emergency Notification ~ SYSTEM TEST ~  September 12th

The Diocese of Arlington uses the School Messenger notification service to send important information to families through phone calls, emails, and text messages.  In the event of an emergency, All Saints Catholic School will activate the School Messenger system.  As the system will only be used for this purpose, parents can anticipate that any communications received via this program are critical and deserve particular attention.

In order to participate in the SMS messaging service, you must indicate your willingness to receive text messages to your phone.  The process is simple and only takes a few seconds to complete.

Simply text any one of the following words to the number 68453: subscribe, optin, yes

You’ll know you were successful if you receive the following reply message:

You’re now registered with the SchoolMessenger notification service.  Reply STOP to cancel, HELP for help.  Msg&data rates may apply.  3msg/mo. Schoolmessenger.com/tm

In order to ensure the functionality and accuracy of the system, All Saints will conduct a test on Friday, September 12th.  A test message will be issued via recorded phone message, text and email to the emergency contacts of all students and staff at approximately 10:30 a.m. 

 

Student In-Service ~ Sexual Harassment, Our Policy & Response (Grades 6-8)

In accordance with diocesan policy, students in grades six through eight will participate in a brief classroom presentation within the next two weeks on the topic of the prevention of sexual harassment.  Mr. Conroy will visit each of the homeroom classes for approximately fifteen minutes, providing an overview of the diocesan policy and explaining to students how they should best respond if they encounter any behaviors of this nature.  Should you have any questions about this policy or presentation, please do not hesitate to contact the principal.

 

Use of Student Photos for Marketing Materials

In recent years, a formal marketing program has been implemented at All Saints and we are presently making a consistent effort to share the success of our program via local newspapers and our website.  It is important that parents understand that they retain the right to object to their son/daughter’s inclusion in these printed or electronic materials.  A “Waiver Information/Right to Object Form” (Appendix N) is located on the website within the forms section associated with the parent-student handbook.  Please note: If the form is not returned, we will assume that you waive your right to object.

 

Criminal Background Checks for Volunteers & VIRTUS Requirements

As part of the diocesan initiative to maintain a safe environment for all of our children, all volunteers with “substantial contact” with children are required to complete a background check prior to working in the school and to complete VIRTUS training within 45 days of commencing service.  To register for an upcoming training, please visit www.virtus.org.

 

In accordance with diocesan policy, full compliance for an adult parent volunteer is not required for open events.  (An open event is one that is open to the public, infrequent and publicized, such as Field Day, concerts and special events/assemblies.)  However, full compliance is required for adult parent volunteers who wish to participate in closed events.  (A closed event is one that is not entirely open to the general public such as classroom activities, parties, field trips, etc.)  For this reason, all parents who wish to attend field trips or volunteer in support of classroom activities are required to complete the background check process and attend VIRTUS training. 

 

As we begin a new year, in accordance with diocesan policy, only those parents who have completed the criminal background check are eligible to volunteer in the school.  Those who have not yet completed the background check process may request a packet of forms from the front office.  

 

The diocese also requires volunteers who have completed the full VIRTUS training to attend an annual update entitled Keeping the Promise Alive.  This 30 minute video training is a prerequisite for volunteering in the school.  The following is a list of upcoming sessions.

 

We have scheduled the following opportunities for completing the half-hour VIRTUS update:
Wednesday, September 10th in the Art Room at 7:00 PM

Tuesday, September 16th in Meeting Room 1 at 7:00 PM

Thursday, September 18th in Father Kelley Hall at 2:15 PM

Note:  For this session, pre-registration by September 16th is required.

Wednesday, September 24th in Meeting Room 1 at 7:00 PM

Wednesday, October 1st in Meeting Room 1 at 7:00 PM

 

We are requesting advance registration by telephone or email for this brief update.  Attendance will be taken to ensure that you receive credit for completing the training.  If you have any questions or to register, please call Mrs. Janet Smith, Virtus Coordinator at the Parish Office, (703) 393-2158 or email her at jsmith@allsaintsva.org

 

(Note:  As Mrs. Smith will be out of the office from September 30th – October 14th, volunteers are encouraged to submit background check forms by September 22nd so that they may be processed in advance.)

 

Upcoming Events

Thursday, September 11th

  • Middle School Night (7:00 p.m.)

Friday, September 12th

  • School Mass (8:30 a.m.)
  • Priests’ Barbecue (11:15 a.m. – 1:00 p.m.)
  • School Messenger Test (10:30 a.m.)

Monday, September 15th

  • Fall Picture Day
  • Formation in Christian Chastity Program begins

Thursday, September 18th

  • Room Liaisons Meeting (9:00 a.m.)
  • SCA Installation Ceremony (PAC/1:30 p.m.)
  • Enrollment Management Team Meeting – cancelled

Friday, September 19th

  • School Mass (8:30 a.m.)
  • Noon Dismissal – DFE Faculty Meeting
  • Spirit Event: Chick-fil-A (6:30 a.m. – 9:30 p.m.)

 

Links

2014 Casino & Auction Information Form – https://allsaintsvaschool.org/index/wp-content/plugins/download-monitor/download.php?id=Solicitation-Form-2014.pdf

EMERGENCY CARE FORM – http://www.allsaintsvaschool.org/index/wp-content/uploads/downloads/2012/08/emergency-form.pdf

Grocery Program Sign-Up (which includes Target) – https://allsaintsvaschool.org/index/wp-content/plugins/download-monitor/download.php?id=Grocery-Program-letter-2014-2015-with-TARGET.pdf