Class Parents for the 2020-2021 School Year
Please click on the link below to sign up to become a class parent for the 2020-2021 school year.
Link to sign up genius: 2020-2021 Class Parents
HSA Class Parent Coordinator
Letter to Parents-Continuation of Remote Learning
Please see below for an important message from Ms. Barbara Dolan, the
Acting Superintendent of Schools.
May 6, 2020
On Monday, May 4th Governor Murphy announced that schools in New Jersey will remain closed for the remainder of the 2019-2020 school year. The Catholic schools in the Archdiocese of Newark will follow this directive. Students and teachers will continue remote learning until school ends in June.
The realization that students will not be returning to schools this year for in-person learning brings a sense of sadness. While we have adjusted to remote learning, the in-person dynamics of teaching and learning are sorely missed. However, we understand that the health and safety of all in our school communities and the broader community requires that we continue remote learning for the remainder of the school year.
School administrators have been planning for the possibility that students would not be returning to in person learning for the 2019-2020 school year. In the coming weeks, your school administrator will communicate plans and procedures for ending the school year. We know that the Class of 2020 students are uniquely affected by this extended closure of school. I have no doubt that our school leaders will be creative in finding ways to distribute diplomas in a manner that adheres to all health and safety guidelines while honoring this important accomplishment.
We thank you for your understanding and support during these unprecedented times. Remote learning is one challenge among the many you have faced in the past two months.
We want to applaud the educators in the Catholic schools in the Archdiocese of Newark, and all educators, for working tirelessly to ensure that students continue to learn and move forward in their education.
And most importantly I want to commend students throughout the Archdiocese for their ability to adapt to remote learning. They continue to attend class, do classwork, confer with teachers, and submit assignments under very extraordinary circumstances. The lessons they have learned and skills they have developed over the past two months extend well beyond curriculum requirements.
Know that you and your families are in the prayers of all in the Office of Catholic Schools. Please continue to keep all affected individuals, families, first responders, and especially those on the front lines in your prayers.
Ms. Barbara DolanActing Superintendent of Schools
Gov. Phil Murphy Announces New Jersey Schools Will Remain Closed
Gov. Phil Murphy announced today that New Jersey schools will remain closed for in-person instruction through the end of the academic year.
New Jersey teachers have been required to conduct remote instruction since schools shuttered in mid-March. That will continue.
We will be sending you more details shortly.
Parent Letter April 30th
“Many are the plans in a person’s heart, but it is the Lord’s purpose that prevails.” Proverbs 19:21
Sincerely, just how we are feeling right about now…
As I review some of the spring plans made in simpler times, such as field trips, May Processions, Dress-up Days, Casino Night at Wish Upon a Star, Sports Dinner, STEM Expo, First Holy Communion, and so many more creativity takes over!
My heart goes out to our eighth graders because the traditions we hold near and dear to our hearts for the end of eighth grade will be missed. But!!! New traditions will be born this spring and I promise you will feel special and be treated special in your final days at SRLA. More info to follow, but Eighth Graders, please make sure you attend the special Zoom meeting on Tuesday, May 5th at 10:00 am. A separate invite has been sent to your parents for you.
In response to parent requests for more time on-line with the teachers, I have asked Mr. Miller and our teachers to add an extra day for all of our students. The new days are listed on the top of the schedule for each teacher as well as in the attached document. Note that World Language Classes have not increased.
Below please find four recommendations from a family therapist, Erika London Bocknek, reinforcing the four R’s for children.
About 55 million U.S. children attend schools that have been closed or are being directly affected by the new coronavirus social distancing rules. Erika London Bocknek, a family therapist who studies early childhood development, parenting, and family resilience, encourages anyone parenting quarantined kids to focus on the 4 R’s: routines, rules, relationships, and rituals.
A good routine should create a pattern each day for a child that is predictable. But there are many ways to do that besides setting up a traditional schedule. New strict schedules may increase anxiety for some kids, especially if the transitions between one activity and the next seem arbitrary. To create predictability outside the constraints of a traditional school schedule, consider holding daily morning meetings to set priorities. Families can use that time to clearly communicate, sort out expectations, and remind one another of what’s ahead, from online chats with teachers to when lunch will be to who will do which household chores or where to go on an afternoon walk. Older children can write those priorities down to use as checklists. Little kids benefit from daily reminders about what they can look forward to throughout the day.
Several studies, including some I’ve conducted, have consistently found that sticking with dinnertime and bedtime routines in particular is good for positive mental health outcomes throughout childhood.
Even if families opt for a model that’s more flexible than what kids are used to on school days, consistency is key. For example, kids and adults should have at least one meal at about the same time every day together. That meal is a good opportunity for everyone to spend time together free of electronic devices and other distractions. To be clear, the gathering itself matters as much as what’s on the table. These types of routines anchor the day, and research shows that they organize children’s external worlds in ways that support self-regulation, the building block of good mental health. In addition, predictable family environments help children feel like their homes are stable and supportive – which is especially important when under stress.
While parents and other guardians may see fit to reduce expectations and ratchet down demands, they should stick with the rules that matter most in the long term for their families. For example, it may be reasonable to relax expectations about tidiness or screen time. However, families should maintain rules about safety and kindness and be consistent with consequences. Children of all ages feel and behave better with predictable family rules.
Parents and other caregivers may want to set new family rules at this time, such as requiring kids to do more chores and share in household responsibilities. Such rules may instill some of the independence, community obligation and social engagement that students otherwise experience at school.
As families find themselves spending more time together, responsible adults should reflect on their own mood and behavior. Children don’t need perfect parents to thrive, but they do benefit from parenting they find predictable. For example, children should be able to anticipate how their parents or other caregivers will typically interact with them and how the most important adults in their lives will respond to stress. It’s OK for those adults to let on that they’re feeling stressed out, as long as children see them coping with these feelings in safe and appropriate ways.
Kids fare best when their moms, dads and other caregivers are warm and responsive when directly interacting with them. This doesn’t require nonstop attention and, in fact, attempts to sustain direct attention throughout the day may detract from adults’ overall capacity to provide this kind of positive attention. Aim instead for planned moments of focused, positive interaction even if brief and repeat throughout the day.
Any special routine can become a family ritual – which are predictable and help every family member feel like they belong to a special group. Research shows that rituals support good mental health in childhood because of the previously mentioned sense of family organization and the added benefit of family cohesion that gives children a positive sense of their identity.
Taco Tuesdays and regular movie nights work, as do religious practices like bedtime prayers. I’ve found that rituals that connect children to previous generations may be particularly powerful, so this could be a good time to revive and adapt a beloved ritual from your own childhood. Or create new family rituals together. Especially during periods of uncertainty like this pandemic, rituals make it clear to kids that their families are stable and strong.
Remember that this virus has revealed our true character, one of immense strength!
Stay SRLA Strong!
Just in time for the weekend!
A Letter to the Children from Fr. Harahan and a link to the Easter Sunday Mass
Please see below for Important Message from Fr. Harahan.
Dear Boys and Girls,
I hope you are still happy with the celebration of Easter. Our church does this for forty days ! That’s a long time. But Jesus brings us so much joy that we need many days to celebrate.
You have had new experiences these days too. With your moms and dads you have begun a new way of going to school and learning. You are with some friends, but others you may only see on FaceTime or Instagram. You play more inside and sometimes by yourself. I’m sure you miss a lot of the things you normally do, or miss the places you love to go.
Being at home is not always easy. We have to really try and get along with our family and get our schoolwork done. We have to remind ourselves to be kind to our sisters and brothers and those we live with. Some days we are happy and the time goes fast. And there may be days when we feel sad and we don’t want to do anything.
I miss seeing you at church and school. But until we start going back there are some things we can do. First, talk to your mom or dad every day about how you feel. You may also have the opportunity to talk to your teachers online.
Second, try to say a prayer at the start of each day. Ask Jesus to bless you and your family and help you through the day. Maybe you can ask your family to say a prayer with you. Or your family could read a bible story together. You can draw a picture of Easter and the message of Jesus. Hang up the picture as a reminder of our faith.
Third, do an act of kindness or something good for someone each day. That will help you see how each day is a chance to be like Jesus.
Sometimes these days have been hard for everyone. Your family loves you and God blesses you each day with His love. May Mary and Joseph and the child Jesus help us and our family every day.
I look forward to seeing you soon.
PS: Your mom and dad can always let me know how you are celebrating the Easter season.
On another note, a number of people called in to say the Easter Sunday Mass could not be found online. If you missed it, here is the direct link to the Mass for viewing: https://youtu.be/k1WdZpm2Xgw
Please remember we are in the Octave of Easter. Today is not the Monday AFTER Easter but the Monday OF Easter. Today is Easter Monday!
Today is EASTER as is tomorrow…for these 8 days and the next 8 Sundays.
I hope this is helpful.
Stay well all!
Parent Letter April 7th
This week, with the passing of Bill Withers, I can only think of his song, “Lean on Me” and how appropriate this message and sentiment is for us right now.
We need our families, friends, loved ones and trusted individuals to help us get through this. Everyone I know is working together to succeed. Please accept my sincere Thank You to everyone in the SRLA family for pitching in, together we are stronger than alone. So please, “Lean on Me” if I can help in any way.
Online suggestion for this week includes one from the publisher of the NJ Catholic magazine has put together the attached School-at-Home Guide for Catholic Families.
The guide is also available as a flipbook at
(You will need Adobe Flash)
Please feel free to share the link
The following poem reminds us that our journey is not new and this too shall pass…
A Family in lock down
40 days, 40 nights in the Ark, Noah's family was confined in a boat. There were no windows, no balconies, no terraces, no internet, no phone, no YouTube, no Facebook or Netflix. They only heard the rain. They spent their time praying, loving each other and caring for animals. God the Father took care of them as Noah was a man of faith and obeyed His word.
Remember even though there is out there an ocean of viruses and life seems like a stormy ride, our God is watching over us!
Don't be afraid!
Be faithful to Him and wait patiently. The rain will stop one day. A rainbow will shine and all will be well again.
In Jesus, we trust!(Anonymous)
"Living in GOD's Love"
Ways in which we can help:
School-wide event! This idea was suggested by Dawn Kepler (K) More details to follow but this is a preview:
“We obviously know that this time has been one of great disruption. The children, who are all students at St. Rose from Pre-k 3 to 8th grade, are all a part of this 'history' happening right now. The idea I have, is that each student find a small rock, paint it, put their name on it (optional), and we will create a St. Rose of Lima 2020 rock garden, to mark this time.
This activity can be done by all aides, teachers and students, to remember this time in our lives.
There is a book that I am happy to read to the entire school if you would like to do this called Only One You by Linda Kranz. I am happy to read this book to the entire school when we get back, and they deliver their rock to me.”
Something that our families can do on their own (I have already donated for one sign to be placed in front of SRLA to show our love):
Appreciation Lawn Sign Fundraiser
Be a part of the movement to spread hope and gratitude, while supporting Overlook Medical Center in purchasing an urgently needed XENEX sterilization machine that can sanitize a room in 20 minutes! This device has a $90,000 price tag.Congratulations to Zoe Berlinger, Age 9 from Summit, and Ashleigh Andrews, Age 11 of Millburn, on their winning artwork submissions!
The Overlook Auxiliary would like to thank Scott Hale of STH Printing in New Providence for his designs and sign printing by The UPS Store in downtown Summit for their generous contributions to this project. Both are great local small businesses to support.
The Overlook Auxiliary is also pleased to partner with community residents Deb Meslar of Summit, Maria DeLuca & Amy Lepre of New Providence who presented this idea to us. We are truly grateful for the outpouring of love and support during this time.
Every contribution makes a difference!
Warmest thoughts to you and your family on this holiday.
Student Rules When Using Zoom
Proper Protocol During Zoom Sessions with Teachers
This document explains what is expected of you when you are using Zoom for your remote learning sessions. If a teacher sees a problem, they will give you a warning and give you a chance to correct the behavior. Students will lose points for the class if these rules are not followed after a warning.
General Information – Attendance will be taken during Zoom sessions. If you are sick, please have a parent let your homeroom teacher know. Please do not have pets in the room with you. Please be respectful of each other. Conduct yourself as if you were in the classroom at school. Use your correct name when joining the session. Do not use nicknames or you will be counted absent for that session.
VIdeo – Video should be turned on. This is necessary so the teachers can see if you are there and engaged in the session. Also, you should not cause any distractions to disrupt the session such as making faces, holding up signs or pictures or constantly moving in and out of the screen. Students should also not be eating or drinking during the sessions. No other screens such as a TV or other computers should be visible.
Audio – Students should make sure there are no other noises in the background such as a TV, radio, music, etc. This is distracting to others on the call. Students should make their best effort to find a quiet area where there won’t be any distractions during your class.
Chatting – Students should not chat with anyone but the teacher on the call. This is also distracting and keeps your fellow students from focusing on the lesson.
This is a new way of learning for all of us, teachers and students. We want to make the remote learning experience as enjoyable and meaningful as possible.
Please remember that you can always reach out to teachers via email if you have questions on assignments or other class related questions. If you are having computer or technical issues, you can reach out to Mr. Miller via email as well.
Parent Letter March 31
We are in uncharted waters. I like to think that we are the “Bridge over Troubled Waters” for our students, that connection with their classmates, looking in on their classes brings pure joy to my heart! Never before have we been faced with the task of providing Zoom instruction to our students because of a public health emergency. I want to take a moment to say just how proud I am that our teachers and all members of our school communities are rising above all expectations, and providing students with learning opportunities each and every week.
The schools is physically open on Monday, Tuesday and Thursday from 10:00 am-1:00 pm only but, please feel free to pick up anything you may need from our lobby which will remain open Monday-Friday from 9:00 am-3:00 pm until further notice.
Unfortunately that phrase…until further notice…, is about the only thing I have been told about school closures but as soon as I hear anything else, you will be the first to know!
Please look for a separate notice from Mrs. Katz and Mrs. Espiritu with regard to our next publication of The Blurb.
Below you will find several websites that you may find useful moving forward to either fill in over Easter break or just to supplement your child’s learning experience.
Resources from “It Takes a Village”
Khan Academy is providing their comprehensive online curriculum tool that covers math, science, reading, social studies and SAT prep from PreK through college in 40 languages for free during school closures. You can also tune in to their daily livestream at 9 am PST on Facebook, Youtube and Twitter.
Education.com is making their library of activities, learning games and homeschooling lessons available for free to those who sign up during this time of school closure.
We’re all scrambling to find ways to keep our kids engaged with good media. Check out the great list our friends at Common Sense Media compiled. It’s filled with free online activities and live events to keep the family learning and entertained.
In the words of Andrew Cuomo, please practice “social solidarity” responsibly.
We are all in this together!
The staff of The Blurb, our school newspaper, has decided to publish the edition that was almost ready to go just before we left school. To make it more topical we’d like your input about how you’ve been spending your free time at home.
Thanks, fellow journalists.The Blurb Staff
Helpful Coronavirus (COVID-19) Resources
Optum Public Crisis Line: Our toll-free emotional support help line at (866) 342-6892 is free of charge and available to anyone, so you can share it with family and friends. Caring professionals will connect people to resources. It will be open 24 hours a day, seven days a week.
Learn how to calm your fears and protect your health
- Read about mindfulness techniques for coping with coronavirus anxiety.
- Watch a video to learn about COVID-19, how to protect yourself, and where to get ongoing updates.
- Watch a webinar: Coping with Traumatic Events
Traumatic events can range from acts of terrorism, war, natural disasters and infectious disease outbreaks such as COVID-19. Whatever form they take, when trauma hits close to home, it can be hard to process. Fear and anxiety about a disease can be overwhelming and cause strong emotions in adults and children. This program helps identify and normalize reactions to traumatic events. Participants will explore the broad emotional impact and look at healthy ways to cope.
- Define what a “critical incident” is
- Discuss expected expressions of grief and emotional toll
- Identify appropriate means of support and how to avoid stressors
- Learn effective stress-reduction techniques
- Examine strategies for helping children cope
- Determine when to seek professional support
- Explore the range of normal responses to critical incidents, such as the outbreak of Coronavirus
- Watch a webinar: Get the Best of Stress
In this training, participants will get an overview of stress basics as well as practical suggestions for coping with stressful situations, like the Coronavirus outbreak. The concept of stress hardiness is also introduced as a focus for healthy stress management. In addition, attendees will get tools to help them dial down stress and better understand personal and organizational aspects of stress.
- Learn ways to respond to stress differently
- Apply several stress management techniques
- Identify common sources of stress, such as seeing repeated images or hearing reports about the COVID-19 outbreak in the media, and learn our reactions to it •
Visit the CDC for more information and up-to-date resources.
Keep Catholic and Other Nonpublic Schools in the Senate CARES Act for Coronavirus Relief
Dear Families, Friends, and Supporters:
The big “Phase 3” coronavirus relief bill (called the CARES Act) being considered in the US Senate is at a critical stage. Currently there is a paragraph in the CARES Act allowing for non-public schools to receive relief under the Education Stabilization Fund. However, it appears that leadership in the Senate is trying to remove this language. The bill is being considered RIGHT NOW and we need outreach to our NJ Senators asking them to support the work of Catholic and other nonpublic schools as all students need to benefit from the CARES Act. The contact information for Senators Menendez and Booker is below. As time is of the essence on the vote, please TWEET, EMAIL,or CALL them right away. This is time sensitive.
THE ASK: Insist that the funding and “equitable services/proportional share” language for non-public schools that was included in the Sunday version of the CARES Act is retained in the version reportedly to be released today.
Senator Menendez: @SenatorMenendez
Senator Booker: @SenBooker @CoryBooker
Thank you for answering the call to support our students by advocating for them!
Parent Letter March 24
We began our Virtual Learning Plan on Wednesday, March 18!
Distance Learning is up and running and progressing nicely judging by the amount of positive feedback emails and baked goods dropped off by our incredible SRLA families!
I do hear your suggestions and invite everyone to communicate with me freely as we are learning as we go and I believe that learning is a life-long goal.
As a result of one of these wonderful suggestions, you will receive an excel worksheet with all of your students classes, assignments and due dates on one weekly schedule sheet beginning next week. That means that this Thursday, 3/26 by the end of the day, you will receive a weekly schedule sheet for the week 3/30-4/3/2020. The Lower School schedules will be generated by the homeroom teacher while the Middle School schedule will be compiled through Office 365 checked and sent to you by me.
Also, full guidelines outlining SRLA'S Virtual Learning Plan and Student User Guideline will be published on Thursday as well.
Students, Please remember that it is inappropriate to zoom your teachers after 3:00 PM. You may email them at 9:00 PM and they will respond the next morning.
We shared the disappointment of our faculty and students who worked so diligently to produce projects that reflect deep thinking and application of science concepts.
Students, your efforts did not go unnoticed! Little did we realize at the time that would be the beginning of the many postponements to come our way.
Using these principles, and after careful consideration, I have made the difficult decision to cancel all upcoming field trips between now and June. While I share your disappointment, it is important to limit the number of people and public spaces to which your children are exposed, whether we return back to school before the end of the school year or not.
I wish to share with you several interesting websites that have crossed my desk this week. The amount of things sent my way is outstanding and space limits my selection, so I give you just a few:
A four-week Virtual Program to improve mental well-being from the Mayo Clinic —http://www.mayoclinichealthsystem.org/gratitude
Join Mayo Clinic Health System for a four-week virtual program from March 30 to May 1 to help you improve your mental well-being through daily journaling. Practicing mindful thankfulness is one way to boost your spirits, feel happier and enhance your overall health. You also will be asked to complete at least one act of kindness and take deliberate time to be mindful each day.
This community program is appropriate for adults and youth. Feel free to share this program with friends and family
Also, a wonderful website that guides parents on how to talk with children about coronavirus as well as an interesting parent survival strategy.
Finally, Scholastic has really stepped up their game with Scholastic Learn at Home Website. It is a free resource provides all students with 20* days’ worth of learning journeys that span the content areas so you can keep your students actively engaged in learning while our school is closed.
Students will have access to approximately three hours of learning opportunities per day, including projects based on exciting articles and stories, virtual field trips, reading and geography challenges, and more. These learning journeys were carefully curated by Scholastic!!!
The site includes learning journeys across four different grade spans—PreK/K, Grades 1–2, Grades 3–5, and Grades 6–9+. Learning experiences cover ELA, STEM, Science, Social Studies, and Social-Emotional Learning. They are also providing access to four award-winning digital solutions that students can access anytime, anywhere. The Scholastic Learn at Home website does not require a username or password, and is open freely to all. The learning journeys are accessible on any device. They are designed to limit the need for printing, and allow students to learn independently or with their families. If your student finds something extremely interesting SRLA teachers can even plan virtual learning meetups to discuss and expand on any of the resources found on the site.
Please visit www.scholastic.com/learnathome and enjoy.
Remember that is an additional resource and not an assignment from your SRLA teachers.
I am currently working with Scholastic to bring Children's novels with read-along recordings to every class level!
I will start with the third grade and The Jungle Book next week!
A Letter from the HSA
Dear SRLA families,
We hope this email finds you well and that those you love are safe and well during this challenging time. We sure miss our students’ bright smiles, our teachers' and parents' friendly faces and all the joy and energy you bring to SRLA daily life.
We want to take a moment to update you on a few changes as we continue to monitor the impact that the COVID-19 pandemic has had on our events schedule.
Parent Letter March 20
Welcome to the new normal…
It’s hard to believe that we have been Distance Learning for less than three days!
The learning curve has been steep for everyone and I cannot tell you how proud I am of you, our parents, in stepping up to the plate.
COVID-19 Update for Monday, March 16, 2020
As the coronavirus (COVID-19) has rapidly evolved, I feel it's important to keep you informed during this fluid situation.
Starting tomorrow, we will begin using our on-line learning platform, Zoom! Below you will find a master schedule showing the time/day each teacher will Zoom with their class. If they have not done so already, teachers will forward sign-in information to each class they teach. Their letter will outline clear instructions on how to sign-in to Zoom.