Dear St. Bernard School Community,
It is always very exciting to write a back to school letter because it means the beginning of another amazing journey is just around the corner! This year promises to be an outstanding year as we move forward from our very successful TCCBED ACCREDIDATION visit, which we passed with flying colors and of course we marvel at the hard work of Liz Boyce, Dad’s Club, all the parent volunteers, our maintenance staff and the Keith Family, all who contributed greatly to the completion of seven new restrooms.
Academically, we will be starting with some new faces around St. Bernard. I know we will all miss Mr. McCloskey, Ms. Biershenk, Mrs. Kendall, Mrs. Diaz DeLeon, Miss Cathcart, Mr. Douglas, Nurse Dominic, and Mrs. Drumm this year. However, I do feel very strongly that we have found some very qualified educators to join our dynamic team. Middle School Math and Science will be in great hands with the addition, or comeback, of Mr. Jeff McCormick. Mr. McCormick is returning to St. Bernard and is very prepared to take on this challenge. He and I will be meeting very early in the school year to map out plans for the creation of our Middle School STEM, STREAM, or STEAM (choose your acronym) Program to be opening in 2019. This program will propel our school in a direction unseen in other Catholic Schools in the Diocese of Dallas. Mr. Michael Gereecke will be bringing his 20 years of teaching experience in the Round Rock ISD and Arlington Classics Academy to our Middle School as our new Language Arts/Reading Teacher. His background in education which includes experience with Speech, Drama, and PE, along with Reading and Writing will help us prepare our students for all the challenges they will face in high school. Mrs. Anita Villalpando will be taking over our music program. This year she will share her time with us and St. Patrick’s. Hopefully, in the future we will grow our student population so that we can bring her on full time. I am also very happy to announce the hiring of Mrs. Pat Thompson. Mrs. Thompson is going to bring a wealth of experience to our 4th and 5th graders as their new teacher. Mrs. Thompson has many years serving in Catholic education as a teacher at St. Patrick’s School here in the Diocese of Dallas. I am really excited for what she brings to our school along with her kind and caring personality. Finally, our wonderfully talented and experienced librarian, Ms. Sally Walsh, has agreed to work as our lead kindergarten teacher and librarian. We are going to create a schedule that will provide our new kindergarteners every opportunity to learn and grow. Ms. Walsh will work closely with Ms. Weis so that all of our younger students in Kinder and First will receive an education grounded in a strong foundation of language development and religion. Once we have finalized the details and scheduling plans we will be sure to communicate them with all of our parents.
Other exciting changes you should all know about is the new uniforms provided by RISSE Brothers. They have a store in Addison and you also have the option to purchase items on-line. Please remember the decision was made that for this first year of change we are allowing student to wear the 2017-2018 uniform and/or the 2018-2019 uniform. We realize school uniforms are expensive, therefore we wanted families who still fit into last year’s uniforms the opportunity to stay with them or purchase the new look St. Bernard uniform. The choice is yours.
As many of you know we are also moving to a new after school program. The YMCA will be providing our after school care in the cafeteria this year. This group has a very positive reputation and we are really looking forward to bringing them on board. Please remember there are three options a family can chose for after school care. Each option is different in price. Option 1 – Register your child at the YMCA (the first 50 families do not pay registration fees) and have your child attend after school care each day – MOST ECONOMICAL Option 2 - Register your child at the YMCA (the first 50 families do not pay registration fees) and purchase a “Punch Card”. Whenever your child needs to stay they punch the card. Once the card runs out you can purchase another one – SECOND MOST ECONOMICAL. Option 3 – After school drop in. Do not register your child. If they are picked up at 3:30 in the gym to attend the after school program you family will be charged a user’s fee – MOST EXPENSIVE. Please decide what option is best for your family. If you have questions contact the YMCA.
Our back to school events begin on Monday, August 13th. Our Home-and-School has planned an exciting and very casual night to kick-off the school year. Please join us at 4:30 PM on this day for fun times filled with fellowship and community bonding. The first day of classes is Wednesday, August 15th. Please remember this is a half-day of instruction.
It’s a great time to be a part of St. Bernard of Clairvaux Catholic School. Every day, extraordinary things are happening that will help our children, our families, and our school grow. I look forward to welcoming you back to campus next week. In the meantime get some rest, enjoy a good book, and be sure to finalize all of your back-to-school shopping.
Michael Davies, Principal