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May 14, 2019

Tuesday, May 14, 2019

Dear Parents,

I am pleased to inform you that we have received official notification from the Middle States Association of Colleges and Schools that at their meeting in May, they awarded Hoboken Catholic Academy accreditation!  What we have known since their visit in November is now official.  Thanks again to everyone who completed surveys, worked behind the scenes or who sat in for interviews for their help in shining a light on our school.  Accreditation lasts for seven years, so our status will remain in good standing through 2026 at which time we will host another team visit.

We are thrilled to inform you that seventh grade student, Mia Cavagnuolo’s magazine cover submission has been chosen by Music K-8 Magazine as their May/ June cover!  Mia’s piece was chosen was the New Jersey winner.   One of two “First Runners Up,” was HCA seventh grader Aiden Cruz and MJ Wright’s submission was a top finalist.  In all thirteen HCA students were recognized for their artwork.  Mia’s cover and all of the students’ submissions can be found on the link below.   Enter Hoboken and all of our student winners and their covers will be available.

Not to be outdone, eighth grade students, Tess Feremans and Alice Altomare had their artwork displayed at William Paterson University as part of our Professional Development School Program, highlighting our incredible partnership.  The students were recognized at a reception on May 8th.  Both pictures have been hung at the WPU Professional Development and Continuing Education Office on campus in Wayne.  We have included the artwork on our Facebook page.

On Thursday, May 2nd, our outstanding choir was rated Superior at the annual iSing competition at the Archdiocesan Youth Retreat Center.   Unfortunately, the Basilica concert was canceled, but the students will perform here at the Choir Concert on Wednesday, May 22nd.  We will have copies of the Choir CD recorded in St. Ann Church at the end of March for sale that night.  We have posted a brief video of the taping along with the order form on the Choir section of our website and are accepting orders here at school.  Footage from the iSing performance will be posted on our Facebook page!

HCA’s Got Talent!  Our students do indeed have talent as was evidenced at our second annual talent show. Students sang and danced and played instruments to the delight of all in attendance.  The evening began with HCA alum, Aiden Ward setting the mood with his rendition of Piano Man on the piano and Nanki Nagpaul and Amelia Gallagher’s Broadway selection.  The program was capped off by a special performance by the band, CouncilCouncil performed their hit song “Rust to Gold,” which was featured at the Winter Olympics, FIFA World Cup, and on American Idol.  The level of talent was remarkable and the entire night was indeed special.  A special thank you goes out to HSA moms and event organizers’ Kristi Alvez and Roz Musker.  The ladies worked with Ms. Fusiak, Mrs. Bloor and members of our Student Council who helped oversee the practices and organize the student performers.  All involved did an outstanding job!  Pictures from the show will be posted shortly on our Facebook page.

Thanks to HSA President, Donna Murphy, and parents Suzy Bracken and Kristi Alvez for all of their help in making both Field days so successful.  We all appreciate the hours of preparation that our moms and Mr. Montefusco logged in putting the days together, as well as on each of the two field days.  Thanks as well to the dozens of parent volunteers who worked on each of the field days.  The weather cooperated, the Hoboken Police came through again with escorts to and from the field each day and the Hoboken BoE staff at the field was fantastic.  Thanks to our tee shirt sponsor, Sam Khalil, from First Alliance Home Mortgage.  The shirts are great!  We have posted photos from the day on the school’s Facebook page.  Please take a look when you are able.

The weather cooperated as well last Monday when all of our students had a chance to visit with farm animals right in our own courtyard!  Thanks to the Home and School Association, our friends at Quiver Farm in Pennsylvania brought a three week old calf, a pig, a goat, a sheep, an alpaca, a couple of ducks, two rabbits, a chicken, a rooster, a turkey and a goose to our school.  Students fed and petted some of the animals and thoroughly enjoyed the experience.  Please check out some photos on our Facebook page.

On Wednesday, May 15th, teachers, Mrs. Fitzgibbons, Mrs. Peterson, Ms. Rambaran and Ms. Molino will sere as “Super Scoopers,” at Ben and Jerry’s on Washington Street at 6:00PM.  The program sponsored by the store and Hoboken Family Alliance will raise money to support the HFA Summer Bike Camp.

Our eighth graders are preparing to visit our nation’s capitol, Washington DC, on their three-day class trip.  We will leave Hoboken at 7:00AM on Wednesday and will return late Friday evening.  In between, the students will visit Mt. Vernon, the National Archives and Arlington National Cemetery.  The students will solemnly observe the changing of the Guard at the Tomb of the Unknown and learn about our brave service men and women and national leaders entombed in Arlington.  They will visit the World War II, Korean and Vietnam War Memorials as well as the Lincoln, Jefferson, FDR and MLK memorials. The students will enjoy a dinner/dance cruise on the Potomac River on Thursday evening.  We will attend mass at the Cathedral Basilica of the Immaculate Conception, on the grounds of Catholic University and tour that magnificent cathedral to begin our final day in Washington.  Students will tour the Capitol, the Supreme Court and Library of Congress, and visit the White House for photos before returning home on Friday night.  

On Monday, May 20th, our third graders will visit the Museum of Natural History and our Preschoolers will travel to the Central Park Zoo.  On Tuesday, May 21st, our Campus Ministry students will host the annual Senior Prom.  The dinner/dance for Campus Ministry grand parents and seventh and eighth grade parents will feature DJ music by Angelina and special student performances by some of our talented students.  Thanks to the Mr. and Mrs. Jacey (Black Bear Bar and Grill) and Mr. and Mrs. Di Giacomo (Frankie and Ava’s Restaurant) for supplying all of the food for the dinner!

The Spring Choir Concert will take place on Wednesday, May 22nd at 7:00PM in the gym and our seventh graders will have their field trip to Philadelphia on Thursday, May 23rd.  There will be a Memorial Day Prayer Service for the rest of the students K-8 on Thursday during AM Assembly and parents are welcome to attend.

Following the long Memorial Day Weekend (Friday, 5/24-Monday, 5/26), students in grades 6-8 will have final exams from Wednesday, May 29- Friday, May 31st.  On Thursday, May 30th, the whole school will gather for Mass to celebrate Ascension Thursday as well as the May Crowning of the Blessed Mother by our second graders.  Parents are cordially invited to attend this wonderful event.  Mass will begin at 10:00AM at St. Ann Church.

May will come to a close on Friday, May 31st, with the third grade science fair at 1:30 and eighth Grade Graduation Dance at 6:00 that evening.  The graduation dance includes seventh graders and will bring our amazing eighth grade students one step closer to graduation.

Our annual 5K Race will take place on Saturday, June 1st at Pier A Park.  Each year we welcome hundreds of runners of all ages.  The venue is spectacular and all are welcome.  If you have not done so already, please register to run.  The One-mile Fun Run and Kids’ Dash are great ways for children of all ages to take part.  Thanks to Monica De Falco, Amber La Gattuta, Donna Murphy, Katie Maye, Andrea Cuttita, Katie Champagne and Jen Shukofsky for all they have done.  Thanks as well to all of our sponsors, and anyone who has helped and/or will help the day of the race.  I am sure it will be an amazing day!

As always, thank you for your kind support and for allowing us the opportunity to work with your wonderful children.

God bless you all.


Matthew McGrath



April 29, 2019

Monday, April 29, 2019

Dear Parents and Guardians,

Welcome back!  I hope that you enjoyed a wonderful Easter and spring break with your families.  Now that we are back, please make note of the important school events and some changes and additions to the school calendar.


                                 Wednesday, May 1               Gr. 6 Field Trip Statue of Liberty/Ellis Island               All Day

                                                                             Home and School Association Meeting                      7:00PM

                                 Thursday, May 2                   iSing Competition (Choir)

                                                                            Youth Retreat Center – Kearny                                  11:30AM

                                 Friday, May 3                       Kindergarten Field Trip-Imagine That!                        All Day

                                            First Friday Mass – St. Ann Church                            10:00AM

                                                                            Trimester III Progress Reports

                                                                             HCA Talent Show                                                      6:30PM

                                 Monday, May 6                    Ava Kauffmann –Principal for a Day!

                                            Traveling Farm (Quiver Farm)                                     All Day

                                                                            All classes will be scheduled to attend

                                Tuesday, May 7                    Teacher Appreciation Day

                                                                             PK-2 Field Day – JFK Field                                        9:00-11:30

                                Wednesday, May 8               No School for Students

                                                                            Teacher Professional Development Day

                                Thursday, May 9                   Gr. 3-8 Field Day                                                        9:00-11:30

                                Friday, May 10                     HSA Teacher Appreciation Day Breakfast                     7:45AM

                                            HCA Choir performance at the Cathedral

                                            Basilica of the Sacred Heart                                     7:30PM​

Monday, May 13                   Field Day rain date

Wednesday May 15-            Grade 8 Washington DC Trip                                   7:00AM Depart

Friday, May 17                                                                                                    11:00PM Return

Wednesday, May 15             HFA –Ben and Jerry’s teacher scoopers                   6:00PM

                                Thursday, May 16                 Gr. 7 Scholastic Olympics –Marist HS                       3:30PM

                                Monday, May 20                   Pre-K Field Trip to the Central Park Zoo                   All day

                                                                             Grade 3 Field Trip to the American                           All Day

                                             Museum of Natural History

Tuesday, May 21                   Campus Ministry Senior Prom                                  6:30PM

Wednesday, May 22             HCA Choir Spring Concert                                         7:00PM

Thursday, May 23                 Memorial Day Prayer Service – HCA Gym                8:15AM

                                             Parents invited

                                             Gr. 7 Philadelphia field trip                         All day

Friday, May 24                      No School

Monday, May 27                   Memorial Day No school

Wednesday, May 29-             Gr. 6-8 Final Exams

Friday, May 31                     

Thursday, May 30                 Ascension Thursday/May Crowning Mass   10:00AM

                                            St. Ann Church-Parents invited

Friday, May 31                     $2 Dress Down Day

                                            Gr. 3 Science Fair –HCA Gym                        1:30PM

                                            Graduation Dance (Gr. 7-8)                           6:00PM

Saturday, June 1                   5K Race Pier A Park  Registration                  7:00AM​                                                                                          

Monday, June 3                     Grade 8 Retreat Youth Retreat Center          All Day

Tuesday, June 4                    Art Show                                                      6:00PM

Wednesday, June 5               Sports Awards Assembly                              9:30AM

Thursday, June 6                  PK Moving Up Ceremony                               9:00AM

                                            Kinder Moving–up Ceremony                         1:00PM

                                            Home and School Association Social Mtg.       7:00PM

Friday, June 7                       Baccalaureate Mass -St. Ann                          10:00AM

                                            Deloitte and Touche Impact Day                      9:00-2:30 PM

Saturday, June 8                   Grade 8 Graduation- St. Ann                           10:00 A

Wednesday, June 12            Half Day                                                         12:00- Dismissal

                                           Last day – PK and K

                                           Free Dress Down day

                                           Aftercare available

Thursday, June 13               Half-Day Gr. 1-7                                            12:00 Dismissal

                                           Honor Roll Assembly                                     8:15AM

                                           Class parties

Aftercare available

Friday, June 14                    Last Day Students                                         12:00 Dismissal

                                           No Aftercare

  • HCA Choir CD’s are available for sale and it is outstanding.  Order forms went home before Easter and will be posted on our website.  The CD’s are $15 and feature our amazing choir under the direction of Laurie Campana with special guest performances by HCA alums Nora Jacobi and Nanki Nagpaul.
  • Iowa Test results will be made available to us within the next week or so and will be sent home as soon as we can following our debriefing at the schools’ office in Newark.
  • Our Field Days are scheduled for next week and we still need some volunteers for the upper grade day on the 9th.  Parents of students in grades 3-8 are needed.  Please contact the school office or Donna Murphy if you are able to help.
  • Our second annual talent show will take place this Friday evening and I am sure it will be amazing.  In addition to our incredibly talented students, there will be a guest appearance by the band Council!  Spots are still available, so please join us if you are able.
  • On Wednesday evening, May 15th, Ms. Molino, Ms. Rambaran, Mrs. Peterson and Mrs. Fitzgibbons will be scooping ice cream at Ben and Jerry’s on Washington Street in support of the Hoboken Family Alliance’s special program to raise funds for their summer bicycle camp.  Please come out that evening at 6:00 and order up some ice cream from our amazing teachers!

Thank you and God Bless you!


Matthew McGrath


April 3, 2019

Wednesday, April 3, 2019

April 3, 2019

Dear Parents,

Now that April has arrived, hold on to your collective hats, because the rest of the school year will be a blur. 

The chicks have hatched!  The farmer from Quiver Farms delivered the chicken eggs and incubators to our Kindergarten classrooms about ten days ago and our students patiently waited for the big day.  Well, on Monday, both classes returned to find some of their new friends had emerged.  By the end of the day on Tuesday, all of the chicks joined the others.  The children have helped water and feed the chicks and learned to gently pet and hold them.  The other classes have made their way to the kindergarten rooms to share in the experience.  To say the children are excited would be an understatement!   We can’t wait for our friends from Quiver Farms to return with the rest of the barnyard babies when they visit on May 6th!

The HCA Choir spent three hours on Saturday at St. Ann Church with professionals from a production company to record their first ever CD!  Under the direction of Ms. Campana, the choir sang nine of their signature pieces for the CD.  In addition to the CD the team from Ripe Creations filmed a promotional video that we will post on our website.  CDs and Flash drives will be available for sale sometime after Easter.  More details will follow.

The Spring Gala is just ten days away and between now and then we will squeeze in a handful (tongue in cheek) of other activities.  The Home and School Association will meet on the 3rd and the fifth grade field trip to Camp Bernie on be on Friday the 5th.  The 5th is also First Friday, so the rest of the school will attend Mass, and the older students will pray the Stations of the Cross.  The Archdiocesan STEM Expo will take place on Saturday the 6th and Mr. Taormina will have our four teams of scientists showcase their projects along with students from across the Archdiocese at the Youth Retreat Center Gym in Kearny.   The spring book fair will run from Sunday, April 7th through Wednesday, April 10th.  On Wednesday evening, our middle school language arts and sixth grade homeroom teacher, Peggy Girovasi, will be honored at Xavier HS with their Ignatian Educator Award.  Thanks to an essay written by HCA alum and Xavier freshman, Quincy Flett, Ms. G will be one of only five New York area educators to be so honored.  On Thursday, April 11th, students form grades 3-8 will attend a Lenten Penance Service and will have the opportunity to go to confession and after school that day, Adele Tanini, Nirvaan Pal, Isabelle Garlick and Divyanshi Rath will represent our school at the Marist HS, Sixth Grade Math Contest.   On Friday, the day of the Gala, we will visit St. Ann Church to walk with Jesus through the Stations of the Cross, as we do each Friday during Lent. 

The Gala is shaping up to be another wonderful event!  This year, the party will be held at the W, in Hoboken, so the commute for most of our parents and friends will be minimal.  Some of the most popular auction items each year fall under the category, “All Things HCA!”  They include the beautiful artwork that Mrs. Albunia has the students come up with each year, as well as prime seats for concerts, naming a dress down day, having Pizza Friday named for your child, dinner with Mrs. Ferrara and Ms. April, lunch with Mrs. Foley, gym teacher for the day and principal for the day.

This year, the Ujhely twins will serve as Gym Teachers for the Day on the Thursday, April 4th and will help Mr. Montefusco keep things moving throughout the day.  Second grader, Jenna Kruse, will be Principal For a Day on Tuesday, April 9th, and first grader, Ava Kauffmann, will be Principal for A Day on Monday, May 6th.  I am certain both young ladies will be benevolent leaders who will each have a great day helping me run the school. The Mia Guerra Wacky Wednesday Dress Down Day will take place on Wednesday, April 10th.  Students should wear their clothes backwards, inside out or mismatched that day.  There will be no cost and no coupons will be needed AND no one has to wear their school uniform, all thanks to the Guerras. 

All of these experiences and many more will be available at this year’s Spring Gala/Silent Auction on the 12th.  Thanks to Cara Guerra, Donna Murphy, Jenn Araneo, Alanna Kauffmann and Alison Cornell for all they have done to prepare for the Gala and for all of our parents and friends who generously donated auction items and sponsored teachers and staff to attend the event.  It is not too late to purchase tickets for the Spring Gala.  If you have not done so already, please get in your order by Friday, April 5th.

As you know from my previous email, officers from the Hoboken Police Department were at our school on Monday and observed our lock down drill.  Following the drill the team of officers met with me to provide feedback and suggestions for improving our procedures.  They provided valuable guidance and as a result, the teachers and I will discuss their recommendations and put them into practice.  In addition, they suggested some physical enhancements to our already robust safety protocols.  As a result, I will reconvene the Security Ad Hoc Committee to discuss those suggestions and prioritize the work they recommend.

Finally, we were able to have the plumbing issue that caused us to suspend the use of the second floor lavatories ahead of schedule.  The repairs were completed today and the second floor bathrooms and water fountain are operational once again.

Thank you and God Bless you all.  I hope to see you at the Gala!


Matthew McGrath


March 6, 2019

Wednesday, March 6, 2019

Important dates to remember:

March 6, 2019          Ash Wednesday Service 1:30 PM St. Ann Church

March 8, 2019          Grade 8 Ring Ceremony/Mass 10:00 AM St. Ann Church
                                 Half-Day- Teacher PD in the afternoon
                                 Trimester II report cards distributed- K-8

March 10,2019          Daylight Savings Time begins - Spring ahead one hour at 2:00 AM

March 11-15, 2019   Iowa Assessment administered

March 18-20, 2019   Iowa Assessment make-ups

March 21, 2019        Lifetouch Spring Portraits and Grade 8 graduation portrait re-takes

March 22, 2019        Student Council Dance Grades 5-8 6:30-9:00 PM

March 26, 2019        Deanery Family Penance Service and confessions Our Lady of Grace Church 7:30 PM

March 28, 2019        Opening Day for both the Yankees and the Mets!

March 29, 2019        NJHS Induction Ceremony 10:00 AM

March 30, 2019        HCA Choir CD recording session – St. Ann Church 11:30 AM-3:30 PM

April 3, 2019             Home and School Association meeting 7:00 PM

April 6, 2019             RCAN STEM EXPO Youth Retreat Center Gym - Kearny​

April 7-10, 2019        Spring Book Fair

April 11, 2019           HCA Penance Service & confession St. Ann Church 1:30 PM​

April 12, 2019           HCA Spring Gala at the W in Hoboken!

April 17, 2019           Half-day for all students and no Aftercare
                                 Easter recess begins at 12:00 PM

April 29, 2019           School re-opens