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Mrs. Hartnett writes,
As I write this portion of the newsletter, I look out my window and see the bluest of blue skies. The grass has become decidedly greener and the air has a definite warmth to it. Yes, it is spring! And although I love winter and lots of snow, I do enjoy beautiful days like today.
On May 8, you will read the last issue of the Junior School newsletter for this school year, and as you will see, it is one whose prologue is taken over by the students themselves. Thus, this is my last opportunity of this school year (and for Form II families, forever) to write directly to you.
For someone whose life is absorbed by the workings and doings of the boys and their families in the Junior School, I find this time of year to be one truly tinged with a feeling of nostalgia and, yes, sadness. In my job, I come to know your sons and you as central to everything that I do here, and saying goodbye to that, saying goodbye to you, is not easy. And even though the boys are moving only down the hill, it is never quite the same again. The boys do come back and visit (especially at snack time!) and they do know where the refrigerator is, but they grow up, and they grow away. And although I will miss them, I understand that it is appropriate for them to take their place in the high school. I do know, though that I am proud of them, of who they are, and of what they are.
May I take this final opportunity to thank, profoundly and gratefully, the parents of our Form I and II students who have shared their wonderful sons with us here. They are unquestionably a blessing without measure.
FORM II SEMINAR
Please be reminded that on Thursday, April 30, we are hosting a Form II seminar for eighth grade parents and boys. The seminar begins at 8:00 am and concludes at 8:45 am, and will be held in the Junior School commons area. Dr. Rob Furey, our own educational psychologist, will speak about the adventure that lies ahead and the importance of focus and positive attitudes to achieve success. I hope that all of you will join us!
I am happy to announce that Form II students Thomas Clear and Anthony Jones were finalists in the 2015 Respect Life Creative Writing Contest, sponsored by the Respect Life Apostolate of the Archdiocese of St. Louis. As such, they and their parents and teachers were invited to the Awards Assembly at the Cardinal Rigali Center to celebrate their success. Archbishop Robert J. Carlson was the featured speaker.
Congratulations to Thomas and to Anthony!
(l-r: Thomas Clear and Anthony Jones)
EXAMS EXAMS EXAMS
Below you will find the third term final exam schedule for the Junior School:
FORM II FORM I
Tuesday, May 19: Tuesday, May 19:
8:15 – 9:45 Theology 8:15 – 9:45 English
10:00 – 11:15 History 10:00 – 11:30 Latin
Wednesday, May 20: Wednesday, May 20:
8:15 – 9:30 French/Spanish 8:15 – 9:45 Mathematics
9:45 – 11:15 Latin 10:00 – 11:15 Theology
Thursday, May 21: Thursday, May 21:
8:15 – 9:45 Mathematics 8:15 – 9:15 Science
The Junior School will close at noon on all three exam days. It is very important that Junior School boys be picked up as soon as possible after exams on the three exam days, but in any case, no later than noon. Any boys not picked up by noon will wait in the high school lobby or commons room. Please note as well:
- Monday, May 18, is a review day. No classes are held in the school. At the conclusion of the exams on Thursday, May 22, the school year is officially over.
- Junior School students who are picked up at the high school must remain in the lobby or the commons room of the high school building and are not allowed in the hallways, the library, or the bookstore, as some high school exams may be in session.
- Milk and donuts are available to the boys between exams. Donuts are 50 cents and milk is free.
- The dress code for exams is the same as a regular school day. All boys are expected to be in normal dress code.
- No student may leave early from an exam. Each student must stay in the exam room until the exam period is completed.
- Any Junior School student who wishes to eat lunch at school on Tuesday or Wednesday of exam week is welcome to do so but must sign up in the Junior School office for each day desired. Sign-up sheets for lunch will be available on Mrs. Lane's office door during the week immediately preceding exams. No student lunch will be served on Thursday, May 21.
JUNIOR SCHOOL STUDENTS, EXAMS, AND ANXIETY
In spite of our efforts to the contrary, the Junior School boys will naturally be somewhat anxious about exams, especially the Form I students who are experiencing this full exam schedule for only the second time. And although this is fairly commonplace, I do urge parents to monitor this possible anxiety and to address it openly and calmly. Anxiety at this time of year is born from a very real and profound desire to do well; our boys hold themselves to a certain standard and very much do not want to disappoint anyone, including themselves. Recently, I told the boys about Rogers Hornsby. A former Cardinal second baseman and Hall-of-Famer, Rogers Hornsby (batting proficiency rating of .371 – top ten in baseball history, .358 lifetime batting average, 3 .400+ seasons, 2 Triple Crowns) is said to have declared that he was grateful for the acute, piercing nervousness he felt each and every time he stepped to the plate, for this feeling properly understood and properly channeled gave him the power that he needed to hit the ball. And hit the ball, he did!! Boys need to remember that each day, in each class, when they work with attentiveness and confidence, they are actually preparing for the term assessments. This is not simply one test, one day. It is a term, a term of study, a term of effort and achievement and real learning.
One of the best ways in which to manage these challenges is to begin NOW. Organizing papers and notebooks and returned tests and quizzes, finding all of those lost items that are clogging the lost and found area here in my office, planning a strategy for study that begins, at some level, immediately. A structured and systematic review that begins early will allow time for family, for fun, for BALANCE. And always, always, always, boys should ask questions of teachers, advisors, and parents, if something/anything is not clear. We are here for all of you.
LOST AND FOUND, LOCKER CLEAN OUT
The lost and found area in the Junior School is beginning to fill to overflowing with every imaginable option. Please be aware that after May 15 (the last day of classes), all unclaimed items from either the clothing bin or the book shelves will be donated or disposed of.
Locker clean out for the end of the year will also take place on the last day of classes, May 15. Please send with your son on that day a sturdy plastic bag or other carrying bag for the locker contents. Plastic grocery bags or thin trash bags tear easily and are generally not helpful. Anything left behind after that day will be removed by our maintenance staff. Be sure and take your locks, too, for future use.
GYM LOCKER CLEAN OUT
Any items left in the gym lockers after May 15 will be disposed of. And don’t forget to check the grunge box!!
GIVE STL DAY
Save the Date for Give STL Day! On May 5, Priory is participating in Give STL Day, a 24-hour giving event with local impact. We are thrilled to participate in this community event, and hope you will join us in celebrating giving.
Thursday, April 30 8:00 – 8:45 am Form II Seminar in JS commons
Friday, May 8 the final newsletter
Friday, May 15 Last day of classes; all locker clean out
Monday, May 18 Study day – no Classes
Tuesday, Wednesday, Thursday
May 19, 20, 21 Term exams
“Whenever I walked to the plate with a bat in my hands, I couldn't help but feel sorry for the pitcher." Rogers Hornsby
Thank you all for your kindness and generosity to all of us. We are grateful to you for your unending support of the boys and of the School.
Diana B. Hartnett
Director of the Junior School
Saint Louis Priory School