2012-08-23 / Lifestyles

School offers new programs, activities

MANISTIQUE – St. Francis de Sales School in Manistique is reporting student growth – from 72 students in 2002 to 220 students registered for the upcoming 2012-13 school year. This is a 205 percent increase in the number of students, according to school officials.

Father Glenn Theoret explained that nationwide test scores for writing are “abysmal”.

“At St. Francis de Sales, our reading scores are off-the-charts good,” he said. “Therefore, the focus will be in developing good writing and communication skills. With that goal in mind, the school has added a new language arts program to its curriculum.”

This program – My Access – provides interactive feedback and resources to improve communication in critical areas such as focus and meaning, content and development, organization, language use and style, and mechanics.

Another new addition – SFdS’ Accelerated Reader program. This will be enhanced to a completely online version, making the library of quizzes readily available from home or school computers.

Jon Bintner will serve as the new Accelerated Math coordinator. The Accelerated Math program allows each student to continue to work as his or her level.

“With the additional practice and evaluation, Accelerated Math will add the level of depth that we need,” Father Glenn said. “Even though St. Francis de Sales students again score very well in math, the full implementation of this additional tool will take us even higher.”

Kindergarteners through second graders will be introduced to new curriculum, entitled “Math in Focus”.

Both third and fourth grades will supplement their math experience with “First in Math” competition.

Bintner will also serve as SFdS’s technology instructor. A formal computer curriculum will be followed from first through eighth grade.

A new art curriculum, “Christian Heritage Art” will also be implemented. Alyssa Nugent will teach art in addition to Spanish.

Several parents have suggested ideas for enrichment opportunities for the children and SFdS welcomes further suggestions.

Bintner will also serve as the physical education teacher for the coming school year.

SFdS also plans to expand after-school sports opportunities for students. The elementary basketball program for boys and girls may be joined by a flag football program this fall. Bintner will serve as athletic director to coordinate the school’s efforts to take enhance the sports program.

“In sports jargon, this is the off-season for our school,” Father Glenn said. “As in sports, things that are accomplished in the off-season often determine the amount of success achieved during the regular season. For St. Francis de Sales School this has been the best summer, the best off-season in memory.”

St. Francis de Sales is now accepting new students for the 2012-13 school year. For more information on SFdS, call the school office at (906) 341-5512, or visit their website at www.sfdsraiders.com.

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