12.3.2020 Principal’s Blog

Dear St. Joseph’s Families,

I hope you and your family had a blessed Thanksgiving! We are now in the season of Advent. I will be visiting classes over the next few weeks joining with our students in this especially important Catholic tradition. This is a special time that we prepare the way of the Lord and eagerly await the Light of Christ to enter our lives.

Reminder, students do not have school tomorrow- Friday, December 4th. It is a teacher workday. We will have an Advent retreat for our faculty and staff. I will be meeting with each grade level team. Teachers will be collaborating, grading papers, updating grades, preparing lessons, etc.


In our 15th week of school, we have not had any students test positive for COVID-19. We have five students in quarantine this week.

Current COVID tracking information for St. Joseph’s HERE.

  • If your family has been exposed to someone with COVID-19, please keep all children home. If anyone in your family is being tested for COVID-19 keep all children home.
  • If anyone in your immediate family is sick, please keep all children home from school.
  • Any immediate family member experiencing any illness symptoms- keep children home – siblings must stay home as well per our safety protocols
  • Request that you limit exposure over the next month to immediate family – avoid sleep overs or group gatherings
  • Please consider the health and safety of our faculty and staff – we have several faculty members who are caring for elderly family members
  • Please consider the health and safety or our broader community – continue to practice our 3 W’s:
    • Wear a Mask – all people on our school campus must wear a mask
    • Wash your hands
    • Watch your distance when with others
  • see Illness Decision Tree for Schools

Weeks of November 30th – December 18th

I want to reiterate the message from our newsletter that was sent before Thanksgiving regarding the upcoming weeks before Christmas break.

. . . we have made the decision in collaboration with Fr. Mariusz, our St. Joseph’s School Advisory Board, and other Catholic Schools in Idaho to continue with our current educational plan- full, in person learning with staggered start and stop times. We will continue to make the commitment to distance learning for those families who wish to have that option. We ask that those families who wish for their child/children to continue learning in a distance model, commit to a minimum of two weeks, from November 30th – December 11th, or the full three weeks through December 18th.

Currently, we have 18% of our students who are in distance learning. There are 31 students in kindergarten-5th grades and 39 students in 6th-8th grades who are distance learning. This adds quite a bit of work for our teachers in these already demanding times.

If your child is distance learning – please pick up or drop off materials and assignments from 8:15-3:00 Monday-Friday or days designated by the teacher.

School Mass

We had Mass on Tuesday morning with our 1st and 8th grade students attending in person. On Tuesday, December 8th, our 6th and 7th grade students will attend in person. It is the Feast Day of the Immaculate Conception. It is such a privilege and blessing to be able to pray and worship together. Mass will be livestreamed (private link) for those students not attending in person. For those students attending Mass in person, Mass dress is required.

Here is the Mass Schedule for December:

  • December 15th – Grades 4 and 5 will attend in person

#BravelyGiveToday Fundraising Drive

To date, our school community has donated a little over $75,000 – thank you for your generosity! Ways to donate- You can write a check to the school, you can submit a payment online – the school pays a  small transaction fee for this method, or you email Anita Miller an amount you would like to donate and it can appear on your bill – we can accept monthly payments if that helps.


Parents, please notify the front office if your child will be absent for any reason and state the reason for the absence. We need this information to continue to track daily absence rates. Mrs. Granvall’s email is granvalla@stjoes.com.

St. John’s Parish/School Connection: Please continue to support St. John’s Parish or your local parish. Advent begins on November 29th. Prayer for Advent:

Thank you for partnering with us in your child’s education.  We are blessed to be able to continue to serve our St. Joseph’s Catholic School families!


Tammy Emerich


St. Joseph’s Catholic School