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SCC Prepared for New School Year

St. Charles Catholic High School knows consistency.  Even in the midst of ever-changing guidelines from the CDC and from government officials, SCC has continued to offer its students everything they’ve needed to learn, improve, and perform during the COVID-19 pandemic. During the stay-at-home order, the SCC faculty continued instruction online, which was simple since students were already in possession of Apple devices issued by the school.  As the new school year approaches, SCC continues to accelerate their offerings to students and parents in anticipation of whatever the year ahead may bring.

St. Charles Catholic was proud to have continued instructional time with students during the stay-at-home order that lasted from mid-March to late May of 2020.  Comet students were able to meet regularly with their teachers for live instruction as well as office hours via Google Meets. Alan Stauder, an SCC father, expressed his experience as a parent: “Shortly after all the schools were forced to closed due to COVID-19, I wondered how long this would last and how the students’ education would be handled.  As we all know St. Charles Catholic was right on top of the situation – faster than I anticipated.  I have found it difficult to describe in a mere few words how I feel about SCC’s response. Relieved, thankful, excited and honored are just an inadequate few descriptors.” 

Since summer break started, SCC hasn’t slacked in any measure.  The school building was thoroughly cleaned, classrooms were reorganized to provide for social distancing, sanitation stations were placed at the various entries of the school to facilitate temperature checks, and all trainers and coaches were able to host summer conditioning while offering health screenings, new sanitation procedures, and social distancing. 

SCC has also made special arrangements for the new year in order to ensure safety all over campus.  Water fountains are being replaced with bottle-filling stations. Class sizes are reduced so that each class would have less than 25 students per room, allowing for desks to be spaced six feet apart.  SCC Comet masks were sold during the summer, and communications were sent to families about masks being expected for all students upon returning to school.

The Director of Admissions and Alumni, Carly Flynn, said of the changes, “We’re taking this opportunity to consider how these new protocols could be constructive changes for our students.  Smaller class sizes will allow for better instruction. New SCC gear, like the masks and Comet water bottles, are fun ways to approach the changes.  We feel confident in our ability to stay positive and prepared at all times.  We also have awesome students who we know will be eager to be on campus and ready for whatever the year ahead holds.  They were so great this past Spring!”

Instructional preparation has looked different for SCC teachers this summer as well. The administration provided professional development on online instruction and assessment and upgraded the technology available to teachers and students through both the Apple Device Program and through Promethean’s interactive SmartBoards.  Upcoming professional development will include Google Suite training—including Google Classroom, Google Meet, Google Drive, and more— instruction with online educational apps like Quizziz and Flipgrid, and an online live instruction workshop where teachers will learn how to live stream their classes and attend to learners watching from home.  Professional online learning consultants through Promethean and through EduScape will assist in leading parts of these trainings.

SCC Campus Minister and teacher Raleigh Poche said of the new technology, “I was blown away when I reentered my classroom after returning from the summer. Partly because I missed my classroom, but even more so because of the brand-new Promethean Board that was mounted on my wall. I’m truly overwhelmed and excited to have this technology in my classroom. We have a training coming up to learn everything about what these boards have to offer to our students. I’m very excited to learn a new skill and use my board every day to improve my lessons. I can’t wait to see how this technology changes my instruction and procedures!” The Promethean boards will allow the teachers, from their classrooms, to use state-of-the-art technology to engage students no matter where they are through their Apple Device. The Promethean boards create a virtual classroom for every student no matter what the learning scenario may be so that instruction is never interrupted.

Students at St. Charles will continue to be provided with an Apple Device in order to aid with the educational pursuits of each student.  Underclassmen are issued iPads with attached keyboards and upperclassmen are issued MacBook Pros.  This practice allows SCC to seamlessly adjust to different modes of learning while also allowing students and teachers to interact and keep in touch while not on school premises. These devices are also used to facilitate spiritual events, sports meetings, club meetings, and teacher professional development.  This year will be no different as SCC prepares three modes of learning through which the students can continue their classes no matter what mandates or guidelines are put in place by governing officials.

The first plan is traditional learning in classrooms every day with masks, social distancing, temperature checks, and health screenings as new school procedures.  The second plan is a blended learning system in which students would attend school two days a week on an alternating schedule and attend class virtually on days they are not on campus.  The third plan is fully remote learning utilizing the Apple Devices and Google Suite system to facilitate continuous class instruction, assessments, and prayer services.

Principal Courtney Millet has been communicating to parents and community members about the three instructional modes of learning and new protocols for the upcoming school year via email.

Chandra McLendon, SCC parent, said of the school’s plans for 2020-2021, “I’ve bragged since March about how my son’s school had such a smooth transition to the digital learning environment.  Whatever the case, I’m confident that you all will make it work.” 

SCC is prepared to offer the students and their families a stellar school year, no matter what conditions the school year may require.  To learn more about SCC or get a tour of the campus, call our office at 985-652-3809 or email the Director of Admissions at Flynn.carly@stcharlescatholic.org.