Family Communication 11-9-17


Dear Holy Rosary Families,

This fall, students finished their first session of MAP testing. MAP stands for Measures of Academic Progress and is a computer adaptive test created by NWEA that students take three times per school year. The results provide teachers with information to help deliver appropriate content for each student and determine each student’s academic growth over time.

It is important to understand that the MAP test is one test at one point in time. It does not measure intelligence or a student’s capacity for learning. Teachers assess student learning and collect data continually in the classroom in many ways, including using summative and formative assessments such as tests, quizzes, oral & written reports, exit slips and progress checks. MAP testing is another method for teachers to collect data on student understanding of the grade level standards and provides information that can be used in conjunction with classroom based assessments. It is a helpful piece in the picture of student learning and supports what teachers do every day as they assess and work towards student understanding and achievement.

During your child’s conference, you will receive his or her most recent MAP testing results. Results are reported in RIT scores (short for Rasch Unit). A RIT score is an estimation of a student’s instructional level and measures student progress or growth. You may have a chart in your home on which you mark your child’s height at certain times, such as on his or her birthday. This is a growth chart to show how much he or she has grown from one year to the next. MAP assessments do the same sort of thing, except they measure your student’s growth in mathematics, reading, and language usage.

You can learn more about RIT scores at this link (which includes a short video that can assist in interpreting your child’s MAP testing data.

We look forward to discussing your student’s individual growth and progress at our upcoming conferences.

In Christ



  • November 17 – Book Fair Opens
  • November 20-22 – Parent/Student/Teacher Conferences (regular school not in session) BASE open
  • November 23-24 – Thanksgiving break – no school
  • December 14 – Christmas program (begins at 6:30)
  • December 19 – January 1 – Christmas break (begins at noon dismissal)


Yearbook Order Time!

It’s yearbook order time! This year’s theme is Growing Memories, so put the petal to the metal and ORDER ONLINE HERE TODAY! $25 for grades preschool through 7, and $30 for grade 8. Your FACTS account will be billed.

We are extremely proud of our yearbook program at Holy Rosary. It’s one of the few K-8 school yearbooks designed by eighth graders, who are skilled in Adobe Photoshop, Illustrator and InDesign. A yearbook is not only a memory book, but a record and history book, a reference book, and a public relations book; as well as an educational experience for everyone involved.

Conference Signup

The conference signups will close on Wednesday, November 15 at noon. Sign up here!

Recess Duty Signup

Signups for second trimester recess duty are open. By committing to once a week recess duty for a trimester (November 27 through March 9 from 11:15-1:15), you are eligible for double general volunteer hours. You can also join a sub list; those who have subbed for at least 10 sessions are also eligible for double hours.

Lost and Found

Please check the Lost and Found in the main hall during conference week.  Everything left behind will be donated to charity.

Priority School Application For Current Families Adding A NEW Student

Click here for the 2018-19 online application for current school and parish families who are enrolling a NEW student to Holy Rosary (into preschool and/or grades K-8). Priority application runs until November 15. Re-enrollment for current Holy Rosary students will occur in January.

Accepting Financial Aid Applications

Applying for a Fulcrum Foundation tuition grant and Holy Rosary financial aid for the 2018-19 school year is open and available through FACTS. Click here to sign-in/or create an account to begin the application. Applying for Fulcrum aid and HRS aid uses the same FACTS application, please check Fulcrum to be considered for Fulcrum Foundation aid. Please complete your application before December 15. Any questions, please contact Jennifer Kokkonis at

Safe Environment Update

The Archdiocese Safe Environment Office is simplifying the process of determining when an online refresher module is required and assigned. Currently the internal system coding in Virtus is using two dates to determine when the online refresher module is assigned.

  • The date of the initial Live Training
  • The date of the most recent background check

Due to the necessary complexities to accommodate both of these dates, the system misses 20 – 30% of the needed prompts or prompts inappropriately.

To simplify this, the Safe Environment Office is separating the online refresher from the date of the most recent background check. This will leave the online refresher tied to the most recent class date and increase the system’s accuracy to 100%. The Go Live date of this new coding is Monday November 6.

Please be aware that you might receive a notification from the Virtus helpdesk, regarding your online update, on November 6. If this is the case, you can trust that it is accurate and it is indeed time to take your renewal class.


Parent’s Club Meeting Tonight

The guest speaker will be Jennifer Burbridge who will discuss how to keep our kid’s safe, and how to talk to them about safety issues. Social hour starts at 6:30 and the program begins at 7.

Scholastic Book Fair

The Scholastic Book Fair returns just in time for conferences. The library is transformed into a bookstore and every purchase benefits our school. School-age siblings are welcome to remain at the book fair while parents attend a sibling’s conference. Additional information will be posted next week.

Development Directives


All School Commission members have pledged an amount to the Annual Fund, won’t you join them? The ANNUAL FUND is a very important campaign that requires the entire school community to be successful.  Our goal is to raise $200,000.  This $200,000, combined with other development and fundraising activities, closes the $750,000 gap between the cost to educate and tuition charged.

The ANNUAL FUND has two goals. The first is to raise $200,000 and the second is to reach 100% participation. When Holy Rosary applies for grants, one of the questions frequently asked is percent of participation in annual giving. Higher percentage rates alert a granting committee that we have exhausted our internal resources and are now looking for external funding. Please help HRS achieve 100% participation!!!

Every dollar counts, so make your pledge today. 100% participation, it’s for the kids!!!



Follow Up On Tax Fraud

We have learned that six individuals have been charged in the 2013 tax fraud scheme that affected some employees and volunteers of the Archdiocese of Seattle several years ago. Over 250,000 people had their identities stolen, which was then used to apply for $25 million in fraudulent tax refunds. From April 2013 through May 2015, the investigators believe the scheme generated at least $4.7 million in profits. One of the databases that was attacked was that of CICS Employment Services, a Lincoln City, Oregon background-check company. Five of the individuals have been convicted on multiple counts of mail and wire fraud and related charges. Two have been sentenced to federal prison (a six year and a nine year term). The other three are awaiting sentencing. Although these convictions do not change the fact that many of our employees and volunteers experienced stress and a tremendous amount of inconvenience, it is reassuring to know that at least some of the individuals responsible are being held accountable for their crimes. We have been told that the large number of employees and volunteers who attended regional gatherings and signed affidavits for the IRS agents was helpful to their investigation.


CYO Holy Rosary Ski Bus (through Mohan Ski School)

Holy Rosary School ski bus is here! Departing Saturday mornings at approximately 7:15 from Holy Rosary and returning in the late afternoon/early evening. We need a minimum of 30 skiers registered to commit. We are working with a local ski outfitter to organize equipment rentals.

  • Kindergarteners through fifth graders must have a chaperone (one parent to three kids maximum). That parent is responsible for their skiers, their equipment, and their lunches.
  • Sixth graders can ride the bus without a parent chaperone, but without a designated chaperone, they must take a lesson at the mountain and be able to carry and manage their equipment and dinner.
  • Seventh and eighth graders can ride the bus without a parent chaperone and do not need to take a lesson.
  • Some parent organizing suggestions – Buy one bus ticket between three parents and trade off weeks. Carpool with other parents, and meet the bus at the mountain.

Click here to register. Thank you!

Discovering Chess

Once again this year I’m pleased to teach an after-school chess class. I keep seeing studies where chess playing is linked with Academics; helping kids with spatial ordering, forethought, and pattern recognition. I personally enjoy the mix of right brain creativity and left brain logic and order. It has been fun for me to see the kids at Holy Rosary steadily improve as they grow.

Just like past years, I will be teaching the class in my room (7A) from 3-3:45 on Thursdays. The cost will be $15 per student. No need to send money; the school will bill your FACTS account at the end of the month. I am open to all ages, but I’ve noticed that many young kids really can’t sit and play a quiet game after a long day at school, so I leave that up to you to gauge. I’d like to keep it pretty informal — no need for an official sign-up. Just send your child when they want to start and we can go from there. Do email me with any questions here at Thank you, Mike Ritscher, 7A


A Message From Father Oakland

“Bless us O Lord and these Thy gifts which we are about to receive from Thy bounty through Christ our Lord. Amen.” How often do we pray these words? The truth is everything we receive from the Lord is a gift to us in God’s goodness and love for us. But He doesn’t just give us these things for ourselves, but invites us in our goodness and love to share His blessings with others as well, as we share together in this journey toward Heaven. At this time every year parishioners are asked to renew their financial commitment to the parish after praying about the gifts that God has given to them. For those receiving in-parish tuition, the minimum donation increased for the first time in almost a decade to $1,020 per year (using the July-June Fiscal Year/Academic Year – $85 per month). Of course, depending upon the gifts God has given you, you might be able to give more. Your support of our parish and our work and ministry is vital as we continue the work of Jesus Christ here in West Seattle, including through our school. Be sure to obtain corporate matching donations if you can. Some won’t allow matching donations to the church itself, but will if the money is earmarked for our social outreach ministries. If you missed it at Mass, you can fill out your pledge card online here. Thank you for your prayerful support and generosity.

In Christ,

Fr. Oakland

Halloween Celebration Recap

A big Thank You to all the 6-8 graders, high schoolers, and parents who helped set up our super fun event on Friday night, October 27, as well as help on Saturday, October 28. Our Youth Group did an amazing job with running our nine Halloween activities as well as our Spooky House. We had over 250 people attend that evening! If you are interested in being on our team for next year’s Halloween Celebration, please email Thank you again from Deyette and Nicole Warren, Youth Minister

All Saints Mass

Our fourth grade saints did a fabulous job at the All Saints Mass on Wednesday as well as at the 10:30 a.m. Mass on Sunday. Thank you to Mrs. Podell and Ms. Simpson for all of their hard work preparing them, as well as Janet Mudge and Paul Dolejsi for music. Click below to view gallery.

2017 Christmas Choir Sign-Ups Now

Every year, our children’s YouthChoir! sings for the festive 5 p.m. Christmas Eve Mass — celebrating the birth of Jesus! Be a part of Holy Rosary tradition and come and sing with the YouthChoir!. Rehearsals started on September 7 and will continue to meet every Wednesday from 2:30-3:15, which is a convenient pick-up time similar to the rest of the week. What about band? Fifth graders who are in Holy Rosary band can come directly to the chapel at 2:30 when band practice ends. What about BASE? We also escort kids back to Holy Rosary BASE after choir!

  • Registration is easy! Here is the link.
  • Register online here. YouthChoir! is open to all students in grades 3-5 from all schools in the parish neighborhood! NOTE: Current choir singers who are already registered, do not need to register again.
  • Rehearsals are on Wednesdays on November 15, 29, December 6 and 13 in the Chapel from 2:30-3:15. Grade 4 and 5 cantors may continue from 3:15-3:40.
  • Mass is Saturday, December 24 (Christmas Eve) at 5 p.m. and the pre-Mass rehearsal is at 4 p.m. in the Chapel.
  • Parents, we need your volunteer help! Volunteer time counts towards your school hours! Help to support YouthChoir! by volunteering your time as an administrative support person (email, web, other…) or supporting fun ideas or resources (t-shirts, video recording, website, field trips, community performances, pool/karaoke parties, etc.). Contact Paul Dolejsi, director at pdolejsi@holyrosaryseattle.orgto register, volunteer or for questions. Thanks for your support!

NOTE: Religious Education students are invited to participate, too! Some new schools are getting out earlier now. Even if your student can’t attend weekly Wednesday 2:30 rehearsals, maybe they can make the one Wednesday that their school gets out early for teacher in-service. They are also invited to the Christmas Eve pre-mass rehearsal at 4pm on December 24 in the chapel. We’ll go over all the music so they can sing at the mass!

Remember that music helps kids become better learners! Choir helps kids become more confident persons! Singing and serving helps you become closer to Christ! Come and sing before the Lord!


Veterans Day Dinner On November 11

The American Legion Post 160 of West Seattle (3618 SW Alaska St.) invites all U.S. veterans and family members to a complimentary pasta dinner on Veterans Day, Saturday, November 11 from 5:30-7:30 p.m.

Donations To Westside Baby

Holy Rosary School has a donation bin for Westside Baby in the lost and found area. Westside Baby is a social service agency in West Seattle that collects, inspects, and distributes diapers and clothing to children up to age 12 years. They have an ongoing need for Size 4-6 diapers and pull-ups, wipes, hygiene items, and gently used clothing for kids up to 12 years old.  You are welcome to bring any of these items into our bin and they will be picked up by Westside Baby volunteers.  Thank you for your generosity!

Watts Basketball Camps

As you are aware, basketball season is right around the corner and there is probably still a lot to do to prepare. Watts basketball is big on helping players gain the confidence and life skills it takes to be the best player they can be. We are excited to help you and your players prepare for the season by hosting confidence and skill building camps and clinics in your community on days off from school!

Veteran’s Day Clinic

  • When:  November 10 from 9-3.
  • Grades:  3-8
  • Where:  Salvation Army White Center, 9050 16th Ave SW, Seattle, WA 98106
  • Fee:  $70
  • Click here to register

Holiday Hoop Camp

Holiday Wine Fest

Holy Rosary School Alum Christopher Chan and the Chan family invite school families and parishioners 21+ to a day of sipping, sampling, and shopping at the 2017 Holiday Wine Fest, Saturday, November 11 at Seattle Center Exhibition Hall. Enjoy local and international wine, beer, cider, spirits, food, and artisan gift shopping at this comfortable and festive affair. Proceeds benefit Washington state wine and spirits industry educational scholarships. Holiday Wine Fest information is here and ticket purchase is here.

After School Art Workshops!

Another fabulous six-week Art Workshop session (B2) is scheduled to begin today. This art workshop happens right next door to Holy Rosary School, at Seattle Lutheran High School, and is taught by Ms. Reuter (former Art Teacher at Holy Rosary). We’ll be creating ceramic totem poles, splatter paint masterpieces, balloon animals, illuminated manuscripts, and much more! Grades 1-6 are welcome to join. Please note that the Art Workshop is not a Holy Rosary School program. Register online here or email Ms. Reuter at

Additionally, Ms. Reuter will soon be offering Art Nights for grown ups. That means you! It’s time to unleash your inner child and have some fun! Please show your support for Ms. Reuter programs by liking Rainbow Parrot Art on Facebook and help spread the word: