Read Principal's newsletter -November 2009 (Read-Only) text version

Principal's Newsletter Scranton Preparatory School

November 2009 Dear Parents:

At our opening in-service day for faculty in August, each teacher was asked to do a self-evaluation on the ministry of teaching in a Jesuit school. The faculty considered a check-list of items that included many of the areas involved in their teaching ministry--student growth (academic, social, and spiritual), cura personalis, prayer, communication, involvement in the school's mission, and professional development. When finished with their own evaluation, teachers met with each other in small groups to share what they believed to be individual areas of strength and areas where they saw room for growth. This personal evaluation seemed appropriate at this time since faculty have spent the past several years completing the Middle States self-evaluation of the school. It was time to step back and look at the important aspects of each individual teacher's ministry. The results of this self-evaluation, I believe, were helpful to teachers. I know it was very helpful to me to read the summary of each group's discussions to find, for example, the seriousness with which faculty take their ministry, to learn how teachers recognize areas that they need to develop and talk about ways to do that, to see the areas of strength of faculty members, and to notice how various members of our faculty complement each other. As one group put it, "though each of us is not able to affect every student in every way, our special individual strengths allow us to minister to very different children in very different ways. As a whole faculty, therefore, we do well in meeting each student's needs." Another but very different way we evaluate ourselves is to look at standardized testing. A close look at SAT scores and student performances in subject-based regional and national tests and competitions help us validate what we do academically. The detailed analyses of these tests show us where we do well and where we can improve and so give us direction for evaluation of our curriculum. The Class of 2009 had an average SAT score on their best SAT performance of 1162 (national average was 1015) and an AP pass rate percentage of 80% (national average was 57%). The average increase in Prep students' scores from their first PSAT test as sophomores to their best SAT score in senior year was 159 points (national average increase is generally between 50-60 points). Hundreds of students in all four years took regional and national tests or competed in competitions in languages, sciences, mathematics, computer science, social studies, and art. Composite scores for each of these tests and competitions indicate again that our students score well above average. We are very proud of these student accomplishments, but as always we find in these successes the challenge to continue to work as hard as ever on our academic program. Finally, I hope you will join us on Tuesday, November 24, at 7 p.m. in the St. Robert Bellarmine Theatre for the annual family Mass of Thanksgiving. This is always a beautiful way to give praise and thanks to God for our many wonderful gifts as individuals and as a school community. On a personal note, I have much to be thankful for this year, and one of the things I am most grateful for are your many expressions of kindness and prayers for me over these past few months. I am as always grateful for your support of what we do here at Scranton Prep each day. My prayers are with each of you and your families during this grace-filled season of thanksgiving.

Sincerely yours, Patrick J. Marx

Principal

Ten Prep Seniors Earn National Recognition

The National Merit Scholarship Corporation has recognized 10 Prep students for their outstanding achievement on the National Merit Scholarship Exam. Jennifer Boland, Daniel Brier, Stephen Gan, John Guzek, and Amelia Mackarey were named semifinalists in the competition. Louis Balzani, Mary Theresa Condosta, Samuel Kuchwara, Meghan McDonald, and Virginia McGregor were named commended students. Semifinalists finish in approximately the top 1% of the 1.4 million students taking the National Merit Exam; commended students finish in approximately the top 4%.

Thirty-Nine Prep Students Named A.P. Scholars

Thirty-nine students earned the distinction of Advanced Placement Scholar for receiving outstanding scores on multiple Advanced Placement exams. Students earning these awards had to take a minimum of three A.P. exams and have an above average score on the exams. These recognitions attest to the hard work of students and the sound programs offered by our faculty.

Judge Michael Barrasse to Speak to Parents on Combating Substance Abuse

Judge Michael Barrasse will speak to current Prep parents on his court's approach to drug and alcohol abuse in Lackawanna County. During this informational session, Judge Barrasse will explain the comprehensive nature of the Problem Solving Courts, the constituents involved in the process, and why this program has been so successful in the effort to combat substance abuse-driven crime and dealing with offenders with mental illness. Please join us.

Thursday, November 19, 2009 -- 7 p.m. Judge Michael Barrasse St. Robert Bellarmine Theatre

If you plan to attend, please notify the Prep Development Office at 941-7737 or email [email protected]

Event Parking Available in Two Prep Lots

For after school and evening events at Scranton Prep, there are two parking lots which are now available for your use. The lot which we call the "junior parking lot" is in the 300 block of Ash Street. It is behind the Scranton Primary Health Care Center property. This parking lot is enclosed with a chain link fence. Our newest parking lot is in the 900 block of Wyoming to the left of the Scranton Primary Health Care Center.

2009 Yearbooks Are In!

2009 Yearbooks are available for $20.00 in the music room or at the main office.

Open House Attracts 829; Entrance Exam is Saturday, December 5

Two hundred and ninety-two students from forty-four schools throughout Northeastern Pennsylvania were among the 829 people who attended this year's Open House in October according to Mr. Hewitt, Prep's admissions director. Also, more than 200 eighth graders are signed up for the Prep-sponsored tutoring program to help prepare for our entrance exam which will be administered on Saturday, December 5. Students work each Tuesday afternoon with members of Prep's National Honor Society. If you have any questions about the tutoring program or registration for the entrance exam, please contact the admissions office at 941-7737 ext. 141.

Early Dismissals for Faculty Meetings

Students will have early dismissal once each month (except January) for faculty meetings. The time for dismissal will depend on the agenda for the month but usually dismissal will be at 12:50 p.m. Occasionally meetings are cancelled if there have been many schedule interruptions due to weather. Following is a list of faculty meeting days for the remainder of the year: Tuesday, November 10 Tuesday, February 9 Tuesday, March 30 Tuesday, December 15 Tuesday, March 2 Tuesday, May 4

Special Schedule for Trustee Day

Wednesday, December 16, is Trustee Day at Scranton Prep. Members of the Board of Trustees will spend the day at Prep meeting with faculty and students and visiting classes. In order that the faculty may meet with the board in the morning, we will have a delayed start on that day. Homeroom will begin at 10:10 a.m.. Bus drivers have been notified of this change.

Call Alert System Reminder

Scranton Prep uses The Call Alert System which allows us to record a message and send it immediately to all the numbers we have on file. We use this system for unexpected developments like a power outage or early dismissal due to snow. We want to keep its use for important information or unexpected changes in schedules. We do not use the system to communicate late starts or cancellations due to weather. We already have several ways to communicate that information (see Snow Cancellation and Delays below). Also these delays and cancellations are often made late in the evening or very early in the morning, and we do not wish to disturb families at these times.

School Cancellations and Delays

When Scranton Prep must cancel school or have a delayed start due to inclement weather, it communicates that information to the following television and radio stations: WARM (AM 590) WMGS ( FM-Magic 93) WEJL (AM 630) WEZX (FM ­Rock 107) WBRE ­TV (Channel 28) WNEP ­TV (Channel 16) WYOU ­TV (Channel 22). The information is also immediately available on our phone system and websites. When it is necessary to have a delayed start, Prep normally goes on a two hour delay. This means that homeroom starts at 10:10 a.m. Please Note: Districts that bus students to Prep will run buses based on their decision. If a district closes and Scranton Prep does not, there would be no busing provided that day. Buses also run on the delayed start time of the district. Prep serves a wide geographic area, and weather conditions can vary greatly during the winter. If your school district delays or cancels and Prep does not or if the roads in your area seem icy, please use your discretion about sending your son or daughter to school and err on the side of caution.

In the event that Scranton Prep needs to convey more information about delays or cancellations than is possible through the information provided on television and radio, we will do so through announcements on our phone system and on our websites scrantonprep.com and scrantonprep.net

Award Omissions in School Catalog

We inadvertently omitted two names in listing academic achievements in our school catalog. Elizabeth Casey should be listed in the gold medal category for Social Studies, and Michael Shostek should be listed under honorable mention for Religion. We congratulate these students and all who achieved medals and honorable mentions for their hard work during the 2008-2009 academic year. We apologize for the error.

The Scranton Prep Players Present Arsenic and Old Lace

On the weekends of November 13-14 and 20-21, the Scranton Prep Players will present Arsenic and Old Lace in the Bellarmine Theatre. Curtain time is 7:30 p.m. For ticket information, call Prep at 941-7737.

Galleria 2009 at Scranton Prep

The St. Francis Xavier Center is the site for Galleria 2009, Scranton Prep's annual unique shopping experience. Prep's Marketplace Bakery, featuring all homemade items, and the Prep Booth, where a variety of Prep clothing can be purchased, will be among over seventy-five new and returning talented artisans and retailers offering a vast array of merchandise. Galleria 2009 St. Francis Xavier Center Saturday, November 14 from 10 a.m. to 5 p.m. Sunday, November 15 from 11 a.m. to 4 p.m.

Upcoming Events

November 10................................................. November 14-15............................................... November 13-14 and 20-21.............................. November 24................................................ November 25­30............................................ November 29 ............................................... December 5................................................. December 10.................................................. December 15 ................................................. December 16 .................................................. December 23................................................. Faculty Meeting--12:50 p.m. dismissal Career Day at Prep for Juniors - 12:50 p.m. - 2:35 p.m. Galleria Prep Players Present Arsenic and Old Lace at 7:30 p.m. Family Mass of Thanksgiving 7 p.m. in Bellarmine Theatre Thanksgiving Holidays Student Council's Semi-formal Dance - 5 p.m.-10 p.m. Scranton Prep Entrance Exam Parent-Teacher Conferences--7 p.m. Faculty Meeting -- 12:50 p.m. dismissal Trustee Day Advent liturgy - followed by dismissal

Scranton Preparatory School's 36th Annual Family Mass of Thanksgiving The St. Robert Bellarmine Theatre Tuesday, November 24 -- 7:00 p.m. Reception follows in the St. Francis Xavier Student Center

Prep Families, Prep Alumni/ae, Prep Faculty, and Friends of Scranton Prep are cordially invited to attend this special Mass.

Information

Principal's newsletter -November 2009 (Read-Only)

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