Notes from the Head

At St. Michael’s, we spend a great deal of time, at every opportunity possible, talking about values. At the beginning of the year, kindness and compassion are underscored, and that theme carries through our year. In May of 2013, the graduating class gave to St Michael’s a beautiful Ben’s Bells mural, which graces the wall outside of our Student Center. The plaque beside it proclaims, “St. Michael’s has the courage to be kind.” Among the Class of 2013 was a young man who stood as a constant reminder of both courage and kindness. He brought his classmates along within him in living into those key values. That student was Ben Faust. Ben modeled tenacity, courage, kindness, and a “never give up” attitude. For his entire life, Ben lived with Marfan’s Syndrome, a connective tissue disorder that compromises the integrity of all connective tissues of the body. And yet he seemed determined not to let it slow him down. Ben participated as fully as possible in all activities at St. Michael’s and was much beloved by his classmates and the school community. Sadly, on Tuesday we learned that Ben Faust had died in Houston, where he had been hospitalized following major heart surgery. With this loss from our community, the sadness runs deep and is particularly and profoundly felt by his classmates from the Class of 2013. Ben would have been a senior this year at The Gregory School.

Kindness and courage go hand in hand. They remain core values of our school community. And how fitting that we are reminded of this by a Tucson symbol, Ben’s Bells, which now will forever remind us of another courageous Ben, who always modeled for us that St. Michael’s has the courage to BE KIND. Thank you, Michael and Laura, for sharing Ben with us, and thank you, Ben, for all you taught us in how to live life with courage and grace. You will be missed.

Margaret Moore

Head of School

SMA News

Please check out the Fall SMA Eaglet Newsletter (Eaglet Newletter).  Thank you to Jennifer Smith for her expertise!
Thank you to Steve Zeiller and Laura Lee Zeiller / Tucson Orthopedic Institute for sponsoring our first Coffee Corner this Friday, September 2.  Please stop by for a cup of coffee!
Our first meeting will be Wednesday, September 14, at 8:05 a.m. in the Smith Parish Center.  All are welcome.  We’d love to see you there!

Curriculum Night for K-3

Parents of students in Kindergarten through third grade are invited to Curriculum Night this Thursday, September 1, at 6:00 p.m. in the Student Center. You will receive some important information about the school year ahead before heading to the classrooms to meet with teachers. Our new Science and Language Room for the Lower School will also be open, and we invite you to stop in to see this beautiful new facility.

In addition, parents with new students in first, second, and third grades are invited to a New Parent Orientation at 5:30 p.m. on Thursday in the new Lower School Science and Language Room. We look forward to sharing helpful information as you learn about St. Michael’s.

Coach’s Corner

Our girls’ volleyball team has its first home game of the season on Tuesday, September 6, against The Gregory School. The A Team plays at 4 p.m. and the B Team plays at 5 p.m. Come out and support your St. Michael’s Eagles!
The co-ed fall intramural program for third, fourth, and fifth graders will begin on Tuesday, September 6, and run until Thursday, October 27. Practices will run four days per week (Monday, Tuesday, Wednesday, and Thursday) from 3:20 to 4:45 p.m. For the fall season, we will be working on soccer and flag football (four weeks of each). Each student who wishes to participate must have a signed permission slip turned in before he or she can play. This form is available in the School Office or on our school website. This year’s fall intramural program will be coached by St. Michael’s alum Christopher Huerta-Rojas. Chris is currently a student at the University of Arizona and is excited about the opportunity to be back at St. Michael’s helping out.
More information:  Fall Intramural Program (1)

The BUZZ around Campus

With the monsoon season came a pesky visitor to Tucson. Mosquito season is in full swing, and we are taking aim on campus. Last spring and again in late summer, our evaporative coolers were treated for mosquitoes. In addition, our fountains have been thoroughly cleaned and will also contain repellants. We are taking care to avoid having any standing water around campus that could harbor mosquito eggs. Although our teachers and school nurse can not apply bug repellant on our students, we would suggest that if your child is sensitive to bug bites, or you are concerned about mosquito bites, you use bug spray or repellant before he or she comes to school. For those who do not want to use these products, a non-chemical application such as Avon Skin-So-Soft has proven to be a good alternative. As the cooler weather arrives, particularly with lower night-time temperatures, the mosquitoes will leave our area. In the meantime, we are doing what we can to make our campus less attractive to these annoying visitors.

Eighth Grade Bake Sale

Calling all hungry kids and parents!  Come join the eighth graders this Friday morning at Coffee Corner for a sweet treat.  They’d love to see their Lower School buddies at the bake sale table!  The eighth graders are starting to raise funds for their graduation by selling a variety of delicious baked goods.  Hope to see you all there!

Notes from the Head

And we’re off! After months of preparation and an exciting summer of campus construction, we have begun our new school year with optimism and a growth mindset that will open the door to unlimited possibilities for the students, teachers, and staff. There is a freshness to our start and a team spirit that joins us together.  Just in the nick of time, the renovations to the old Parish Hall resulted in a beautiful, spacious School Office and a new home for Admissions. Our teachers will have a new work center, and our much-anticipated Lower School Science and Language Room is just about ready to receive students in Kindergarten through fifth grades. In addition, we are moving full steam ahead with a greater integration of Science, Technology, Engineering, and Math throughout the school.

As I welcomed our faculty back on campus, there was a renewed sense of purpose as we celebrated the gift we have in working with the students and families of St. Michael’s. The privilege we have to open the minds and hearts of children to a new knowledge of, and appreciation for, the gifts that are uniquely theirs, affirms our call to the vocation of teaching and the mission of our school. As we launch this new school year, I am grateful for the support and contributions of so many in our community who have made this fresh new start possible. We are charting our course for the future, and the future is now! Together we can make all things possible…for our kids…for our school. So, off we go!

Margaret Moore

Head of School

Welcome Back to School from the School Nurse

SchoolNurseLogoIf you have not yet turned in your yellow Confidential Emergency Health Information Form, please complete it promptly and drop it off at the School Office.  This form must be completed annually with any important health and contact information and updated as often as needed.

For all new students, all sixth graders, and those students participating in sports, a current physical exam needs to be on file with the school nurse.  If there are insurance issues preventing a student from getting a physical until later in the school year, please let me know so that I can note that in my records.  Also, new students and 6th graders need to bring a current copy of immunization records.

Lastly, please take special precautions on extremely hot days, including dressing your children in lightweight clothing, limiting outdoor activity, and drinking plenty of fluids. If a heat advisory is in effect, we will limit outdoor activities as needed.  Please make sure your student comes to school daily with sunscreen applied, a water bottle with his or her name on it, and plenty of healthy snacks and lunch to keep him or her going during the school day.  We look forward to a safe and healthy school year!

Erika Huff, R.N.
School Nurse

Time to Play!

Playground time before and after lunch is an important time for our young students. On the playground they develop their social skills, exercise creativity as games are invented, and collaborate with each other in testing their physical abilities. During this time, we always want the children to be safe. Our parent/grandparent playground volunteers are so important in helping us to provide adequate supervision, allowing teachers to have a short break during the lunch period. Please consider volunteering one or two days a week to help on the playground. What a great way to get to know the kids and to meet other parents in the process. To volunteer, contact Richard and Alisa Reed: alisareedesq@yahoo.com. We appreciate it, and the students do as well.

SMA News

Welcome back to school!  SMA (St. Michael’s Angels) is one of the parent-volunteer organizations on campus, along with the Vaqueros. We welcome and encourage all families to get involved in some way this year.  It’s a great way to support our school while creating stronger friendships and connections in this wonderful community.

If you haven’t seen the SMA Volunteer Opportunities form, please grab one from the SMA bulletin board outside of the School Office, fill it in with your interests, and return it to the office.  PLEASE NOTE: there is a back side for your contact information.  A few were turned in blank.  If you don’t recall filling that in, please grab another so we can make sure to include you. We appreciate all the wonderful parents here!

Our first Coffee Corner will be Friday, September 2, in front of the School Office.  Stop by for a cup of coffee, catch up with old friends, and meet some new people.

Uniform Exchange Chairs, Kristin Greenwood and Bridget Peyton, just wrapped up another successful Uniform Exchange last Saturday and also a summer Exchange in July.  Many items found new homes, and countless families showed great appreciation for this service.  Thank you to all our volunteers: Jaime Bernier, Stacy Butler, Michelle Gastrock, Olivia Gastrock, Kristin Greenwood, Ellie Greenwood, Ethan Greenwood, Jennifer Lahue-Smith, Vicki Lazaro, Shanti Martinez, Sarah Nordstrom, Maria Olmedo, Bridget Peyton, Mike Peyton, Jensen Peyton, Trevor Peyton, Isabel Rebert, Barbi Reuter, Cathryn Rose, and Marta Strambi-Kramer.  We couldn’t do it without you.

Please contact Terese Souvignier (teresesouv@yahoo.com) or Breanne Tirrito (breanne.tirrito@me.com) for any questions or suggestions for SMA.

Thank you!