• Fr. Peter Scott

Newsletter, October 2018


October 15, 2018

Dear parents of St. John the Baptist Catholic School,

Our parent-teacher meetings last Friday were only a moderate success. It was disappointing to see that many of our parents did not show for these meetings, and especially the parents of children who have difficulties. All parents need to be aware that education is a joint effort of the school and the parents, and that the school can be an extension of the parents, but not a substitute for them. We can inculcate respect for God and his commandments, for prayer and for study, for discipine and for hard work, for morality and for academic excellency, but only under the condition that we are building on the same values that come from home. Hence the importance of coordinating our efforts with parents. If you did not attend those meetings, but would still like like to speak with your children`s teachers, you can call and make an appointment to do so between 2:15 and 3:00 pm. Also, consider it your responsibility to ensure that your children tell you about their daily homework, and accomplish it on time.

I remind those of you whose children are not registered for next year that you cannot count on sending them to St. John the Baptist. On the one hand the classes are filling up with new students. On the other hand, we have learnt from experience that we cannot trust the promises of school fees` payments to be made in the future, often false and insincere. If you do not catch up before the classes are filled, you will have to search for another school. When you do catch up, you can then ask for a registration form.

This final term of the year is a short one. Keep a track of your children`s tests and help them to prepare for them. The last day for exams and tests is Friday December 8. Tuesday December 11 will be the day for the presentations that the different classes will make to the school and to the parents. The presentations of the primary school classes (up to and including Grade 7) will start at 9:00 am in St. Joseph House. All parents are invited to attend. The presentations for the high schools will start at 1:00 pm. The last day of school for the year, Wednesday December 12, will be the day for the handing out of awards and report cards. The ceremony will begin at 8:30 am, also in St. Joseph House. The year will end with Benediction of the Blessed Sacrament at 10:30 am.

Allow me to be very clear concerning study days. St. John the Baptist school does not allow for any study days at home. Such study days are a waste of time. Every day until the end of the term is a full school day, and the study periods between the different tests and examinations will be supervised, just as much for the high school students as for the primary school students. Those of our older students sitting the Cambridge examinations have free the day of the Cambridge examination, but not any days before or after. The best preparation for these examinations is to attend our classes. In any case, Cambridge exams cannot be crammed for. Moreover Cambridge is only a part of the complete education that is provided by St. John the Baptist School, nor would we ever consider reducing our education to a secular system of examinations, as good as it might be.

Not all parents of children in Grades 2, 3 and 4 have returned the permission slips for the trip to Lory Park Zoo, to take place on Friday October 26. If you have not yet returned the form with the accompanying R 160 please do so by the end of the week, so that we can know the precise number of students who will be participating.

The winners of the jog-a-thon were the first grade boys, who will receive a pizza party as a recompense for their efforts to find sponsors and to run laps. They raised R 2,065, out of a total raised of R 11,996. It is only a small part of the cost of the landscaping around Bosco House, but the help is very much appreciated.

We have two big feast days coming up. The feast of Christ the King is on Sunday October 28. We will have a procession of the Blessed Sacrament, during which we will proclaim Christ as our King, and renew the consecration of the world to His Sacred Heart. Also, several of our students will have the joy of receiving Our Lord in Holy Communion for the first time on that day. You are invited to join them on this day of spiritual consolation, on which they receive God Himself in their hearts for the first time.

This year the feast of All Saints falls on Thursday, November 1st. We will have school as usual, but beginning with a High Mass at 7:30 am. After a short break for breakfast, there will follow an All Saints party. Children of all ages will be invited to attend. The condition of attending is that they dress up, act out or speak of the saint that they have chosen. Children who do not chose to do a saint will go to class as usual, and will not be allowed to attend the party. Each child has to present a saint, his life and virtues, according to his age, and the Fathers are to guess which saint he is acting out.

On Friday November 2nd, the Mass will also be sung. It will be a Requiem Mass for the repose of all the souls of the faithful departed, especially for those who have noone to pray and offer Masses for them.

Yours faithfully in Christ Our Lord, King of Kings,

Father Peter R. Scott, Principal

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