STATE OF THE SCHOOL REPORT
From Principal Madeleine G. Thomas
As we concluded another school year 2016-2017, I reflected on what we have accomplished in the last several months and what is in store for the upcoming school year. Our past is our guiding force and foundation of what lies ahead and will further assist us in the years to come.
This report is written in the spirit of accomplishments, progress, confidence, and optimism for the future. We acknowledge that our reason for Resurrection Academy’s existence is the presence of Christ in each and every one of us. Reflecting on the name of the school, Christ resurrected, we are blessed to represent Jesus in our lives, and what we want to accomplish with the children entrusted to us.
School Mission, Philosophy, and Goals
Resurrection Academy, a ministry of St. John XXIII Catholic Community, is a diverse preschool to eighth grade population with a rigorous Catholic academic education, immersed in technology with a focus on 21st century skills where students communicate, collaborate, create, and think critically. Serving Fontana and neighboring locales for over fifty years, we are a community which provides for worship and is caring, respectful, compassionate, and life-giving; designed to create tomorrow’s leaders, today.
Philosophy of Education
We at Resurrection Academy are a community of dedicated Catholic-Christian educators, whose goal is to provide a Gospel-centered environment for our students and families. For over fifty years, we have served as a ministry of the community of St. John XXIII grounded in an atmosphere of service and stewardship wherein our students may discover a respect for self and others thereby developing their God-given potential for service and peace.
We believe in the personal dignity and worth of every individual. We encourage and develop a sincere spirit of caring, concern, a sense of civic duty, community service, and pride throughout the student body, faculty, and families. We celebrate a rich Catholic tradition through faith sharing, liturgy, sacramental preparation, Reconciliation, and Holy Eucharist.
Our goal is to provide a multi-faceted curriculum that promotes spiritual, academic, social, emotional, and physical growth. We are committed to fostering a positive self-image and desire within our children to be life-long learners, creative critical thinkers, responsible Catholic citizens, and effective communicators by developing their sense of personal growth and independence, challenging their limitations, and building on their strengths. We prepare our students for leadership roles and to meet the demands of our rapidly changing world by immersing them in technology, collaboration, and creativity.
We believe that the parents are the first and most important educators of their children. We instill the values of Catholic schools, including service, respect of self and others, discipline, high academic standards, prayer and worship, with the support and commitment of the parents. We work to provide a well-rounded experience and to form our students into Disciples of Christ. To this end, we build bridges of communication that will enable us to work in partnership with our parents to improve each student potential for individual excellence.
Finally, our school is blessed with students from various racial, cultural, religious, social, and economic backgrounds. We recognize, utilize, and celebrate these differences as gifts that enrich our school community.
Resurrection Academy’s vision statement states that it will maximize the use of technology to enrich and expand the tradition of excellence in Catholic education.
Resurrection Academy is in the process of piloting Lennox Virtual Academy, which will greatly enhance the technology capabilities of our school through one to one devices per students, Grades K-8. Our teachers will utilize this platform as an added teaching tool for our students.
Students will be using a learning platform utilizing Accelus, which is an online interactive learning system that is empowering students to learn as never before. The curriculum will cover the core subjects including Language Arts, Math, History, and Science. Students will be able to work at their own individualized pace allowing our slower learners to succeed at a pace comfortable to them and our advanced students to be challenged. Instruction is differentiated to meet each student’s academic needs.
Enrollment, Recruitment, and Retention
Enrollment has fluctuated from year to year. This year, our current enrollment is 200 and in the previous school year 2015-2016, there were 218 students enrolled at Resurrection Academy. In 2014-2015, we had 208 students, and in 2013-2014, there were 198. These numbers do not reflect the overall size of our parish, which has approximately 2,000 active parishioners and more than 5,000 registered parishioners between the church sites of St. John XXIII Rialto and Fontana.
The cultural and ethnic diversity of our school population is a true reflection of our parish. We are blessed with students from various racial, cultural, religious, social, and economic backgrounds. Although our Hispanic group is our leading population and will remain the same for the course of the next years, we will continue to recruit families from all walks of life.
Our classroom sizes are 9 to 23 students except for the Preschool program that has 34 children in both the 3 year old and 4 to 5 year old classes. It is our goal to continue to increase our enrollment for all grades in order to provide additional ancillary services and to increase the classroom capacity to 25 to 30 children in order to be less dependent on the diocese, parish, and donors, while we continue to provide our students the best in quality Catholic education.
Despite the change of our parish name and the merging of two parishes to make up St. John XXIII. We are thriving and keeping afloat. We are grateful to God, to all our families, and our supporters. We are grateful for the commitment of dedicated teachers and staff, support of our pastor and priests, and parishioners who are generous with their financial support. For those that are recommending our Resurrection Academy to others to serve the family’s needs in their early and elementary education, we are most grateful.
In the school year 2015-2016, Resurrection Academy was one of the school’s chosen to undergo a strategic development program through the sponsorship of Catholic Schools Management, Catholic Extension, and our Office of Catholic Schools. This process is a four-year commitment. We have started last year: reviewed, revisited, and updated our foundational documents. These documents are the following: mission statement, philosophy of education, School wide Learning Expectations (SLE), also known as the profile of our graduate, SWOT analysis, 4 great things about the school, assumptions, and vision statement.
We have strived to be less dependent on the diocese, parish, and donors who have been generous and keeping us afloat. We have been blessed to have the Shea Foundation provide a major capital improvement of our school that keeps our school plant in an excellent condition. In addition, we are currently working with Shea Foundation to support us in meeting our technology plan goals and Caritas Communications in providing the school with 50 iPads and with the necessary firewall or monitoring system. In addition, our school is in the process of collaborating and partnering with Lennox District for a blended learning educational program. If these plans come to fruition, it will ensure that our students will continue to maximize the use of technology to enrich the tradition of excellence in Catholic education.
Resurrection Academy has withstood the test of time in covering the day-to day expenses. However, we look to the future when the school will be able to rely solely on its own in order to have a lasting foundation for a long-term future.
Top quality education can be very expensive when we strive to keep quality teachers and small classroom numbers. Over the last three years, we have been doing an optimal job of controlling expenses, however, we challenge ourselves to encourage more families in the value of a Catholic education.
For the end of this school year 2016-2017, Resurrection Academy has an accounts payable that is approximately $120, 000.00 In the school year 2015-2016, the accounts payable was $74, 629.96 and school year 2014-2015, the accounts payable was $90, 195.79.
For the upcoming school year 2017-2018, there will be a 5% increase in tuition rate. This means that for the cost of one child is $420.00 per month, two children is $728.70 per month, and three children is $887.88. This increase will also take place in our preschool program. The registration fee and mandatory fundraiser amounts will remain the same. The reason for increasing tuition is due to the higher cost of living, higher health benefits, and to be in compliance with our state hourly rate.
The cost of educating a child at Resurrection Academy is $6,000.00 per school year. The administration has worked diligently to keep the cost of education down by augmenting our school income through fundraisers and donations from benefactors, donors, and the local businesses.
Our Bishop and the Diocese supports a number of our families through the Bishop’s Endowment Fund where our families who qualify receive $750.00 to $1,000.00 for tuition assistance/scholarship.
The purpose of the strategic planning process is for the establishment of an annual fund campaign. This will strengthen and bolster the efforts that were started three years ago with the scholarship dinner. This Scholarship Dinner was brought about to bring additional funds to the school. In the 2013-2014 academic year, we raised approximately 7,000.00. In 2014-2015, we raised an average of $ 6,000.00, and this current year, 2016-2017, we sent mailers and we received at least $ 4,500.00 in donations. Our School Advisory Board and PTG (Parent Teacher Group) have been creative in supplementing income by researching avenues of fundraising activities. In previous years, we have sponsored Goodwill, e- waste recycle, and Family Bite Night fundraisers to supplement our school income. We ask for your continued support in these fundraising endeavors to ensure that the hard work that goes into them results in substantial gain.
This school year, 2016-2017, Mrs. Elizabeth Hernandez, took the helm of directorship for our Preschool Program. As the new preschool director, she plans to have “Family Days” with the parents/guardians of the children so that they have a chance to see first-hand our curriculum in action and the many activities in our preschool. Family Day is held on the first Monday of the month, In addition, our Pre-K (4 to 5 years old) program is providing curriculum that will allow children to be ready for Kindergarten in the coming school year.
We have many exciting things going on in our elementary and middle school grades. Resurrection Academy continues to bring technology into the classrooms and into the hands of the students. Currently eBeam technology is set up in all classrooms. In grades K-2 through 4 students use iPad technology. Currently, kindergarten has 5 iPads and 1st through 4th have 8-10 iPads. The school recently received 50 new iPads through a grant, so we are gradually reaching our goal of 1 to 1 tablets for the students. The iPads are used throughout the day for Superkids.
In the Language Arts program, several educational apps such Accelerated Reading and Moby Max are used. Students also use technology to complete research. In the upper grades we suffered a setback in the area of technology. As you know, our classrooms were broken into last year and all the tablets from 7th and 8th grade were stolen. As yet, we have not been able to replace these devices. Students in the upper grades have been able to bring their personal devices from home to utilize in the classrooms following strict classroom procedure in regards to the technology. Three of the classrooms are equipped with Apple T.V., which is utilized on a daily basis. In keeping up with the 21st century, Resurrection Academy is steering away from textbooks and utilizing technology as the main resource in learning.
This year our New Math program has an Internet component, which goes along with student texts. For Science and Social Studies the online program, Studies Weekly, is utilized in grades Kindergarten through grade 8. These online programs more fully engage the students in their studies.
Field Trips are a wonderful way for students to learn. This year our students had the opportunity to experience a variety of field trips. Our middle school students spent a week on Catalina Island earlier this school year studying marine biology. While there, they got to experience kayaking, scuba diving, and hiking as well. All the students were able to experience being artists when Purple Easel came to the school and taught all the students and teachers how to paint on real canvases. Grades 2 through 8 were able to view the Our Lady of Guadalupe exhibit at Bower’s Museum in January. This was a wonderful exhibit, and the first time that all these, and this many images of Our Lady of Guadalupe were ever shown together.
In the last week of January, we kicked off Catholic Schools Week. On Sunday our school community joined the parish for 9:30 A.M. Mass followed by the school’s Open House. Visitors were able to view the students’ Science Fair projects in the social hall, a variety of student work in the classrooms, hear our choir perform, and hear firsthand of the successes of one of our 2007 alumni Adrienne Del Rosario. The week continued with many fun, service oriented, and civic-minded activities for the students. These included a variety of dress up days, sports and hot dog day, movies day, root beer floats, and family day. Students took time to write thank you letters to their parents and to service men and women. Students collected pajamas to donate to the Sleep Train organization. The week ended the way it started by celebrating Mass together.
Auditions are underway for our very first school wide play “Willy Wonka and the Chocolate Factory”. The roles will be announced on Friday and rehearsals will begin next week. This performance will take place in the Spring and we hope to get a huge turnout for this first time event.
As many of you know, our first grade got off to a rocky start this year. Unfortunately, our first grade students had to deal with the inconsistency of a high teacher turnover in their class. This challenge was faced head on and to the best of the school’s ability. I thank you for your patience and support during this transitional time. I have been the acting 1st grade teacher since before Christmas and have worked to bring the students up to speed in their curriculum. I have also worked very hard to give a routine required to instill discipline in the classroom. Since that time, we have hired a substitute teacher to finish the school year with the students.
We are proud of our school and thankful for the beautiful refurbishment of the school generously provided by the John and Dorothy Shea Foundation. As you know, two years ago the Shea Foundation gave our school a complete makeover including our offices, teachers’ lounge, and all the classrooms. In addition, we are extremely grateful to all our benefactors for their generous support of Resurrection Academy.
Our lunch shade for the elementary and middle school area is in the works. This has been a long time in coming and we are pleased to share that it will be completed soon.
Grade 8 and Kindergarten Graduation
The faculty and staff of Resurrection Academy were beaming with pride to graduate seventeen (17) Grade 8 students and twenty-one (21) Kindergarten students. Graduation Mass and ceremony was held on June 2 at 4:00PM and the Kindergarten Mass was on June 7 at 10:00AM at St. John XXIII Catholic Church. A special luncheon was prepared for our Grade 8 Class of 2017 and after the luncheon; our graduating class presented their School wide Learning Expectations Exit project to all parents, teachers, and guests in attendance. The graduates of Resurrection Academy are:
Creative Critical Thinkers
Responsible Catholic Christian Citizens