COVID-19 UPDATE FOR SMHS COMMUNITY

As of Monday, March 16, 2020, Saint Mary's High School began using remote learning through online instruction. We expect our campus to remain closed through the remainder of the school year; however, Saint Mary's will return to campus earlier if public health officers deem it safe to do so. We will continue to work with public health authorities, and we will keep you updated as our country's response to COVID-19 evolves. 
 
 
 
ACADEMICS
How can I help my student adapt to remote learning?
Require your student to check each of his/her classes on Schoology every morning
(M-F). Teachers are posting all assignments through Schoology since it is our main communication platform. While teachers are using some new tools to implement their curriculum, these tools are linked through Schoology.
Encourage your student to plan ahead. Teachers are scheduling occasional quizzes and Zoom sessions during students’ regular class time as this is the only way we can avoid schedule conflicts. Teachers will give at least one day’s notice if students need to be “present” on Schoology at a particular time.
Encourage your student to track assignment due dates through the Schoology calendar and access assignments through the “Materials” and “Updates” on the Schoology menu. Although remote learning demands a higher level of organization and independent work, teachers are available for group and individual help during the school day.
Encourage your student to take regular breaks away from any screens. Getting fresh air, exercise and good nutrition are important elements for maintaining mental health.
Access your student’s counselor and communicate with teachers if your
family is undergoing higher levels of stress during this time.
 
Will we be out for the rest of the year?
We expect our campus to remain closed through the remainder of the school year; however, Saint Mary's will return to campus earlier if public health officers deem it safe to do so. We will continue to work with public health authorities, and we will keep you updated as our country's response to COVID-19 evolves. 
 
I applied for Athlete PE credit.   Will I get Athlete PE credit this semester if there's no sport season?
If you have applied for and have been granted Athletic PE, you will receive credit even if the sport season has been suspended.
 
Do you have any idea about finals?  Will they still take place on campus in May? 
Administration, along with the department chairs are in discussion about final exams.
 
Are we still planning on having summer school?
We are still planning on having summer school. If this changes you will be informed by the summer school principal.
 
What is the attendance policy if my student is sick during this remote learning phase?
If a student is sick or unable to attend any school day(s) during our remote learning phase, parents are required to email the SMHS Attendance office attendance@saintmaryshighschool.org within 24 hours of the student's absence. Students cannot excuse their own absence.
 
What is Zoom and why are teachers using Zoom?
Zoom is a video conferencing service, which allows our students and teachers to interface with each other in real time for more "face-to-face" connection. Some teachers may record these sessions so that they can be shared with students who may have missed the session or who wish to review certain sections again. These recordings will only be made available to students who are enrolled in the particular class and who have been given a link from their teacher to join the session.
Parents -by allowing your students attend these sessions, you are granting Saint Mary's permissions to record their image, comments and questions during the sessions.
 
GRADUATION
Click here to listen to Principal Kathy Smith's Message to Seniors. We are committed to having some type of a graduation ceremony. All options will be considered including a June or July ceremony at UOP if necessary. We continue to keep in communication with UOP.
 
STUDENT ACTIVITIES
When will Class Elections begin? What will the process be?
At this time, the availability of class officer applications has been postponed until April 20th with elections tentatively occurring Tuesday, April 28th.
 
Is Prom canceled?
At this time, Prom is still scheduled for May 2. However, in the event that it needs to be rescheduled, we are prepared to schedule prom for a later date.
 
Is Powder Puff and Rough & Tough canceled?
At this time, Powder Puff and Rough & Tough have been postponed until further notice. We hope to reschedule these events for a future date. 
 
ATHLETICS
When are sports going to return to play?
The CIF will put out a statement on April 3 to discuss the status of spring sports.
 
Will they condense the league season then have playoffs?
The CIF is considering several different scenarios ranging from adjusted league play only to some type of Section championship.
 
Can my students work out at SMHS facilities if they are alone?

Students are NOT allowed to work out alone or in the presence of a coach. The facilities at SMHS are closed the public.
 
When and where will our upcoming fall sports meeting be if campus is still closed?
8th grade parents will receive this information in the mail if we have not resumed classes on campus by May.
 
 
We know students are struggling to balance school work while keeping worries under control. When many things feel uncertain or out of our control, one of the most effective ways we can manage stress and anxiety is to focus on the actions that are in our control.
Here are some ways you can take intentional steps to look after your physical and emotional wellbeing during this challenging time:

Protect yourself and other from COVID-19
Prevent the virus from spreading including practicing good hygiene and social distancing.
 
Acknowledge your feelings
Whatever you are feeling right now, know that it’s okay to feel that way. Allow yourself time to notice and express what you’re feeling. This could be through journaling, talking with others, or channeling your emotions into something creative (e.g., drawing, painting, poetry, music.) Having a healthy routine can have a positive impact on your thoughts and feelings. Go back to basics: eating healthy meals, physical exercise (e.g., walking, stretching, running, cycling), doing things you enjoy and getting enough sleep.
 
Stay connected
Receiving support and care from others has a powerful effect on helping us cope with challenges. Spending time with supportive family and friends can bring a sense of comfort and stability. Talking through our concerns, thoughts, and feelings with others can also help us find helpful ways of thinking about or dealing with a stressful situation.
 
Keep things in perspective
In a situation that’s uncertain, it’s natural to have many ‘what if?’ questions in our minds. In the absence of information, our anxious mind will often fill in the blanks with worst case scenarios, which can leave us feeling overwhelmed, helpless, or vulnerable. Here are some questions you can ask yourself to shift your thinking from doubt and uncertainty to a more helpful mindset:
  • What are the things within my control?

  • Am I overestimating the likelihood of the worst-case scenario?

  • What strategies have helped me cope with challenging situations in the past that will

    serve me well during this time?

  • What is a small helpful or positive action that I can take now?

 
This simple prayer of St. Teresa of Avila can calm your nerves: 

Let nothing disturb you, Let nothing frighten you, All things are passing away: God never changes. Patience obtains all things. Whoever has God lacks nothing; God alone suffices.

 
 
 
SAINT MARY'S HIGH SCHOOL COMMUNICATIONS
DIOCESE OF STOCKTON AND CATHOLIC SCHOOLS OFFICE
 
April 3, 2020 


Dear Catholic School Community:

As we head into Holy Week, it is without a doubt, this is a Lent we will never forget! Truly, this has been a challenging time for all of us. As we continue this journey, we need to remember that we are in this crisis together and Jesus is with us in the midst of it all. We need to believe this and we need to trust Him. 

We wanted to brief you on our campus closures. We expect campuses to remain closed through the remainder of the school year; however, schools will return to their campuses earlier if public health officers deem it safe for them to do so. We will continue to work with public health authorities, and we will keep you updated as our country's response to COVID-19 evolves.

Rest assured that as when we started this journey, our administrators, faculty and staff remain faithful to our Catholic identity, our academic standards, and our school communities, keeping our students engaged, learning, and connected. In the weeks to come, we will share details regarding reporting, instructional objectives, grading and assessments, summer opportunities, and plans for major events, including graduations and Baccalaureate Masses. In the meantime, we hope you take comfort in knowing the following:
  • Teachers will continue to deliver curriculum, with a focus on readiness for the next grade level.
  • Completion of student work will be required.
  • Student learning will be assessed and recorded.
  • Community connection will continue to be embedded into the lives of our students and families.
  • Catholic identity will continue to be central to our work together.
  • Directives from higher educational institutions are being monitored to create an alignment with diocesan remote learning plans.
We also understand that there have been some questions regarding tuition, and we want to take this opportunity to remind all families that although our campuses are closed, school is still in session and faculty and principals continue to work daily to ensure our students are receiving a quality, Catholic education. As a result, tuition will continue to be applied during this period. We would also like to remind all families that Catholic schools are critical to the evangelical mission of the Church in America. We must do everything we can to keep them strong for the next 200 years. Should you have any concerns regarding your tuition account, we ask that you contact your school administrator immediately.

We continue to keep you and yours in our prayers. We ask that you keep us in yours.


In the Peace of Christ,
 
Most Reverend Myron J. Cotta
Bishop of Stockton
Marian DeGroot Graham
Director for Catholic Schools
   
   
DIOCESE OF STOCKTON AND CATHOLIC SCHOOLS OFFICE
 
March 27, 2020

Dear Catholic School Community:

We want to thank all of you for your partnership and commitment to Catholic education. The last few weeks have certainly been filled with unprecedented uncertainty from school campus closures, shelter-in-place order, loss of income to COVID 19 itself.  Click here to view the Thank You from Catholic Schools Office. 
 
It is clear that the impact of this crisis is far reaching and each and everyone of us is experiencing it at different levels. We pray that you can take solace in Deuteronomy 31:8  It is the LORD who goes before you; he will be with you and will never fail you or forsake you. So do not fear or be dismayed. 
 
As we head into week three of remote learning, we wanted to update you on the status of our campus closures. In consultation with our public health officials, we have been informed that a safe return to campus will most likely be determined in the first two weeks of April. If the shelter-in-place order has been successful in slowing down the spread of COVID 19, we may be able to return to campus as early as April 20th. If the shelter-in-place order has not been successful, we may need to extend the campus closure into May.  
 
Over the next few weeks, particularly over the Easter break, we ask that you check your emails and school communication tools to get the latest updates.  
 
Let us pray that soon we will be able to hear the chatter of children in our hallways and in our corridors. Please also continue to keep all who are affected by this illness in your prayers and remain prayerfully hopeful of the work done to alleviate and eradicate this virus.

In the Peace of Christ,
 
Most Reverend Myron J. Cotta
Bishop of Stockton
Marian DeGroot Graham
Director for Catholic Schools
   
   
ONLINE LEARNING HAS BEEN EXTENDED
March 19, 2020
Based on the current information from health officials, the Diocese of Stockton and Catholic Schools Office have extended the closure of our campus. We will continue the use of remote learning to a date yet to be determined. Saint Mary's will observe their Easter break as scheduled
 
ONLINE LEARNING EXPECTATIONS
March 17, 2020
  • Teachers will post a weekly agenda on Mondays on Schoology for students with due dates so students can plan their 7 classes for the week.
  • Teachers will communicate with students through Schoology. 
  • Teachers will share their office hours through Schoology. Students can chat, Zoom or email teachers with questions during office hours.
  • Students are expected to check in daily to each class through Schoology. Academic counselors and teachers will be monitoring Schoology check-ins and coursework deadlines.

 

SMHS MOVING TO ONLINE INSTRUCTION
MARCH 16, 2020
 
We are grateful that Saint Mary's is able to continue to provide instruction for our students - thank you for your patience as we make this transition to remote instruction.
 
Today, teachers met to share resources and obtain training on tools that will enhance this mode of instruction for our students. Instruction will take place primarily on Schoology, our Learning Management System, and incorporate software and apps that integrate with our existing infrastructure. Our goal is to continue to meet our instructional objectives and maintain the excellent level of instruction and support for our students that already exists at SM.  
 
Since we are able to maintain instruction during our campus closure and grant credit for courses in progress,
  • It is imperative that students check Schoology for each class every day as well as their student email (gmail) accounts.
  • Teachers will be posting instructional videos, class materials and assignments regularly on Schoology and communicate via email/Schoology.
  • All assignments will have due dates and students are expected to meet these deadlines.
  • Students will continue to adhere to their teachers' policies and expectations, which will be communicated to students when assignments are given.
Major assessments have been postponed for the next two weeks since we want to be able to ensure a high level of academic integrity. Homework, projects, written assignments and quizzes will still be given and we will adhere to our student academic honor code as outlined in our handbook (p. 31-32). Our expectation is that all submitted work must be completed by the student and contain his/her original work.

Teachers and Academic Counselors will be available to answer individual student questions during normal school hours (Monday - Friday).
  • The format of such individual access will be established by each teacher as they determine the best format for such communication (email/video conferencing, etc.)
  • The academic counseling department will continue to provide support for students. Students should not hesitate to reach out to their counselors during this time.

Registration for the 2020-21 school year:
  • If you have not registered for next year's classes, please login to PowerSchool to do so.  Watch the Video Guide on the Parent/Student Portal for assistance.
  • Email a photo or scan of your parent-signed course requests to your counselor. In order to schedule you for the 2020-21 school year, your parent must sign your course requests page and you must submit a photo or scan of this page to your counselor.
  • The Online Registration Portal will remain open until Monday, March 23 at 10:00 pm.
  • If you have questions regarding registration for the 2020-21 school year, please contact your academic counselor.
 
 
SAINT MARY'S WILL TRANSITION TO ONLINE INSTRUCTION
MESSAGE FROM BISHOP COTTA
MARCH 14, 2020
 
Dear Parents/Guardian,

As a follow up to previous communications, we want to reiterate that the public's health and safety are paramount to the Diocese of Stockton and our school community. While there have been no confirmed COVID-19 diagnoses within our school, we want to ensure that we are acting with prudence and diligence for the best interest of our students, teachers, and families.

We do understand the tremendous burden this may place on our families, and only after careful consideration and in light of the fluid nature of this pandemic, the Bishop has announced that all schools within the Diocese of Stockton, will suspend onsite instruction from March 16 - March 27, 2020. We plan to re-open school on March 30, 2020.

This closure includes any planned large gatherings that are not essential, including fundraisers, community events, and field trips. School buildings will not be open to children, parents, or community members during this time. However, if your student needs his/her books or materials s/he will be able to access his/her locker between 9:00 a.m. - 12:00 p.m. on Monday, March 16. 

In preparation for this possibility, our teachers have developed remote learning plans to provide continuity in learning. The implementation of this remote learning model will alleviate additional school days being added to the end of the school year.

Yesterday, teachers asked students to take home their books and essential materials they may need. Teachers will be posting lessons and communicating with students and parents via Schoology and/or email. Over the course of the next two weeks, teachers will continue to deliver course content, monitor students' work and provide feedback via Schoology and other online tools. To stay updated on schoolwork, it is essential that your student have his/her iPad or have access to a laptop/PC.

On Monday, teachers will convene at Saint Mary's to prepare for this transition to remote learning. While we realize that in-person class time is optimal for students, we are fortunate to have Schoology already in place, which is a robust learning management system that teachers and students already know how to use. Recently, we have added some useful tools that integrate with Schoology and that will enhance teachers' interactions with students. Over the next few days, teachers will work on adapting their curricula for remote learning and acquiring more hands-on training on tools that will provide optimal interactions for their particular discipline. In the meantime, where possible, teachers will post relevant assignments via Schoology. Please have your student continue to check Schoology and school email for any new assignments and communications from their teachers. In addition, please continue to monitor your email as we continue to update you. As our teachers and students make this sudden transition, please know that we intend to offer the same level of curricula for our students.

We thank you for your patience and prayers.
 
In Mary's grace,
Kathy Smith 
Principal 
Jim Brusa 
President 
 
 
 
COVID-19 UPDATE FOR SMHS COMMUNITY
MARCH 12, 2020
 
Dear Saint Mary's Parents and Guardians:
 
In an effort to keep you informed, we would like for you to know what our plans are if we need to close the school due to infections related to the COVID-19 virus.
 
The following measures have been taken:
 
The COVID-19 outbreak is a an emerging, rapidly evolving situation. Saint Mary's will share new information as it becomes available. In addition, we recommend families stay apprised of COVID-19 news and updated information through the following sources:
 
 
Our response to this public health crisis may require temporary school closure as we continue to help with practices already in place to further facilitate campus cleaning and mitigate the spread of the disease. This week, we met with the faculty to discuss available instructional tool options, including the posting of lessons on Schoology and extending due dates of class assignments. We will take into consideration those households who may not have a computer/tablet and internet access, but we also intend to offer online instruction in order to continue with lessons in the event of a closure.
 
We are encouraging students, staff, and parents to use standard preventative actions to stay healthy and prevent the spread of contagions.
 
Most importantly, we want you to know that the well-being of our Saint Mary's students, faculty and staff is our top priority.
 
In Mary's grace,
 
Kathy Smith 
Principal 
Jim Brusa 
President 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
PREVENTING ILLNESS
Public health officials recommend the following steps people should take to reduce their risk of getting and spreading any viral respiratory infections. These include:
  • Stay at home and away from others if you are feeling ill. If you have reason to believe you or someone in your household has tested positive for COVID-19, please inform Principal Kathy Smith immediately at ksmith@saintmaryshighschool.org
  • Wash your hands often with soap and water for at least 20 seconds. Use an alcohol-based hand sanitizer that contains at least 60% alcohol if soap and water are not available.
  • Avoid touching your eyes, nose, or mouth with unwashed hands.
  • Avoid close contact with people who are sick.
  • Cover your mouth and nose with a tissue when you cough or sneeze, then throw the tissue in the trash and wash your hands.
  • Clean and disinfect objects and surfaces.
 
 
We do not know of anyone in our school community who has tested positive for COVID-19.
 
 
QUESTIONS?
If you have specific questions, please use our online directory, to reach out for assistance.
 
Thank you for your patience as we navigate this crisis. We continue to hold in our prayers all of those affected by COVID-19. Please remember that the best way to keep updated on Saint Mary's news and actions regarding COVID-19 is on this page.
 
 
 
 
CLASS OF 2024 REGISTRATION
During our transition to online instruction, we will be completing freshman registration through the mail. For all students who have taken the Placement Test and have been accepted into Saint Mary's, please check your mail for communication from Saint Mary's High School. Once you receive this mailing, we request that you submit the registration form and registration payment. Receipt of your student's registration form and fee will guarantee his/her enrollment  into the Class of 2024. If you have any questions, please contact the registrar, Su Towne, at sutowne@saintmaryshighschool.org
 
 
ATHLETICS
All athletic practices and games, league and non-league, on and off campus are canceled until further notice.
 
 
CALENDAR OF EVENTS
  • Incoming Frosh Registration, Class of 2024 - Registration forms will be mailed and must be completed and returned by April 1st.
  • March 31 - Senior Parent Graduation Meeting - listen to Kathy Smith's Message to Seniors
  • April1 -3,  Drill Virtual Clinic & Tryouts 
  • April 4, ACT Off Campus, Postponed
  • April 6 - 8, Cheer Virtual Clinic & Tryouts
  • April 7, Class Officer Elections Postponed
  • April 9 - 17, Easter Holiday
 
 
RAM NEWS
If a student is sick or unable to attend any school day(s) during our remote learning phase, parents are required to email the SMHS Attendance office
attendance@saintmaryshighschool.org within 24 hours of the student's absence. Students cannot excuse their own absence.
Daily Math Tutorial Lab Available starting Friday, April 3
Do you need help with math? Beginning April 3, sign up for a
10-minute tutorial slot and log on to the zoom meeting during your
designated time. Student tutors and Mrs. Howze will be available to help you with your math questions. Here are the details:
• Math Tutorial Lab is available each day, Monday – Friday, from 11:00 a.m. - 12:30 p.m. Sign up for a 10-minute slot on the Google Form starting from 1 p.m. the day before your desired appointment until 10:30 a.m. on the day of your desired appointment. Time slots will reset each day at 12:30 p.m.
• Sign up for an available 10-minute slot via this Google Sheet: https://docs.google.com/spreadsheets/d/1GaInTXDy4UgmMLdkC3Yb
NJXplWVOqPvJjUO4jpCjPt0/edit?usp=sharing

Note – if someone’s name is in the slot, it means that time is
taken for that day, please choose another time.
• To join the Math Tutorial, click on the Zoom Meeting https://us04web.zoom.us/j/589515369?pwd=SzdaZlRhQ2NEL1ozTkhYU2
RUS2U2QT09

 and enter the following password: 218787
Note – Only join the Zoom meeting during your designated
time slot, please DO NOT arrive early.

Senate and Cabinet applications are now being accepted by the Deans' Office.
If you are interested in serving as part of this senior-class leadership organization for the 2020-2021 school year, please submit the online application to the Deans' Office, and request your faculty recommendation by April 8th, 2020. Senate/Cabinet Application: https://forms.gle/89JY7j5nPppoW5Vo9   Please reach out to Mrs. Ripa or Mr. Zanini with any questions.

The College Board will be conducting AP Exams online and are now scheduled one week earlier from May 11 - May 22. Please go to this link for more information:
or contact Mrs. Nisby at enisby@saintmaryshighschool.org with questions.  

 

ACT has rescheduled its April 4 national test date to June 13 across the U.S. in response to concerns about the spread of the coronavirus (COVID-19). All students registered for the April 4 test date will receive an email from ACT informing them of the postponement and instructions for free rescheduling to June 13 or a future national test date.

For more information, please visit: act.org

If you or anyone in your family is seeking spiritual counseling during this crisis, please email Father Mathew and he will contact you by phone missac@saintmaryshighschool.org
Hours update:  When we reconvene students will be informed of how many hours will be waived and a new deadline for the 2019-2020 hour requirement.
If you have not registered for the 2020-2021 school year, please contact your academic counselor immediately.
A Message from the Deans' Office
 
Dear Students and Parents,
 
Please be reminded that while we are learning off campus, school is still in session and all disciplinary policies will be strictly enforced.
 
It is requested that you review closely our Electronic Use and Disciplinary Policies outlined on pages 53-65 of the Parent Student Handbook.
 
Any online threats, harassment or cyber-bullying, including rumors or negative statements aimed toward students or staff at Saint Mary's will not be tolerated.
 
Saint Mary's High School expects that all students, online and offline, will conduct themselves in a manner consistent with our Catholic values and in accordance with the guidelines set forth in the Parent Student Handbook. Behavior in violation of the aforementioned will be investigated and met with appropriate disciplinary consequences.
 
Thank you.
During this time, Tech Support is ready to help students and parents.
 
Email:
techsupport@saintmaryshighschool.org
This sends your request into our ticketing system where we can focus on solving your issue.

Phone:
209-957-3340, Ext 227.
This will ring to both of the IT staffs' numbers, wherever we are.

We recommend using these two methods to be sure the first available person can assist you.