Welcome Back!

Dear St. Raymond School Families,

Welcome to the 2018-2019 school year! I pray that these last couple of months have provided you and your family time to relax, re-energize and create beautiful memories! We now turn our efforts towards another sacred school year. Thank you for being a part of the St. Ray’s community! Your sacrifice is one that does not go unnoticed.

We extend a special welcome to all of our new families and to all those who will experience ‘school’ for the first time. We truly look forward to getting to know each of you and we warmly welcome you to the St. Raymond family.

As we begin a new year, change is inevitable. In July Mr. Lewickas accepted a public school assistant principal position in District 308. I am certain he would appreciate our prayers as he transitions to this new position. It is unfortunate we couldn’t send Mr. Lewickas off with a proper goodbye! If anyone would like to extend gratitude with a letter or a gift for the many contributions Adam made to St. Ray’s during his years here, I can make sure he receives them.

Mr. Lewickas was hired at a time when our enrollment numbers were much higher. With the state of our current enrollment, it was decided that we would not rehire for this position. I will assume most of Mr. Lewickas’ job responsibilities. Mrs. Prieboy and Mrs. Alt have also been assigned a few of his tasks.

Janet Seddon, our book keeper, will be moving down to two days a week: Mondays and Wednesdays from 9:15-3:15. If you have any tuition questions, I encourage you to contact her on those days.

Mrs. Vitas who provides enrichment to students in grades 2-5 is moving down to two and half days (as opposed to the three days she did last year).

With enrollment as it currently stands, there are some classrooms that will be moving down to one homeroom: Kindergarten, 3rd, and 5th grade. Sixth grade has been one homeroom for the past couple of years. Second grade will again have a split homeroom in the morning and then will combine in the afternoon.

The following teacher placements have been made for this coming year:

Pre-School 3 year olds: Jen Christiansen

Pre-School 4 year olds: Shelley Poropat

Kindergarten: Stephanie Kaput

1st Grade: Ginny Baltz and Jen Munson

2nd Grade (split in the morning): Diane Ratajczak and Marlene Hinthorn; Mrs. Ratajczak takes the whole class in the afternoon

3rd Grade: Molly Shanahan

4th Grade: Tara Jacoby and Amy Bialko

5th and 6th Grade ELA and Social Studies: Lisa Black (5th Grade Homeroom)

5th and 6th Grade Math, Science and Religion: Renee Gambino (6th Grade Homeroom)

7th and 8th Grade Science and 7th Grade Religion: Amy Schwert (7th Grade Homeroom)

7th and 8th Grade Math and 8th Grade Religion: Jeremy Gregory (8th Grade Homeroom)

7th Grade ELA and 8th Grade Social Studies: Laura Borio (7th Grade Homeroom)

8th Grade ELA and 7th Grade Social Studies: Lynne Shemaitis (8th Grade Homeroom)

Art: Mrs. Karen Latz

Music: Ms. Holly Keenon

Gym: Mr. Rob Kodura

Technology: Mrs. Kathleen Byrd

Enrichment: Mrs. Julie Vitas

Academic Counselor: Mrs. Leanne Buhr

Aide placement is still being determined.


As you all have been away, we have been busy at work trying to get our building ready for the new school year. Some things are pretty visible; others less so.  

1.New phones were installed! We were on our last leg with our last phone system. Please note that the extension numbers have changed. Listen carefully when you call! In addition, you can now reach EDS from our main number. Simply dial extension 4!

2.The fire panel was rewired to have an antenna reception as opposed to a telephone line connection. With the many issues we were having with our phone system, this makes us better connected to the fire station!

3.New doors were installed in the Commons. You may have noticed that one door ripped off this past year and another was completely torn up at the bottom.

4.We are working to make some technology upgrades. Some rewiring is being done in the junior high classrooms to bring them up to code. In addition, we are creating a plan to replace many of the classroom projectors. Most are 15+ years old (typically projectors last 10 years).

5.The carpet outside of the hallway leading to pre-school through 1st grade is being replaced.


Here are a few changes to be aware of for this coming school year:

1. As a staff, we decided to embrace a theme for this coming year centered on JOY. We want our love for Christ, our love for learning and our love for each other to permeate all we say, think and do. More details on our Year of JOY will be shared at Back to School night. We can’t wait to see all the possibilities that will unfold with our theme!

2.School will start at 7:55 as opposed to 8:00. This is a minor change, but the extra five minutes was needed to accommodate the junior high schedule. Teachers will now pick up the students from the parking lot at 7:45. Early arrival will remain at 7:30. (Students arriving before then must report to morning EDS.)

3.Mass will be at 8 AM on Friday.

4.Parents with students in K-3rd grade will now have access to their child’s assessment marks in School Speak.

5.We are offering chocolate milk as an option this year!


The following curriculum upgrades are being made:

1.First grade will be implementing reading workshop as a continuation of the work that kindergarten did last year.

2.We finalized the purchase of new social studies textbooks for 4th and 5th and for 7th and 8th grade. Now all grades, 1-8 have new social studies textbooks.

3.All students in K-8th grade will be using a new Religion series—Christ Alive! published by Our Sunday Visitor. It includes some fantastic technology options as well as home connections that will help support your efforts as parents.

4.Decisions on the purchasing of new science materials and equipment are still being made.

As we look to the week leading up to school, we are trying something new this year with our Back to School Barbecue sponsored by HSA. This replaces packet pick up and back pack Sunday. We invite you to join us on Thursday, August 16th at 6 PM. Class lists will be posted at door 1 and 26 that evening! If you did not purchase the school supply kit from HSA, you will drop off your child’s supplies at labeled tables in the gym. The teachers will still be working on setting up their classrooms, but they will be available that night to meet with you and hear all about your summer vacations! We look forward to this being an annual tradition where we can gather in the spirit of JOY right before school starts.

The first day of school for K-8th grade is August 20th. It is a FULL day of school. We will gather as a school community at 10 AM for mass. Our presider will be Fr. David Mowry. Fr. David is with us at St. Raymond only for a few short months as Fr. Bill is on sabbatical. Please join us!

We will continue our Wednesday early release. Explore will still be offered with some new options. Details will follow. Our first early release will be Wednesday, August 22nd.

In conclusion, I want to thank all of you for the privilege of working with us in the spiritual development and academic growth of your child/ren. The faculty, staff and I look forward to sharing and celebrating the many successes that will unfold this year.

With deepest gratitude,

Ms. Marjorie Hill


Always be full of joy. Never stop praying. Whatever happens, always be thankful. This is how God wants you to live in Christ Jesus.

--1 Thessalonians 5: 16-18


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