The ABC's of St. Alphonsus
Frequently Asked Questions
The after school care program, Cougar Club, is held at St. Al’s from 3:00 p.m. to 6 p.m. each school day. Please call the school office for detailed information.
Our entire school comes together to celebrate the Eucharist four times a month, on Holy Days of Obligation, and for special occasions.
ALPHONSUS Liguori, Saint
St. Alphonsus is the Patron Saint of our school. He was an Italian bishop and lawyer who lived in the 18th Century. Our school has a statue of St. Alphonsus near the office by the stairway. His feast day is August 1.
In the morning, you may drop off your child by entering off of Loomis Road near the Dale Creek apartments. Older students act as safety patrols and open the car doors, help with backpacks, and escort the 4K children to the entrance doors. The 4K children are met by their teachers and walked up to their rooms.
The first bell rings at 7:30am, and students need to be at their desks by 7:45am. Please make every effort to have your child to school on time.
If you must accompany your child into school, please park on Churchway or down near the playground set and walk on the sidewalk up to the school doors.
Students in grades 3 - 5 have Art class twice a week. Students in grades K5, 1, 2, 6, 7, and 8 meet once a week in room 407.
Participation in team sports begins in fifth grade at St. Alphonsus. The Athletic Association is responsible for organizing and managing teams and joining leagues. Volleyball, basketball, cheerleading, football and track are team sports at St. Al’s.
That’s what we call the information, envelopes, and news we send home in a family envelope on Thursday. You can send lunch money, tuition & fees, and your Scrip order through this delivery system. Thursday is the official School Mail Day. A large majority of school information is electronically sent through g mail. Please inform the office if your e-mail address changes.
BIG BUDDY PROGRAM
Our school pairs up our younger students with the older students to meet and share activities at times agreed upon by the classroom teachers. This helps to build nurturing bonds among our children.
Birthdays are very special days for St. Al’s students. On your birthday, you may dress out of uniform. If your birthday falls on a weekend, you may choose another day to be out of uniform. Summer birthdays can choose a day of their choice to be out of uniform. Healthy birthday treats are encouraged in all grades, but please be considerate of food allergies among your child’s classmates. It is best to contact your child’s teacher for birthday treat suggestions.
The Blue Room is found on the lower (gym) level of the school and is where our children eat lunch and the location of the Cougar Club.
BOX TOPS FOR EDUCATION
We bet you’d never imagined that you’d become a garbage collector! But by saving those 10-cent Box Tops on your General Mills Cereal boxes (& many other products), you can help fund great things at our school. So start saving now. When you send Box Tops in to school in groups of 25, your child receives a coupon to go in the “treasure chest” to receive their reward.
That’s what it is, a line of cars that forms each afternoon for the 3:05 pm dismissal. After the buses leave, each car drives up to the curb and collects the waiting children. Teachers are present and dismiss the children when they see their car. Caution in pulling out and pulling in is crucial for a safe pick up. More details on the car line and pick up procedures are found in the school handbook—see http://www.st-alphonsus.org/handbook.pdf (see page 18 for more details).
This is the school’s major fund raiser and is a fun evening for adults. The Community Room is set up as a casino and “fun money” is used at different event tables—black jack, roulette, etc. Donated items, gift baskets, sport tickets, and classroom items are among the many prizes available for the silent auction. The profits from Casino Night are applied toward tuition reduction in the school budget.
CATHOLIC SCHOOLS WEEK
This is celebrated during the final week of January and the first week into February. We run special events for the students and emphasize the values of a Catholic education.
Parents are encouraged to volunteer for field trips and classroom help. Adults must complete the Safeguarding All of God’s Family program. To register for a session, go to www.archmil.org and scroll down to Safeguarding All of God’s Family and click on the link. You must register online and attend the information session before you may help in the classroom or accompany children on field trips. This is an Archdiocese requirement.
Technology (or computer) is taught by in our newly renovated computer lab, room 329. Students in all grade levels have technology. Along with the working lab, teachers and students have access to an adjoining lab for classroom projects and presentations. In addition, each classroom has at least one computer for students to use.
We have a mandatory parent teacher conference during the first semester and an optional conference set during the second semester. The dates may change yearly so watch for dates in the weekly newsletter.
We are the Cougars! Blue and gold are the school colors. Cougar sweatshirts are for sale through backpack mail, in student and adult sizes. An order form and information will be sent home at the beginning of the school year.
The courtyard entrance is located on the north side of the building by the statue of Blessed Mother. The outside school entrance door is open each day after arrival time. If you need to come to school for any reason during the school day, please go to the courtyard doors and ring the intercom for one of the school staff to “buzz” you in. Go the office to sign in and also sign out when you are ready to leave.
Students who ride the school bus to and from school are dismissed at 3:00 pm from the gym entrance on the south side of school. Car riders and students who walk to and from school are dismissed at 3:05 pm. Parents pick up by entering off of Loomis near the Dale Creek Apartments and form a line. Please see handbook for diagram. Students stay with the teachers in charge and watch for their cars. Check the school calendar for early dismissals at 12:00pm.
St. Al’s students are required to follow the uniform dress code of navy blue bottoms (tailored shorts or trousers, skirts) and a light blue, white, or navy blue top. Students in grades 6 - 8 may also wear red tops. Girls may wear the plaid uniform jumper or skirt instead of the navy bottoms. See Uniforms for details where items may be purchased.
The elevator is located to the east of the School Office.
Teachers can be reached at their e-mail addresses. To communicate with the teachers in this manner, please use their last firstname.lastname@example.org.
These are sold each year to families as part of the Home and School fundraising. The books contain discounts and coupons for various businesses in the area.
Students are encouraged to participate in our extracurricular activities. These include: Sports starting at 5th grade, Student Council beginning in 3rd grade, Forensics starting at 6th grade, Girl Scouts starting in Kindergarten, Boy Scouts starting in 1st grade, Future City for grade 8, 6th grade Sweepers (recyclers), 8th grade Drama Club, Knitsters (knitting club), Rosary Club (middle school), and Lego Club.
FALL FAMILY FEST
This evening is for primary children and parents with Halloween as the theme. There are games, food, and prizes for all. Look for the exact date in the weekly newsletters.
A directory is distributed to school families during the first quarter of the school year. It includes parents’ names, addresses, telephone numbers, e-mail addresses, and students' names, grades & homeroom numbers.
Students in every grade level take field trips to enhance and enrich the curriculum. Permission slips and information are generally sent home well in advance of the trip and parents are often invited to join the students. Dress code requirements and lunch plans are provided on the field trip information form. Chaperones need to have completed the Safeguarding God’s Family from the Archdiocese.
FIRST DAY OF SCHOOL
Students should come in uniform that day and bring their school supplies (if they didn’t bring them on “Meet and Greet” night). Dismissal is at noon on the first day of school. While the kids are getting to know their teacher, you are invited to make some new friends in the Community Room for the Parent Coffee Hour. The New Family Committee is on hand to help answer questions from parents.
These Friday evenings are a huge benefit to the school children financially. The proceeds from the Friday Fish Fry have been used to fund our classroom Smart Boards, construct our science lab, and help with Gateway to Technology.
Our indoor winter carnival, Fun Fair, is held each year in late January or early February on a Friday evening. This fun event is organized each year by the 6th grade families. Each classroom sponsors a game booth. More details on the event will be provided by room parents in early January.
Please see the addendum that includes a list of the Home and School Fund Raisers and their amounts.
Tuition covers less than half the actual cost of educating a child at St. Al’s. The parish pays more than half the cost, while the balance is from fundraisers.
Did you know that if you register your Advantage savings card at the Pick ‘n Save customer service desk with our school number (7541400), you can earn money for St. Al’s? Check it out at www.picknsave.com.
The GYM (multi-purpose room) is located in the front of the building and the entrance to it is through the main school entrance.
Our health room is staffed each day until 1pm with a caring, compassionate adult (parents, grandparents, aunts & uncles). After 1pm, the school secretary assists students who come to the health room. You may receive a call should your child need to be taken home or have taken a spill on the playground.
HOME & SCHOOL
Home & School is a Catholic school’s PTO. Home & School coordinates and manages a variety of volunteer opportunities for parents and sponsors various activities throughout the year. Home & School also works to raise money to support these programs and enrichment opportunities for our students and teachers. Every school parent is automatically a member of the association and has a vote in how the organization spends the nearly $60,000 raised each year.
Hot lunch is offered most every school day at St. Al’s. A menu is published monthly and is available on the school website.
Information on where to tune in for weather-related school closings is published in the school handbook. Be sure to dress your children appropriately for the weather. The students have outdoor recess daily unless it is raining or well below zero degrees. St. Al’s will be closed if Greendale Schools are cancelled. You will receive a g-mail as soon as the principal is notified by the Greendale School District.
JERUSALEM ROOM – see Lifelong Learning Center
One of the most exciting years in your child’s academic life, Kindergarten at St. Al’s offers two options, part-time and full-day. Also offered are 3K (2- or 3-day option) and 4K (part-time and full-time).
LAST DAY OF SCHOOL
On the last day of school in June, you are invited to join in a closing Liturgy that ends another wonderful school year. More details on this event are issued each spring.
Students in grades 5K through grade 5 visit the library once a week. Our library coordinators and parent volunteers assist the children in selecting reading materials.
MASS – see All-School Liturgies
Twice monthly, Home & School sponsors McDonald’s Night. Held from 4-7pm at the McDonald’s on 76th & Rawson, this is a great opportunity to meet other St. Al’s families and earn money for St. Al’s School at the same time. The owners of this restaurant donate 15% of the proceeds from McDonald’s Night back to school. Each student who attends receives a non-uniform pass for the next school day.
MEET and GREET
You will receive a note from your child’s teacher in the mail the third week of August inviting you to a Meet and Greet. On this evening, you may drop off school supplies and meet the teacher who will help you mold that special young mind for the next 180 school days.
The middle school refers to grades 5 through 8 at St. Alphonsus. Middle school classrooms are located on the far west side of the building.
Morning supervision is available between 6:45am and 7:30 am. Please call the School Office at 421-1760 for more information. This is an “as needed” service and advance enrollment is not required.
Students in grade 1-5 have music class twice a week, students in grades K-4, K-5 and 6 thru 8 have music class once a week with the instructor.
Students are allowed to wear appropriate casual clothes following McDonald and Cousin's Night if they attend. Their name will be checked off on a class roster when they arrive. The roster goes to the classroom teacher for the next day. There are other days—birthdays, last Friday of the month—when non-uniform clothes may be worn. Check the Dress Code in the Family Handbook for appropriate non-uniform clothing.
The School Office is open each school day from 7:15 am to 3:30 pm. Mrs. Joanne Haupt and Mrs. Mary Bailen are there to assist parents and children. The office is located at the back of the school building (facing the Parish Ministry Center) near the courtyard entrance. The office answering machine is on during non-office hours. Please feel free to leave a message if your child is ill and won’t be in school the next day, or if you would like a call back. Phone 414-421-1760.
If you pick up your child before school is out or if he/she arrives late, you are expected to sign your child in and sign out in the School Office. There are binders located on the School Office desk for this purpose. Also, any parent or other adult who visits or volunteers in any area of school is required to sign in and out. This is important for safety and accountability.
Please watch for news on this event that takes place one of the first days of school. Parents are invited to gather in the Community Room to visit, meet new parents, and get acquainted with the Home and School members. Many initial questions can be answered here!
These are held on two evenings in September: a) grades K4 through 4 and b) grades 5-8. Parents are invited to school to hear an overview of the classroom expectations, curriculum, procedures, etc., from the teachers. Please consult the school newsletter for specific dates and times.
Physical Education is a part of the weekly curriculum at St. Al’s. Most grade levels meet with our physical education teacher twice a week. Tennis shoes MUST always be worn. Each grade level is told what specific gym clothes are required.
On Picture Day takes place on the "Meet and Greet" day.
Each family is asked to help supervise the playground from 10:45am-12:00pm twice a year. Sign up is in the office. You must have had the Safeguarding God’s Family training before you volunteer for anything at school.
Mrs. Pat Wadzinski, our school principal, greets the children as they arrive at school and welcomes parent input. Please feel free to stop in or set up a convenient time if you have concerns or questions about school, students, procedures, etc.
We’re sure you may have more questions even after reading this booklet. Please feel free to contact any of the Home & School officers. Our School Office staff and principal are also very well informed and able to help you.
Children in grade 4K through grade 4 have morning and noon recess. Grades 5-8 have noon-time recess.
One or two parents in each classroom serve as room parents for the entire school year. Room parents assist the teacher with special projects, coordinate treats, and organize the Fun Fair booth.
School begins at 7:45am with students expected to be in their seats and ready to go. School dismisses at 3:00 pm for bus students and 3:05 pm for walkers and car riders.
SCHOLASTIC BOOK FAIR
This is held in winter and helps to raise money as part of Home & School. Time is set aside for students to look at the book selections and mark their favorites. There is also weekend time for families to visit and purchase selections.
This is perfect for parents who would like school supplies to come complete and ready-to-go for school without having to fight crowds or travel to multiple stores over the summer to find the right supplies. Ordering information is handed out each spring.
St. Alphonsus has active Boy Scouts & Girl Scouts. Boy Scouts starts in 1st grade while Girl Scouts begins in Kindergarten. Troops are established and rely on parent volunteers to take on leader roles.
SCRIP – see T.R.I.P.
For everyone’s sake, your child must stay home if he/she is running a fever and must stay home for 24 hours after the fever is gone (without medication). Too often, parents send children back to school before they are physically ready to perform at school. You will be called to pick up your child if they become sick while at school.
Most classrooms are equipped with Smart Boards, interactive white boards that keep the students involved in their own learning. Various web sites are utilized to enhance lessons, and the students actually can be involved in hands-on learning through this tool.
You can send a nutritious snack (fresh fruit, veggies, cheese/crackers, fruit bars, granola bars) to school daily. Please avoid high sugar and salt snacks such as chips, Doritos and candy.
Spanish is a course for students in grades K5-8 . At certain grades, Spanish is manadatory. An additional fee is required for the course.
Your child must go to the School Office and be issued a tardy slip if they arrive after the final bell. It is important to set a good example by having your child here on time. This is their place of business!
Our teachers have religious certification from the Archdiocese and state certification from the Department of Instruction. You may contact them through e-mail by using their last name @st-alphonsus.org.
The Tuition Reduction Incentive Program is a simple way school families can help keep tuition costs down. This is done through SCRIP sales of gift certificates from nearly 200 retailers. You can purchase SCRIP at weekend Masses (before the Saturday evening Mass, the 9am & 11am Masses on Sunday and after the 7:30am Sunday Mass). You can also purchase Scrip through backpack mail, on Friday mornings in the school/gym lobby, and during Market Day sales. More information will be provided to you on Parent Night.
The money you pay toward your child’s education represents only part of the actual cost of educating a child at St. Al’s. The parish contributes a sizable amount per child and third source funding-Home and School, Casino Night, Annual Pledge Drive for school—supports the balance. Timely tuition payments are important since our school is also a business. Always call the school if you experience unusual circumstances or are having a difficult time paying your tuition. Families will not be allowed to return to school if the tuition is not up to date.
Uniforms are part of our dress code at St. Al’s. The Bel Aire plaid jumper and skirt may be purchased at The Uniform Place in Wauwatosa or Sunrise Clothiers in South Milwaukee. Many Target stores have school uniform sections (if you register your Target credit card with our school number – 17092 – a percentage of your purchases will support our school). Also, we are part of the Lands’ End Preferred School program (where we receive a 3% return for all uniform items purchased using our number – 9001-0118-9). We also have used uniform sales throughout the school year so be on the lookout for that. Please refer to our handbook for more details.
Please consider giving of your time and talents. There are many ways to do this – helping your child’s teacher, being a parent helper at recess, and participating in school activities and fundraisers. Please contact Pat Wadzinski or Home & School to learn more.
Students are allowed to bring water bottles to school each day. They must be taken home daily and thoroughly clean for health reasons.
Please view our website at www.st-alphonsus.org. Weekly newsletters, menus, sporting events, Home and School information, plus much more can be found here. We always need parent volunteers for this special day!
EXTREME SPORTS DAY
Each year, Home & School sponsors Extreme Sports Day. This event is held at the end of May, and students in all grade levels participate in a variety of sports activities like the water balloon toss, basketball, and more.
An annual memory book of the school year is published for student purchase.
You are your child’s first teacher, and you are an important part of our school. Your assistance in the classroom, library, lunchroom, playground, sports, and your participation and organization of various school activities and events is always welcomed, needed, and appreciated!
No, it’s not the end; it’s just the beginning of a wonderful school year for your family. We are happy you have chosen to join our school family. Thank you in advance for all your support of St. Alphonsus School!