Aquinas Footnotes 5-16-18 It's happening!
Aquinas Academy -- the Next Part of the STORY!
Dear Aquinas Families,
We have great news to share!
Three years in the planning, and one year in the waiting, we are ready to put the shovel in the ground and begin digging the column footers for the new two-story lower and middle school building! "When?", you ask! Why, Tuesday, May 18th -- held off by a day so that we can have our May Crowning with second-grade parents on campus!
First things first!
Two weeks ago, we had a meeting with the General Contractor, Franjo, and looked at the construction timeline. In order to optimize the length of time this summer to complete the exterior supporting structure, it is best to begin the work of excavating for the column supports for the second story super-structure this week. That work can be done while the students are still in the classroom. The work will begin on the back side of the current elementary this week. The biggest concern will be the distraction to students who will likely be mesmerized by the digging process outside of the windows! Fortunately, lower school has only two weeks left in the school year!
With gratitude to our major and supporting benefactors on this project, we are moving forward and not a moment too soon. Most of our lower and middle school classes are at their full capacity for next year (2 groups of 18 - 20 per grade level). It is so very important that we take this next step to create learning space that is bright, comfortable, and functional!
We are pleased to report that the fundraising to date for this project will get us well underway. However, there is still a gap between the projected cost of the project and the funding. That gap will be financed on the short term as we continue our fundraising efforts, knowing that this project is critical to providing the space needed for each division of the school to continue to thrive.
As this preliminary work gets underway, Franjo will take every precaution in securing the construction areas, and will leave all sidewalks and walkways intact until the end of the school year.
As we conclude the
twenty-fifth school year for Aquinas Academy, we have much to celebrate -- both looking back and looking forward. (
Making it through this actual twenty-fifth year so well was, in fact, a cause to celebrate!)
Thank you for being a part of that history!
There have been some questions regarding whether any changes will be made to the protocol that we have been following this school year with regard to COVID restrictions. As you know, the CDC and the state department of health have relaxed the masking requirements under certain circumstances. There is a regularly scheduled meeting of the Board of Directors on Monday evening (5/17). The Board as well as the COVID task force will consider what these changes allow for with regard to the students, and more information will be forthcoming.
Please note that with regard to year-end awards ceremonies/commencement, there will not be any gathering limits. All family members and friends are invited.
I will keep you updated if there will be any other changes to the school protocol for the last few weeks of the school year.
Speaking of gathering limits... the latest guidance on gathering limits is cause to celebrate!
The 25th Anniversary Gala, which was supposed to be held this spring, has been rescheduled for October 2nd.
We are now moving ahead with those plans, and we know that
it will be a FABULOUS social and fundraising event next fall which will be a great opportunity for our parents to finally reconnect and enjoy a special evening in each others' company!
On Tuesday of this week (5/20), we will have an afternoon Field Day.
Students should wear their team shirt, along with Aquinas gym shorts, and tennis shoes.
Students will compete in various field events, for which team points will be earned.
The overall winner for all of this year's team events will be named the champions for the year!
Parents should be sure that all accounts are paid in full (including declining balance lunch accounts) in order for final report cards to be released.
In preparation for the annual Uniform Swap this summer,
please consider donating used uniform pieces in GOOD condition.
Monday, May 17th
there will be bins placed near the front office to collect these pieces. Items may be donated throughout the summer during office hours, up to the date of the swap.
When donating items, please consider the following:
Dress Code approved
2. No items with rips, stains, or tears
3. Be sure white items are still white
4. No items that have been significantly altered
Official Uniform Swap date coming soon! If you have any questions, or would like to help out at the swap this summer, please contact Tina Rossi (
) Thank you!
Attention Junior Parents: Mrs. Bogdewic has started working with your students on the college application process. Please note that students will continue to work on various parts of their application throughout the summer. Please see below for summer workshop dates.
July Session I - Activities List Feedback/Review of College Essay Drafts: July 14th and 15th
(July 16th, Friday, Office Hours from 9:30 AM to 1:30 PM)
July Session II - College Essay Final Drafts: July 28th and 29th
(July 30th, Friday, Office Hours from 9:30 AM to 2:00 PM)
August Session - Supplemental Essays: August 11th and 12th
It is extremely helpful to begin the senior year with the college application process well underway. Even if you are away for one of these sessions, your son or daughter will find it worth their time to participate in this summer process as much as they are able.
Important year end dates:
Monday, May 17th: May Crowning for 2nd grade parents. Arrive at 10:15
Thursday, May 20th: Field Day - Team Shirts and Gym Shorts
Friday, May 21st: High School Choir Concert during Crusader Period
Monday, May 24th: Scapular Service for 3rd graders and parents following Mass.
Monday, May 24th: 8th grade class trip to Ligonier.
Wednesday, Thursday, Friday, May 26th - 28th: Final Exams for Seniors
Friday, May 28th: Last Day for Lower School. Brief athletic and academic
recognitions in the gym at 12:45. Closing Lower School Mass in the
Chapel at 1:10. Students may be dismissed following Mass if parents
Friday, May 28th: HS Academic Award Ceremony in the Rhodora: 6:30 p.m.
Saturday, May 29th: Baccalaureate Mass, 10:00 a.m. Seniors should arrive at
9:15 with their Display Board, Cap and Gown. Commencement to follow
Mass at 11:15.
Tuesday - Friday, June 1st - June 4th - Final Exams for MS/HS (HS only half day on
Friday, June 4th with 11:00 dismissal)
Thursday, June 3rd -- Last Day for Middle School
Friday, June 4th -- Last Final Exam (a.m.) for High School. 11:00 dismissal
Friday, June 4th -- MS Closing Mass and Academic Award Ceremony.
6:30 Mass honoring 8th graders, followed by Awards in the Rhodora.
Several Aquinas students will be performing in the Pittsburgh Public Theatre's
"Bard in Bloom" event,
a part of Pittsburgh Ballet Theatre's Open Air Series at Flagstaff Hill on
Saturday, May 22, from 2:00 to 3:15.
This event is a celebration of the extraordinary young artists who have taken part in the
Shakepeare Monologue and Scene Contest.
One of the groups participating in this even is the Aquinas group that placed first for a lower school scene in 2020. The students in that group are Alice Dingle, Aurora Predis, Brigid Mercer, Samantha Falcon, and Mira Greca.
Please join in next weekend's (5/22) prayer vigil for Aquinas Academy. Consider taking a time slot and praying family Memorare's for the success of the building campaign -- especially as construction gets underway this week. We know from experience that until every spot is filled on our Memorare image, we will not be occupying the building! Please pray... count... and send in the completed Memorare cards!
on Sunday, May 16 at 10:28PM