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December 19, 2017

Tuesday, December 19, 2017

Dear Parents and Guardians,

And just like that, Breakfast with Santa, the Santa Shop and three wonderful concerts are in the books.   What an amazing couple of weeks!  Thanks to everyone who helped make the Santa Breakfast such a success.  Thanks to Jenn Shukofsky and Dharshini Rajmohan for co-chairing the event and to their committee members, Marie Tellier, Lina Cagrossi, Katie Mucci, and Tracey Kelly and everyone else who donated food or supplies and who helped in any way.   A special thank you goes out to HCA Advisory Board member Joyce Flynn and her husband Eugene, the proprietors of Schackenberg’s, who not only donated and delivered much of hot food for the breakfast, but they assisted Chef Fred in preparing the food as well.

Thank you to our friends at:

Anthony David's
Lisa's Deli
JP's Bagel Express
Bagels on the Hudson
Philippine Bread House
Hoboken Hot House
Morton Williams
Dunkin Donuts - Washington Street
Dunkin Donuts - Newark Street
Old German Bakery
Baking Mama
Events by Dezign
Black Rail Coffee
ACME Markets

As well as from our families, including:
The Dayo Family
The Mucci Family
The Lanigan Family
The Tellier Family
The Shukofsky Family
The Rajmohan Family




for donating food, supplies gift cards and many other items to make our event so special.  Both sessions were very well attended and the event was a huge success!

Thank you to Rowena Dayo and all of the parents who worked with our office staff on the Santa Shop. Students shopped on Sunday and continued shopping with their classes through Wednesday.  The Santa Shop was also a big success.

Thanks to Home and School Association President, Alanna Kauffmann, and past president, Monica De Falco, for joining me at the New Jersey Department of Education Offices in Trenton earlier this month.  Hoboken Catholic Academy was one of seventeen New Jersey schools recognized by the NJ State Board of Education and Commissioner of Education, Kimberly Harrington, for being named a 2107 National Blue Ribbon School.

Pictured along with Mr. McGrath are Arcelio Aponte, NJ Board of Education President, Mary McElroy, RCAN Director of NJ Network of Catholic School Families and Government Programs, Former HSA President, Monica De Falco, current Co-president, Alanna Kauffmann, and Dr. Kimberly Harrington, New Jersey Commissioner of Education

The three Christmas Concerts were simply spectacular!  Ms. Campana, our teachers and especially our students, knocked it out of the park, again.  A special thank you goes out to Mrs. Albunia, Mrs. Bernardo and HCA parent, Rowena Dayo, for the beautiful decorations.  The choir and all of the classes performed beautifully, and I doubt that anyone will think of the “Twelve Days of Christmas,” the same way ever again!

Campus Ministry and Student Council combined to collect dozens of boxes of food for Catholic Charities Harvest of Hope last month.  The food was delivered to In Jesus’ Name Food Pantry at Our Lady of Grace Church and St. Lucy Shelter in Jersey City.  Thank you to everyone who so generously supported our students in their efforts to make a difference in the lives of those less fortunate.

The officers of our Student Council, Nanki Nagpaul, Julianna Griesbauer, Amelia Gallagher, and RJ Fiore sent a letter to the USO along with a check for over $1,800 to purchase phone cards as a result of their Phone Cards for Troops at Christmas campaign.  Thanks to our student’s efforts and your generosity our school will secure more than 200 phone cards for our service men and women serving abroad.

Thanks again to your generosity, members of our National Junior Honor Society will deliver the seventeen large bags of toys they collected to the children’s wards at Hoboken and Hackensack University Medical Centers as well as “Finding Words, New Jersey,” an organization at Hackensack Medical Center dedicated to supporting children who are victims of abuse, on Wednesday morning.   NJHS officers, Quincy and Wyatt Flett, Amanda Tennaro and Zoe Drasheff will walk with eighth grade NJHS members to Hoboken University Medical Center for the first delivery and will travel with Mrs. Flett to Hackensack for the next two stops.  In their letter to the respective organizations, the students said it best- “Please accept our donation of toys for children in your hospital at Christmas and throughout the year.  We hope that our humble gesture helps put a smile on the faces of children during the holiday season and whenever else they come to you.”

Our first, second and third grade students will attend a production of “Twas The Night Before Christmas,” at The Paper Mill Playhouse also on Wednesday morning.  Unfortunately, the Penance Service scheduled for Wednesday afternoon has been canceled.  Fr. Remo indicated that no other priests were available to hear confessions that day. We will schedule a Penance Service early in the New Year to give our students an opportunity to go to confession while here at school. 

The Hoboken Catholic Academy Choir will perform at the Hoboken Senior Center on Thursday morning and all class parties will take place that day as well.  Our last day, will be a half-day on Friday with no Aftercare.

I have posted a letter from the RCAN Superintendent of Schools’ Dr. Margaret Dames, explaining that beginning this spring, we will no longer administer the Terra Nova standardized test each year. The Archdiocese will now use the Iowa Assessment as our standardized test.

I am pleased to report that we will roll out our new website during the week of January 8th.  We are putting the finishing touches on the site and are excited about the upgrade. I realize that the old site had outlived its effectiveness and thank you all for your patience as we transition to the new site.

Finally, we continue to count our blessings at HCA and appreciate all that each of you do to help make our school the great place for children that I know it to be.  On behalf of everyone at Hoboken Catholic Academy, please accept my warmest best wishes for a Blessed Christmas and a Happy and Healthy New Year!

God bless you all!

Matthew McGrath

Link: A letter from RCAN School's Superintendent, Dr. Margaret Dames