Principal Newsletter Archives

Email blast

Principal’s Newsletter 9/04/20

Dear St. Francis Families,

I can’t believe we’ve completed the first three weeks of the school year. As we prepare for the three-day weekend that marks the “unofficial end of summer,” I hope you find some time to rest from your labor. Given everything that’s transpired over the past 5-plus months, I hope you enjoy the Labor Day holiday with your family and cherish the quality time you spend together. If you’re traveling this weekend, be safe, wear a face covering, and physically distance; so we can beat this pandemic, and return to our school safely. 

Additionally, for those of us that get to rest from our usual labors, I ask that we pray for those that will continue to shoulder the burden of human labor over the holiday.  

Lord, on this Labor Day,
We thank You for the blessing of work.
We ask for strength to complete each day.
We ask for rest when we are weary.
We ask Your guidance for everyone seeking employment.
We ask that You be with those whose faces we might never see, but who work tirelessly each day for the good of us all.

God bless our St. Francis community.

St. Francis of Assisi, pray for us!
St. Clare of Assisi, pray for us!

In the spirit of Pax et Bonum (peace and goodness),

Elias Mendoza
Principal

Email blast

Principal’s Newsletter 8/28/20

Dear St. Francis Families,

The past two weeks have flown by. Our students and teachers have done a phenomenal job of navigating our distance learning environment. The transition had some initial hiccups, but most were resolved early on and now most, if not all, students are actively engaged with their instructors in their classes. I cannot thank you enough for the outpouring of support and positive validation you’ve shared about the St. Francis faculty/staff. We genuinely care about providing our Troubies with a world-class education and preparing them for life after high school. This will continue to be our focus as we remain in distance learning. We are continuously looking at re-envisioning important community events that we all miss.

The Sacramento County Health Officer published a health order on Thursday, August 20th, essentially closing all public and private schools in Sacramento County. As such, no students may be permitted on school campuses with the exception of the following:

Emergency Mental Health Counseling: Counseling services should be conducted virtually, as much as possible. If emergency in-person mental health counseling is deemed necessary, it may be conducted on an individual (1:1) basis.

Initial English Language Learner Assessments: Initial English Language Learner assessments may occur in-person on campus. They must be conducted on an individual (1:1) basis unless legally required to be conducted in a group setting, in which case they should be conducted with the smallest possible group size.

Special Education Assessments: Special education assessments may occur in-person on campus on an individual (1:1) basis as required by state and federal regulations.

Given this order and with Sacramento County remaining on the California Department of Public Health monitoring list, we will not be able to return to our beautiful campus until we are off the watch list for a period of at least 14 consecutive days. At this point, it is impossible to predict when that may occur. 

In an effort to provide our students and teachers with the opportunity to acclimate to the school year and provide consistency of instruction and daily interaction, we will remain in distance learning mode through the end of the 1st Quarter on Friday, October 2, 2020. This was not an easy decision to make. In consultation with our Executive Director of Catholic Schools and the Sacramento County Department of Public Health, it was decided that the extension of distance learning through October 2nd would be best for our school community to remain in a protective posture for a little longer. It will also minimize any student adjustment impacts so early in the quarter.

The transition from the current Distance Learning Model to our Synchronous Hybrid Learning Model (beginning October 5, 2020), is multi-faceted and will require time and diligence to ensure a successful transition for all. As such, we will look at making this a phased transition to ensure our faculty/staff and students can adjust plans with their families and acclimate themselves to the COVID-safety protocols on campus. It will be imperative that all faculty/staff and students adhere to county guidelines to safeguard and protect all from inadvertent exposure.

Some families have inquired about the release of Red/Gold Cohorts. With the additional time in Distance Learning, we will be able to better refine the 700+ individual requests we received in July/August to balance the numbers. We will share those with you later in September.

I will continue to communicate with the Diocese and the Sacramento County Department of Public Health to ensure we are taking the needed steps to safeguard our faculty/staff and students. I will keep you updated as more information becomes available. In the meantime, if you have any questions or concerns, please do not hesitate to contact me directly. Again, I am grateful for your continued support and making the best out of this unimaginable circumstance.

St. Francis of Assisi, pray for us!
St. Clare of Assisi, pray for us!

In the spirit of Pax et Bonum (peace and goodness),

Elias Mendoza
Principal

Email blast

Principal’s Newsletter 8/21/20

Dear St. Francis Families,

Well, the first week of the 2020-2021 school year is in the books! Distance Learning is not the standard we are accustomed to, but nonetheless, our teachers and students did a phenomenal job this week. 

Given the current challenges we’ve faced and the uncontrolled wildfires in neighboring counties, we are still committed to providing a world-class education for our students. Our staff has spent countless hours preparing for this week’s instruction. It is important to acknowledge the complexity and challenges of teaching virtually, as everything takes twice as long to develop and implement on a virtual platform. Nonetheless, our teachers are meeting the challenge head-on and showing their commitment to and support of our Troubies.

As we prepare for the weekend, I ask that you keep those impacted and displaced by the wildfires in your prayers. May God continue to shine his grace upon the St. Francis community.

St. Francis of Assisi, pray for us!
St. Clare of Assisi, pray for us!

In the spirit of Pax et Bonum (peace and goodness),

Elias Mendoza
Principal

Email blast

Principal’s Newsletter 8/14/20

Dear St. Francis Families,

We are on the cusp of a new and exciting school year! While we did not imagine we would be here five-months ago, we are prepared to meet and support our Troubies in a familiar virtual setting. 

Monday, August 17th, is the first official day of instruction, and I look forward to hearing from you, and hopefully, receiving a few pictures of your Troubie’s first day of school. Feel free to send me your pictures, so I can share them on our social media sites. 

I’m sure you know that regardless of the current situation we find ourselves in, our faculty and staff are committed to supporting your daughters in the upcoming school year. We are stronger together, and we’ll get through any challenges together. 

As we begin the 2020-2021 school year, I leave you with our school year theme and prayer, “We belong to each other,” from St. Teresa of Calcutta. 

Lord, open our eyes that we may see you in our brothers and sisters.
Lord, open our ears that we may hear the cries of the hungry, the cold, the frightened, the oppressed.
Lord, open our hearts that we may love each other as you love us.
Renew in us your spirit.
Lord, free us and make us one. Amen.

St. Francis of Assisi, pray for us!
St. Clare of Assisi, pray for us!

In the spirit of Pax et Bonum (peace and goodness),

Elias Mendoza
Principal

News

Guardian Angel 2020-21 Peer Team Summer Training

St. Francis High School’s 2020-2021 Guardian Angel Peer Team met today via zoom. They are taking part in training to help get prepared for the school year ahead. The Guardian Angels along with our Wellness Team are really excited to reconnect with you all, and of course meet our new Troubadours! 

Alumna Aine Colgan, Class of 2019, wrote a wonderful article for the 2019 Winter Pax Magazine about the SFHS Guardian Angels, and her experience as a member. Here is a little excerpt: “The “Guardian Angels” peer team is a dedicated group of Troubies who have been trained to help classmates address conflicts and provide support for them as they face the pressures in life. The peer team’s goal is to support, enhance and overall help improve students lives via a peer sisterhood experience here at St. Francis Catholic High School.”  Check out the Full article below

PS: Keep any eye out for more from our Guardian Angels & Troubies can contact our wellness team with questions 

Email blast

Principal’s Newsletter 8/07/20

Dear St. Francis Families,

Our faculty returned to campus this week and have been busy preparing for the upcoming school year. There is a lot of excitement to engage in teaching/learning with your daughters, even though the start of the school year will look different. Nonetheless, our faculty and staff are prepared to thrive in this new COVID-19 reality to deliver a rich educational experience you expect of St. Francis Catholic High School.  

As we celebrate our 80th anniversary this year, we look forward to continuing the legacy of educating young women in the Sacramento region with a world-class education and instilling our four pillars of faith, excellence, leadership, and service. As students return to campus in cars for orientation, they’ll see some beautiful new signage welcoming them back and celebrating this milestone anniversary!

Regardless of the COVID-19 pandemic, we will continue to work on re-imagining events, activities, and traditions that many of our alumnae remember about St. Francis. We’ll creatively make this school year memorable and special for all of our Troubies and their families. Our community is robust, and one of our hallmarks is the care we take and show each other. 

For the time being, please keep the faith, and know that God works in mysterious ways. We will get through this challenge together. Your daughter/s will be stronger and more resilient because of our collective efforts. 

St. Francis of Assisi, pray for us!
St. Clare of Assisi, pray for us!

In the spirit of Pax et Bonum (peace and goodness),

Elias Mendoza
Principal