Dear Friends of St. Joan of Arc School,
I am happy to say that we again had another banner year at St. Joan of Arc School. We had many assemblies and activities that created a very positive atmosphere in all that we did. Our enrollment remains pretty steady at 350, one of Diocese’s larger Catholic schools.
We began our process for STEM accreditation through Middle States, and are making so much progress that we think we will be able to apply in October for them to visit us in the spring. STEM involves doing activities that promote Science, Technology, Engineering, and Math.Of course, we add Religion and Arts to make it STREAM, but technically, it is STEM. This summer we are offering a STEM camp every day from 8:00-4:00 with a different STEM theme each week. Several of our teachers are enthusiastically running this camp. It’s a big hit for the kids, and a safe place to care for children of working parents.
Father Al is in the process of planning for a new addition to the school. He already has approval from the Diocese and from Derry Township, and is planning to start the capital campaign in the fall. The building will house: a new AV-STEM-Resource room, a new student cafeteria and kitchen, an elevator on the first floor, and 7 classrooms on the second floor. This will enable us to move all Pre 3 through Grade 3 students into the present first floor wing of the school, and specials (Music and Art) into the present middle school (former cafeteria).
In preparation for this, we started to do some remodeling in the current school. We have a new floor in the cafeteria in anticipation of using it for an adult social hall. That will allow us to have funeral lunches, wedding receptions, anniversary parties, etc. in the current student cafeteria. We also put in a new floor (blue and gold) and painted the lockers for the first time in history...blue! The lockers are no longer brown! The walls have also been painted shades of blue.
It looks like a brand new school! We hope you will find opportunities to come and visit and see how beautiful everything looks. It was wonderful to see so many (more than usual) alumni at our parish festival in June. These alums all expressed how SJA School remains an important part of their lives, and how much it means to them to return every year for the festival. This speaks highly of our dedicated faulty, parents, parishioners, and priests, as well as the efforts of our students who are motivated to succeed.
May God bless you for any way that you are able to help us to continue our efforts to spread the Gospel and its values through our wonderful SJA Community, both near and far.
With love and prayers,
Sister Eileen Marie, DM