THE ARCHDIOCESE OF PHILADELPHIA’S CATHOLIC EDUCATION CORONAVIRUS TASK FORCE PROVIDES ELEVENTH NEWSLETTER TO FAMILIES DEMONSTRATING THE ONGOING DEDICATION AND CREATIVITY OF ADMINISTRATORS, FACULTY, AND STUDENTS IN THE MIDST OF THE PANDEMIC

Tuesday, June 9th

The Archdiocese of Philadelphia’s Catholic Education Coronavirus (COVID-19) Task Force continues to offer guidance to schools as they effectively navigate the public health crisis facing our nation. The Task Force also provides a continuum of support to students and school families. 

The Task Force recently shared the eleventh issue of its newsletter with families demonstrating the exceptional work and creativity of administrators, faculty, and students taking place during these challenging times.  With the 2019-2020 school year coming to a close, this will be the last weekly newsletter.  The Task Force will provide updates during the summer, as will individual schools on plans for reopening schools in the fall.

Outlined below are a few highlights from parish and regional elementary schools and secondary schools throughout the five-county region.  For a full list of schools featured, as well as letters to school families from Father Matt Guckin, Director of Catholic Mission and Identity and from Sister Maureen Lawrence McDermott, I.H.M., Ph.D., Superintendent of Secondary Schools, in addition to Mr. David J. Magee, Ed.D., Chairperson of the Catholic Education Coronavirus Taskforce, please see the full newsletter here. Highlights are presented below from the eleventh newsletter.

Saint Laurentius Catholic School; 1612 East Berks Street; Philadelphia, PA 19125. Mr. Andrew Notarfrancesco, a Math teacher at Saint Laurentius and a member of the Civil Air Patrol has been recognized with the National ACE CAP Excellence Award.  Ms. Susan Mercer from the Awards Committee wrote, “I am pleased to tell you that St. Laurentius Catholic School is the 2019-2020 ACE CAP Excellence Award Winner of the Year. The awards committee was truly impressed with the program at St. Laurentius School. The program is exactly what the committee looks for when selecting a school to represent our ACE Program. The dedication of the teachers is apparent in their actions to go above and beyond for the students. I only wish I could be there to enjoy some of your classes!”

Saint Christopher Catholic School; 13305 Proctor Road; Philadelphia, PA 19116. Students in the Preschool at Saint Christopher’s came to school to celebrate the end of the school year.  Their families parked their cars with students blowing bubbles outside their cars while social distancing.

Saint Albert the Great Catholic School; 214 Welsh Road; Huntingdon Valley, PA 18976 (Montgomery County).  Friday, May 29th was the last day for Distance Learning at St. Albert the Great School. These past months have really shown what amazing, dedicated teachers the school has. They worked tirelessly at home to transition to have Distance Learning in place beginning the Monday after schools closed. It was a sad way to end the year but there were still some great projects presented by the student. The first graders finished the year with 2D and 3D shape projects. They also sent in pictures of their version of the Ascension of Our Lord. The sixth graders worked on a summer retreat plan entitled “How to Have the Best, Most Awesome and Memorable, Holy and Happy Summer!” It included goals for Prayer, reading the Bible, Entertainment and Service.

In Archdiocese of Philadelphia Sports News, the Archdiocese of Philadelphia Class of 2020 includes athletic excellence as well as nearly 300 graduating senior student-athletes from AOP high schools will complete in college athletics in the 2020-2021 academic year. The complete list can be found here.

For information about Archdiocese of Philadelphia Athletics, please visit www.aopathletics.org/

In addition, a comprehensive COVID-19 resource page is available for parents, school families, and employees. The page is updated regularly with the latest health, government, and spiritual resources available. 

All Archdiocesan high schools, parish and regional elementary schools, schools of special education, PREP programs, and early learning centers shifted from traditional classroom instruction to a flexible classroom instruction model in early March to ensure the health and safety of all students, faculty, and staff.  From the first day of this shift, nearly all schools were fully operational within the context of the virtual learning landscape and attendance rates in Archdiocesan schools have been near record highs.

During these uncertain times, all Archdiocesan schools remain steadfast in their commitment to providing the best educational experience possible and to give students every tool they need to be successful now and in the future.