Weekly Letter (Jan 22, ’18)

Dear Star Families,

As promised at the last Parent Club meeting, here is our School Vision: CLICK HERE TO VIEW.  Fr. Joseph, Mrs. Lundy and I, based the writing of this vision on the current school mission and philosophy, viewable on our school website. Both academic excellence and Catholic identity have been highlighted as focal points together with strengthening ties with the Star parish community. The school board will now be established; invitations to serve are forthcoming.

I’d also like to address the questions many of you have about the pastor and chaplain roles as we move forward. Fr. John will continue to act as our primary liaison to the parish. He will celebrate the majority of school Masses, lead class retreats, and teach in the sacramental programs. He will continue weekly visits to classrooms. Fr. Joseph will continue to celebrate the school Masses on a monthly basis and in the absence of Fr. John. There will be no changes to student liturgies this year. Fr. Joseph will visit classrooms as his schedule allows, for about 15 minutes each session. Both Fr. John and Fr. Joseph will be more visible in the school yard during assembly and recess and will continue to be invited to attend school functions and activities.

Last week the Archdiocese began advertising for principal opportunities throughout the Archdiocese. I find it necessary, now, to formally announce that I have chosen not to be considered, nor will I be returning to teach at Star next year. Pamela Lyons, School Superintendent, will chair the search committee, which will include the Associate Superintendent and a balanced set of representatives from the parent, teacher, parish, and preschool communities and will be led by the Pastor. Parent representatives will be chosen from the leadership already in place in the Parent Club and our various committees. I do have the utmost confidence that the Department of Catholic School’s standard protocol for the Principal Search will bring our community the best candidate for the job. After all, it is the same rigorous and inclusive procedure that brought Mr. Hanley to us.

As I sign off for this week, please know that my decision to leave Star has little to do with my experiences here, because if that was truly the sole factor, I would never leave. In truth, my decision has everything to do with me. Terry knew that I planned to leave Star this upcoming school year to explore other opportunities in the high schools, or find a job utilizing my experiences in tech, education, and communications. As it happened, his wish that I try out being principal came to fruition and it has been pretty awesome to serve all of you. For the record, because he’d want me to admit it loudly and proudly, Terry was right about a lot of things, particularly that I would come to love our community even more while I sat in his seat. For now, however, I find that being principal is not quite right for my family and where I am in my life. I am confident that someone else who is just as dedicated as I am, will be able to enthusiastically throw their whole self into making Star truly shine. I want to sincerely thank both Fr. Joseph and Fr. John for their boundless support as I learned the ropes this first semester. It has truly been an enjoyable experience getting to know them both as we worked together.

With all of this being said, I want to let each of you know that I am fully committed to faithfully serving out the length of my contract, which lasts until July 31. And I am 100% dedicated to ensuring we all have a wonderful rest of the school year. My personal goal is to ensure a seamless transition with whomever our search committee chooses to take on the leadership of our beloved Star of the Sea.

With all my thanks for all that you do,

Mrs. Theresa Poon

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