Welcome back!  I can hardly believe that we are back in session; I am afraid to blink for fear that the New Year will be here tomorrow!  We began our year with many changes: a new start time, teachers in new grade levels, longer lunches, thirteen new families in the school, and 59 Pre-school students. We have two new Pre-school aides, Sharon Gearhart is here with the 4-year- old students while Madison Tockstein is here with the 3-year-old students.  We are very happy they have joined our team.

After being with St. Stephen for over 25 years, Mrs. Krajewski retired at the end of the year.  As a result, we hired a new 5th grade teacher, Mrs. Jennifer Hunt.  Ms. Sara Cripps became Mrs. Sara Burke over the summer and is now teaching 6th grade. Other grade level changes that were made: Ms. Helen Oziem is teaching Kindergarten, Ms. Christina Jones is teaching 1st, Mrs. Therese Waddell is teaching 3rd, and Mrs. Marie Dean is teaching 4th grade. The changes have been very positive.  All the teachers are doing wonderful work in their classrooms.

Our start time is earlier.  The school doors open at 8:00 a.m. and our day begins at 8:05. We are now able to have three separate lunch periods that are 30 minutes long.  The students get that time to eat; recess is scheduled at a different time for each group.  We have been busy!  Our Masses begin at 8:15; this month we paid homage to 9-11 with the Patriotic Rosary. I will admit that hearing the children sing patriotic songs during the recitation of the Rosary always makes my eyes misty.

For the first few weeks of school, Fr. John blessed the classroom statues.  These pilgrimage statues go home with the students for a week at a time, so the children can share the prayers that are part of their class’ Choir of Angels with their families. Each class represents a different Choir of Angels that Fr. John discusses with the students during their Holy Hour.  Fr. John took the Kindergarten through the 4th grade on a pilgrimage to Grass Lake at the Pious Union of St. Joseph, and the 7th grade visited Sacred Heart Major Seminary for Vocation Day during this month.  Thank you to all who participated and chaperoned on these trips.

Have a wonderful Sunday!


Mrs. Christine Vaughan