Personal Finance students prepare for College and Careers

Personal Finance students prepare for College and Careers

This week, our Personal Finance students finished up the Paying for College Unit. Students took a deep dive in learning the Financial Aid process. Topics included: filling out the FAFSA, reading a Student Aid Report, learning the difference between a college sticker price and net price, scholarships and grants, and analyzing the financial aid award letter. To conclude the unit, we invited Mrs. Susan Holmes to come in to share her expertise on preparing for college.

Bishop’s Hurricanes Relief Tuition Fund Established 

Bishop’s Hurricanes Relief Tuition Fund Established 

Bishop’s Hurricanes Relief Tuition Fund Established 

By Pamela Seal
Diocese of Lake Charles 

Catholic schools in the Diocese of Lake Charles have served as an example of faith, hope and resilience in recent months after being struck by two major hurricanes in 2020 — Hurricane Laura on August 27 and Hurricane Delta on October 9. 

A top priority for Bishop Glen John Provost was the reopening of Catholic schools, and he recognized the Catholic community’s obligation to help those greatly affected by the storms. 

The Bishop’s Hurricanes Relief Tuition Fund has been set up to assist families of current students who have experienced losses from Hurricanes Laura and Delta. Due to a generous donation, Bishop Provost will match up to $500,000 of donations collected. 

Struck by the damages suffered by so many families to their homes, Bishop Provost said an essential concern is those with students currently enrolled in Catholic schools in the diocese. 

“We, as a Catholic community, want to reach out to families who have been left homeless or with uninsured losses or with overwhelming expenses for repairing their homes,” said Bishop Provost. “These circumstances are particularly burdensome when impacting families with children in our schools. We have an obligation to help.” 

While the concept of tuition aid in the Diocese of Lake Charles is not new, what is new about the Bishop’s Hurricanes Relief Tuition Fund is the concept of matching funds. The idea was suggested to the bishop by the donors. 

When asked how he has been inspired by the challenges the Catholic schools have had to overcome, Bishop Provost shared details of a visit in November by a bishop friend whose diocese was devastated by Hurricane Harvey in 2017. 

“Among the many destroyed and damaged properties, I took him to visit two of our schools, St. Louis Catholic High and St. Margaret. Both schools had already installed temporary buildings and had resumed classes by mid-October. He thought this was phenomenal. From his own experiences, he knew the obstacles and was most impressed with the speed and determination with which the Diocese of Lake Charles and school communities were addressing the recovery against overwhelming odds. Our Catholic schools are courageous.” 

Bishop Provost emphasized that Catholic schools are “alive and well” in the diocese, noting that Our Lady Immaculate School in Jennings re-opened on the Monday following Hurricane Laura with relatively no damage. 

“Schools that were seriously damaged — St. Margaret, Our Lady’s School, and St. Louis Catholic High School — hit the ground running and re-opened in a few weeks,” said the bishop. “The schools with lesser damage — Immaculate Conception Cathedral School and Our Lady Queen of Heaven — re-opened very soon once they had stabilized their facilities. The principals are a positive group who have embraced the challenges with openness and creativity.” 

Kimberlee Gazzolo, Superintendent of Catholic Schools, said, “In the very first days after Hurricane Laura, I was heartened and grateful at entire communities that came out to help with mitigation and clean-up on the school campuses. I was acutely aware that those in the community had also suffered losses but set that aside to help their schools.” 

Mrs. Gazzolo encourages anyone who can to consider making a donation to the tuition relief fund. 

“No donation is too small, and every donation can make a difference in a child being able to continue to receive a Catholic education,” Gazzolo said. “The history of our schools and the success of our students have proven that Catholic education is a gift, not only to the students, but to our community and to our Church.” 

To make a one-time or recurring donation, visit http://www.lcdiocese.org/resources/support-the-diocese, and click on The Bishop’s Hurricanes Relief Tuition Fund. 

Star Testing for Saints

Star Testing for Saints

This week and next week, students will take the STAR Assessment in both English and math. Teachers will use this data to accurately measure their mastery of certain skills in these subjects and to check for learning gaps that may exist. Students who show growth from their fall assessments will be entered into a raffle for a gift card. 

Congrats to the 12 Days of Reading Winners

Congrats to the 12 Days of Reading Winners

Thanks to all who participated in the reading challenge. Teachers and students from each grade level gave themselves the gift of reading over the break. I’m so proud of you! Stay tuned for another reading challenge during Lent. Let’s build a community that reads!

PSAT Testing is January 26th for 10th & 11th Graders 

PSAT Testing is January 26th for 10th & 11th Graders 

PSAT Testing is January 26th for 10th & 11th graders

What is it and why should I care about it?

Cosponsored by the College Board and National Merit Scholarship Corporation (NMSC), the Preliminary SAT/National Merit Scholarship Qualifying Test (NMSQT)—often shortened to PSAT—is a standardized test targeting 10th and 11th graders in the US. Every year, approximately 3.5 million students take the PSAT test at various high schools. But why take it at all?

As it stands, the PSAT is heavily connected to the SAT. One of the test’s primary purposes is to act as a precursor to the SAT—as the name suggests, as an SAT practice test. But the two tests aren’t identical. Regardless, for many students it is also the first exposure to any college admissions exam, including the ACT we tend to take in Louisiana, so students can get the practice on what to expect of a real college admissions testing.

In addition to being a preparatory test for college admissions testing, the PSAT is a qualifying test for the National Merit Scholarship Program. PSAT scores determine students’ eligibility for National Merit scholarships. Each year the top 1% of 11th-grade PSAT takers become Semifinalists. Semifinalists receive national recognition which can lead to lots of scholarship offers from various universities. Each year, SLCHS has been fortunate enough to have one to two Semifinalists.

How can my student prepare?

Through our English & Math classes, we have had our students completing test practice questions through a software program called Prep Factory. We encourage students to continue to take these assignments seriously.

There is also an official PSAT Student Guide that offers students insights and practice questions. In a normal year we receive a paper copy for each student, but College Board has indicated that we shouldn’t expect any materials before January 15th. Should the study guides arrive, we will certainly pass them out, but the document is linked above.

My student has a Service Plan, what happens?

We have filed your student’s paperwork with The College Board. The College Board makes an independent decision regarding disability accommodations and has notified us of their decision. Mrs. Holmes will be sending out emails to parents about the College Board accommodation decisions and what that means for the disabled student.

Weekly Saints Athletics Report by AD Coach Pat Neck

Weekly Saints Athletics Report by AD Coach Pat Neck

Wrestling

The Saints wrestling team opened their 2020-21 season last weekend by finishing second in their group in the Jennings/McCrory/Petitjean Duals at Rayne High School. The Saints defeated Division I East Ascension 51-21 and South Beauregard 57-12 before falling to defending Division II state champion Teurlings Catholic 60-18.

Senior John Reina and sophomore Henry Gil won two matches each to lead the Saints individually. Also winning matches were senior Julian Jones, juniors Daniel Thomas and Graham Conrad, sophomores James Reina and Hank Milligan and freshmen Hank Hebert and Beau McMichael.

Coach Terry Gage’s squad will be back in action this Saturday at the Jacob McMillan tournament in Lafayette.

Girls Basketball

The Lady Saints continued their winning ways, sweeping through the Lake Arthur tournament with wins over Lake Arthur, Iota and Natchitoches Central. The team upped their record to 11-0 in the process.

Coach Tony Johnson and his girls will be participating in this weekend’s Sam Houston tournament with games scheduled against traditional power Fairview on Friday and Lacassine on Saturday.

Boys Basketball

The boys basketball team and Coach Mack Guillory will be in action this Thursday, Friday and Saturday in the DeRidder tournament with games against Florien, DeRidder and Captain Shreve.

Girls Soccer

The girls soccer team picked up three ties last week at the David Thibodaux tournament in Carencro. The Lady Saints played to even scores with Episcopal of Acadiana, Holy Savior Menard and Slidell in the event.

The girls will face Sulphur at home this Friday at 6 p.m. and travel to face Pope John Paul II on Monday in Slidell.

Boys Soccer

The Saints boys soccer team won a pair of games last week, besting DeRidder by a 2-0 score and David Thibodaux in the Bulldogs’ own tournament by the same 2-0 count. Coach Jason Oertling’s squad also played to a draw with Southside in the event.

The boys return to the pitch Wednesday night with a home contest against Southside and will do battle with Sulphur on Friday, Beau Chene on Saturday and at Pope John Paul II in Slidell on Monday.

Powerlifting

Coach Cord Larsen and the Saints powerlifting teams will begin their season this Saturday at the Southern Pallet meet in Abbeville. Senior Molly Inman anchors the girls squad and seniors lifting for the boys are Saizar Berlanga, Gabe Hebert, Stephen Russell Kershaw, Andrew Landry, Connor Mills and Jack Spann.

Ughovwa Selected to the Ambassador Leadership Program by the National Society of High School Scholars

Ughovwa Selected to the Ambassador Leadership Program by the National Society of High School Scholars

A role model to peers, Nicholas Ughovwa ’21 was selected out of hundreds of applicants for demonstrating strong academic achievement and a commitment to community service. Each year, student members of NSHSS are invited to apply for leadership roles responsible for representing the society in their schools and inspiring peers to become more involved in community activities.

Nicholas serves the community with a pure heart. Early in the year when the pandemic hit, Nicholas and his sister began reaching out to the community through their Psalm 91 boxes. This act of service not only brought joy to the community that were closed in due to the pandemic, but it brought hope.

Congratulations Nicholas on an amazing accomplishment! Keep being the hands and feet of Christ.

Saints 12 Days of Reading

Saints 12 Days of Reading

You are invited to participate in the 12 Days of Reading activity. It’s so easy to participate and will get your brain ready for the new year PLUS prizes will be awarded. Check out the instructions and template.

Do you know the benefits of reading 20 minutes per day? According to the New York Post (https://nypost.com/2019/12/31/the-new-years-vow-everyone-should-make-read-at-least-20-minutes-a-day/), studies show that the benefits are:

  • sharpens skills valuable to workforce such as memory retention, social-emotional skills, and critical thinking
  • creates empathy
  • increases vocabulary
  • better performance on standardized tests
  • it’s fun, helps with stress, and increases imagination and creativity

Merry Christmas and Happy Reading!

Self-Paced Lessons: Algebra II Transformations of Parent Functions

Self-Paced Lessons: Algebra II Transformations of Parent Functions

Mrs. Manns’s Algebra II classes are learning Transformations of Parent Functions by completing self-paced lessons. During this time, students watch videos, complete interactive assignments, and work together while Mrs. Manns is able to provide direct and differentiated instruction to all students.