Dear St. Matthias School Parents,
We have had another great year at St. Matthias School. We will be especially busy this summer, cleaning classrooms and doing some minor repairs. Also, we are hosting our annual camps with Summer Camp running from June 20 until July 15; Athletics camps being offered and, The Get Ready for School PreK Camp in August.
Carmen White and Lee Valdez will be busy enrolling students and preparing for the new school year, with openings in many grades and waiting lists in a few grades. Please, if you know of any families looking for a wonderful school and great community, send them our way.
I, personally, am busy finalizing our staffing and planning for next school year. All hiring and staffing decisions are made based on enrollment. At present the First Grade class has 25 students registered with a waiting list in place. Ms. Brady will be teaching First Grade and I am scheduling an aide to be present throughout the day, so that the ratio is 2 adults for the 25 students.
The fourth grade has 42 students, which means that there will be two Fourth Grade classrooms. Ms. Kreisel, an excellent addition to the SMS staff this year, will be moving to the Fourth Grade. She and Ms. Otter will make a great team! Ms. Kreisel’s energy and teaching style will make the 2016/17 4th grade year wonderful. I will keep you informed of changes as enrollment continues to grow, with regular updates as to class sizes.
Ms. Kanaley, another wonderful addition to the SMS staff, will be moving to the Dank Haus permanently. She will focus on the IB Spanish Program for our Junior High students and will be assisting in the teaching duties at the Junior High level.
Mrs. Prinzivalli will be leaving SMS to embark on the wonderful joys of being a new mom and we will miss her. I am in the process of hiring a new Language Arts teacher. The Junior High team is strong and the new teacher will come with excellent experience and a drive to continue to develop our IB Program.
Ms. Scheiber, SMS’s Junior High Science Teacher, will assume Assistant Principal duties as part of her role in the Junior High. She is an excellent leader in the SMS community and a strong asset to the school.
I am also very close to hiring a new Inclusive Education Coordinator to continue the Inclusive Education efforts at SMS. Emily Ropars was very helpful as a consultant and she and I feel that we have found an excellent coordinator to advance the program compassionately and creatively. Look for that announcement coming soon.
Other changes to the school day and SMS programming include a slightly longer Junior High day. The Junior High team had expressed concerns about meeting the number of minutes and providing the deep, meaningful IB experience that is a cornerstone of the SMS program. We are very blessed to have a faculty that wants to teach and do more for students and are willing to go the extra mile. After conversations with them, it was decided that the day would be lengthened to 3:30PM for Junior High. Siblings in the lower grades will receive free After Care from 2:50 until 3:30 to make dismissal easier for families with students in multiple grades. A “revamped and rebooted” description of After Care will be shared soon detailing this and other changes.
Please let me know if you have any questions and concerns regarding this and/or any other matter related to next year. I will be at school practically the entire summer and look forward to meeting with you, if needed. My door is always open.
Sheila M. Klich