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We are excited to welcome Kathleen Peek Evans, a 2011 St. Joseph’s Academy graduate, back to campus as our campus minister. Working with Kathleen are Mary Kay Alford and Sister Chris Pologa, who is our pastoral care minister and service coordinator. In our year of COVID, Kathleen and Mary Kay are working hard to plan an exciting lineup of formative and spiritual events for our students. With protocols in place, they have begun offering Bible study to students and faculty. The Campus Ministry office will continue to offer the weekly rosary, adoration, reconciliation, service opportunities and, we hope, mission trips this summer. Faith development opportunities allow our students to strengthen their relationship with God and develop a deeper understanding of the Gospel values lived out by words, actions and deeds through Christian discipleship.
We hope that you can find the time to join us virtually on Wednesday, September 30, for our second Liturgy of the Word. Our theme will be vocations, and we will be joined virtually by the Sisters of St. Joseph. Our third Liturgy of the Word will take place on Tuesday, October 20. We will be praying for the upcoming election and focusing on our responsibilities as active Catholic citizens. We will be joined by Father Jamin David. Both services begin at 10:05 a.m., and both will be livestreamed on SJA’s Facebook page.
You might have noticed your daughter’s school ID card has a few new features. We made the ID functional this year by adding the lunch barcode for quick checkout in the Dining Hall. The second feature is the addition of the National Suicide Prevention hotline number (1-800-273-8255). While this is a difficult topic to discuss, we cannot ignore the fact that there has been an increase in the rate of suicide deaths among those ages 10-24 and that, according to the CDC, suicide is the second leading cause of death for this age group. In accordance with Bulletin 741 (Louisiana Handbook for School Administrators), SJA will provide training for faculty and staff in the area of suicide prevention, including awareness, risk factors, warning signs and services available to those affected.
We look forward to formally welcoming our flamingos of the class of 2024 in our annual Candlelight Ceremony. This long-standing tradition of senior big sisters passing the flame to their little sisters will take place on Thursday, October 15.
Happy fall everyone!
I love what I do, I love who I do it with and I love that we do it together in the name of our patron, St. Joseph.
Stacia B. Andricain
LITURGY OF THE WORD
Wednesday, September 30. We will celebrate our annual schoolwide liturgy focusing on vocations. This year’s prayer service will be dedicated to Sister Jane Louise Arbour, class of 1941, and Sister Johanne Pedersen, class of 1946, who passed away this month. These two graduates of SJA dedicated 150 combined years of service to the dear neighbor as Sisters of St. Joseph. The prayer service will begin at 10:05 a.m. with the lighting of a candle in our chapel and in our classrooms. We invite family members and friends to join our streamed service and have a candle of your own ready to light.
ACT DIAGNOSTIC TESTING
SJA will hold a full-length ACT Diagnostic Test on Saturday, October 3. Students will take a full-length ACT test in the same testing environment as a standard ACT. They will receive a detailed diagnostic report as well as have the option for an individual conference of specific skills they can practice. The cost is $15.50 and can be purchased on Shop SJA (under Extended Programs) until Thursday, October 1, at 12 p.m. Please direct questions to Dean of Curriculum & Instruction Aimee Urdiales at email@example.com.
TESTING PREP IN-SCHOOL SESSION
Part of SJA’s Testing Prep Program is an in-school segment that will give students the skills and strategies they need as well as individualized practice for ACT and SAT testing. We will have nine 50-minute sessions (five in the fall, four in the spring) of ACT/SAT prep that occur during the school day. These sessions are part of a grade-specific curriculum that focuses on the main test that occurs during that grade year as well as on general testing tips and anxiety tools. We will follow Schedule 10 on these days.
Remaining dates are as follows:
- Tuesday, October 6
- Wednesday, October 14
- Friday, November 6
Thursday, October 8, for Faculty Professional Development. Students are dismissed at 1:34 p.m. (Schedule 8). Please note that the library will remain open until 5:30 p.m. and that resource teachers (math, science and English) as well as the Writing Center will be available.
Healthvacs will be on campus on Friday, October 9, to administer flu vaccines. Only the injection form of the vaccine will be available this year. The vaccine is for ages 4 and up. Cost for students and parents is $28. Vaccines will be given between 8 a.m. and 2 p.m. in the concession area of the Activity Center. You will enter through the door near the Medaille Hall circle driveway. Your temperature will be checked upon arrival.
Please bring the completed questionnaire and payment with you on October 9. Cash or checks made payable to Healthvacs are accepted. Please direct questions to Nurse Marie Vukovics at firstname.lastname@example.org.
LETTER JACKET SIZING
Wednesday, October 14, all three lunch periods. The Recognition Company will be set up in the concession area of the Activity Center to measure students for jackets and collect order forms. More information, including order forms, will be emailed in advance to those students who are eligible to purchase a jacket.
BIG SIS/LITTLE SIS REVEAL/CANDLELIGHT CEREMONY
On Thursday, October 15, we will combine our Big Sis/Little Sis Reveal, originally scheduled for September 22, with our traditional Candlelight Ceremony. The event will take place after school. All seniors and freshmen are required to attend. We will share details once our plan is finalized.
Friday, October 16. School is closed.
LITURGY OF THE WORD
Tuesday, October 20. Father Jamin David will preside over a streamed Liturgy of the Word as we pray for our nation heading into the November election. Parents and friends are invited to join online beginning at 10:05 a.m. and to light a candle along with our students.
BALFOUR REPRESENTATIVE ON CAMPUS
Wednesday, October 21, outside the Dining Hall during all lunch hours and again at 5-7 p.m. Juniors are invited to order their school rings, and seniors are invited to order graduation announcements. Parents are encouraged to attend with their daughters.
Wednesday, October 21, for Professional Learning Community. Students are dismissed at 1:50 p.m. (Schedule 3). Please note that the library will remain open until 5:30 p.m. and that resource teachers (math, science and English) as well as the Writing Center will be available.
Friday, October 23, Chapel at SJA, all lunch hours.
8th Annual SJA Sticker Scramble
Monday, October 26, TopGolf of Baton Rouge. Hosted by the SJA Dads’ Club, the Sticker Scramble is now in its 8th year and has raised almost $80,000 for enhancements to SJA.
If you are interested in playing or in supporting this great event with a sponsorship, please contact Dads’ Club Moderator Meg Gerald (email@example.com; 388-2254). You can also visit www.stickerscramble.org for more information.
Our goal is to raise $10,000 this year. All sponsorships, gifts and services are tax deductible. Rain or shine, we hope to see you on October 26 at TopGolf!
Thursday, October 29, for 8th grade girls and their parents. We will follow a special schedule on this day for early dismissal at 12:23 p.m. for drivers and 12:28 p.m. for carpoolers. All students not assisting with Open House must be picked up by 2 p.m. The library will not be open for after-school hours. Students remaining on campus and working Open House will be provided refreshments. They must wear their dress uniform.
Due to Open House the night before, SJA will have a late start on Friday, October 30. School will begin at 9:01 a.m. and end at the normal time. There will be no breakfast served on this day.
STUDENT COUNCIL FUN DAY
Friday, October 30. The theme is “Trick or Treat on Broussard Street.” Full details and costume guidelines will be emailed to students.
ACT GEAR-UP READING SESSION
Our ACT Gear-Up Sessions begin with our reading session on Saturday, October 31. This session will be taught by SJA ACT-certified teachers and will encompass overall test strategies, specific question types, analysis of passages and practice. It will be held in St. Joseph Hall from 8 a.m. until 12 p.m. Students may purchase the class on Shop SJA (under Extended Programs) until Tuesday, October 27. Please direct questions to Dean of Curriculum & Instruction Aimee Urdiales at firstname.lastname@example.org.
ALL SAINTS DAY
On Monday, November 2, St. Joseph’s Academy will observe All Saints Day with a schoolwide Liturgy of the Word. During the Liturgy, we will remember our deceased loved ones in prayer. As in the past, we will print a list of all the names of the deceased relatives and friends for whom you would like us to pray and place them on the altar. Please send the names of your loved ones to Wendy Coniglio at email@example.com by Thursday, October 29.
DATE CHANGES FOR PSAT AND PRE-ACT
Under normal circumstances, SJA administers the Pre-ACT and PSAT in October. The Pre-ACT is given to freshmen and sophomores as a pre-test for the ACT. The PSAT is given to sophomores, juniors and select freshmen as a pre-test for the SAT; it is also the qualifying standardized test for National Merit Scholarships. Due to COVID-19, these testing companies have given us the opportunity to move these test dates to the spring. The Pre-ACT will be given on Monday, January 25, 2021, and the PSAT will be given on Tuesday, January 26, 2021. More information will be provided closer to the testing date.
MARCH 9 ACT PAYMENT AVAILABLE ON SHOP SJA
All juniors are required to take the ACT on March 9 at SJA. Parents of juniors should have received an email with more details. Payment for this test is $61.50. It can be purchased on Shop SJA. Payment is due by November 20, 2020. Please direct questions to Dean of Curriculum & Instruction Aimee Urdiales at firstname.lastname@example.org.
ACT TEST SITE UPDATE
Due to current COVID-19 school guidelines, we will be a private ACT testing site for SJA students only through the end of 2020. School-day procedures for social distancing and cleaning will be followed during the test. We will offer the ACT on these remaining dates: October 17, October 24 and December 12. If you have already registered for the ACT, no action is necessary. If you would like to register, please visit http://www.act.org/. During the registration process, the system defaults to search by zip code. You will need to choose the Change Location option and enter the test center code listed below that is associated with the test date you choose. Please direct questions to Assistant to the Deans Cristina Benigno at email@example.com.
Test Center Codes
- October 17: 161069 (Deadline to register is October 2. No late fees charged.)
- October 24: 161060 (Deadline to register is October 2. No late fees charged.)
- December 12: 161060 (Deadline to register is November 20. No late fees charged.)
IMPORTANT DATES 2020-2021
Click here for a listing of important dates for the upcoming school year. Please be reminded that with the uncertainty of evolving COVID-19 restrictions, this calendar is subject to change.
Holiday Office Closings
The main office is closed on these holidays. Please plan accordingly.
- October 16: Fall Holiday
- November 23-27: Thanksgiving
- December 21-January 4: Christmas
- January 18: Martin Luther King Jr. Birthday
- February 15-19: Mardi Gras
- April 2-9: Easter
Office Hours/Visitors to Campus
Following recommendations of healthcare officials, we are not allowing visitors to campus at this time. We ask anyone who needs to conduct business with the school to please call the person with whom they need to talk or the main line at (225) 383-7207. Office staff are available to assist you from 7 a.m. until 3 p.m. Monday through Friday.
Illness, Doctor Visits, Tardies
If your daughter is sick and will not attend school, please contact Students’ Receptionist Erin McLean (firstname.lastname@example.org; 388-2256) by 8 a.m. If a student becomes ill during the day, she must report to Nurse Marie Vukovics’ office, and her parent will be called. Any student who checks out during the day must bring a note from her parent when she returns to school.
Most routine visits to the doctor should be scheduled outside of school hours. If a student knows in advance she must leave early for a doctor’s appointment, written parental permission must be presented to the Students’ Receptionist. When the student returns to school, she must present a note signed by the physician to the Students’ Receptionist in order to receive an excused absence. If you set a doctor’s appointment for your daughter during the school day and will be arriving to check her out, please call Mrs. McLean before arriving so your daughter can be notified of your arrival time.
Students are expected to be on time for every class. A student who arrives on campus after the tardy bell must report to the Students’ Receptionist’s office for a tardy slip before entering class. If she comes in during the day, she must bring a note from her parent to the Students’ Receptionist and sign the check-in register. A checklist will be issued upon the fourth unexcused tardy and for each additional unexcused tardy to school or class.
After-School Rules and Regulations
After dismissal, students remaining on campus must be in designated areas only (Dining Hall, courtyard or library), where an afterschool monitor is present. Students may remain in or in front of the Dining Hall or in the courtyard from 3 until 4 p.m. At 4 p.m., an announcement will direct students to make their way to the library to sign in. Students may not leave campus after dismissal to roam the neighborhood. The library is open until 5:30 p.m. If a student is not picked up by 5:30 p.m., this will be reported to Dean of Women Erika Angarita, and a plan will be made. After-school library rules can be found in the School Handbook under the Students and Parents portals. Please direct questions to Librarian Rebecca Stagg (email@example.com; 388-2235).
St. Joseph’s Academy abides by the provisions of the Family Educational Rights and Privacy Act (FERPA) with respect to the rights of parents and, in the event of divorce, the rights of custodial and noncustodial parents. In the latter case, absent a court order to the contrary, the school will provide the noncustodial parent access to academic records and other school-related information regarding the student. If there is a court order specifying that no information is to be given, it is the responsibility of the custodial parent to provide the school with a copy of the court order. We do not need the complete court order, only the part dealing with custody. Please direct questions to Principal Stacia Andricain (firstname.lastname@example.org; 388-2240).
Free Heart Screenings
The Louisiana Pediatric Cardiology Foundation provides free heart screenings to high school student-athletes. The SJA Athletic Department recommends that each athlete undergo this free screening. Please visit the LPCF website for more information and to schedule your appointment.
Please note that if you choose to unsubscribe to any electronic message you receive from us, you are unsubscribing to all electronic communications. Please note that we must have one valid, regularly checked email address on file. If your email, phone number or physical address has changed since last time you updated our records, we ask that you let us know. Please address questions to Assistant to the Registrar Stacy Rennhoff (email@example.com; 388-2318).
SJA generally follows the same procedures as the East Baton Rouge School Board and Diocese of Baton Rouge. School closures due to weather and other circumstances are announced via our phone messaging system. If your phone number has changed since you last updated our records, or if you would like to add additional phone numbers to those we call, please contact Stacy Rennhoff (firstname.lastname@example.org; 388-2318) in the Registrar’s office.
To improve the efficiency of our phone alerts, we ask that parents add St. Joseph’s Academy – (225) 383-7207 – to their contacts and to listen to voice messages before hitting their phone’s call-back button. When we receive a large number of calls from parents before they listen to the voice message, it results in busy phone lines. Thank you for your cooperation as we strive to keep you informed.
SJA Telephone System
The school’s main number is (225) 383-7207, but you are encouraged to call faculty and staff directly. Faculty members do not have physical phones; rather, their phone numbers connect directly to a voice mail box. Click here for the faculty/staff directory.
Students will be expected to wear their school ID on the school-issued lanyard at all times. The ID must be worn on the outside of the uniform so it is visible. Students not wearing their ID will be required to purchase a new one for $2 and/or receive a checklist. Replacement IDs can be purchased in the Deans’ Office before or after school.
We want to make the carpool lines as painless as possible for our parents. We ask that you refrain from using your cell phone if possible while in line, especially when the line is moving. Many students and faculty members are using crosswalks that pass through the carpool lines, and we need everyone paying attention to the teachers and security officer working the carpool line. Please pull up as far as possible to allow for a maximum numbers of students to load at one time.
Also remember that students cannot be dropped off on Broussard, Parker, Kleinert or South Eugene. Students cannot be picked up at the Medaille Hall circle until 4 p.m. or later. Our security officer will ask you to move to the carpool line if you arrive before 4 p.m. We also ask that you remember that our surrounding streets are school zones. Please observe the school-zone speed limits.
The 2019-2020 yearbooks will be distributed to students in early October. Plans for distribution will be emailed to students once they are finalized.
The 2020-2021 yearbooks are currently on sale. Please note discounted pricing ends October 31. Click here to purchase your copy today. A receipt will be emailed to you once your purchase is complete. If you have more than one daughter attending SJA, please purchase a copy under each student’s name. SJA’s yearbook code is 1590.
Each Wednesday at 7 a.m., outside of the Chapel at SJA. In case of inclement weather, we will move inside the chapel. Because of COVID-19 restrictions, participation is limited to SJA students and faculty/staff members only. Please remember that face coverings and social distancing are required.
Soirée Rescheduled: Save the Date
Mark your calendars for Thursday, March 4, for The Soirée. Join us for live music, silent and live auctions and great food and drinks in the Academy Student Center. If you would like information about serving as a committee member, volunteering or sponsorship opportunities, please contact Assistant Director of Advancement Cydney Morris (email@example.com; 388-2270).
GRANDPARENTS WEEK FOR SENIORS
We are working hard to find a time for grandparents to celebrate their seniors with an on-campus lunch and tour this spring. Once the dates have been set, we will provide additional details. Please direct questions to Assistant Director of Advancement Cydney Morris (firstname.lastname@example.org; 388-2270).
Grandparents Day for Freshmen
Grandparents Day for Freshmen will be held during the spring semester. Once the date has been set, we will notify parents, and grandparents will receive an invitation. Please direct questions to Assistant Director of Advancement Cydney Morris (email@example.com; 388-2270).
Save the Date: Mother-Daughter Brunch and Style Show
The 2020-2021 Mother-Daughter Brunch and Style Show has a new look! The Mothers’ Club is excited to announce that the 2020-2021 Mother-Daughter Style Show, An Evening Under the Sea, is set for Friday, April 30, 2021, at the Raising Cane’s River Center. Please join the Mothers’ Club and support this wonderful event. We are looking forward to fun-filled evening this spring. Please note that all senior mother models in the style show must be members of the Mothers’ Club.
SIX-MONTH REUNION (CLASS OF 2020)
Each December, we invite our recent graduates back to campus for a six-month reunion, during which they pick up their yearbooks and visit with classmates and former teachers. Due to the uncertainty regarding which state-issued COVID-19 guidelines will be in place in December, the six-month reunion for the class of 2020 has been postponed. To receive their yearbooks, we invite our recent graduates to a drive-by pickup on Thursday, December 17, between 10 a.m. and 1 p.m. in front of Mother Alice Hall. Our 2020 graduates will receive information this spring about a one-year reunion crawfish boil reunion in May.
The Counseling Center provides students with resources and support they need to be successful. Grade-level counselors support students during all four years at SJA. The Counseling Center collaborates with teachers and administrators to identify and discuss students who may need additional assistance and to determine best practices to reach all students both academically and socially. In addition, counselors meet with every student at least twice a year to discuss college and career readiness. Two full-time college advisors assist students with scholarship and college applications.
Class of 2021 Counselor
|Allison Hipwell Bruton ’95
Counseling Center Director
College Advisor (A-J)
|Ellen Smith Frazier
College Advisor (K-Z)
Dates and Deadlines
- October 1: FAFSA application opens
- October 6: Virtual college visits: U.S. Naval Academy, Vanderbilt University
- October 9: End of 1st Quarter
- October 15: Virtual College Visit: Oglethorpe University
- October 20: Virtual College Visit: Merrimack College
Mrs. Banta is meeting with seniors individually to review their core grade point average and answer questions regarding TOPS. Please contact her if you have any questions or concerns.
According to Act No. 346 from the 2020 Regular Session of the Louisiana Legislature, COVID falls under the statue of “circumstances related to the public health emergency.”
Based on this Act, the Louisiana Office of Student Financial Aid (LOSFA) will not increase the Core GPA requirements for the Performance and Honors awards for the class of 2021. The requirements will be the same as those in 2019-2020. See below for the requirements for the class of 2021.
|TOPS Awards||Award Amount||Previously Conveyed Requirement Increases||COVID Requirements - Class of 2021|
|TOPS Opportunity||Tuition||2.5 core GPA & 20 ACT||2.5 core GPA & 20 ACT|
|TOPS Performance||Tuition + 400/year||3.25 core GPA & 23 ACT||3.0 core GPA & 23 ACT|
|TOPS Honors||Tuition + 800/year||3.5 core GPA & 27 ACT||3.0 core GPA & 27 ACT|
Complete information can be found at each of the three links here:
Please direct any questions to Mrs. Banta.
The last date for your daughter to take the ACT to qualify for TOPS for a full four years is April 17, 2021. The highest ACT composite will be used to determine the award.
You were sent an email with information about completing the Free Application for Federal Student Aid (FAFSA). All students must complete the FAFSA to be awarded TOPS and other financial aid, including scholarships, student loans and work study. The FAFSA will be available on October 1, 2020, and may be completed using 2019 tax information. Detailed information is available at www.fafsa.ed.gov.
Due to current COVID-19 school guidelines, SJA will be a private ACT testing site for only SJA students through the end of 2020. School day procedures for social distancing and cleaning will be followed during the test. We will be offering the ACT on October 17, October 24 and December 12. Registration will still be done through the ACT website. During the registration process the system defaults to search by zip code. You will need to choose the change location option and enter the test center code listed below that is associated with the date you would like to test.
Test Center Codes
- 10/17: 161069
- 10/24: 161060
- 12/12: 161060
Job Shadowing Day
Job shadowing is pending as we assess how best to proceed. Social-distancing issues are playing a role in our decisions. We are brainstorming alternative ideas for the job-shadowing experience. We will notify students and parents as soon as we make a decision.
The NACAC Virtual College Fair is October 12 (12-8 p.m.), October 18 (11 a.m.-7 p.m.) and November 8 (1-9 p.m.).
SJA Transcript and Test Score Policy
SJA requires student signatures for each transcript request. The Request for College/Scholarship Documents form may be found on the Class of 2021 College Advising Moodle page. Official transcripts cannot be given to a student or parent; they must be submitted directly to the college, university or scholarship agency.
Standardized test scores are not included on the transcripts sent to colleges or universities. Students must request that the testing company send official ACT or SAT scores. When registering for the ACT or SAT, a student may request that her official scores be sent to any college or university. Additional score reports to colleges or universities can be requested online at www.act.org through the student’s account. The SJA Code for testing is 190235.
College Application Information Deadlines
Due to the large volume of college work processed, we must adhere to deadlines. Because of the Thanksgiving and Christmas holidays, students must follow the policy listed below. The items listed are to be given to Ms. Allison Bruton (A-J) or Ms. Ellen Frazier (K-Z) by these dates:
- October 4: All official-transcript requests with a November deadline must be received.
- November 1: All teacher letter of recommendation requests with a December, January or February deadline and all official-transcript requests with a December postmark deadline must be received.
- December 1: All official-transcript requests with a January postmark deadline must be received. Students can check the status of their requests through Naviance Student.
College Representative Visits to SJA
Representatives from colleges and universities around the country are visiting SJA virtually. The list of visitors may be found in Naviance Student. The sessions are informational and demonstrate the student’s interest to the college representative.
October Visits (as of 9/24/20)
- October 1: University of Georgia; Loyola New Orleans; University of New Orleans
- October 6: U.S. Naval Academy; Vanderbilt University
- October 7: College of Charleston; Franciscan Missionaries of Our Lady University; Catholic University of America
- October 8: Roanoke College, Louisiana Tech University; Northwestern State of Louisiana University
- October 13: Renssalaer Institute
- October 15: University of Holy Cross; Birmingham Southern College; Oglethorpe
- October 20: Merrimack College
- October 22: Spring Hill College
- October 27: St. Peter’s; St. Lawrence
AMY SCHEURICH HOUSE '97
Class of 2022 Counselor
Your daughters will be applying to colleges as early as this summer. While all colleges have different criteria for admissions, they will all look at transcripts and standardized testing scores. That is why it is important to encourage your daughter to keep her grades up this year and to start taking the ACT or SAT this spring. We are meeting this semester and discussing ways to help narrow down the list of schools in which they are interested. How can you help? First, you can help your daughter gather information about colleges. You can also encourage her to attend virtual college fairs and, when allowed, take her on college campus visits. Finally, encourage your daughter to visit with college representatives when they schedule virtual meetings for SJA students. Upcoming virtual college visit meetings are included in the school announcements each day.
When colleges receive your daughter’s transcript, they will see grades through her junior year. We ask that you be aware of her cumulative GPA as well as her core GPA. Colleges differ in which GPA they use.
The end of the first nine weeks is rapidly approaching. Please take time to review your daughter’s grades on MySJA. Each junior also received a worksheet to calculate her core GPA. I recommend that you ask your daughter to share her core GPA worksheet with you.
Standardized Testing Information
The PSAT/NMSQT is scheduled for Tuesday, January 26. (The original October test date has been postponed.) This test prepares students for the new SAT college admissions test. The results of the PSAT qualify juniors for the National Merit Scholarship Program. Be sure your daughter is well rested and alert so that she can perform to her fullest potential.
Some students perform better on the PSAT than they do on the ACT. If your daughter performs well on the PSAT, I recommend that she register for a spring SAT test date.
ACT recommends that students begin taking the test in the spring of their junior year. Because the test is a curriculum-based test, the juniors are more prepared by the spring. I will give you more information about spring testing soon.
College and Career Meetings
We are narrowing down what careers your daughter is interested in and looking at undergraduate majors that provide the best foundation. When looking at colleges, I encouraging students to have a list of three to five colleges that include schools that match their GPA and testing scores as well as “safety” and “reach” schools. Students don’t need to know where they will be going at this time, but they do need to have some ideas about where they want to apply.
NACAC National College Fair
NACAC’s College Fair offers students and parents the opportunity to meet with university and college admission professionals. Colleges sometimes look for students who show “demonstrated interest” in their school. This is a good chance for you and your daughter to interact with colleges and learn about what sets each college apart. Try them on to see if it is a “good fit” for your daughter.
The National Virtual College Fair will be held on three dates: October 12, October 18 or November 8. Event registration can be found at https://www.nacacfairs.org/virtual/.
College Representative Visits for October
Numerous college representatives come to SJA to visit with students. Juniors may visit virtually with the college reps if they are unstructured or if they have their teacher’s permission to miss class. All college rep visits are posted on the school calendar. Students also receive email reminders and announcements. This is another way to gather information about college fit and a form of demonstrated interest when they visit with the representatives and ask questions about their school.
LINDSAY CARLINO '02
Class of 2023 Counselor
The first quarter of the school year will end on Friday, October 9. Report cards will not be mailed home, but they will be accessible on MySJA. You will receive an email notifying you when report cards have been published.
Tips for Parenting a Teenage Driver
During my individual meetings, many girls have been talking about the excitement of either taking driver’s ed or getting their driver’s license. While many of them have shared how happy they are, those same students and others are expressing how nervous they are about it, and understandably so. These novel drivers have newfound freedom, but with that freedom comes much responsibility. Just know that while they may attempt to put on a cool, calm and collected front, many of your daughters are sharing your same concerns about beginning to get behind the wheel, although most would never admit it to you.
I encourage you to remember these tips:
- Talk to your daughter about cellphone use while driving.
- Do not allow her to drive with other teenagers in the car until she is more experienced.
- She should always let you know where she is going and when she will be back.
- Have a curfew for her.
- Make a plan with her for if she has a flat tire, is in an accident or experiences any other emergency while driving.
- Lastly, and most importantly, be an example of a good driver. As with anything, they learn more by what you do than by what is said.
Standardized Testing (New Dates)
In order for your daughters to get more acclimated to the changes of this school year, standardized testing has been moved to January 2021. The original dates in October will now be regular school days. Please see the new dates below.
All sophomores will take the Pre-ACT on Monday, January 25. The Pre-ACT is a valuable test in that it is an official practice test for the ACT. It includes tests in English, math, reading and science and is scored 1-36 just like the ACT, but it has fewer questions and will take less time to administer. This test also provides students with a predicted ACT score range based on their performance.
All sophomores will take the PSAT on Tuesday, January 26. The PSAT is the test that juniors take to qualify for the National Merit Scholarship Program and is a practice for the SAT test. It includes tests in reading, writing and language and math and is scored 320-1520. Providing our sophomores with the opportunity to take this test will give them an advantage as they can familiarize themselves with the timing and question format for this high-stakes test junior year.
Community Counseling Resources
While I can be a great resource to your daughter at school, many students benefit from counseling services in the community. If you are interested in seeking counseling services for your daughter, please do not hesitate to reach out to me for help figuring out a few clinicians that may be a good fit. I know that looking at a list of counselors that accept your insurance can be overwhelming. I also have six pages of resources available on the Counseling Center Moodle page that can be accessed through your daughter’s account. I update this list at least once per semester.
MARY BETH ELFERT
Class of 2024 Counselor
It is hard to believe that the end of the first quarter is quickly approaching. I want you to know that I am enjoying meeting with your daughters on an individual basis. As of this time, I have met with more than 100 freshmen. If you have any concerns about your daughter, please reach out to me. The adjustment to high school can be a tough one, but there is plenty of support on campus to help you and your daughter during this time.
Help with the Transition
- Recognize the changes your daughter has gone through and will continue to go through this year.
- Ask your daughter about the best parts of her day at school. Keep the talk positive.
- When trying to find out information from your daughter, open-ended questions can be beneficial rather than ones that can be answered with a quick “yes,” “no” or “fine.”
- Listen. Sometimes your daughter just needs to vent. Change is scary for everyone, and the transition to high school is a big step.
- Encourage her to get involved in clubs and/or athletics. In addition to this being a great way to make new friends, it also assists with time-management skills. The club meeting schedule was sent to all freshmen last week. The monthly meeting rotation starts on the first full week of the month, and meetings are scheduled right after school. These meetings are also posted on the school calendar. Please note that COVID-19 protocols are followed at all club meetings.
- Meet the parents of any friends your daughter has made. These connections are important.
- Make sure she gets enough sleep. Removing all electronic devices, including computer and phone, from her bedroom at night helps to facilitate a good night’s sleep.
TOP 10 Things Recommended during Freshman Year
- Don’t procrastinate.
- Watch what you post on social media.
- Get involved in activities/clubs.
- Keep your grades up.
- Always do your homework. It helps!
- Stay organized with a planner/to do list/sticky notes (whatever works).
- Develop relationships with your teachers.
- Dress up for Fun Days.
- Make friends with those who sit next to you in class.
- Don’t be afraid to ask questions.
With the end of the first quarter on October 9, this is a great time to sit down with your daughter to discuss her academic progress. It is very important for your daughter to know that you are aware of her progress and are her cheerleader along the way. If you have any concerns or would like to discuss her academic progress, please contact me. Updated grades can be found in MySJA.
Extra Support Offered
The Learning Center is in the library and provides tutoring to students in all levels of math, science and English. Tutoring is offered weekly both during lunch hours and after school. The weekly schedule is posted on the Learning Center Moodle page and emailed out daily in the announcements.
The Writing Center is in the lobby right outside the library in Medaille Hall. Peer consultants are available by appointment on a weekly basis. The Writing Center serves students at all levels of writing ability in any stage of the writing process. Your daughter can make an appointment via the Writing Center Moodle page. She can get assistance with writing assignments in all classes, not just English.
The Learning Center provides free-of-charge assistance to any student needing extra help with math, science, English or writing. Also offered is academic counseling. Peer tutoring in foreign languages and social studies is provided by members of the National Honor Society and Beta Club. These student-led sessions are offered during lunch hours on Monday through Thursday in the library.
Math Resource is available on Tuesdays and Thursdays during all three lunch hours and on Tuesdays, Wednesdays and Thursdays from 3 to 5 p.m. in the Learning Center classroom in the library. Email firstname.lastname@example.org.
Science Resource is available on Tuesdays, Wednesdays and Thursdays during all three lunch hours and on Tuesdays and Thursdays from 3 to 5 p.m. in the Learning Center classroom in the library. Email email@example.com or firstname.lastname@example.org.
ENGLISH RESOURCE AND ACADEMIC COUNSELING
English Resource is available Monday, Wednesday and Thursday during all three lunch hours and on Tuesdays and Wednesdays from 3 to 5 p.m. in the Learning Center classroom in the library. Email email@example.com.
The Writing Center provides instruction, resources and support. Trained peer consultants help students gain competence and confidence as writers through one-on-one sessions. After-school workshops are offered on a variety of topics. The Writing Center is modeled on university writing centers and is a place for all writers at any stage of the writing process. Email firstname.lastname@example.org.
ACT Prep Courses
As your daughter prepares to take the ACT this fall, we would like to provide you with information about test preparation classes. SJA does not promote any particular course; rather, we are sharing opportunities should your daughter want or need additional test-taking help.
Former SJA math faculty member Kevin Landry offers ACT prep courses on campus. Faculty members Brianna Sommers and Rhonda Baird are also on the teaching staff. Students may take individual content courses or the full program. Visit The Extra Point at https://extrapointtestprep.com/
Princeton Review: www.princetonreview.com
Mastery Prep: https://masteryprep.com/
Best in Class BR: https://bestinbr.com/act-prep/
Magnolia Prep: www.magnoliaprep.com
Khan Academy: https://www.khanacademy.org/join/T5BB5SDJ
Sylvan Learning Center: https://locations.sylvanlearning.com/us/baton-rouge-blue-bonnet-la/act-prep
Peer+Plus Diagnostic & Tutorial Service: https://www.facebook.com/peerplustutoring/
Zach Roubein Tutoring: https://www.zachroubeintutoring.com/
Materials found on the ACT website: www.act.org
Faith development is a key component in the lives of our students, and we will do our very best to safely facilitate ways for our girls to encounter Christ. Our new Campus Minister, Kathleen Peek Evans, will continue to offer weekly rosary, adoration, Bible study and retreats following COVID-19 safety guidelines.
Currently, class retreats are scheduled on the following dates but are subject to change.
- Senior Retreat: March 8-9, 2021
- Junior Retreat: February 1, 2021
- Sophomore Retreat: Monday, November 9, 2020
- Freshman Retreat: Monday, March 8, 2021
Required Service Program
Service is an integral part of the SJA curriculum. Important information about this year-long program can be found on the SJA website under the Faith tab. The Service Directory can be found on Moodle. Please read this information so you are aware of requirements. The deadline for completing service requirements is April 1, 2021. There will be checkpoints throughout the year to ensure timely completion of the service requirement.
The x2vol program for tracking service hours has a smart phone app. Go to your app store, search x2vol and follow the prompts.
Summer service hours completed during the months of May, June, July and August need to be entered into x2vol by Wednesday, September 9, to count for this year. Sister Chris Pologa is available on Tuesdays during all lunch periods to answer questions about service and to help students with service entries. Students may email her at email@example.com or stop by her office in Mother Alice Hall, room 212.
There is also a tutorial video on the x2vol app which discusses how to enter hours.
Please note that failure to turn in service hours by the deadline will result in a checklist. Seniors must complete their service requirements in order to graduate from SJA, and underclasswomen must complete their service hours in order to return to SJA the following year.
Our Parents Annual Fund is off to a great start. Thank you to all the parents who have already sent in their pledge or donation. If you have not yet made your pledge, please do so. The deadline for making your Parents Annual Fund pledge or donation is Friday, November 20.
Gifts to the Annual Fund support the people and programs that make SJA special, including faith formation; vital and inspiring academic, athletic and arts programming; a talented faculty; personal attention; and enhanced sanitation for a healthy learning environment.
We hope that you will take this opportunity to partner with us in the mission of the school and give a meaningful gift that expresses the value that you place on the educational experience at St. Joseph’s Academy. Each gift makes a difference in the school life and learning of a student. Contributions to the Annual Fund are tax-deductible and may even be matched by your employer.
The SJA faculty and staff reached 100 percent giving for the ninth year in a row. Our parents are striving to reach 100 percent participation for the first time this year. Please consider a gift to SJA, no matter the size. Click here to give today, or use your Paypal account by texting SJA1868 to 41444.
The only gift that is too small is the one that is not made at all.
For additional information, please contact Mission Advancement Director Meg Gerald (firstname.lastname@example.org; 388-2254).
Pave the Way Bricks
Make your mark on SJA’s campus by purchasing a brick for your daughter. Engraved brick pavers are placed outside the Sister Agatha Dining Hall. For more information, contact Mission Advancement Assistant Wendy Coniglio (email@example.com; 388-2336). Click here to purchase your brick today.
SJA Mothers' Club
The SJA Mothers’ Club needs you! Dues from our members support the services and events provided by the Mothers’ Club for our administration, faculty/staff and students. The membership drive for the 2020-2021 school year is currently under way. If you are not yet a member of the Mothers’ Club, please click here to register today.
The SJA Mothers’ Club, through a system of active committees, provides various services for our school community. While this year looks different from previous ones, the Mothers’ Club is working hard to help in any way that we can, from Teacher and Student Appreciation to our new online Sticker Shop. During these unprecedented times, one thing we can all do is support our school community with prayers, so remember to send in your prayer requests to firstname.lastname@example.org.
Our annual fall meet and greet typically held in August for new parents went virtual this year. Thank you to all the moms who joined us. If you missed it, you can find the information we covered by clicking here.
SJA Dads' Club
It is not too late to join the Dads’ Club. The Dads’ Club works in partnership with the school on a variety of events throughout the school year. Some of the highlights of our involvement are class retreats, Seniors’ Last Day, Open House and exam snacks, to name a few. Your membership dues, in combination with the profits from Dads’ Club-sponsored events such as Father-Daughter Day and The Sticker Scramble, benefit our daughters.
Click here to sign up for The Dads’ Club.
We hope you can join us for our upcoming events.
SJA Sticker Scramble set for Monday, October 26. The SJA’s Dads Club will hold its 2020 Sticker Scramble at TopGolf of Baton Rouge. The Sticker Scramble is now in its 9th year and has raised almost $80,000 for enhancements to SJA.
If you are interested in playing or supporting this great event with a sponsorship, please contact Dads’ Club Moderator Meg Gerald at email@example.com or call 225-388-2254. You can also visit www.stickerscramble.org for more information.
Our goal is to raise $10,000 for school-wide enhancements. All sponsorship, gifts and service are tax deductible. Rain or shine we hope to see you on October 26th at TopGolf!
Father-Daughter Day is Sunday, April 18, 2021. The day will begin at 11 a.m. in the Academy Student Center with a prayer service and a guest speaker, followed by lunch and games on campus. Compete with and against your daughter for prizes and bragging rights. The theme for the day is “Aloha! From SJA Father-Daughter Day.” You can register now (and order your t-shirts) on Shop SJA. Deadline to register is Thursday, April 1, 2021.
SJA Invitational Cross Country Meet
Saturday, October 3, Highland Road Park, 8 a.m. Due to COVID-19 restrictions, spectators are limited to two per runner, and they must wear face coverings at all times.
Gymnastics team tryouts will be held Saturday, October 10, from 11 a.m. to 1:30 p.m. at Elite Gymnastics on Bluebonnet Boulevard. Students must have a current LHSAA physical to try out. For more information, please contact Brenda LeBlanc, team moderator, at firstname.lastname@example.org.
The 8th Annual Sticker Scramble will be held on Monday, October 26, at TopGolf. Registration and warmup at 1:45 p.m. Shotgun start at 2:15 p.m. Register online at www.stickerscramble.org
Volleyball Senior Night
Monday, October 19, versus Baton Rouge High, Academy Student Center. The recognition ceremony will precede the varsity match at 6 p.m. The number of spectators is limited because of COVID-19 restrictions. The match will be livestreamed on SJA’s Facebook page.
Swim Team City Meet
Friday and Saturday, October 30 and 31, Crawfish Aquatics. Times TBA. Due to COVID-19, no spectators are allowed.
Please direct questions to Athletic Director Dorinda Beaumont (email@example.com; 388-2290).
Ho Ho Ho! The Sticker Shop is gearing up for Christmas, and we have great gift ideas for all family members!
The ever-popular SJA Christmas nutcrackers are now available online for $30 and can be seen on the Sticker Shop site. The 2020 Nutcracker is a new design this year and 10 inches tall. These sell out fast, so be sure to place your order soon, we only have a limited supply.
Curbside pickup is now available on Tuesdays, Wednesdays and Thursdays between 9:30 a.m. and 1:30 p.m. from the circle driveway in front of Mother Alice Hall. When you arrive on campus, call the Sticker Shop at (225) 388-2237, and a Mothers’ Club volunteer will bring your items to your vehicle. Students can pick up pre-purchased items on Tuesdays, Wednesdays and Thursdays during their lunch periods through the Sticker Shop window. Please direct questions to firstname.lastname@example.org.