Dear St. Louis Friends and Families,
What is Catholic education all about? Why do our families sacrifice their treasure and time fundraising to ensure that their children attend St. Louis Catholic School? We believe the answer is Christ is here! He is ever present in all we do. He is at the car door every morning to say welcome. He is in the classrooms and in the hallways. He is encouraging students to make good decisions while they work and play. He often speaks to our children through Fr. Jolly and our associate pastors at Mass and His true presence in the Eucharist provides our sweet children the grace that they need to overcome evil and become moral and ethical citizens.
This year the administration, faculty, and staff are working diligently to achieve STEM Certification through AdvancED. Our faculty voted three years ago to include more project based learning using the engineering model of problem solving that involves all subjects across the curriculum . We know our students will be more engaged and better prepared for their future careers because of our efforts. Over the past three years, all SLS teachers attended professional development on incorporating science, technology, engineering, and math across the curriculum. We are now ready to invite an AdvancED observation team into our school this spring to certify that we are committed to this style of learning and will continuously work to meet the AdvancED standard and
indicators necessary to be recognized as a STEM certified school. This certification will celebrate the work that we have accomplished in this area and, more importantly, it will give us areas of improvement on which to focus as we walk along this STEM journey.
It’s nice to stop, reflect, and be grateful for all that we have done as a team to make St. Louis the best elementary school in Memphis. Balancing faith formation and academic excellence is a challenge we must work together to achieve. You may have noticed we are making a point to include church events and spiritual growth opportunities in the Wednesday Wire, our weekly school bulletin. We hope all parents feel welcome to become fully immersed in our church and school community. When we continue to focus on our own faith formation as adults, we set an example for our children. After all, faith formation doesn’t end when students graduate 8th grade– Confirmation is just the beginning of an amazing journey.
Many parents and grandparents stop me at church and school events to compliment us on our accomplishments and to offer help if we need it. I am so proud to be principal of this incredible school. We have the best faculty and staff, the best parents, and the best students! How can you help? Please pray for us, please continue to support our children by volunteering and being present in their lives and, most importantly, please remind your children why you chose a Catholic school.
Peace & Blessings,
–Mrs. Teddi Niedzwiedz, Principal
Spirit Jeans Day
Trunk or Treat and Fall Festival (parking lot and old gym)
Kindergarten Chit Chat (new gym)
All Saints Day (no school)
1st Friday all school Mass
Begin wearing winter uniforms
Children’s Mass at 10:30am
Veteran’s Day Programming (old gym following 8:15 Mass)
Spelling Bee at 8:15am (old gym)
All school Mass (canned food drive for St. Vincent de Paul)
Thanksgiving Break (no school)
H&S Meeting at 6:30 (Clunan Center)
Homeroom pictures (wear uniforms)
Auction Item Jeans Day
Leading By Example
Teachers took Deacon Jeff’s message to heart. This year, faculty members are making a special effort to be involved in parish AND school events. We know that no one can do it all, but everyone can do something. Teachers have been participating in the Divine Renovation book study, Feed My Flock, Ignite meetings, Men’s Club events, Children’s Masses, as well as Home & School meetings and events.
There are many opportunities for spiritual growth on our church and school campus and teachers hope their involvement will encourage others to join them. The Wednesday Wire and church bulletin include church and school opportunities and announcements in an effort to get the word out about all that St. Louis has to offer.
At the heart of teachers’ renewed efforts to be involved in parish activities is the desire to carry out our school mission. Parents and teachers must work as a team to prepare our children for life as disciples of Christ. It isn’t easy, but we are grateful that St. Louis Catholic Church leaders are working to provide tools to help us along the way. If you haven’t gotten involved in our church community, keep praying and watching for opportunities.
Our focus on Science, Technology, Engineering, and Math (STEM) is not a temporary phase of promoting the latest buzz words in education. Our goal, in becoming STEM certified, is to connect subject matter learned in the classroom with the real world around us.
We study the trends in higher education so that we can prepare our students for high school, college, and life beyond the classroom. Our teachers receive meaningful continuing education so that our students will have access to the best lessons, tools, technology, and methods for learning skills they can use for the rest of their lives. Our goal is to create an environment where children can identify their God given talents and learn how those talents can change the world.
Working with parents, we aim to help students form a moral foundation that will allow them to discern whether they are called to be priests, teachers, engineers, doctors, homemakers... the possibilities are endless! By teaching children to pray for guidance from God (and by providing the BEST available teachers, textbooks and technology), we will accomplish our goals!
Please continue to pray for our school and for our mission to make disciples who are well educated, well loved, and well prepared when they graduate.
Back to School
Teachers returned to school July 31st and attended a religious inservice led by Deacon Jeff. His talk highlighted the importance of family. Faculty and staff were reminded that family is the building block of society, that the breakdown of the family unit leads to many problems in today’s world, and that we are lucky to be part of a Catholic school where Christian family values can be shared with our students.
Deacon Jeff encouraged teachers to lead by example by sharing God’s love with students and each other. It was the perfect way to begin the new school year and truly set the tone for accomplishing our main mission at SLS, faith formation!
There are many opportunities for parents to visit our campus and get involved in their children’s education. (The Early Childhood Center hosted Donuts with Dad in September, parents can sign up to work in the cafeteria during lunch, parents are invited to read in their children’s classrooms… the list goes on and on.) At St. Louis, we are fortunate to have so many parents willing to share their time and talent. With so many opportunities at a small school like ours, it’s easy for everyone to know everyone (and easy to forget what it’s like to be a newcomer!) This year, parents are organizing and co-hosting Parent Parties for each grade so that parents can get to know each other and our pastor, Fr. Jolly. Since we are all so busy, it’s important to facilitate fellowship among our family members. We know from experience, that relationships among parents are vital to providing a loving, safe environment for our children. We are grateful to those who are hosting and attending these parties so that we can continue the SLS tradition of having a strong community in which to raise our kids.
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This year, Fr. Jolly invited all students in grades 3– 8 to a private “teaching” Mass. Students are able to stand on the altar alongside our pastor as he celebrates the entire Mass, and explains what he is doing and why. Students will gain a better understanding of the liturgy of the Word and the liturgy of the Eucharist. More importantly, we hope they will understand what a miracle it is to participate in the Last Supper with Jesus and all the saints every time they go to Mass!
October celebrates the rosary, an important tool for Catholics who believe in the power of prayer. The entire school gathered to pray a rosary for peace along with the rest of the Memphis Diocese on October 12th. Mrs. Hayden asked Fr. Donato to bless her students’ rosaries before the event. We encourage parents to pray the rosary with their children and meditate on the mysteries of the Church and the life of Jesus Christ!
The 1st quarter was successful for many of our teams! The boys’ golf team won the PAA championship, all 4 Cross Country teams made it to State, and our 7/8 Varsity Volleyball team won the Shelby League Championship. Go Cardinals!
4th Grade: Grayson Goodwin, Margaret Hayden, Katherine Kovacs, Christopher Waggoner, Claire Wetick, Anna Wilson
5th Grade: Iris Bird, Maria Brown, Emma Caesar, Hollis Coleman, Andrew Denegri, Eme Donaldson, Claudia Durante, William Fruechtenicht, Emma Goughnour, Henry Hyle, Keaton Jackson, Hallie McBride, Alex Perrone, Matthew Price, Briley Quarles, Mia Ralph, Alice Rehrig, Evelyn Rehrig, Madilyn Sutherland, Riley Tull, Drew Van Epps, Lilliana Vescovo, Mary Waggoner, Ethan Wildman
6th Grade: George Booth, Nate Brownlee, Joey Drouillard, Will Edwards, Emma Grusin, Caroline Hubbard, Reed Johnston, Madeline Mitchell, Reed Shupe, Beckett Sudbury, Josh Tancrell, Grove Thompson, John Zweig
7th Grade: Cullen Brummer, Thomas Cassat, Caroline Gibert, John Goodwin, Campbell Gossett, Sofie Herbstrith, Mark Koch, Christian Novarese, Abby Wood
8th Grade: Will Brownlee, Lindsey Crossnine, Alex Johnston, Abby Johnston, Hana Roberts, Katie Skinner, Kaitlin Smith, Anna Kate Wade, Ben Wills
4th Grade: Christopher Brown, Olivia Candiotto, Mitch Davenport, Jake Disalvo, John Fox, Sam Goodwin, Luke Gossett, Peter Hager, Jameson Kee, Andrew Keys, Graham Marcantel, Matthew Mitchell, Abigail Moore, Ryan Naguib, Chace Pratt, Taylor Reeb, Paulina Soefker, Gray Stakem, Kate Tancrell, Mia Thomas, James Thompson, Casey Van Epps, Mimi Wood
5th Grade: Ellie Bender, Will Brick, Andrew Brimm, Elliott Cary, Anna Fox, Abby Griffith, Louis Hendricks, Harrison Herbstrith, Lucy Huffman, Coen Jackson, Elizabeth Lutts, McNeil Madden, Julianna Meadows- Jackson, Elliott Sweeney, McEwen Taylor
6th Grade: Bryce Beyer, Garrett Brown, Griffin Bryant, John Candiotto, Macie Carr, Caroline Cassat, Luke Cestaro, Ella Colvett, Elise Durante, Julia Ebelhar, Sam Fitschen, Parker Goodwin, Thomas Hayden, Vince Koch, Susanna Lyons, Madeline Marcantel, Lilly Martin, Jack McBee, Siya Patel, Mary Ann Pesce, Abby Price, Claire Rains, Matthew Richardson, Audrey Simmons, Alexander Taras, Ava Thomas
7th Grade: Lulu Baker, Emma Berry, Hill Canale, Elizabeth Chism, Ayden Coon, Luke Goldsmith, Griffin Herring, Stephen Hudson, Cash Johnson, Lila Outlan, Will Perrone, Nicholas Pesce, Hunter Reeb, Robert Senter, Jagger Sudbury, Peter Wilson
8th Grade: Nicolai Buchignani, Savannah Cook, Zach Davenport, Jacob Goughnour, Anne Grimes, Mary Grimes, Lindi Hathaway, Henry Heinz, Baylor Hill, McKinley Kee, Gracie Leo, Trenton Lyons, Emma Pratt, Mauricio Rentas, Connor Stevens, Ava Trainor, Andre Valdes, Ava Wendt, Ava Whidden, Cooper Williams, Ava Witmer, Audrey Zweig