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St. James School: A Vibrant Community in Spite of the Pandemic

Teachers, students, and parents at St. James School in Waynesburg are finding creative ways to be connected. Every morning, sixth grader Landry Steiner, leads a prayer on Facebook to start the day. Parents are sending videos with their children saying the Pledge of Allegiance at home, which is posted on St. James Facebook every morning as well. 
Parents have been sending pictures and videos of learning projects, chosen and prepared by the children.  A few of the topics have included How to Change the Oil in the Car, presented by third grader, Miss Dakota Broad; How to make a Bug Out Bag by third grader Matthew Michel; Planting and Germinating Seeds by kindergartener Alexzander Hutchinson; The History of WWE by fourth grader Doc Dexter; and the ALP Striker Ocean Tug by kindergartener Timmy Gardner. The children’s presentations give evidence that they are engaged and enthusiastic about learning. The pictures and videos are shared on Facebook and the school’s website.
Story time is hosted every Tuesday and Thursday morning, again on the school’s Facebook page, by the Preschool and Kindergarten teachers. Books for older students are also included in the reading time. 
The school is having SWAP Day every Wednesday. Parents go to the Pavilion to pick up new learning packets, prepared by the classroom teachers, and drop off the completed work in bins for each grade level. Children remain in the car and parents keep a safe social distance if they encounter other parents.
On the first SWAP Day, the teachers stood along the driveway with signs to show parents and students how much they are missed and loved. Pictured is Beth Geroge, first grade teacher, with her signs. 
Mamie Gonzales shared that her sons were thrilled to see the teachers greeting them as they came for SWAP Day. The boys felt like they were ridng in a parade, waving to the teachers. Mamie exclaimed that, “It was the most beautiful and amazing scene. The fact that the teachers woud do that for the kids and parents was a testament to the way St. James School goes above and beyond on a daily basis. My boys were happy to see that their teachers were okay through this pandemic.”

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