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School - Frequently Asked Questions

 

Frequently Asked Questions
Click on the question below to drop down to the answers

For more information, reference the St. Mary of Gostyn School Parent/Student Handbook.


Registration/Enrollment

When is registration?
Is there a registration fee?
Are Non-Catholic students welcome at our school?
Do you have a before- and after-school care program?
Do you have a school bus service?

Curriculum

How does St. Mary School compare to other schools in the area?
Do you have a pre-kindergarten program?
Do you offer all-day kindergarten?
What are the school's hours?
What is the school's curriculum?
How does St. Mary provide a Catholic environment?
Is sacramental preparation offered?
Is computer instruction offered?
Is homework assigned every day?

What is your policy on homework due to Illness?
Do students take field trips?
Do you offer mentor programs?
What extracurricular activities does St. Mary of Gostyn School offer?

Staffing

What is the maximum class size at St. Mary of Gostyn?
Does SMG hire certified highly qualified teachers?

Policy

Is the St. Mary school campus a closed campus?
What is the school uniform?
What is your policy on tardiness?

What is your lunch time policy?
Do you have a milk program?
Do you have a food allergy policy?
What is your policy with student use of telephones?

What is your policy for school absences?
Can I schedule my student appointments during the day?
What is your policy on vacations?
What is your policy with medication in school?

What is your policy for parents, volunteers, and visitors?
What happens if illness/accident occurs at school?
Does St Mary of Gostyn have a Crisis Plan?
What to do in case of an Emergency School Closing?



ANSWERS:


When is registration?

General registration is year round. However, we find that most parents register the Sunday of Catholic Schools Week, usually the last Sunday in January for Pre-k and Kindergarten.
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Is there a registration fee?

In the spring of each year, each school family pays a nonrefundable registration fee to assure the family's registration with St. Mary of Gostyn school for the next academic year. The fee is applied to one child's book fee for the following school year at the time of registration in the fall. All fees are to be paid before school starts.

Registration Fees:

  • Per student in Pre-school = $300 (includes $100 toward tuition)
  • Per student in Half-day Kindergarten = $300
  • Per student in grades Full-day Kindergarten thru Grade 8 = $300

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Are Non-Catholic students welcome at our school?

Yes, Non-Catholic students are welcome at our school.
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Do you have a before- and after-school care program?
Yes, the After-School Care Program strives to provide a safe, supportive and caring environment for children who are unable to go home after school. The program is available on all full days of school until 6:00 p.m. either on a regular basis or as needed for occasional use. Registration forms are available in the school office or on the website on the forms page.

Location: Parish Center Lower Level, 630/968-6155, ext. 240
Cost: $16.00 per day for the first child in the family, $8.00 per day for each additional child.

At this time St. Mary’s does not offer a formal before-school care program.
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Do you have a school bus service?

St. Mary of Gostyn School students in grades K-8, who live within District 58's boundaries, and who are 1 ½ miles or more from the school qualify for bus service. Bus service is also provided for the ½ day Kindergarten students who meet the above criteria. Bus routes are available on the website under Resources or in the school office.
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How does St. Mary School compare to other schools in the area?

At SMG we feel that we offer an educational experience that is second to none. Why? St. Mary School is strong in education and faith. Our students’ scores on standardized testing are consistently higher than the national, local public school and Diocese averages.

SMG students are well prepared for high school which is evident by the number of SMG students on the honor rolls at the local high schools. SMG students are often placed in honors classes and Spanish II their freshman year.

We have found that parents are best served by visiting the school campus and speaking directly with our staff, teachers and parents.
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Do you have a pre-kindergarten program?

Yes, St. Mary of Gostyn School offers three- and four-year-old preschool for children to begin their educational experience. Read more at our Preschool page.
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Do you offer all-day kindergarten?

Yes, we offer both full- and half-day kindergarten. Half-day kindergarten class hours are 7:40 am – 11:15 am, full-day kindergarten class hours are 7:40 am – 2:20 pm. Full-day kindergarten offers the students lunch, recess, social studies, science, computer technology and additional art, gym and music time in addition to the half-day curriculum.  Read more at our Kindergarten page.
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What are the school's hours?

3-year-old Preschool Students

4-year-old Preschool Students

Tuesday & Thursday

Monday, Wednesday & Friday

Morning Session: 8:05 am - 10:35 am

Morning Session: 8:05 am - 10:35 am

Afternoon Session: 11:45 am - 2:15 pm

Afternoon Session: 11:45 am - 2:15 pm

Kindergarten
Full-Day Kindergarten: 7:40 am - 2:20 pm
Half-Day Kindergarten: 7:40 am - 11:15 am

Grades 1 - 8
Monday - Friday
Schedule for Students in grades 1-8:
                                           7:40 am - 2:25 pm

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What is the school's curriculum?

Our faith-based curriculum includes

Religion

Math

Reading

Science

Social Studies

Language Arts

Spanish

Music and Art

Computers

Physical Education

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How does St. Mary provide a Catholic environment?

Students take part in the following throughout the entire school year:

Morning Prayer Reflections

Weekly All-School Mass

Prayer Services

Service Projects

Rosary

Special event honoring those in need

Catholic Schools Week Celebration

Religion subject taught daily in class

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Is sacramental preparation offered?

Students at St Mary of Gostyn are prepared for the sacraments of Reconciliation and First Holy Communion in 2nd grade and Confirmation in 8th grade.
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Is computer instruction offered?

St. Mary of Gostyn School has a comprehensive and integrated technology curriculum. Students received individualized computer instruction and the entire class benefits from the use of Interactive Whiteboards in each classroom. Fall of 2016 brings 1:1 Technology to our 6th-8th grade students at SMG School. Each student will be assigned a Chromebook to use the entire school year 24/7. Teachers' notes and students' notes will be accessed from the computer at home as well as school. Our Chromebook management system will enable our students to use the Internet still under the security of our school filter. Fourth grade students are each assigned a Surface computer and Fifth grade students are each assigned a Chromebook for in-school use throughout the year. 
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Is homework assigned every day?
Homework is a scheduled part of each school day that extends the learning process beyond the classroom. It is also an opportunity for special projects or reports. Homework must be completed on time since unfinished assignments affect grades. Parents should check that assignments are completed. Homework may be given over the weekend. The amount of homework will vary from time to time; however, it should never be excessive. If parents notice a problem with the amount of time spent regularly on homework, they should contact the teacher.

Starting in 1st grade, students are given an assignment notebook to copy down assignments, projects and upcoming tests.
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What is your policy on homework due to Illness?
If a student is absent more than one day, parents may request homework to be sent home.  Students have one school day for each day of absence to make up the missed class work and assignments. Arrangements for missed quizzes or tests are made with the teacher and must be taken within one week of the student's return to school.
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Do students take field trips?
Educational field trips are an integral part of the curriculum offered at each grade level. Examples include 1st grade trip to the Shedd Aquarium to learn about penguins after studying a penguin unit in class or a 6th grade field trip to see a play at Drury Lane Theater.

Parental signed permission slips issued by the school, transportation fees and admission fees will be required. See School Forms on the website for a permission form.
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Do you offer mentor programs?

We have a Buddy Program that matches the primary students with a "buddy” from the upper class. The class buddies participate in various activities and events throughout the year.
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What extracurricular activities does St. Mary of Gostyn School offer?

Altar Servers

Environmental Club

Athletics

After School Math Tutoring

Geography Club

Spring Musical Production

Band

Math Club

Student Council

Coding Club

Boy Scouts

Stratagem Club

Choir

Girl Scouts Students for Life
Chess Club  

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What is the maximum class size at St. Mary of Gostyn?

Our goal is to keep class size of 30 students or less per classroom. Currently there are two classrooms per grade.
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Does SMG hire certified highly qualified teachers?

The SMG teaching staff consists of 29 teachers - 10 holding Master's Degrees. Credentialed teachers lead our classrooms through a rigorous blend of core subjects peppered with "specials” including Spanish, computers, art and music. Our faculty are lifelong learners through regularly scheduled professional development sessions.
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Is the St. Mary school campus a closed campus?
Yes, once the students arrive at school they are to remain the entire school day unless they have a pre-arranged reason to leave. Students are not allowed to leave campus for lunch or to have visitors at lunchtime.
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What is the school uniform?

The uniform for boys in all grades is navy pants and a white polo shirt. Girls in Kindergarten have the option to wear a plaid skort, girls in grades 1-5 have the option to wear a plaid jumper and girls in grades 6-8 have the option to wear a plaid split skirt or skort. There is a warm weather policy in the months of September and May. All students in grades 1-8 are required to wear a gym uniform to gym class. The school uniform is described in detail in the Parent Handbook. Students are expected to be dressed according to the uniform policy every day except on designated out-of-uniform days.

The HSA organizes a uniform exchange at the beginning of the school year. These items are good-condition, used uniforms donated by school parents and are free to SMG families.

New uniforms can be purchased through Schoolbelles  (Use school number S2110 when viewing the uniforms online) or Lands' End (Our Preferred School Number is 900162728).
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What is your policy on tardiness?
Pupils in grades 1-8 who are not in their homeroom seats when the bell rings at 7:40 a.m. are marked tardy. In kindergarten, students are tardy after 8:00 a.m. Doctor's appointments and late bus arrivals are excused. Any other tardy should have a written excuse and be presented to the office. Students will receive a "tardy slip” to be given to the homeroom teacher. A pattern of unexcused tardiness will result in a demerit and be treated as such.
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What is your lunch time policy?
Parents are asked to send healthy food for their children's lunches and not bring in food from carry-out restaurants. On Hot Lunch days, students have the option of pre-ordering the special of the day or bringing their own lunch from home. Only Middle School students are allowed to bring in soda on Hot Lunch Days. Teacher permission is required before a parent brings treats, lunch, or movies for a class. Courtesy toward other students and cooperation with lunch monitors is expected of all students.
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Do you have a milk program?
Yes, the school offers the Government Milk Program to students in Kindergarten – 8th grade. First semester fees are given in the August Parent packet. Second semester fees are quoted later and collected in January.
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Do you have a food allergy policy?
St. Mary's recognizes that life-threatening food allergies are an important condition affecting many children and asks for the cooperation and understanding of all members of the community to enact safety precautions to prevent serious reactions to those at risk. Following are the steps to be taken:
1. Preschool and Kindergarten are peanut/nut free.
2. In grades 1-8, parents will alert the homeroom teacher and office staff of children with peanut/nut allergies and plan appropriately.
3. All students, especially those in Grades 1-8, can wear an EpiPen to self-administer or for the adult to do so.
4. All parents should notify the homeroom teacher, after-school staff, etc. at beginning of the school year of food allergies so we are prepared to handle a reaction.
5. The homeroom teacher (Preschool-Grade 8) and office staff (Grades 1-8) should be given emergency medication by the parents to hold.
6. We will strongly encourage children not to share food.
7. Preschool parents provide all-class snacks on a rotating basis using an approved food list. Kindergarten students bring their own daily snack; birthday treats for the whole class are from an approved list. Grades 1-8 do not have food as part of birthday celebrations, rather books or nonfood treats can be brought in following classroom teacher's directions.
8. Appropriate strategies for managing food allergies during field trips will be handled on an individual basis.

9. When school begins, school staff, after-school care staff, and lunch monitors will be trained how to administer an EpiPen. Every homeroom has displayed an orange folder containing a list of students with food allergies and what to do in an emergency.

Parents and primary care providers and/or allergists are asked to fill out the Food Allergy Action Plan. These are available in the office and online in School Forms. A copy will be kept in the office and in the student's homeroom.

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What is your policy with student use of telephones?
All students may use the office telephone for emergency calls or school-related business calls. Parent telephone messages will be relayed to the student. Students are allowed to bring cell phones which must remain in the OFF position during the day and kept in the locker. Cell phones may not be used for picture taking or game playing while on school grounds. Those who violate these rules may forfeit the privilege of bringing cell phones to school.
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What is your policy for school absences?
Parents are asked to call the school (630/968-6155) to report their child's absence between 7:30-8:15 a.m. (The school will follow up if a call is not received.) When calling, parents should 1. Explain reason the child is staying home. If you don't know the child's illness, then you need to call back after the doctor visit. 2. The student should be kept home if he/she has a fever of 100 or higher. 3. Expect a call from the school to take your child home if he/she has a fever of 100 or higher. 4. Send your child back to school when he/she is fever-free for 24 hrs.
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Can I schedule my student appointments during the day?
Doctor/Dentist appointments should be scheduled outside of school hours. If a student needs to leave the building during the school day, he/she needs a note with the date, time, reason, and parent's signature. The parent/guardian/designated adult must pick up the student at the school office. Students are not allowed to leave the building alone.
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What is your policy on vacations?
Vacations should coincide with the School Calendar. Extended vacations are strongly discouraged because there is no such thing as make-up work; teachers can only attempt to offset the loss of instructional time. With the increase of teacher-pupil interaction, discussion groups, computer-assisted instruction, etc., a loss of a day may be detrimental to a student's progress. Teachers should be notified before the vacation and are not required to give work that will be done while the student is out. The student is responsible to find out and complete all the assignments, projects, quizzes, and tests assigned or missed. Makeup work should be completed outside of regular school hours.
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What is your policy with medication in school?
All medication is self-administered by the student under the supervision of the school personnel. Medication is limited to those required during school hours which are necessary to maintain the student in school and to those needed in the event of an emergency. A student must have a Physician Request Form and a Parental Authorization Form on file. These can be downloaded in School Forms. The prescription medication must be brought in a pharmaceutical container clearly marked with the student's name, the name of the medication, and instructions. The over the counter medication must be brought with the manufacturer's original label and the child's name affixed. All medication is kept in the school office. (Exception: Students who must carry and self-administer medication.) The classroom teacher should be told if a student is on medication and of the side effects. A note must be sent to school each day that over-the-counter cough drops, etc., are to be used.
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What is your policy for parents, volunteers, and visitors?
Parents, volunteers, and visitors are welcome at St. Mary's. In order to maintain a safe environment for our students and staff, all doors to the school are locked so visitors must enter through the front doors which are monitored by the office staff. All visitors are required to sign in and out in at the school office and to wear a badge while in the building. Parents are asked to handle all matters in the office or arrange for an appointment to see a teacher through a note, telephone message, or email message. They should not come into the classroom to see their child or the teacher or to bring in items. (Items are left in the office)
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What happens if illness/accident occurs at school?
In case of illness or an accident, the school will use the following procedures: 1. Contact the parents, 2. Call the emergency contacts on the student card, 3. Notify the family doctor if the situation warrants, 4. Take necessary emergency steps to ensure the well being of the student. It is essential that correct information is provided on the emergency cards in the school office. This includes correct cell and work numbers of parents, names and phone numbers of emergency contacts and doctors.
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Does St Mary of Gostyn have a Crisis Plan?
St. Mary's has a Crisis Plan in place in case of a lockdown or any other emergency situation. When we implement the Plan and circumstances permit, parents will be notified through the Notification System. Teachers and staff are trained on the policy and school-wide fire drills and lockdown drills are conducted throughout the year.
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How do I find out if there is an Emergency School Closing?
If weather or circumstances dictate that we not open the school or that we close before the regularly scheduled time, we will contact parents using our One Call Now system which can call all families simultaneously. This system may also be used to alert families of other school-related situations. At the beginning of the year, parents are asked to submit a day and a night number where the message can be left. We will also include this information on School Speak and send an email blast to all parents. Please do not phone the school or rectory for information as this makes the phone lines inaccessible for emergency use. Families should have plans in place in the event that no one is home when the student arrives. When school is closed, all after-school events are cancelled.
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