St. Mary's Religious Education: Grades 1 - 8
Karen Ackles, Director
Liz Bertoni, Administrative Assistant
Paula Baker, Administrative Assistant
Attention Grade One Parents:
This is an important message to inform all of our families of a change which will help to strengthen the Faith Formation of our young people. After much prayerful thought, advice, and discussion with Fr. Brian, teachers, and parents, we have decided to have our First Grade students come to class at the school building. Beginning September 2017 there will be no home program for Grade One (First Communion 1).
If you already have other children in our program, you will register your first grade student when you register your other children this summer, adding Baptismal information online. New families of first grade students will have the opportunity to register online using the registration link that will be on the parish website this summer. You will also be able to add the necessary Baptismal information online.
At this time, if anyone is interested in joining our teaching team for Grade One and hopefully, Grade Two, please contact the Religious Education Office at 508-528-1450.
I hope by getting this information out to you early you will be able to make your plans for Religious Education for 2017/2018. If at any time you have questions, regarding Religious Education, please feel free to call me at 508-528-1450.
If you have any questions, please call the Religious Education Office at 508-528-1450 or by email at firstname.lastname@example.org.
St. Mary's Safety Program:
Mandated by the Archdiocese, an important component to our Religious Education Curriculum is a very comprehensive Personal Safety Program. As we enter into our fifth year offering this program, we realize what a wonderful opportunity this is to help and support parents introduce the most current best practices to help keep their children safe. Last year, based on parent input, we changed the safety schedule to allow the program to be offered every day during Safety Week so as not to disrupt everyone’s busy schedule. Feedback has been very positive and encouraging. Thanks to guidance and encouragement from Father Manning, St. Mary Parish has been a leading frontrunner in implementing a child protection program and now eleven other parishes in the area have sought to duplicate our model!
This program is offered three times during the year, covering three very important topics—general safety issues, internet safety, and keeping our bodies safe. In a very non-threatening, age appropriate manner, this faith based program provides children the skills they need to recognize potentially dangerous situations and what they can do should they ever find themselves in an unsafe situation. Although the general safety topic may seem repetitive and unnecessary to some parents, please remember that a foundation is being laid to reinforce and empower the children to remember that they are a precious gift from God who needs to follow all types of rules so they can grow up to be happy and healthy; ready to do whatever God asks of them. A study last year by The New York Society for the Prevention of Cruelty to Children concluded that the child protection message needs to be reinforced minimally twice a year by someone OTHER than a child’s parent or guardian if it is to remain effective. When the message is heard in the home, schools, religious education programs, etc. it becomes an everyday way of life which empowers children to talk openly to their parents and not keeps secrets out of fear or shame or not being believed.
A parent meeting to explain the program in more detail is scheduled for Thursday, October 13th at 7pm in the library of the Charter School. In the meantime, we ask all parents to take a moment and pledge the following to your children:
“You are VERY important to me! If you have a safety problem, I want to know.
Even if I seem too busy.
Or might feel upset.
Or don’t understand at first.
Even if someone we care about will be upset.
Even if it is embarrassing.
Even if you made a mistake.
Please tell me and I will do everything in my power to help you.” (kidpower international)