SFHS Preparation for COVID-19


Update on Transition to Distance Learning 

 March 16, 2020

Dear St. Francis Families,

I am sure you have many questions after hearing that school would be closed for the next two weeks. Below is a list of some of the questions and the answers that you may have considered over the weekend. On a personal note, I cannot express how much I appreciate the patience and support you have shown us throughout this COVID-19 situation. I can assure you that every person who works at St. Francis Catholic High School has your child’s best interests at heart, and they will be working hard over the next two weeks to ensure a continuity of learning and a smooth return to school whenever that date is identified by public health officials, as well as federal/state/local authorities.

I’m also attaching a memorandum from our Superintendent and Executive Director of Schools, which outlines the transition from brick and mortar instruction to an online format.

How will distance learning work?

Our teachers are in the process of preparing the curriculum for the next two weeks. The goal is not to replace the classroom experience, but instead to provide a continuity of learning and ensure that your daughter is still being prepared with rigorous academic content despite the school closure. This is not considered a vacation from school, and each student still has expected work she will be doing remotely throughout the duration of the school closure.

  • Instructional activities will be provided via PowerSchool Learning and email by the classroom teachers. Some of the activities will be completed online, and some will be completed using other resources.
  • Some teachers may be providing live instruction via web resources like Zoom; they will provide students with a link and guidance on how to connect. 
  • Every classroom teacher will be on call between the hours of 9:00am and 2:30pm on school days (March 18-20 and March 23-26). Teachers will be available to provide guidance and assistance as your child completes her assigned activities. 
  • Distance Learning Office Hours will be held on Friday, March 27th from 9:00-10:10am. 
  • The best way to contact a teacher during the on-call window is via email, but please be patient as they may receive a large volume of emails on any given day. Emails sent outside of the on-call window will be answered within 24 hours during this time of school closure.

It is imperative  that your daughter monitor her school email daily and also on the weekend for updates. 

How will attendance be taken?

Student attendance will still be recorded despite the school being closed. Every teacher will be using PowerSchool to take daily attendance at the beginning of each block. If a student is ill and cannot complete the work for that school day, there will be an option to mark them accordingly.

Will we be allowed on campus?

In general, students and parents are not permitted on campus during the school closure. However, we understand that unique circumstances may require it. If you need to come to campus, please reach out to me, another administrator or the classroom teacher directly in order for us to evaluate your needs and set up a time if possible.

Who do I contact if my child has technology issues?

We have set up a technology support team at St. Francis, and they can be contacted at (SFTech@stfrancishs.org). This is the best way to receive support if you are having trouble with a student’s device, log in ability, WiFi connection, etc. Problems that cannot be easily solved will be addressed on a case-by-case basis, and direction will be given as appropriate.

Who do I contact if my child has questions about the curriculum?
Questions about the curriculum and instructional activities should first be directed to the classroom teacher. Teachers will be on call every school day from 9:00am to 2:30pm. Please understand that they may not be able to respond to your question fully right away. However, they will get back to you in a timely manner. Questions and concerns raised outside of the on-call window will be responded to within 24 hours.

Please also understand that this is our first venture into distance learning as a staff. I ask you to please be patient and charitable with the teachers as they address the issues that will likely come up throughout the next two weeks. They are all exceptional educators with your daughter’s best interests at heart, and they are doing their best given the unfortunate circumstances we find ourselves in. Please keep these things in mind when you reach out to them.

Who do I contact if I have general questions or concerns?

You can contact me directly via email with any general questions or concerns. This includes questions about the school closure, distance learning procedures, COVID-19 situation, etc. I will make every effort to respond to your inquiry in a timely manner.

You will also be receiving updates from me regarding the school as appropriate. You may also reach out to our Dean of Students, Mrs. Cost at ccost@stfrancishs.org

What do I do if someone in my family is confirmed to have COVID-19?

If you find yourself in this situation, please contact me ASAP. I will work with you on the next steps as they pertain to your particular circumstances.

As we enter this strange new world, I pray for the well-being of our school community and will continue to do so in the days to come. I ask for your prayers, not only for myself, but for the students, faculty and staff, parents and the St. Francis school community.

In the spirit of peace and goodness,
Elias Mendoza

St. Francis Announces School Closure For Minimum of Two Weeks

March 13, 2020 

Dear St. Francis Families,
After consultation with the Bishop’s Office, the Catholic Schools Department, and public health authorities, all schools in the Diocese of Sacramento will be closed effective at the end of day today, Friday, March 13, 2020, for a minimum of two weeks. This closure includes any planned school events, including fundraisers, community events, and field trips.  School buildings will not be open to children, parents, or community members during this time. We have not yet set a firm date for a return to classroom instruction.

This action was not taken lightly; the school closure is in the best interest of our students in order to disrupt the spread of the COVID-19 virus in the school and larger community.  We will be moving to an online Distance Learning format, and you and your students will be receiving more information in the days ahead. Our goal is to have the online instruction commence on Wednesday, March 18th, 2020. Additional communication will be sent to parents and students and will be posted on the St. Francis website.

It is important to reiterate that there is no reported case of COVID-19 at St. Francis or in the Diocese.

All students should have already taken their books and materials home. However, if your student still needs to pick up her books, we encourage her to come to campus and get those items on Monday, March 16, 2020 between the hours of 9:00 am - 4:00 pm.

During this time, students  should stay home as much as possible and be discouraged from congregating with other persons in public places, such as shopping malls, movie theaters or community centers to stop the spread of this virus.

The health and safety of our students and staff continue to be our top priority, and we will keep the school community apprised of any changes that arise in the coming days.

As we adjust to these unprecedented times, I ask that you keep our students and larger school community in your prayers. 

Elias Mendoza


SFHS Preparation for COVID-19

March 11, 2020

At this time, there are no cases of COVID-19 at or on the St. Francis campus. While there is no current reason or plan to close the school, we are continuing our efforts to prepare for such a situation.

CLASSES CANCELLED FOR FRIDAY, MARCH 13, 2020. We are cancelling classes on Friday, March 13th, to provide our faculty and staff time for planning and logistics to ensure the provision of classes in the safest and most effective way in the event the situation changes. We currently have no further plans to halt in-person instruction. 

We continue to closely monitor the COVID-19 situation and are following all recommendations from the California Department of Public Health and the Diocese of Sacramento.