Jan 01

Holy Family Activities and Arts Watch Party

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Let’s end our year celebrating the talents of our student athletes, artists, and musicians.  Over 1,200 members of our community joined our livestream of the Class of 2020 Baccalaureate and Commencement Mass on Wednesday, May 20. This week we invite you to tune in at 7:00pm on Thursday, May 28, for the Holy Family ESPYs, Spring Virtual Coffee House, Spring Band Performance, and the earlier shared Virtual Art Show.

The 2020 Holy Family ESPY’S

AWARDS SHOW HONORING HOLY FAMILY STUDENT ATHLETICS AND ACTIVITIES

Introducing the first annual Holy Family ESPY’S, recognizing excellence in student athletics and activities.

Holy Family Spring Virtual Coffee House

One of Holy Family’s favorite musical nights of the year went virtual this spring with a coffee house featuring a few veteran performers.

Holy Family Band presents “Music from our Virtual Journey.”

From our Mrs. Laura Boillat, HFCHS Director of Vocal Music: Learning, rehearsing and performing music is on an ongoing group project, with an ENORMOUS amount of subtle yet essential non-verbal communication between musicians. School moving online in mid-March due to Covid-19 turned music performance groups on their heads! The Holy Family Band was no exception, but we embraced the online format and began a journey into the world of studio music and music production. In doing so, we have learned a LOT about recording, editing, and mixing, and just how vital that non-verbal communication is to perform live music effectively. We have certainly grown as musicians through this experience!

Many of the virtual performances presented here are the culmination of our third project in our exploration of a digital audio workstation (DAW) called Soundtrap (similar in function to Garageband). Students started out experimenting with loops and beats to create original ringtones they could use on their phones. We then moved on to incorporating our own recorded tracks for project two. Project three expanded on it and required students to work individually or in groups to create layered recordings along with loops. It took countless hours for everyone to get from zero to their final product. After the music was selected, we familiarized ourselves with it through listening and practicing. Working with a timeline of what needed to be done and setting goals for accomplishment, students needed to collaborate with others in their group to make musical and non-musical decisions. Students then began recording their parts in their homes, using only the equipment they had on hand. Recording, along with editing, required a lot of problem-solving and experimenting with everything from microphone placement (typically just a computer or phone) to tempo and balance. Students then layered, edited, and mixed them into our final performance of the 2019-2020 school year.

We present to you “Music from our Virtual Journey.”

The 2020 Virtual Visual Arts Show

Check out our Spring Art Showcase!

 

Jan 01

Coronavirus Updates – COVID-19

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May 26, 2020

Holy Family Activities – Summer Sports & Camps – May 26, 2020

Greetings Holy Family students, parents, coaches, and campers,

The following guidelines have been created to provide families with a clear understanding of Holy Family’s plans to create opportunities for students throughout the summer, while implementing measures to safeguard the health and safety of everyone involved. These procedures have been created based on recommendations from national, state, and local administrators and health experts, and tailored to the unique specifications of our school’s facilities and student body.

Families are expected to review the plan, and make decisions about their son or daughter’s participation in team training opportunities this summer.

Families who elect to participate in training and camps must complete the attached COVID release of liability form prior to participation.

Please know that this plan has been created with the most accurate and timely information available.  However, as new information becomes available, it is possible that plans may need to be modified. We will ensure that families are informed of changes as they arise.

Updates about training and camps in July will be provided at a later date, based on the available information at that time. We are hopeful that we’ll be in a position to offer camps and training throughout July with progressively fewer restrictions.

Period 1 – June 8 – June 29:

Youth Camps:

  • All sports camps for elementary and middle school students that were scheduled to take place prior to June 29th have been either cancelled or rescheduled for July.
  • Individuals who have registered for camps will receive communication regarding rescheduling and/or refunds.
  • Registration fees will be refunded in full in a timely fashion for all cancelled camps.

Training for Holy Family students (including freshman enrolling in Fall 2020) will adhere to the following parameters:

No sports specific training will occur until June 15 in accordance with MSHSL guidelines.  Coaches will provide specific information to their participants.

Pre-workout Screening:

  • All coaches and students should be screened for signs/symptoms of COVID-19 prior to participation.
  • Screening includes a temperature check administered at home prior to participation.
  • Families are required to monitor the health of their children and withhold them from participation if they exhibit any of the following symptoms:
    • Fever
    • Cough
    • Sore Throat
    • Shortness of Breath
    • Close contact, or cared for someone with COVID-19
    • Temp (if higher than 100.3 degrees Fahrenheit)
  • Any person with positive symptoms should not be allowed to take part in workouts and should contact his or her primary care provider or other appropriate health-care professional.
  • Vulnerable individuals should not oversee or participate in any workouts during this phase.

Limitations on Gatherings:

  • Workouts will be conducted in “pods” of students with the same 5-10 students always working together
  • No gatherings of more than 10 people at a time inside. Up to 50 individuals may gather outdoors for workouts.
  • It is essential that parents register for summer training opportunities immediately to provide coaches the opportunity to plan and stagger trainings.
  • Register today at: http://www.hfchs.org/firecamps/
  • Parents, if your son or daughter is planning on participating in summer training for an activity that does not require online registration, please contact the program head coach for specific information about training opportunities and logistics
  • If locker rooms or meeting rooms are used, there must be a minimum distance of 6 feet between each individual at all times.
  • Outdoor training will be utilized, when possible, to increase distance between individuals
  • Parents who drop athletes off for camps and training are requested to remain in their vehicles, rather than entering the facility
  • Captain’s practices are not allowed during the month of June

 

Facilities Cleaning:

  • Adequate cleaning schedules have been created, and will be implemented for all athletic facilities to mitigate any communicable diseases.
  • Individuals should wash their hands for a minimum of 20 seconds with warm water and soap before touching any surfaces or participating in workouts.
  • Hand sanitizer will be made plentiful and available to individuals as they transfer from place to place.
  • Appropriate clothing/shoes should be worn at all times to minimize sweat from transmitting onto surfaces.
  • Students are encouraged to shower and wash their clothing upon returning home.
  • There will be no shared clothing between students.
  • All athletic equipment, including balls, should be cleaned intermittently during training.
  • All athletic equipment such as bats, batting helmets and catchers gear should be cleaned between each use.
  • All students shall bring their own water bottle. Water bottles will not be shared.
  • Hydration stations will not be utilized.

 

Rights and Responsibilities for Athletes:

  • Choices made by families – to participate, to not participate, or to participate only in some settings will be respected at all times.
  • Athletes are expected to respect the privacy and space of others, and may expect the same for themselves.
  • Coaches will provide opportunities for students who are unable to train on campus to develop skills and improve strength and fitness, as requested.
  • Students may elect to wear cloth masks if they choose to do so during training, but they are not required to do so.
  • Families will be informed if a student develops COVID-19, but individual health information about students will not be shared with other families. Families are expected to contact the Athletic Director if your son/daughter is found to have COVID-19.
  • Individual adherence to the guidelines found herein is greatly appreciated.

Thanks in advance for the outpouring of support that has been displayed for our students, teams, and school throughout some very challenging times!

We are grateful to serve a community so committed to leading the way for our students.

Go Fire!

Nick Tibesar & Tim Triplett

April 3, 2020

All districts are offering free lunch to students who may or may not qualify for free and reduced lunch.  Below are sites for area school districts.  Click on the document below for links to sites for more information about free lunches during the COVID19 crisis.

Click on the link below

School Lunch Programs

March 26, 2020

En Español

Dear Holy Family parents and students,

We hope everyone is doing well and staying healthy. Yesterday, Governor Tim Walz issued a Shelter in Place Order for the State of Minnesota from March 27 at 11:59 pm through April 10.  With the previous requirement of gatherings 50 or less in place until mid-May and this new directive, we are moving forward with the following items.

ONLINE LEARNING

NEW INFORMATION: Online School begins on Monday, March 30, and now extends until at least Monday, May 4, in accordance with today’s directive. Starting tomorrow, you and your student will receive more details from our faculty and staff on expectations, plans, and resources. By 8:00 am on Monday, March 30, students will receive information and directions for the week ahead.

We are tremendously grateful for the hard work and dedication of our faculty and staff as they prepare for the launch of an extended online learning dynamic. Redesigning lesson plans and implementing an online approach rich in human connection is not a small task, yet, their commitment to seeing our students through this transition remains steadfast.

ACTIVITIES AND EVENTS

NEW INFORMATION: Minnesota State High School League will honor the Governor’s executive order and suspend all spring sports until the state lifts distance learning measures. The league has not made a decision about the cancelation of the spring sports season. However, coaches have been notified of the MSHSL’s extension of the ban on any practices, training, etc. until at least May 4 when schools could potentially reopen.

We understand your disappointment as this is not what anyone planned or imagined, especially for our seniors. Discussions are underway to ensure we celebrate and acknowledge important rites of passage for our seniors. As more definitive plans (or as absolute as these times allow) develop for senior events and others, we will share more information. The continually changing COVID-19 landscapes make this work challenging, but not impossible.

Please know we are keeping you in our prayers and ask for your prayers in return. Please stay safe and take every precaution recommended by the State of Minnesota as all of us shoulder our responsibility to slow the spread of COVID-19.

We must echo the sentiment expressed by so many, “We will get through this together.” We will get through this together because of our deep faith in God, who guides our every step. We will get through this together as a caring and supportive family. We will get through this together and emerge as an even stronger community with new ideas and innovations in providing excellence in education for our students in mind, body, and spirit.

Wednesday, March 18, 2020 – 8:00 a.m.

As we follow the recommendations of our state and national government, our campus is closed until further notice to all individuals with the exception of employees who have permission to access the building.

Monday, March 16, 2020 – 6:48 p.m.

Update from Assistant Principal Dols regarding tomorrow’s Student Assistance Day

First of all, great job, everyone!! Thank you for taking today’s practice experience seriously, working hard, and giving it your full attention. Most importantly, thank you for responding to the survey. The combined feedback from students and teachers will help us build on our strengths and make adjustments and corrections as needed.

We feel very good about today’s outcomes and confident in our preparation for a smooth and successful transition to online learning after the break. Our committed and talented teachers put in many additional hours in preparing today’s lessons. We are grateful for their flexibility and efforts, which allowed us to test our systems and software proactively.

The overwhelming majority of our students reported feeling prepared for online learning after today’s practice. We are in excellent shape to begin online classes on March 30. Closer to that date, we will send reminders and any necessary information to ensure a meaningful and academically strong extended online learning experience.

I want to reiterate the expectations for tomorrow’s limited Student Assistance Day. To minimize person-to-person contact, students should only attend Student Assistance Day if they have an appointment with a teacher to complete Quarter 3.

Finally, students may pick up any remaining necessary items from their lockers, but please make it a quick grab and go. We ask all students to enter and exit the building through the main entrance. The doors will be open from 8:00 a.m. to 3:00 p.m. 

Thank you for your cooperation and patience as we navigate these unprecedented times. In true Holy Family spirit, today was a success because of your willingness to work together and take care of each other. We will continue to do so beyond the course of this virus because that is what we do every day.


Update on Sunday, March 15, 2020 – 2:00 p.m.

En Español

This morning Governor Tim Walz’s Executive Order 20-2 authorized the temporary closure of Minnesota K-12 schools to students in order for school administrators and teachers to make long-term plans for the continuity of education and essential services during the COVID-19 pandemic.

Last week, Holy Family administrators made plans for the continuation of learning, following the week of our scheduled spring break. While Governor Walz’s mandate was an order for public schools, we will be in compliance utilizing the following plan, as described below.

CONTINUATION OF LEARNING

Online Practice Day – Monday, March 16 

To prepare as fully as possible for an online learning dynamic, Monday, March 16, remains a practice day for online learning.  Students are to be at home on this day and will be expected to participate in a full day of online classes utilizing our regular schedule. It is essential that our students and families take this day very seriously as we prepare for the potential of a long-term dynamic.

ADDITIONAL INFORMATION:  Students will be sent a survey evaluating their practice day experiences by the end of the school day on Monday, March 16. Because we need time to evaluate this information for discussion with teachers on Tuesday morning, it is imperative that students respond to the survey by no later than 4 p.m.

NEW INFORMATION: Tuesday, March 17 – Student Assistance Day/End of the Quarter

School leadership made the decision to move Thursday’s end of quarter date to Tuesday, March 17. On that day, Holy Family will offer a Student Assistance Day for students who must make up Quarter 3 tests, quizzes, and/or presentations that cannot be accomplished from home. The hours of SAD are 10:00 a.m. – 2:45 p.m.

Please note:

  • The building will be open on Tuesday until 5:00 p.m. to pick up any additional needed personal items or learning materials for the March 30-April 3 online learning dynamic. Students will not be allowed to congregate—only to pick up materials.
  • Teachers will communicate how they are wrapping up the quarter. This includes information regarding any scheduled assignments, projects, tests, and quizzes.
  • We are allowing an exception to our uniform policy for the March 17 Student Assistance Day. Students may be out of uniform.
  • There is no busing transportation available on Tuesday, March  17.
  • If a student feels unwell, his or her parent should notify the school office, and the student should stay home. 

While so much of our attention is focused inwardly on the needs of our school as we navigate these uncharted waters, let us not lose perspective of the ways we can support others beyond our campus. If you are coming to campus, please considering a non-perishable item to support local food shelves as they experience increased demand.

NEW INFORMATION: Extended Spring Break  

Spring break will begin on Wednesday, March 18, for students and last until the original scheduled end on March 27. Teachers will be using the additional days to wrap up the third quarter and refine plans based on Monday’s experiences and feedback received. For those of you making the decision to travel during spring break, we ask that you carefully read the travel guidelines listed in the “How You Can Help” in last week’s email and an update in the section below.

Online Learning Week – March 30 – April 3

As a reminder, March 30 – April 3 is an extended online learning week. Please refer to last week’s email or our webpage, http://www.hfchs.org/coronavirus-updates/, for details on expectations.

ACTIVITIES AND EVENTS

NEW INFORMATION: Effective immediately, all sports and activities are suspended until further notice, including, but not limited to training, practices, scrimmages, banquets, meetings, and contests. 

Decisions regarding future events continue to evolve. We will communicate decisions as soon as they are definitive. Calendars will be updated accordingly.

Please see the information in the previous update for a list of ways our community can continue to help with the management of the spread of COVID-19. Please note: If a family member has tested positive or been exposed, contact the school at schooloffice@hfchs.org.

CONCLUSION

These are challenging times, and this is a significant response by our state to minimize the spread of the Coronavirus (COVID-19). This raises many questions that we cannot answer immediately, but we are committed to keeping you as informed and supported as possible.  There is much more information to come.

As you prepare for the changes this will entail, please know that HFCHS is committed to providing a strong educational experience in the face of these drastic, but necessary measures. Together, we can ensure these next days and weeks will be productive as possible while we all curtail our activity in such a way that protects the health and well-being of each other, our families, and our community.

Stay healthy and continue to do all that you can to prevent the spread of germs.

We are keeping all our families in our prayers and ask for His blessing on our community as we enter into this new phase.


3/12/2020- Special Announcement Regarding Holy Family’s Plans Moving Forward

This email was sent to parents

En Español

March 12, 2020

Dear Parents,

Holy Family remains in solidarity with numerous government, business and educational institutions as we exercise vigilance and enact preventative measures with regard to the coronavirus (COVID-19) and the prioritization of the health and well-being of our community – both local and extended. As such, Holy Family continues to monitor information and recommendations from official and credible sources including the Minnesota Department of Public Health and the Centers for Disease Control.

Additionally, our professional networks are both strong and extensive, and include the Office for the Mission of Catholic Education of the Archdiocese of Saint Paul and Minneapolis, the local public school district ISD 112, the greater metro area Catholic high schools, and the Lasallian/Christian Brothers secondary schools across the nation. The exchange of information has been constant and the dialogue has been rich and supportive…we are in this together.

While this email is lengthy, there are times where more communication is helpful. We appreciate your thorough attention to the following information. Students will be provided this information tomorrow during Convocation and, additionally, in their classrooms.

Online Practice Day – Monday, March 16 

As shared in an earlier communication, Holy Family Catholic High School has been preparing for the possible extended closure of the school for some time, framing lessons and procedures to support the continuation of instruction in a non-traditional environment. Each teacher has designed meaningful course work and experiences that will be communicated online using mySchool and Office 365.

Refer to this regular schedule.
Refer to this regular schedule.

To prepare as fully as possible for an online learning dynamic, Monday, March 16, is scheduled as a practice day for online learning.  Students are to be at home on this day and will be expected to participate in a full day of online classes in accordance with our regular schedule.

This exercise will allow both teachers and students to experience various methods for academic instruction that could be utilized during any future implementation of online learning. Therefore, students are asked to bring all their textbooks, notebooks, calculators, instruments, music, and other resources home with them tomorrow and before they leave for spring break. 

When students return to school on Tuesday, March 17, teachers will solicit feedback in an effort to troubleshoot concerns and build upon strengths and successful practices. After school activities presently scheduled for Monday, March 16, will continue as planned.

Online Learning Week – March 30 – April 3

(more…)

Jan 01

John Dols Named Holy Family’s Second Principal

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President Brennan Announces Holy Family’s Next Principal

Earlier today, President Brennan announced the professional advancement of assistant principal John Dols as the next principal of Holy Family Catholic High School. Effective immediately, Mr. Dols will begin to work alongside current principal Kathie Brown to ensure a smooth transition as the necessary planning timelines of the upcoming school year approach.

President Brennan shared the following message with the community:

As you are aware, at the end of the current school year, Mrs. Kathie Brown will be retiring from Holy Family after 20 years of dedicated service to our school – a legacy for which we will remain forever grateful. What began as a search process aimed at finding a replacement for a single position would evolve, in the space of the last nine months, into a far more comprehensive, organization-wide process. This expanded approach called upon Holy Family to look inward and evaluate existing roles, functions, and their respective alignment in an effort to determine the optimal structure for effective school operations. The result positions Holy Family to build upon current levels of institutional momentum to support the attainment of our strategic goals aimed at driving growth through excellence.

With that said, as Holy Family Catholic High School’s president, and with the support of the Holy Family Board of Directors, I am excited to announce the appointment of Mr. John Dols as the next principal of our beloved school. Currently serving in the role of assistant principal, Mr. Dols is a licensed school administrator with 23 years of Catholic education experience. He grew up in Catholic education attending Minneapolis’ Ascension Catholic School for grades K-8 and DeLasalle High School for grades 9-12. Mr. Dols holds a Bachelor of Science in Religious Studies from St. Norbert College, a Master of Education from St. Mary’s University, and his principal licensure from the University of St. Thomas. He is a graduate of the Brother John Johnston Institute of Contemporary Lasallian Practice. He began his career as a theology teacher, first at Xavier High School in Appleton, WI, and then at St. Thomas Academy in Mendota Heights before joining Holy Family as a campus minister and assistant principal in 2006.

I have had the pleasure and privilege of working and serving alongside John Dols for the last three years.  With unwavering conviction, I can state that our school community is blessed and fortunate to have such extraordinary talent within our walls. Mr. Dols’ leadership will set forth a course for the future of Holy Family that seeks continuous innovation and reinvention, and remains authentic and true to the mission-centered aspects of our school’s culture – faith and family.

Effective immediately, Mr. Dols will work closely with Mrs. Brown to ensure a smooth transition as the necessary planning timelines of the upcoming school year approach.

As Mr. Dols shares in his message below, we are blessed to have such incredible and experienced educators within our current staff who lead with deep faith and passion for the mission of Holy Family. We look forward to enhancing each student’s educational experience with an unrelenting commitment to developing young adults with ever-deepening faith and Christian leadership skills — caring for them in mind, body, and soul— forming scholars and saints.

Live Jesus in our hearts…Forever!

Michael Brennan


A Message from Principal-Elect John Dols

Principal-Elect John Dols shared his gratitude and excitement as well as two additional position announcements.

Fifteen years ago, I drove to the Southwest suburbs to interview for a job I was not sure I wanted in an area that was utterly unfamiliar to me. One of the things that I remember vividly from that interview was a statement made by Kathie Brown. She said, “Holy Family does not have an entrance exam; we have a placement test. All kids are welcome here. All kids belong.” It was this statement, among others, that convinced me to take the job. It is the way this reality plays out daily that has made me fall in love with the school, the students, and the faculty and staff, and families.

Our mission is to take care of students wherever they are academically, spiritually, and emotionally, and help them grow. This mission lives and breathes in our faculty, staff, and administration— in the way we teach, the way we interact with students and families, and the policies and procedures that drive us. I am proud to be a part of this mission.

As I look toward next year and the years to follow, the innovations such as May Term, Canvas, and our International Student Program excite me. We can innovate while staying true to who we are, a Catholic school that strives to serve all!

I am pleased to announce the professional advancement of two distinguished Holy Family colleagues and the following first steps in further aligning our structure with our school’s mission and core values of scholarship, leadership, integrity, and faith. Current Dean for Academic Support, Melissa Livermore, will be promoted to the role of Assistant Principal for Academic Affairs – a newly developed position with an acute focus aimed at advancing the academic dimension of our school’s mission through faculty and student support, professional development, curriculum oversight, and technology integration. Current Director of Individual Giving and Alumni Relations, Matt Thuli, will serve as the Assistant Principal for Student Life – a position that supports our students as they navigate the ever-increasing complexity of life beyond the classroom setting.  ( Please see their bios below.)

I love Holy Family. I am honored and blessed to be able to serve as the second principal in the school’s history.

Abundantly blessed,

John Dols


Melissa Livermore
Current Dean of Academic Support, Melissa Livermore, takes on an expanded role in her new position as Assistant Principal of Academic Affairs. Melissa received her Bachelor of Arts in Mathematics and Secondary Mathematics Education from Willian Penn University and a Master of Arts in Curriculum and Instruction as well as  Ed. S- Education Specialist from the University of St. Thomas. She holds a K-12 principal licensure from the State of Minnesota and is currently working toward the completion of a Doctorate of Educational Leadership and Learning from the University of St. Thomas. She completed the Lasallian Social Justice Institute, a formation program based on the Gospel. Mrs. Livermore joined Holy Family in 2001 as a math instructor, and has spent the last eight years overseeing academic support, guidance, and teacher development.

 

 

 


Matt Thuli
Current Director of Alumni Relations Matt Thuli has accepted the position of Assistant Principal for Student Life and Alumni Relations. Matt has a Bachelor of Arts in Education from Winona State University and principal licensure from the University of St. Thomas. When Holy Family opened its doors in 2000, Mr. Thuli was our first physical education instructor, basketball coach, and activities director. For ten years, he performed the role of both activities director and dean of students, before accepting his current position on the advancement team four years ago. Mr. Thuli has successfully grown our alumni relations program and led three consecutive years of growth of the annual fund. However, his heart remains that of an educator and school administrator, and he looks forward to returning to serving students and families on a personal and daily basis.

Jan 01

Course Registration is Open

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The online course registrations for summer school and the 2020-2021 school year for current students is now open! The 2020-2021 Course Description Book is located on our website (www.hfchs.org) under Academics.  Go to Curriculum and click on the book.  There you will find information about each class we offer.

Summer 2020 Summer School
Click HERE to register for summer courses and summer camps. Scroll down to the bottom of the page for summer course options.

2020-2021 Course Registration
To use the registration system, parents need to access their mySchool accounts and click on Begin Registration.  The program identifies prerequisites, totals credits as you make choices, and lists remaining requirements for graduation.  It will highlight a course for which a student is not prepared.  Students who have transferred to Holy Family may need the help of a counselor to navigate the differences between former requirements and those of Holy Family.  After making selections, click Preview.  If choices are correct, click Submit.

Other than simple drops, class changes requested after June 4, 2020 will require a $20.00 fee as every alteration impacts the design of the master schedule.  If a class change is impossible to accomplish, the fee will be refunded.

As a reminder, a fee is no longer required at the time of class selections. Each student’s course registration fee will be billed and processed through TADS on March 15, 2020 based on current payment type (i.e., automatic bank withdrawal or card payment). If you need to adjust this payment date, please reach out to Jodi Smith in our business office at 952-856-1413 or smithj@hfchs.org to make arrangements.

Please note: Tuition agreements are not yet available and are not necessary to select courses for the summer or 2020-2021 school year. Families will receive notice of their agreement’s readiness via an email from TADS in the coming weeks. Families applying for tuition assistance will receive award letters from the business office when their awards are determined. Tuition agreements will follow.

Begin 2020-2021 Course Registratoin

Jan 01

Holy Family Dance Team Heads to State!

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Holy Family Catholic High School Dance Heads to State in both Jazz and Kick!

Following very strong performances throughout the competitive dance regular season, Holy Family Dance Jazz and Kick teams brought their best to the Section 2A competition on Saturday, February 8. And it paid off! Fire Jazz won the Section Championship, and Fire Kick finished in third place, earning them a trip to the MSHSL State Class A Dance Tournament on Friday, 2/14, (Jazz) and Saturday, 2/15, (Kick)! Congratulations to the dancers, coaches, and parents!

The Jazz performance schedule can be found HERE. We recommend arriving early as they often run ahead of schedule.

The Kick performance schedule can be found HERE. We recommend arriving early as they often run ahead of schedule.

We are excited for the continuation of a strong dance program legacy:

Jazz/Funk State Champions:

2004, 2006

Additional State Appearances:

2009, 2010, 2011, 2012, 2013, 2014, 2020

We hope you will join us in cheering on both teams at the Target Center. If you are unable to make it to Target Center, the competition will be streamed on https://www.prepspotlight.tv/MSHSL.

Holy Family Catholic High School Dance Team Interview from Holy Family Catholic High School on Vimeo.

Jan 01

Scholarships for Incoming Students

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Middle School Matters! Let’s talk scholarships.

Let’s talk SCHOLARSHIPS, and the huge opportunity they provide families with students attending Holy Family Catholic High School.

Each year Holy Family awards a number of scholarships and grants to incoming students. These awards ease tuition costs, while also rewarding students for their past success and future potential.

“We’ve put our money where our mouth is with this program,” says Scott Breimhorst, Vice President for Enrollment and School Partnerships. “We have dedicated significant financial resources to these scholarships to ensure a broad application of funds is possible.”

For those who like hard numbers, consider these facts:

  • 9X. Holy Family scholarship and grant offerings are trending up with many added during the last three school years. Students may apply for more than one scholarship in the areas they feel most appropriate. Most are awarded to multiple students each year.
  • 3 Categories. 1) Merit Scholarships are earned by students that have already achieved and excelled in middle school, and show potential for future success. 2) Qualifying Scholarships are for students meeting specific criteria, such as coming from one particular middle school.  3) Grants are awarded to families meeting qualifying criteria.
  • Stackable and Renewable. Many scholarships and grants are awarded to multiple students each year. Also, most scholarships are renewable annually for four years, and students can apply for up two different merit scholarships.
  • Lots of Zeros. Annual awards range from $500-$3,000. Multiply by four years, and they grow to several thousands of dollars in tuition savings!

“It is absolutely in every incoming ninth grader’s best interest to apply,” Breimhorst adds. “With the variety of areas covered in our merit scholarship program, we have the ability to reach many families. Why not give it a shot?”

Before breaking down each scholarship opportunity available to incoming students, here are some essential yet critical things to know:

  • Holy Family Enrollment. Before applying for scholarships or grants, students complete the Application for EnrollmentIncoming ninth grade students must also take the High School Placement Test given in January.
  • Categories. Scholarships are available for academic achievement, leadership, volunteerism, and involvement in extracurricular activities except for athletics. 
  • January 17 is the priority deadline for applications. Don’t wait until last minute. Several scholarships require an essay or plan. These take thought and polishing. Students meeting the January 17 deadline receive first consideration.  Applications received after that date may be eligible if funds are still available.
  • Financial Assistance Applications. For most scholarships and grants, the TADS application for financial assistance is not required. But some do require this application. If so, be sure to complete by January 17.

Now that the official stuff is out of the way, here’s a look at all Holy Family scholarship and grant opportunities. Any way you add it up, these are a win for Holy Family students and families.

MERIT SCHOLARSHIP

President’s Award for Academic Achievement

Award: $500-$1,500 per year

Who Should Apply: Students with proven academic success in middle school or other high schools.

Who’s Eligible: Incoming 9th-grade students and transfer students

You’ll want to know:

Fine Arts Scholarship

Award: $500-$1,500 per year

Who Should Apply: Students who have participated and excelled in art, music or theater, and plan to make it a significant part of their Holy Family experience.

Who’s Eligible: Incoming 9th-grade students and transfer students

You’ll want to know:

  • Scholarship requires a Merit Scholarship Application
  • Criteria for selection include a student’s past involvement and experience in arts programs, accomplishments in arts programs, and a written statement of “passion for the arts.”
  • Annually renews if a student continues to participate in Holy Family fine arts programs. 

Founders’ Scholarship for Leaders

Award: $500-$1,500 per year

Who Should Apply: Students whose leadership has positively impacted the lives of fellow students, their community, and the world.

Who’s Eligible: Incoming 9th-grade students and transfer students

You’ll want to know:

St. John Baptist De La Salle Award

Award: $500-$1,500 per year

Who Should Apply: Students dedicated to service and have made an impact on their school, local community, or church.

Who’s Eligible: Incoming 9th-grade students and transfer students

You’ll want to know:

GRANTS

Catholic Parish and School Staff Discount

Holy Family Catholic High School is excited to provide a tuition discount program for children of Catholic parish and Pre-K-8 school staff members.

Award:  $4,800 per year

Who Should Apply: Staff Members of Catholic Parishes and Schools

Who’s Eligible: Staff Members of Catholic Parishes and Schools

You’ll want to know:

  • Check the box on the scholarship application.
  • Also eligible for other scholarship or tuition assistance awards

QUALIFYING SCHOLARSHIPS

Ignite the Fire Scholarship

Award: $1,000-$2,500 per year

Who Should Apply: Students from St. Hubert School who are active in SHS programs and activities, plus maintained a 3.5 GPA while attending middle school.

Who’s Eligible: St. Hubert School incoming 9th-grade students attending Holy Family.

You’ll want to know:

  • Scholarship requires a separate application.
  • Students must articulate a plan for remaining active in Holy Family extracurricular activities.
  • Annually renews if a student maintains a 3.25 GPA at Holy Family. 
  • Must demonstrate financial need via TADS application

Click HERE if you are a St. Hubert family with an application on file and would like to apply for the Ignite the Fire Scholarship.

Flaherty Family Foundation

Award: Determined on a case-by-case basis

Who Should Apply: Highly motivated students with high potential and significant economic needs determined by TADS; positive contributor to the community.

Who’s Eligible: Students with a 3.5 middle school GPA meeting needs determined by TADS from a household with an annual income below $70,000.

You’ll want to know:

  • Families must complete a TADS application. Those meeting criteria are invited to complete the foundation’s application.
  • Annually renews by foundation if similar standards are met each year.

Hildebrandt Family Scholarship

Award: $1,500-$3,000 per year

Who Should Apply: Incoming 9th-grade students attending public middle schools.

Who’s Eligible: Students attending public middle schools who complete separate scholarship application.

You’ll want to know:

  • Scholarship requires a separate application.
  • Annually renews for students maintaining good academic standing.

Click HERE if you are an incoming student from a public school and would like to apply for the Hildebrandt Family Scholarship.

Radick Family Scholarship

Award: Up to $2,000 per year

Who Should Apply: Guardian Angels Catholic School and Parish families with financial need determined by TADS application.

Who’s Eligible: Guardian Angels Catholic School and Parish families.

You’ll want to know:

  • Families must complete a TADS application
  • Applicants may also qualify for additional tuition assistance.
  • A separate application is not required.
  • Annually renews if similar standards are met each year.

Apply by January 17 by clicking on the button below

Jan 01

Jack Kelly joins Advancement Team

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President Michael Brennan is excited to announce the hiring of Jack Kelly in the role of Executive Director of Major Gifts and Donor Relations within Holy Family’s Department of Advancement. Jack began his career in development at Holy Family well over a decade ago. For the last eight years, he served as an executive consultant and vice president for Mission Advancement Partners (MAP), an independent consulting firm specializing in fund development for nonprofits.

There, his work focused on leading development teams and guiding their efforts in raising immediate operational funding as well as creating development plans targeted at sustaining long-term growth. In his time with MAP, Jack demonstrated a keen and committed passion for working with nonprofit organizations. He provided strategic oversight and expertise in the area of capital campaigns, operational fundraising, and internal advancement program development – in all, helping his clients raise over $200 million.

While Jack brings a wealth of industry experience and wisdom, he returns to the many robust Holy Family relationships, which he continued to nurture over the years. His diverse skill sets, coupled with his unique relational connections with so many of our school’s constituent base, will allow him to hit the ground running in his new position. As his title indicates, Jack’s role will focus on donor cultivation and stewardship as well as major gift solicitation aimed at supporting our campaign efforts, debt service, and special projects.

When describing his feelings about the recent hire, Mr. Brennan shared, “I am enthusiastic about this positive development in our school’s institutional advancement trajectory and filled with hope as Jack joins our team. I hope our community will join me in congratulating and welcoming him (back) to Holy Family!”

Mr. Kelly officially began his work with Holy Family on December 16. You may reach him by email at: kellyj@hfchs.org or by phone: 952-856-1418.

Jan 01

The Inside Scoop on Holy Family Placement Tests

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Inside Scoop on Placement Tests: What to Know & Why to Go

FIRE 24 Families—mark January 11 on your calendar and highlight it in yellow. This is the date for Holy Family Catholic High School Placement Tests for all incoming ninth-grade students. It is your student’s first step to securing a successful academic future at Holy Family.

Parents sometimes have questions about our Placement Tests.

  • Why do students take them?
  • How is the information used?
  • What if my student has a bad testing day?

To help answer these questions, and many more, we are sharing this list of helpful answers. It should give you a complete picture of why Holy Family Placement Testing ensures every student has academic opportunities that uniquely fit his or her needs, interests and strengths.

Q: Is there a difference between an entrance exam and a placement test?

HF: Yes. Typically entrance exam scores are used to determine acceptance into a school. Holy Family does not use entrance exams. Instead, we offer placement tests for incoming freshmen with the goal of placing students in a course level where they can experience success.

Q: Is there only one placement test?

HF: We offer three placement tests:

  • Incoming Freshman Placement Test — Broad scope of topics for all incoming freshmen.
  • Math Placement Test — Required for students interested in courses beyond Algebra I.
  • World Language Placement Test — Required for students interested in taking foreign language beyond the first level course.

Q: What are the dates for this year’s exams?

HF: The placement tests are scheduled for these dates:

  • The High School Placement Test (STS’ High School Placement Test—HSPT®) given to all incoming ninth-grade students is January 11, 2020 beginning at 8 a.m. (please arrive by 7:50 a.m.)
  • Math Placement Test is held in early June beginning at 9 a.m (please arrive by 8:50 a.m.)
  • World Language Placement Tests are scheduled on an individual basis throughout the summer.

Q: What are the test fees?

HF: The Freshman Placement Test is $25. This fee is waived if there is already an Application for Enrollment on file. There are no fees for the Math or World Language Placement Tests.

Q: How is the STSHigh School Placement Test (HSPT®) used?

HF: The test results are utilized in two ways:

  • Provide staff with a clearer academic view of the incoming class. It allows the administration to make staff and curriculum adjustments to suit the needs of the class as a whole.
  • Help identify students who need extra academic support or can benefit from encouragement to broaden their academic horizons.

Q: What subject matters does the High School Placement Test include?

HF: The exam covers a broad scope of topics, including, but not limited to: reading comprehension, vocabulary, literary elements, punctuation, spelling, measurements, area, volume, mean and functions. More information can be found on the STS’ High School Placement Test (HSPT®) website.

Q: But wait! If the Math and World Language Placement Tests are conducted after the February 2020 class registration date, how will we know which math and language classes to register for?

HF: Students should register for the math and world language classes that they intend to take in the coming fall. Once placement test results are in, students can make adjustments to their class schedule if necessary. 

Q: Does every student have to take a Math Placement Test, and is it the only factor used in placing a student in a math class?

HF: Only incoming ninth-grade students who want to register for math classes higher than Algebra I take the Math Placement Test. There are three test options: Geometry, Algebra II or a higher-level math course. Individual circumstances can be reviewed during the process to decide which test is right for a student.

Q: How can my student prepare for the Math Placement Test?

HF: There are math review packets at http://www.hfchs.org/math-placement-faq/  available online, and we host weekend review sessions prior to the placement test.

Q: Who must take a World Language Placement Test?

HF: Only incoming ninth-grade students who want to register for second year or higher Italian, Latin or Spanish courses take the exam for their language of choice.

Q: How can my child prepare for a World Language Placement Test?

HF: Students should review materials from their previous world language classes.

Q: Can a student take a science/engineering placement test?

HF: All ninth-grade students begin their science discovery with biology, and engineering studies begin in our Technology Studies program. Holy Family offers a pre-engineering course to eighth-grade students. Students who successfully complete the course earn a Holy Family semester technology credit, giving them the opportunity to take Engineering II during their freshman year and compete with our robotics team.

Q: If we have a question about where our student has been placed after receiving test results, what do we do?

HF: Let’s talk about it. Our staff welcomes dialogue with parents and students to ensure we are all on the same page. We want all students to be successful—not overwhelmed or unchallenged. If, for example, a student is on the border of testing into a higher-level math class, there is an opportunity to be re-evaluated through a summer course.

Q: If my student is placed in a class and it becomes clear early in the first quarter that it’s not the right fit, can he or she be moved up or down a level?

HF: Flexibility is important when it comes to finding the right fit for students. We encourage families to contact the student’s teacher and counselor to discuss challenges the student is facing. Often one-on-one sessions with the teacher bring the student up to speed. If the family, counselor and teacher determine a move to a less challenging course is necessary, we’ll do our best to accommodate the change with the least amount of disruption to the student’s overall class schedule.

Q: Do any of the test results move students into Advanced Placement (AP) or Honors classes?

HF: Generally the only Honors option offered to ninth-grade students is in mathematics. There are exceptions. PSAT Tests, measuring readiness for college, are taken in ninth and eleventh grades and help identify AP potential.  After ninth grade, teachers will recommend Honors and AP classes to students who have demonstrated the knowledge and skills to be successful in those courses.

Q: Do transfer students have to take any of the placement tests?

HF: Typically, no, they do not. We rely on their incoming transcripts for class placements. 

Q: If my student isn’t able to take the tests on the scheduled dates, are there make-up sessions?

HF: Absolutely! Those with conflicts on the date of the The High School Placement Test should contact Scott Breimhorst at 952-443-1955. Contact the school office at 952-443-4659 to make arrangements for another summer test date for math and world language tests. It is recommended that the math test is taken in early June.

Have A Question?

Ask about Placement Tests and we will include the response anonymously for other FIRE 24 families to see. Send your question to breimhorsts@hfchs.org

SUBMIT YOUR APPLICATION FOR ENROLLMENT TODAY!

The $25 Freshman Placement Test fee is waived for students with an Application for Enrollment on file.

Apply Today

Jan 01

3 Reasons Holy Family Students Succeed

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If you’re numbers driven, it is unquestionable that Holy Family Catholic High School students succeed. The numbers prove year, after year, after year that they are prepared for college.

What are the indicators? Here are some of the biggies:

  • Average ACT Score (2018): 25.5; Average ACT Score of Top 25% (2018): 31.5; Average ACT Score of Top 10% (2018): 32.61
  • College Attendance (2018): 94% (2-Year College attendance (2017) 1%, Athletic Opportunity (2018) with plans to attend college: 5%)
  • College Completion Rate 6 years out of high school: 84% (National Avg. 53%) Source: National Student Clearinghouse, tracks students for six-years in 98% of all colleges

What the numbers don’t tell is…WHY?

  • WHY do Holy Family students routinely outperform Minnesota students taking the ACT by an average of 5 points over the past 5 years?
  • WHY do Holy Family graduates succeed their first year in college?
  • WHY do Holy Family students graduate from college way above averages from other high schools, according to The National Student Clearinghouse?

“One of the things people always point to is ACT test scores,” says Kathie Brown, Holy Family Catholic High School principal. “Yet test scores are not everything. It’s important to be a thoughtful, reflective, rational thinker, and to take action when you have strengths to be active. You can’t have other people think and do things for you. That is what is important in post-secondary education.”

With that, we set out to put our finger on some of the specifics that answer why Holy Family Catholic High School students succeed in college. We asked five experts, all of whom have worked with Holy Family students and seen them succeed in college and beyond. They are:

  • Kathie Brown, Holy Family Catholic High School Principal
  • Jeanne Weber, Owner, collegeONE, helping students organize and streamline the college application process
  • Melissa Livermore, Holy Family Dean for Academic Support
  • Josh Rutz, Holy Family Counselor

Three Reasons Holy Family Students Succeed

Based on independent interviews with each of these experts committed to helping students achieve success beyond Holy Family, there are a number of reasons why they are successful in college, starting with year one. But these three stand out:

1. Students Leave with Exceptional Writing and Communication Skills. Brown admits this can be a challenge in a society driven by digital devices. But that doesn’t change the need to be articulate, she says. When it comes to excelling in college, students with exceptional writing and verbal skills stand out among peers.

Kathie Brown: “If you can’t communicate well, your ideas will die with you. Our kids are not afraid to express their ideas. They can speak in public and they know how to write when they leave here. They are going to wind up helping their peers in college.”

Jeanne Weber: “There seems to be an emphasis on writing (at Holy Family) in more than just English class. I see a focus on writing in history and many of the other classes. This makes Holy Family kids stronger communicators than what I see from other schools. Even when they sit down with an adult, they are a little more at ease. They listen and have great communication skills.”

Josh Rutz: “One thing we consistently hear is that the workload, particularly the written papers, helps our students succeed in college. Alumni often say when it comes to knowing how to study, knowing the expectations of how to be good students and writing papers in college, they say they are well prepared. Doesn’t matter what college they attend. It seems every single student is saying they are well prepared.”

2. Opportunities Build Leadership Skills. Small numbers seem to deliver big results at Holy Family. With an average student-teacher ratio of 13:1, students can’t fly under the radar at Holy Family. Plus, they participate in extracurricular activities in extremely high numbers. The result is an expectation that Holy Family students lead.

Melissa Livermore: “Almost 100 percent of our students are involved in something, and many in more than one thing. By the time they leave Holy Family, our students have excellent time management skills because they are so involved.”

Josh Rutz: “(Holy Family) Students are not just focusing on school, but every other aspect in their lives—volunteering, work, sports, clubs, activities, and in faith and religious aspects. If anything, they’re too busy. Sometimes, they overwork themselves because they are such great leaders and want to have an impact on all aspects of life. One example: We bring kids on service trips all over the world. Those experiences change our kids in great ways. That’s why they do so well in college and after.”

Jeanne Weber: “When I look at Holy Family kids, the biggest advantage they have is the ability to participate. They have great social interactions, which comes from being in a small school, expecting students to take leadership roles and help out others. Participation helps them with leadership skills. They understand the nature of college, and that they’re going there to learn stuff. They’re just a little more well rounded and make good decisions while in college. They are substantially prepared to take that on.”

3. Holy Family Students Advocate for Themselves and Others. Often overlooked, this skill possibly should be at the top of this list. It shows confidence, drive, leadership and independent learning at a very high level.

Jeanne Weber: “Holy Family students are very confident. They’re not boastful, but they are confident. If they see something that needs to be done, they do it. And they know when they need help. At Holy Family, there is an expectation that you are going to do well. Whatever that well is for you. And that’s a reflection of college.”

Josh Rutz: “Holy Family students are not afraid to ask questions. They become great self-advocates and advocates for others. We push and see growth in that from 9th to 12th grade. No matter where they are at, they are willing to ask for help or help each other out when in need. It provides that feeling of never being alone.”

Kathie Brown: “Holy Family students believe in goals. They know it takes practice and time. They know that, ‘Just because I want, doesn’t mean I can have.’ They keep going after it. I love the persistence and perseverance. When catapulted in new places, they are still OK. They know these are the things I need to do and these are the people I need to find to succeed.”

Holy Family students become critical thinkers.

While those three reasons are the consensus favorites, there are many more reasons Holy Family students succeed in college. Here are a few additional thoughts from our experts on why Holy Family Catholic High School students are ready for a successful college experience, starting with day one.

  • Holy Family Students Think About Thinking. It is almost a lost skill in the digital age, says Brown. “They reflect about what they do and why they do it. They have great thoughts and are not afraid to express ideas.”

Livermore agrees: “We want to make sure students are geared toward learning and understanding. Not just for a grade or to check a box. We want them to learn and understand, and think about thinking.”

  • Students Experience Challenging Course Rigor. “We have high standards and hold all students to them,” Livermore adds. “This gives them confidence to take reasonable risks, such as trying new classes that they wouldn’t have before. It doesn’t scare them off, because they know how to do it, and that they can do it.”
  • Life Skills Are Taught at Holy Family. “Students leave here knowing what they need for a successful future,” Brown says. “They’re able to collaborate with peers; work with professors and faculty; and develop a sense of service and true caring for others. These all translate into aspects they’ll use in their lives and the working world.”
  • “Family Network” = Success. “The family atmosphere here pushes kids at a different level,” Rutz says. “When they have hard times and fall, they know where to turn. They come back here, turn to their families and turn to their experiences here at Holy Family that helped them grow. They have the confidence to tackle life. And life is not always easy.”
  • A Sense of Sacrifice and Direction. “I do think Holy Family kids, because their family is paying for high school, have a sense that people are sacrificing to send them there,” Weber adds. “And, maybe because of that, they have a better sense of what direction they want to head in. They can confidently take that step into college.”

Attend our Fall Open House and find out what’s waiting at Holy Family for your child.  Open house details and registration available HERE.

Want to keep up to date on the day-to-day happenings at Holy Family? Like us on Facebook!

Jan 01

Geurs receives Schulz Family Scholarship

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Commencement ceremonies are wonderful opportunities to share good news with our community. Each year as Holy Family Catholic High School acknowledges individuals for academic success and senior awards, we also celebrate our families’ returns on their investments as we announce the college scholarships dollars offered and accepted. Principal Kathie Brown used these words to announce this year’s totals:

All of our students have great plans for their lives. It is wonderful when colleges and universities acknowledge potential and are able to offer scholarships to help young people meet their goals. I am going to give you two numbers: one is the amount of scholarship money this class of 110 has been offered; the second is the amount these students have chosen to accept. Both numbers are important as they signify confidence in the knowledge, skills, and attitudes of our students and reflect the value of your investment in a Holy Family education.The HFCHS Class of 2019 earned $14,243,184 in college scholarships and accepted approximately $3,824,350.

This year Holy Family is proud to have its first recipient of the $20,000 Richard M. Schulz Family Foundation College Scholarship, Julia Geurs. Julia is an honor student, multi-sport athlete, captain of the state consolation champions HF Girls Basketball, a campus minister, and well-known for her kindness to others, especially the underclassmen who were part of her sports programs. We caught up with Julie to learn more about the scholarship and her high school experience.

HF: How did you hear about the scholarship?
I heard about the scholarship through an announcement that Mr. Rutz made during an Leadership Institute meeting.

HF: Was it a difficult process?
The process was super easy and went smoothly. The application was very straightforward and well explained. Mr. Rutz really helped me along the process by helping me with downloading transcripts, reading my short answer in the application, etc.

HF: What activities were you involved in during high school?

Julia: During high school I was involved in tennis and basketball for all four years. I also was a part of Honors Society. I played softball for one year, and I was apart of equality club senior year.

HF: What classes did you particularly enjoy?
Julia: 
I had a great experience with all of my classes at HF, and they were more enjoyable because of all the understanding teachers. Specifically, I really enjoyed Chemistry, Catholic Social Teaching, Morality, and Clay.

HF: Do you have a major in mind for college? If so, why did you choose it?
Julia: In college, I plan on studying something in the medical field. Right now I am thinking either becoming a nurse or a physicians assistant! I’ve chosen this path because I really want to help others and impact their lives for the better.

HF: Where are you attending college and why did you choose that college?
Julia:  I’m very excited to be attending University of St. Thomas. I chose St. Thomas because it is an excellent school, and I know it will be a great fit for me.

HF: What factors contributed to your academic success?
I was academically successful because of all the support and help I had from different teachers throughout the years at HF. I also attribute it to being organized and determined to do well. I put a lot of work into my school work and studied hard.

HF: Anything else you’d like to share as it pertains to your four years at Holy Family?
Julia: I am so incredibly grateful for my four years at HF because I grew to become a better person through the people I met and the experience I had. I also always felt very welcomed and supported by the staff. It is a great community, and I am extremely happy I made the choice to attend Holy Family.

Holy Family’s summer enrollment season is underway. Parents are discovering what Holy Family has to offer their children. Visit our website or give our admissions team a call at 952-443-1955 to learn more about our school and our Family.