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Family Focus 12/4/2020

date 12/04/2020 author Ed Friesen category 2020-21, December 2020 comment Leave a comment

Dear BA Families:

Welcome Advent! What a blessing to celebrate Advent and prepare our hearts for the joyous celebration of Christmas and the birth of our Savior. Bethlehem Academy is decked in Advent reminders, from our creche to our Advent wreath. During our full hybrid model, a member of our Peer Ministry group is reading an Advent prayer each Monday and Thursday morning while we light the first week’s candle. 

This week Mrs. Jandro returned to her math classroom. We are so excited to have her back at school and invite everyone to continue to pray for her extended healing. In addition, we will have a substitute teacher for Band. Welcome to David Swenson, Class of 2015 alum and a music and theology graduate studies student at the University of Notre Dame. He will sub over the next two weeks for band rehearsals when he is available. Please remind your scholar to bring their band instrument! 

This next week we will continue with our full hybrid learning model. Here is a review of the week ahead:

  • Monday, Dec. 7: All A-Ka scholars report; Ke-Z scholars report online to PowerSchool and check in with all classes for lessons and assignments. (Unless you have made other arrangements.)
  • Tuesday, Dec. 8: MASS DAY SCHEDULE 8:05 a.m. - All in person and online students report, middle school to homeroom, high school to first hour classes. All students in the building will attend Mass in our gymnasium as it is a Holy Day and DMCS will be at IC Church. Students at home (Ke-Z) are asked to join us online on our YouTube channel. (www.tinyurl.com/BethlehemAcademy)

9:30 a.m. – Ke-Z students report online to PowerSchool and check in with all first hour classes for lessons and assignments.

  • Wednesday, Dec. 9-Student Support Day (WIN): Students needing support or time for projects may schedule time to come into the building or may be requested to report by a teacher. Student Service Club will be packing COVID bags for St. Vincent de Paul from 2-3pm.
  • Thursday, Dec. 10-Friday, Dec 11: All Ke-Z scholars report; A-Ka report online to PowerSchool and check in with all classes for lessons and assignments. (Unless you have made other arrangements.)

COVID Update: As of December 3, 2020, we have had 9 positive Covid-19 cases in our BA family (members who have tested positive but not transferred through school.) Presently we have 22 students quarantining due to outside exposure, not exposure through BA. Please continue to follow the protocols at home and any time your family is in public so that we can offer hybrid or full in-person learning in the months ahead depending on our numbers and State and Archdiocese recommendations. When these numbers drop, or we have no additional cases in our BA family, we can consider changing learning models.

  • Updated Student Symptom Screening form and Decision Tree - click on the links for updated information.
  • Traveling for Christmas or gathering with groups outside of your immediate family?Please plan to quarantine at home and notify the school office that your child will be online that first week in January. Thank you for partnering with us to keep our students and staff safe!

FUNDRAISER UPDATES:

  • BA Annual Fund: Our goal is to raise $250,000 by June 30, 2021. To date we are at $75,944-Thank you! We invite you, or your extended family, to help us achieve $100,000 in our Annual Fund by Christmas! This is a great time to give! With the 2020 COVID giving tax rule changes, all donations of any amount can be taken as a tax credit in 2020. Please spread the news and help us achieve $100,000 by Christmas!
  • BA Bash Raffle Tickets-Looking for a unique stocking stuffer? Order 2020 BA Bash Raffle tickets! Only 1000 $25 tickets printed - send your payment to the front office today and we’ll place you in the drawing. Top Prize-$2020, 2nd Prize-$1020, 3rd Prize: $520. Click HERE to download your order form. All ticket orders must be received by December 30, 2020. Thank you!

KUDOS: Thank you to all of our parents who helped to contribute to the coffee treat at school this week for our staff. What a blessing! Also, congratulations to all of our Students of the Month honored this week. They exemplified one of the four Dominican pillars of prayer, study, community and service and we are so proud of our scholars: Shae Battles, Riley Bauer, Madelyn Bauer, Luke Caron, Aiden Carroll, Megan Cina, Matthew Croke, Karlie DeGrood, Madelyn Gersemehl, Aubrianna Howard, Allison McCabe, Luke McCrea, Sophy Smith, Zachary Velishek, Jonathan Vold, and Verity Wray-Raabolle.

Blessings during our first week of Advent! Please continue to pray for the Gardner family.

Mindy Reeder, President/Principal
mreeder@bacards.org

SCHEDULE CHANGE: Christmas Break will be a full two week break to clean our building and allow additional professional development time for our staff. We will be out of school Dec. 21-Jan. 1, 2021.

ALL-BA UPDATES

BA Mass Update

Several families have reached out regarding viewing live BA Masses via Divine Mercy Catholic Church’s Facebook page. FYI that the parish Facebook page can be viewed without logging into Facebook, as it is a public site. Viewers can ignore the log-in/create account information that loads on the bottom of the page and watch Mass without having to log in. With the no wifi in Immaculate Conception, streaming to YouTube or other platforms can be a challenge while streaming to Facebook using a cellular connection has worked consistently. Know also that the Masses remain on the DMCC Facebook page in video format, so if you have concerns and are not able to be with your student while Mass is streaming live, you can choose to watch it together at a time that is more convenient for your family. Finally, as we will be hosting a separate on Tuesday, December 8 a Solemnity of the Immaculate Conception of the Blessed Virgin Mary Mass (a Holy Day of Obligation) in Van Orsow Auditorium. That Mass will be streamed on our BA YouTube channel. Find that link here.

BA Christmas Angel Fund

Help us support BA families in need!Please consider a donation to the Christmas Angel Student Lunch Account Fund. Many families in our BA community are struggling in a multitude of ways this Christmas season. Please keep them all in your prayers and, if you are able, please consider donating to help families cover their students’ lunch accounts, many of whom fall just outside the federal and state guidelines for assistance. Donations can be dropped off at the BA front entrance or mailed to our address. Thank you!

Prospective Student Visit Options

Help us grow our student enrollment and spread the good news about BA! Take the Future Cardinal Challenge and invite one family/student to join us for a personal tour or one of our limited shadow opportunities. Mid-year transfers are welcome, and applications are now open for 2021-2022. Find more information on our admission page.

Alumni Update Form

We would appreciate any updates for your post-college graduates. Please fill out the attached form and email it to Sister Mary Margaret. Alumni can also update their contact information, sign up for our Veritas newsletter, or share news on our Alumni website page found here. Thank you! 

Mobile Food Distribution: Volunteers & Distribution Info

Area community groups have joined forces to provide mobile food distribution. Drop off sites are Thursday, 12/17 at South Central College and Friday 12/4 and 12/18 at Evergreen Estates and Cannon River Mobile Home Park. Flyers in English and Spanish attached with more information. Volunteers also need to pack and distribute the food boxes! Contact Becky Ford at becky@faribaultyouthinvestment.org to help. 

Holiday Shopping: Amazon Smiles

If you are holiday shopping at Amazon, please go to smile.amazon.com and choose Faribault B A Inc. as your organization (include a space between the B and the A). Amazon will send BA a donation for every purchase you make. It works with Amazon Prime and you can use Scrip to pay for your purchases. Thank you!

Holiday Scrip: Holiday SCRIP is a great option for gift giving! You purchase these small denomination gift cards after all Sunday Masses at Divine Mercy Catholic Church and from the Divine Mercy Catholic School Business Office at 15 SW Third Avenue. 

HIGH SCHOOL UPDATES

Potential KoAm Host Family Opportunity

The KoAm Educational Foundation has reached out about a possible international transfer student. Jisoo (9th-grade female) has been studying in Minnesota this fall, but her school is extremely small (7 girls in the entire high school), and she is looking for a school with more opportunities to make friends and get involved. Jisoo is outgoing, practical, and laid-back. She loves to dance, compose, and sing and is hoping to pursue a career in the arts. She is an only child but would love a host family with siblings she can interact with and spend time with. She came to the US spring 2020 right before COVID, and despite the difficulty of distance learning, she came back this fall in the hopes of attending school in person and learning more about US culture and language. Please contact Kris at ksauer@bacards.org or KoAm at administrator@koameduall.org or call KoAm at 1-800-521-6640 for more information. 

DIVINE MERCY CATHOLIC CHURCH & SCHOOL UPDATES

Middle School Edge/High School Youth Group
Middle School EDGE & High School Youth Group is open to all BA families. This is another great opportunity for your students to gather with others that want to grow in their faith and to enhance what they are learning in the classroom. Registration is required for both. Visit www.divinemercy.cc/faith-formation for more information.

 

Attached Files

Alumni UpdateFall 2020.pdf

Bash 2020 Raffle Ticket Form.pdf

Food Delivery in Faribault-English-December2020 FINAL Locations.pdf

Food Delivery in Faribault-Spanish-December20202 - FINAL Locations.pdf

 

Nov. 30 - Return to School - Full Hybrid

date 11/24/2020 author Ed Friesen category November 2020, 2020-21 comment Leave a comment

Dear BA Families:

 

Thank you for partnering with us during these challenging times. Our online learning reset period improved student success and engagement compared to online learning last spring, and we thank you for partnering with us during this timeframe. We even welcomed a new middle school student during this period! As you are aware, COVID 19 cases and deaths have escalated dramatically since we went into our reset. We pray that you and your extended family have remained healthy and safe during this time.

 

With planning and prayers, we are returning to campus starting Monday, November 30, 2020, in our full hybrid model which splits our student body into two alpha sections. This decision was made based on county numbers, input from the Diocese, school leadership team, faculty and our own quarantining and COVID case counts which have been changing daily. To date, we have had nine positive cases. By moving to a full hybrid model, even if a student tests positive for COVID, we will significantly limit the number of students we need to send home to quarantine. By reducing the number of students in the building, we can also mitigate any possible holiday exposure and increase our chances to return to full in-person learning possibly yet this December. Here are specifics for how this model will work, starting Monday, Nov. 30:

 

November 30-Dec. 11, 2020: Full Hybrid

  • Students with last names A-Ka report to school Monday and Tuesday each week.
  • Students with last names Ke-Z report to school Thursday and Friday
  • Wednesday is our support day - no scheduled classes. Students who need extra support or time to work on projects may come to school. Both teachers and/or students may schedule meetings for this time.
  • A full detailed report of our hybrid model is in our Addendum for your review is at this link.

 

Some students may be asked to report daily; we will be contacting those families directly. If you have any extenuating circumstances which warrants a change for your child’s reporting days, please email the school to let us know of your request: mreeder@bacards.org.

 

What will the next two weeks look like? Both Faribault and BA’s buses are still operating.

  • Mon, Nov. 30-Tues, Dec 1: All A-Ka scholars report; Ke-Z report online to PowerSchool and check in with all classes for lessons and assignments.*Tuesday we celebrate students of the month from A-Ka.
  • Wednesday, Dec. 2 –Students needing support or time for projects may schedule time to come into the building or may be requested to report by a teacher.
  • Thursday, Dec. 3 – All Ke-Z scholars report; A-Ka report online to PowerSchool and check in with all classes for lessons and assignments. *Today we celebrate students of the month from Ke-Z.
  • Friday, Dec. 4MASS DAY SCHEDULE. All in person and online students report to homeroom. Ke-Z students will attend Mass. All students at home (A-Ka) are asked to watch Mass online (https://www.facebook.com/divinemercy.cc). 9:30am: Students report to class, A-Ka students report online and check all classes for lessons and assignments.
  • Monday, Dec. 7 – All A-Ka scholars report; Ke-Z report online to PowerSchool and check in with all classes for lessons and assignments.
  • Tuesday, Dec. 8MASS DAY SCHEDULE. All in person and online students report to homeroom. All students in the building will attend Mass in our gymnasium as it is a Holy Day and DMCS will be at IC Church. All students at home (Ke-Z) are asked to join us online (https://www.facebook.com/divinemercy.cc). 9:30 a.m. – Ke-Z students report online to PowerSchool and check in with all classes for lessons and assignments.
  • Wednesday, Dec. 9 – Students needing support or time for projects may schedule time to come into the building or may be requested to report by a teacher.
  • Thursday, Dec. 10-Friday, Dec 11:  All Ke-Z scholars report; A-Ka report online to PowerSchool and check in with all classes for lessons and assignments.

 

Why are we returning in this full hybrid model? Due to our reset, Bethlehem Academy is better positioned to have students safely in the building; however, since the time of our initial shift to an online reset on November 10, we have had new students and staff diagnosed with COVID, new families having to quarantine, and more families asking to move to distance learning if we return. By returning to campus in full hybrid, we can further mitigate exposure. For those of you still worried if it is safe to return to campus, please know that we have taken even additional precautions including:

  • Spreading desks out further or grouping them to limit possible exposure.
  • Limited lunchroom seating to no more than 3 a table
  • In addition, to date we have not had spread within our building

 

Final Note: Please note, this plan may still need to be adjusted depending on COVID cases within our building, exposure, or on a positive side, the lack of cases or exposure. The more you do at home to mitigate cases and exposure, the more likely we can continue in hybrid or change to full in-person learning.

 

Finally, a couple of notes:

  • In regards to students when learning remotely, the teachers have adapted their format to do a check in with distance and flipped lesson, so that when students are here they are getting more direct support, which is what was recommended by the schools utilizing this learning model. Our staff feel confident that this will work well.
  • Revised symptom checklist for student self-screening: At the advice of public health authorities, we have revised our student screening checklist. Please see the attached checklist to screen for symptoms on days your student will be in the building.

 

Please contact the school with any questions. Sending wishes for a blessed and safe Thanksgiving! Finally, lease share enjoy and share this link to our virtual Grandparents Day program.

 

Blessings,

Family Focus 11/22/2020 date 11/24/2020 author Ed Friesen category 2020-21, November 2020 comment Leave a comment

November 22, 2020

Dear BA Families:

Happy Sunday as we celebrate the Solemnity of Our Lord Jesus, King of the Universe! What an exciting week as we wrapped up our fall sports. Every day seems to bring new information as we adapt to our environment and changing needs. We hold you and your family in our prayers each week as we meet these challenges together. Our Accreditation review is complete. This review ensures that we follow excellence in all that we do, a process that happens every seven years. Our strategic plan is online for your review. Next week is our short Thanksgiving week. Please watch for grandparent letters to be shared with you so that you can give these to your loved ones. We’ll also be creating a virtual grandparent presentation - watch for this next week! Here is a look at our week: 

  • Monday – Nov. 23 – RED DAY
    • 8:05 Morning Announcements: https://meet.google.com/uod-epie-zxa(Also bookmarked in the Cardinal App Store)
    • Middle School Online Schedule: *See your schedule online
    • High School Online Schedule: RED DAY – follow your personal school bell schedule
    • No MS or HS Band Lessons
  • Tuesday – Nov. 24 – WHITE DAY - Grandparents Day!
    • 8:05 Morning Announcements: https://meet.google.com/uod-epie-zxa(Also bookmarked in the Cardinal App Store)
    • Middle School Online Schedule: *See your schedule online
    • High School Online Schedule: WHITE DAY – follow your personal school bell schedule 
    • No MS or HS Band Lessons
    • Watch for our special Grandparents Day video. 
  • Wednesday, Nov 25-Friday, Nov. 27: NO SCHOOL
    • Have a blessed Thanksgiving Break 

GIVING WEEK AT BA - It’s not too late to donate to our Annual Fund! THANK YOU TO EVERYONE WHO HAS ALREADY SUPPORTED BA! We have reached our $25,000 match challenge (Oct-Dec) thanks to the donations this week. To date our Annual Fund is at: $70,239 (+$25,000 match) = $95,239 - 38% of our goal of $250,000. You can make a gift to our Annual Fund until June 30, 2021, at https://www.bacards.org/page/3044

COVID UPDATE: Although we’ve had seven positive cases among our students and staff to date, all are now healthy and all but one are off of their quarantine restrictions. We ask that during the Thanksgiving break you continue following COVID safety protocols with your family in order to limit your exposure so that we can return to school.

  • Wear a mask
  • Keep 6 feet away from others when in public
  • Wash your hands often!

KUDOS: Congratulations to Kennedy Tutak ‘21, our State Farm Athlete of the Week, to our Student Service Club for collecting and donating over 650 pairs of socks for St. Vincent de Paul - and to all who supported their sock drive with donations, and special congratulations to both of our volleyball and football teams and their coaches on an amazing year despite all the challenges thrown their way this season! 

SCHEDULE CHANGE: Christmas Break will be a full two week break to clean our building and allow additional professional development time for our staff. We will be out of school Dec. 21-Jan. 1, 2021.

Blessings,

Mindy Reeder,
President/Principal
mreeder@bacards.org

 

ALL-BA UPDATES

Online Letter Jacket Ordering

Originally, MECA Sportswear was planning on being here Monday, Nov. 16 for letter jacket ordering. With BA currently in online learning mode, the letter jackets may be ordered online at this link. A new date for the representative to come to BA will be set in the near future. Attached is the original letter jacket ordering announcement and a letter jacket sizing guide. We encourage students, especially the boys, to consider the Traditional BA Cardinal letter jacket.

November SADD Posters

Attached please find two posters on Thankfulness prepared by SADD (Students Against Destructive Decisions) students. Meant to be hung in high-traffic areas in our building, we ask that you share them with your students. Thank you!

Volunteer Opportunities

  • BABS Committee-We are looking forward to another fantastic BABS event April 10, 2021! BABS (BA Boosters & Supporters) is our biggest fundraising and social event of the year and key to successfully moving BA forward. Mrs. Reeder at mreeder@bacards.orgOur first virtual meeting is Dec 2 at 6pm. Thank you!

Holiday Shopping: Amazon Smiles

If you are holiday shopping at Amazon, please go to http:/smile.amazon.com and choose Faribault B A Inc. as your organization (include a space between the B and the A). Amazon will send BA a donation for every purchase you make. It works with Amazon Prime and you can use Scrip to pay for your purchases. Thank you!

Prospective Student Visit Options

We’d love to grow our student enrollment! If you know of a family interested in our authentically Catholic, Domincan prep school, please invite them to sign up here for a family tour offered Monday to Friday from 3-6pm. We are also working on limited shadow opportunities; stay tuned for more information. 

HIGH SCHOOL UPDATES

Potential KoAm Host Family Opportunity

The KoAm Educational Foundation has reached out about a possible international transfer student. Jisoo (9th-grade female) has been studying in Minnesota this fall, but her school is extremely small (7 girls in the entire high school), and she is looking for a school with more opportunities to make friends and get involved. Jisoo is outgoing, practical, and laid-back. She loves to dance, compose, and sing and is hoping to pursue a career in the arts. She is an only child but would love a host family with siblings she can interact with and spend time with. She came to the US spring 2020 right before COVID, and despite the difficulty of distance learning, she came back this fall in the hopes of attending school in person and learning more about US culture and language. Please contact Kris at ksauer@bacards.org or KoAm at administrator@koameduall.org or call KoAm at 1-800-521-6640 for more information. 

DIVINE MERCY CATHOLIC CHURCH & SCHOOL UPDATES

  • Middle School Edge/High School Youth Group

Middle School EDGE & High School Youth Group is open to all BA families. This is another great opportunity for your students to gather with others that want to grow in their faith and to enhance what they are learning in the classroom. Registration is required for both. Visit www.divinemercy.cc/faith-formation for more information. 

  • DMCS Butter Braid Sales: DMCS students are selling butter braids! Order by November 30 for December 15 delivery. Contact DMCS at 507-334-7706 for more information.
  • DMCS Holiday Scrip: Holiday SCRIP is a great option for gift giving! You purchase these small denomination gift cards after all Sunday Masses at Divine Mercy Catholic Church and from the Divine Mercy Catholic School Business Office at 15 SW Third Avenue. 

 

Attached Files

SADD Thankfulness Heidi.pdf

Thankfulness Lindsay.pdf

Letter_Jackets.pdf

Jacket_Sizing_Guide.pdf

 

Our Mission
Bethlehem Academy, a Catholic school in the Sinsinawa Dominican tradition, strives to empower its students and staff to achieve personal, spiritual and academic excellence. We challenge ourselves to love as Jesus Christ loved, to lead, to serve, to inspire and to seek the truth: Veritas.
Address
105 3rd Ave. SW
Faribault, MN  55021
Phone:  507-334-3948
Fax:  507-334-3949