2018-19 Family Handbook



St. Mary Catholic School


Parent/Student Handbook

Message From the Principal


July 26,  2019


Dear St. Mary Families,


Welcome to the new school year-a year filled with much change and hopeful possibilities!   It is with a grateful heart, filled with child-like anticipation, that I write this letter.  I am humbled and honored to be a part of this exceptionally caring community and I look forward to the work we will do together in helping our children get to Heaven.


In celebration of the kind regard the people of this community have for one another, this year’s  theme is Unity.  In Psalm 133:1, we read “How good and pleasant it is when God’s people live together in Unity.”  Unity embodies the past themes of Love and the verse from Romans 12:5-”So we, though many, are one body in Christ, and individually members one of another.” 


Therefore, it is our goal this year, to focus on nurturing the bonds within our St. Mary school families which will serve to enrich our church and community. Our Holy Father, Pope Francis, proclaimed that “the aim is to emphasize family love as a vocation and a way to holiness, and to understand and share the profound and redeeming significance of family relationships in daily life.”  With family unity in mind, all school decisions, expectations and offerings will be made in an effort to support our families in building strong, loving relationships with one another and with our Lord Jesus Christ.


The staff at Saint Mary is committed to partnering with our beautiful families to grow in holiness.  We have some new faces in our school community, as well as some familiar faces that have moved to different grade levels.  It gives me such joy to know that I will be leading and working with such a vibrant team of exceptional and compassionate teachers that have demonstrated to me over the summer how much they care about kids and our families.


Our Final Registration will be next week on Sunday, July 28th from 9:30-2:30.  Make sure to get online prior to our Final Registration to fill out your registration forms.  Once you have filled out the forms, make sure to print them before your press “Submit”.  Please bring the forms will you to Final Registration.  We ask that you please take care of any outstanding balances you may have at Final Registration.  We will not be able to complete your registration until these balances have been paid in full.


Please write these important dates on your calendar and plan to attend:


July 16-27                   Online Registration  

July 28                                    Final Registration

August 10                    Virtus Training

August 14                    First Day of School

August 15                    PTO Meeting


The first day of school will be Wednesday, August 14th with a noon dismissal.  Half of the Kindergarten will begin school on this day and then the other half will have their first day of school on Friday, August 16th with a noon dismissal.  Grades 1-8 will have a full day of classes on Friday, August 16th.  Please note that we will NOT have school on Thursday, August 15th.  This is a Holy Day of Obligation-celebrating the Assumption of Mary.


Drop Off and Pick Up procedures have changed slightly.  Please be patient as you drop your children off at either the 9th Street Entrance or the Front Office Entrance.  Children are to exit your vehicle on the right-hand side of your vehicle.  No students are to cross 9th street to enter or exit the building.  If you have any notes or items to drop off at the office, please park your car in the school parking lot and come in to the office.  Please pay attention to the directions in which you drive as you exit the school parking lot-follow the direction of the arrows on the pavement to help keep traffic flowing smoothly and safely.


This year all K-8 students will meet in the gymnasium before the start of school.  If your child is having breakfast, please drop them off at the 9th Street entrance between 7:15-7:35 AM.   All other students should be dropped off at either the 9th Street entrance or Office Entrance between 7:35-7:45 AM.  Students will be greeted and directed to the Gym.  At 7:45 AM, staff and students will start the day together with morning prayer and reciting The Pledge of Allegiance.  At 7:50, students will be escorted by their classroom teacher to their classrooms.  Any students arriving after 7:50 should enter through the School Office entrance to sign in and will be marked Tardy.  Preschool students are to enter through the School Office Entrance doors between 7:45-7:55 AM.


It is my hope that all our families will join and participate in our Parent-Teacher Organization.  This organization does a great deal to support our school and provide much needed educational tools to help our teachers provide the best education possible for our students.  Our first PTO meeting will be Thursday, August 22nd at 6:30 PM in  the Gym.  All other meetings will take place monthly on the third Thursday of every month.  Please consider joining us for food, fellowship, and planning.  Let’s ALL work together to make our school the best it can be for our kids!


We have so much to be grateful for here at Saint Mary Catholic School.  We are grateful for our Pastors-Father Nicholas Voelker and Father Devin Burns, all our Staff, Students, Parents, and Volunteers.  We are grateful for this huge gift of Catholic Education.  It fills my heart with such gratitude to be here and I look forward to meeting you at Final Registration.


May God Bless You!


Sincerely Yours in Christ,

Natalie Steiner



St. Mary Catholic School Prayer

Dear Father,

You sent Your Son into the world to be the way, the truth and the life.  Help us keep our school a place where we are proud of what we stand for and what others have stood for.  May we remember those who have walked these halls before us and those that will follow.  Help us keep our Catholic Christian beliefs an important part of all we do.  Thank you God, for giving us the opportunity to attend a school where the Master Teacher, Christ and His Word remains constant and is the foundation on which our lives are built.  By your grace may St. Mary Catholic School continue to bring this good news and be faithful in teaching His way.  In Your name, we pray.  Amen.


St. Mary Catholic School Mission Statement

St. Mary Catholic School exists to provide students with a Catholic learning environment in which they are challenged to maximum growth spiritually, academically, emotionally and physically.

St. Mary Catholic School Philosophy Statement

St. Mary Catholic School seeks to provide a Catholic learning environment conducive to educating the whole child.  It draws on the wealth of its Catholic and cultural heritage to offer quality formation in academic knowledge and skills, religious truth, Christian values, and personal development.


We believe that children can learn by word and example to live as followers of Christ and take their place in society as productive citizens and active Catholics who can meet the challenges of life with Catholic moral values and principles.


The first responsibility for the overall development of the child rests with parents to develop the child’s intelligence, emotions, will and respect through subjects taught in the light of the Gospel.


Catholic Diocese of Wichita Mission Statement

Together with the family, the parish, and each other, We will FORM EACH STUDENT INTO A DISCIPLE OF JESUS CHRIST Who seeks the Truth, grows to love It, And learns to live It.


Catholic School Standards

“Catholic schools seek, with God’s grace, to form the total person in the image of Christ.  This goal cannot be confined to the classroom but will only be achieved through the totality of the student’s activities, experiences, lessons, and relationships.  Accordingly, the school’s resources must be directed to the fulfillment of the following standards.


Elementary Catholic School - Students are expected to...

1.         Know Church teaching, practice Christian virtue, and participate in their parish faithfully; moreover receive the sacraments all of which were instituted by Christ and each of which has its own vital place in Christian living

2.         Demonstrate a reverence for life and respect for self, family, authority and all cultures

3.         Have an informed conscience, distinguish right from wrong, and know how to make choices based on Catholic/Christian values

4.         Be respectful and responsible, compassionate and just toward others

5.         Demonstrate the knowledge, skills, and desire to continue to learn successfully in middle school or high school

6.         Be independent, responsible, and self-disciplined decision-makers who set priorities and boundaries, lead, and work on teams, make sacrifices to achieve goals, monitor progress, and apply creative and critical thinking skills

7.         Have the reading, writing, listening and speaking skills needed to communicate effectively

8.         Read at or above grade level unless there is a handicapping disability

9.         Master basic knowledge of religion, language arts, mathematics, geography, history, civics, science, and fine arts

10.       Utilize appropriate technology to access and communicate information




Catholic High School - Students are expected to...

1.         Articulate the purpose and aim of human existence

2.         See the Trinity - Father, Son and Holy Spirit - as central to their lives and have a personal relationship with Christ and His Church

3.         Know what it means to be Catholic and to be committed to practicing, defending, and spreading the faith as stewards of time, talent, and treasure

4.         Have respect for self and others and act prudently, justly, and temperately on a consistent basis

5.         Apply moral principles to define issues and seek solutions in the workplace, the classroom, and daily life

6.         Live as a good family member, worker, and citizen in a rapidly changing world

7.         Be committed to an ethic of service to family, church, and community

8.         Be prepared to achieve the level of education commensurate with ability

9.         Demonstrate the skills and desire to continue to learn throughout life

10.       Think logically and communicate effectively by speaking, listening, reading, and writing; using technology to access, organize, and present information independently and as a team member or leader

11.              Recognize and understand the power of the fine arts to nurture culture and influence everyday behavior


Core Values


“That they all may be one.”  (John 17:21)

United as one family with our bishop, Catholic schools are at the service of the family, the

parish, and the common good.  Grounded in charity, we honor the dignity of every human

person with respect for the most vulnerable.

“Let no one have contempt for your youth; but set an example for those who believe, in speech,

conduct, love, faith, and purity.”  (1 Timothy 5:12)



“Remain faithful to what you have learned…” (2 Timothy 3:14)

Loyal to the teachings of Jesus Christ as taught in our Catholic faith, we believe that the

formation of disciples is our first purpose, our critical function, and our ultimate measuring

stick.  Trusting in God, we have a relentless passion for finding the best way to provide Catholic

education, moving forward alone, if necessary. 

“Stir into flame the gift of God which you have.”  (2 Timothy 1:6)



“Place your gifts at the service of one another.”  (1 Peter 4:10)

The grateful response of a Christian disciple who recognizes and receives God’s gifts and shares

 these gifts in love of God and neighbor.

“Guard this rich trust…”  (2 Timothy 1:14)

General Information

School Office Hours                 7:30 - 4:00

School Hours                           7:50 - 3:30

Teacher Hours                          7:30 - 3:45


Security Policy - For the security of the children, the only doors that will remain unlocked during the school day will be the entry door off the parking lot.  All visitors must check in at the office first.  The doors on 9th street will remain locked during the school day. 


Daily Schedule:

    7:15-7:45     Breakfast

            7:30     Drop off begins

            7:40     First bell/building open to students

            7:45     5 minute bell/Drop off for preschool begins

            7:50     Class begins (K-8)

            8:00     Mass (Wednesday, Thursday, and Friday)

            8:00     Preschool begins

          11:00     Preschool dismissal

            3:30     School dismissal

            3:30     Guardian Angels (after school care)

            6:00     Guardian Angels closes (on early dismissal days, there will be no Guardian Angels)









Table of Contents

Academics                                                                                                                                8-10




Accreditation                                                                                                                            10

Athletics                                                                                                                                   10-13


Catholic Schools Athletic League (CSAL) – Diocesan

Eagle Booster Club

Eligibility Guidelines

Letter Program


Attendance                                                                                                                               13-14

Behavior Expectations                                                                                                               14-17

Bullying / Harassment Policy – Diocesan                                                                                    17-18

Cell Phone and Property from Home                                                                                          18

Chain of Command                                                                                                                    18

Communication / School Closings                                                                                               18-19

Counseling                                                                                                                                19

Dress Code                                                                                                                               19-20

Eighth Grade Recognition                                                                                                           20-21

Eighth Grade Trip                                                                                                                      21

Enrollment                                                                                                                                21-22

Events and Programs                                                                                                                 22

Fees                                                                                                                                         22

Field Trip Drivers                                                                                                                      22

Field Trip Policy                                                                                                                        23

Food Program                                                                                                                           23

Gymnasium                                                                                                                               24

Keys                                                                                                                                        24

Lockers                                                                                                                                                24

Parking Lot                                                                                                                               25

Parent Teacher Organization (PTO)                                                                                           25

Recognition                                                                                                                               26

Registered Sexual Offenders                                                                                                      26

Respect for Property                                                                                                                 26-27

School Council                                                                                                                          27

Service Hours                                                                                                                           27

Student Pregnancy – Diocesan                                                                                                   28

Substance Abuse – Diocesan                                                                                                     28-29

Suspected Abuse – Diocesan                                                                                                     29

Threats of Violence – Diocesan                                                                                                 29-30

Uniform Assistance                                                                                                                   30

Visiting Classrooms                                                                                                                   30

Virtus – Diocesan                                                                                                                     31

Volunteers                                                                                                                                31

Service Hour Log Sheet for Families                                                                                          32


Academics: Classes

Beyond the core classes of Religion, Mathematics, English/Language Arts, Social Studies and  Science, St. Mary offers the classes listed below.  Grades given in these courses will be counted toward Honor Roll status.



Students in K-8th will attend Art class weekly.  They will be expected to participate at all times. 



Band is offered to students in 5th - 8th grade.  Band is an OPTIONAL course, but is encouraged.  Students in band are expected to participate at all times.  Students may receive a school letter for participating in band.  Students should take instruments home every evening or keep them in the designated band equipment area.  The school is not responsible for lost or misplaced instruments and supplies. The programs are a part of the Band grade.  Those not participating will have one grade lower for the marking period as it is a performance based class.


Computer Lab

Students in K-8th will attend Computer Lab weekly.  They will be expected to participate at all times.  All students and parents, grades K-8, are required to sign a Student-Parent Agreement for Computer and Internet Use.  These will be available at registration and in the school office and must be returned to the homeroom teacher before the student will be allowed to participate in Computer class.



Students attend library class and may check out books on a weekly basis.  The student may not check out any books until the overdue book is returned.  If a book is lost, stolen, or returned damaged, a replacement fee must be paid. 



Students K-8 will participate in General Music class two times per week.  Students are expected to participate at all times and participate in the Christmas and Spring programs.  The programs are a part of the Music grade as this is a performance based class.  Those not participating in the program will have one grade lower for the marking period.


Physical Education

Students in K-8 will participate in P.E. two times per week.  Students in P.E. are expected to participate at all times.  Students with physical injuries/conditions that prohibit P.E. participation should have a note indicating the ailment and duration from their family physician. 



Students in grades 5-8 will participate in electives.  One elective will be selected quarterly, completing four yearly. 


Academics: Grades

The academic year is divided into four quarters of nine weeks each.  An evaluation is issued at the end of these periods through the report card.

Report cards will be issued at the end of each academic quarter.  Midway through the 9-week period, progress reports will be made available electronically.  Parents of 3rd - 8th graders, may access their grades at anytime through Powerschool.  If you need your access code, please contact the office.  For new families, these will be given out the week of Back to School Night.

Parent-Teacher conferences will be scheduled during the first quarter and are available on an as requested basis at the end of the third quarter.  Other conferences may be arranged as needed and requested by the teacher or parent.


The following grading scale will be used to indicate performance levels of the students at St. Mary Catholic School:


A+       99 – 100

A         94 - 98

A-        92 - 93

B+       90 - 91

B          85 - 89

B-         83 - 84

C+       81 - 82

C         76 - 80

C-        74 - 75

D+       72 - 73

D         67 - 71

D-        65 - 66

F          64 or below


**Kindergarten through 2nd grade uses a standards based report card**

ES/4 – Exceeds Standard         Very rare, student consistently demonstrates understanding at advanced level one or more grade levels above normal instruction

MS/3 – Meets Standard           Meets grade level expectations; shows consistent understanding; demonstrates mastery of grade level standards

AS/2 – Approaches Standard   Makes progress toward meeting grade level standards; shows some inconsistency in understanding and needs improvement

AW/1 – Academic Warning      Does not meet grade level expectations; has consistent difficulty



Promotion is based on satisfactory achievement and conduct and is made at the discretion of the principal.  If a student doesn’t meet standard on a state or diocesan assessment, the school shall require successful remediation (a minimum of 30 hours per assessment or grade through summer school or school approved outside tutoring program) before promotion.



1.         The possibility of retention has been brought to the parent’s attention at the earliest possible time, usually at or before spring conferences.

2.         The classroom teacher has placed the child on an ILP and documented progress.

3.         The classroom teacher has notified the principal of this possibility.

4.         Special Education services have been thought through as a possibility.

5.         School attendance has been reviewed.

6.         The parent/guardian has been involved in the final decision concerning promotion/retention.

7.         A final report card has been filed in the school office/student record stating the decision made.

8.         Adequate yearly progress has not been met according to state and diocesan guidelines.

9.         Failure to attend summer school, if required, is reason to retain.


Students may be retained in the same grade for a variety of reasons.  Teachers will consult with the principal any time retention is contemplated.  The school will consult with the parents as early as possible.  Students who fail a semester in any given subject must makeup their work in summer school.  If a student fails several subjects, he/she may be considered for retention in the same grade level. 

The school reserves the right to determine appropriate grade placement, and all diocesan schools shall respect that placement if the student transfers.


Summer School:

Students may be required to attend summer school for one or more of the following reasons:

1.         Low test scores and assessment scores

2.         Failing one or more subject

3.         10 or more absences (AM or PM) during a semester

4.         Not making adequate yearly progress per state and diocesan guidelines

5.         20 or more tardies during a school year



Academics: Homework

Homework assignments can extend learning begun in the classroom, build independent study habits, and encourage children to think and work creatively outside of the school.  Additionally, homework builds responsibility in students.  Research has shown that an adequate “average” amount of homework is 10 minutes per grade level.  So a 5th grader, on average should have about 50 minutes of homework a night.  Keep in mind that some children are much quicker or slower than the “average” student in completing work.


When a child has honestly spent more than the required time on homework and still isn’t finished, the parents should state in writing to the teacher how much time was spent and what the child was having a difficult time completing specifically.  The teacher then will make accommodations and/or allow additional time. 




St. Mary Catholic School is an accredited school, having been formally recognized and accredited by the Kansas Department of Education. 



Athletics: Coaching

Coaches will have a meeting with all participants at the beginning of each season or activity to inform their team or group of what is expected of them.  St. Mary letters may be earned for those that follow the guidelines and meet all requirements.  Students will be honored at the end of the year Awards Assembly so individual team parties are not necessary.

All coaches may be required to attend a Diocesan Coaches Clinic and receive a coach card prior to any sporting events (as required by the sport or activity).  All coaches and helpers must attend Virtus before the sport season / practices begin.  Coaches must have pre-approval by the principal prior to any purchases.


Athletics: Catholic School Activity League (Diocesan)

Parents, teachers, coaches, and the school administrator will assess student/athlete performance on an individual basis according to these criteria throughout the sport/activity season(s).  Students must have a current physical (within one calendar year of the sport / activity).  When a student does not meet expectations in any or all of these areas, the following process will be adhered to:


1.         Only students, who have attended school for half day on the day of the game, will be allowed to practice or participate in game activities unless prior approval is granted.


2.         Grades will be figured weekly by all teachers and submitted to the principal and/or coach.


3.         Any student with an “F” in any subject, during any given grade check period, becomes ineligible to play (practice and games) for the next week (Friday to Friday). 


4.         Students who are suspended, whether in school or out-of-school, will not be allowed to participate in school activities including practice or games during the suspension period.  Even though school suspensions may not result, the administrator may place students on the ineligible list for not complying with school rules and policies.  A second ineligible period for behavior or failure to comply with rules may place the student on the ineligible list for the remainder of the sporting season.


5.         A combination of an academic ineligibility and a behavioral ineligibility during two different weeks will constitute two ineligibility periods, therefore may result in ineligibility for the remainder of the sporting season.


6.         Parents and coaches will be notified when a student is determined ineligible.


7.         Failure to comply with this policy will result in forfeiture of contests and games for the entire team.



Athletics: Eagle Booster Club

The Booster Club is to provide more SPIRIT, PRIDE, and ENTHUSIASM within our school.  The Booster Club will support Academics and Athletics.  The Booster Club will encourage enthusiasm, growth of students through competition, friendship, and sportsmanship.  Participation by ALL STUDENTS in extracurricular activities will be encouraged.


The Booster Club may help in the following areas:

Letters, equipment purchases, upkeep, assistance with academic programs and sporting games, uniforms, publicize the academics (Honor Roll) and athletic events, scheduling games and officials, and testing and academic awards.  All purchases must be pre-approved by the principal.



Athletics: Eligibility Guidelines

Extracurricular programs can make many valuable contributions to the entire St. Mary educational process.  Many of the lessons learned and habits acquired will benefit student athletes for years to come.  In order for these contributions to be present, only qualified students can be involved in athletics and extra-curricular activities.  Guidelines have been established to determine the students deserving to represent St. Mary Catholic School.


All athletic participants must follow and meet the guidelines set by the CSAL.  This includes all students participating in a sport with Newton USD 373.  These guidelines will be closely monitored.  Students must have a current physical and up-to-date immunizations in order to participate.



Athletics: Letter Program - Grades 6 thru 8

Students who participate in sports at St. Mary Catholic School, through the Catholic Schools Activity League or when a school team is not available participate through the Newton Public School District, have the opportunity to receive recognition through the SMCS Eagle Booster Club Letter Program.  To earn a letter in any sport or activity, students meet or exceed the expectations of their respective coaches and or sponsors in the following areas:

ACADEMICS - Students at St. Mary Catholic School will work to their fullest potential and meet the requirements set forth in the CSAL / St. Mary Catholic School Academic Eligibility Guidelines. 

ATTENDANCE - Students at St. Mary Catholic School are expected to be present at all team practices and games, unless prior arrangements are made with the coach.  An unexcused absence will disqualify the student from the letter program.

ATTITUDE - Students at St. Mary Catholic School will portray positive conduct and attitude at all practices and games.  When you are in the community, you represent yourself, your team and your school.


Athletic Letters

Athletic letters may be awarded to any athlete who has fully participated in a sport or activity.  CSAL rules state that the minimum grade level is sixth grade to participate in the league.  For the Newton Public School, seventh and eighth graders only are eligible to participate on teams that will be awarded letters (only if a St. Mary team is not available).


Band Letters

Band letters may be awarded to any sixth through eighth grade students fully participating in band for the entire school year. 



7th and 8th grade girls fully participating for the entire year and meeting the CSAL Eligibility Guidelines will earn a Cheerleading letter.  Members are expected to be at all performances..


Other Guidelines

The first time a student earns a letter according to the above standards, he or she will be awarded the actual letter and the appropriate pin.  For each letter earned after the initial one, a “bar” will be awarded.

Athletics: Parents

Parents must remember that as primary educators of their child, they must always lead by example.  Positive behavior and good sportsmanship is expected of our students, families and fans.  Disruptive actions or words will not be allowed.  The athletic director, coach or principal has the right to ask any person not following our expectations to leave the premises.




1.         Regular attendance is essential for progress and mandatory by law.  Students who have been absent are required to makeup the work missed.  Students are expected to work with their individual teacher to complete the work promptly.


2.         A student will have as many days to return work that they were absent, so if your child is sick for two days he/she will have two days to turn work into their teacher.  Teachers are not required to provide homework prior to any absence.


3.         When a student is going to be missing from classes, parents are required to make a phone call to the school office (282-1974) by 9:00a.m. to inform the school of the absence. 


4.         A student who has been absent is required to present to his/her homeroom teacher a written excuse signed by the parent or guardian citing the reason and dates for the absence.  If no reason is stated, it will be considered an unexcused absence.


5.         Compulsory Educational Law requires all children to attend school.  St. Mary Catholic School will excuse absences for the following: illness, medical or dental treatment, death or serious illness in family, unusual or unavoidable emergencies, and school related activities (such as being a page in Topeka).  Students who miss ten sessions of any class in a semester are required to attend summer school.  Retention will also be considered.


6.         Students who must leave the grounds during school hours must have a written request, signed by a parent/guardian.  This note should be presented to the homeroom teacher before classes begin.  When a student is to be picked up during the school day, the parent must come to the school office to sign the child out.


7.         If a student becomes ill or is injured, the teacher will refer the student to the school secretary.  Should it become necessary for him/her to go home, the teacher, principal and parent will be informed.  The child must be signed out through the school office.

***It is very important that the office has updated telephone numbers at all times.***


8.         Students are strongly discouraged from taking vacation days during the days school is in session.  If it is absolutely unavoidable to take vacation days, parents must notify the principal a minimum of one week in advance.  Days taken without prior notice, may result in no credit for class work missed.  Teachers are not required to provide homework prior to any absence.  These days count as unexcused absences.


9.         If a student is tardy to school, a note must be sent or a phone call must be made to the school office explaining the reason.  Tardies will be excused for bad weather days and unavoidable circumstances/emergencies. 


10.       Occasionally students will be late.  However, when patterns of tardiness occur, students start the day behind and try to catch up the rest of the day.  When a child reaches 5 tardies in the first semester, a detention will be assigned and if there are 20 or more tardies in the year, summer school will be required to help make up some of the time lost.


11.       Students not picked up by 3:45p.m. will be sent to Guardian Angels.  The after school program is located in the art room and closes at 6:00p.m.



Attendance Procedures

The following guideline will be used for partial absences:

*Leave before 9:00a.m. = absent full day

*Leave after 9:00a.m. and before 2:30p.m. = absent ½ day

*Absent on an early dismissal day is counted as a full day absence



Attendance Policy (Diocesan)

To obtain the maximum benefit from a Catholic school education, students need to be in school everyday.  Parents are to be reminded that the compulsory education law of Kansas requires students to be in school every day unless excused by the principal.  Being absent for such reasons as vacations, sporting events, school activities where the student is not a participant, shopping, babysitting, or travel is not acceptable, and parents should not ask for their children to be excused for such reasons.

When an elementary or middle school student has missed ten sessions of any class in a semester or twenty sessions of any class in a year, the school will require the time to be made up, at parent cost, in a program approved by the school, and may retain the student in the same grade if lack of progress so indicates.

There are students whose chronic health condition or other education need makes regular attendance difficult.  Such needs are to be substantiated in a Health Plan or Learning Plan, and the attendance requirement may be adjusted accordingly.



Behavior Expectations (amended by School Council 2010)

The privilege of attending St. Mary Catholic School carries with it the responsibility to maintain standards designed to ensure acceptable student behavior at all times.  The following set of general behavior expectations for students will help maintain a Christian environment in which there can be quality teaching and learning.  Failure to adhere to these expectations will result in the following consequences and steps.

SMCS Honor Code

I will show courtesy through respect for others’ feelings, rights, time and property.

I will respect my own property and be responsible for my own behavior as an individual and as a member of a group.

I will work and play in a safe way.

I will use appropriate language and gestures in school and on the school grounds at all times.

I will take pride in SMCS and will help make it a good place in which to attend and learn.


Student Conduct

The student discipline plan for St. Mary Catholic School is based on the belief that St. Mary students are capable of making positive choices concerning their behavior and that these choices protect the rights of others, particularly as it relates to a safe and orderly school environment.


When problems are recognized with a student’s behavior, the discipline guidelines provide objective guidance for school administration in dealing with concerns.  The discipline guidelines are organized in three categories.  Category III contains the most severe and serious student behaviors.  The severity of the behaviors decreases through Categories II and I.


Each category has a “point value” assigned to the student behaviors, along with an administrative consequence for each behavior.  All students begin each school year with zero points.  If a student accumulates twenty-five points, a conference will be held involving the student, parents, administration, pastor and others as appropriate.  If a student accumulates fifty points, a formal hearing will be held to possibly remove the student from further attendance at St. Mary Catholic School.  Points accumulate on a yearly basis.  If a student is removed from school attendance for a period of time less than the end of a school year, the student returns to school with a balance of twenty-five points.


Primary Grades K-4

Behavior for grades Kindergarten - Fourth is monitored through the card system: green, yellow, and red (or similar).  Individual classrooms will set grade appropriate consequences that will be communicated at Back-to-School Night.


Middle School Grades 5-8

Behavior for grades Fifth through Eighth is monitored through the Middle School Discipline System.  Emphasis will be placed on positive behavior.  The discipline system will provide student accountability through the use of appropriate consequences.  Violations will be handled through the Honor Card System and the Administrative Referral System.  Parents will be notified for all MAJOR violations and referrals.  Expectations will be communicated at Back-to-School Night.


Honor Card System – grades 5-8

1.         Students adhering to the Honor Code will receive quarterly recognition (ie. individual/classroom incentives, perks, privileges and/or parties)


2.         Students are required to carry their Honor Card at all times.  Students must present their card to a staff member upon request.  Failure to do so may result in an automatic 5 points.

3.         Violations are assigned to a point scale (see list below).

4.         Accumulation of points will result in the following:

            5 points            =          ½ hour detention

            10 points          =          1 hour detention

            15 points          =          1 1/2 hour detention, parent conference

            20 points          =          Saturday School, parent conference

            *25 points        =          1 day in-school suspension, parent conference, administrative referral

            30 points          =          3 days in-school suspension, parent conference, administrative referral

            35 points          =          1-3 days out-of-school suspension, parent conference, probation, administrative referral

            40 points          =          5 days out-of-school suspension, parent conference, disciplinary review

*At 25 points, the student is placed on probation.  Further misbehavior may result in suspensions or expulsion.  The principal may suspend a student up to five days, or longer if a psychological evaluation is required.  The student’s enrollment status at SMCS will be under review by the Administrator and Pastor.


Detention Policy

Detentions will be served at 7:15a.m. or 3:30p.m.  Students will report to the school office for their assignment while in detention.  The focus is on Refocusing/Character Education as well as community service to make up for damages incurred / time lost.  A notice with the detention time will be sent home requiring a signature.  If students are continually turning in assignments late or missing work, then the focus will be on organization and responsibility during this time in order to help develop strategies for the student.


Saturday School

Saturday school will be held once monthly at the supervisor’s convenience from 8:00-12:00.  Students need to check in at the school office.  Notice will be given ahead of time and require a parent signature.


In-School Suspension

In-school suspensions will be served in another classroom or the school office.  A refocusing / character education assignment must be completed first and then the student may do school work.  The student must complete all missed assignments and is responsible for obtaining them prior to the suspension.  All assignments are due the next school day.  Less than full credit may be awarded.


Out-Of-School Suspension

Students are responsible for obtaining all assignments prior to the suspension.  Less than full credit may be awarded.  All assignments are due the next school day.



Expulsion will be used when all other means of discipline have failed, and/or weapons, drugs/alcohol, consecutive suspensions, involvement in any single act that presents a serious threat or places the school/students in possible harm.  Students expelled will not be allowed to enroll in another Diocesan school, and all Kansas schools will be notified of the terms of the expulsion.  Kansas law gives all public schools the right to not admit any student that has been previously expelled.


Category I behaviors (included but not limited to) – 5 to 10 points

Inappropriate language



Any detention assigned


Category II behaviors (included but not limited to) – 10 to 25 points






Any suspension assigned


Category III behaviors (included but not limited to) – automatic review


Drugs or alcohol


The administrator reserves the right to waive and/or deviate from any and all disciplinary regulations for just cause at his or her discretion.


Bullying / Harassment Policy

Bullying is unwanted, aggressive behavior among school aged children that involves a real or perceived power imbalance. The behavior is repeated, or has the potential to be repeated, over time.  Bullying by students is not acceptable.  This conduct need not occur on the school premises or at a school-sponsored event to come within the jurisdiction of the Diocese.


Each school must include in its guidance program periodic training for staff members, volunteers, and students about bullying, harassment, social alienation, and the consequences of such behavior.  Students who are determined to have engaged in bullying will be subject to progressive discipline ranging from mandatory counseling and suspension from participation in school-related activities and privileges, to disciplinary sanctions, up to and including expulsion, as laid out in each school’s handbook.


Harassing behavior by adults cannot be tolerated in Catholic schools, whether it is persistent conduct or a single egregious act.  Behavior is harassment when it has the purpose of creating an intimidating, abusive or offensive environment or unreasonably interferes with an individual’s performance or behavior.  Conduct targeted under this policy need not occur on the school premises or at a school-sponsored event to come under this policy.  Third party persons who come in contact with diocesan employees or students are subject to this policy, whether they are volunteers, clients, family members, or the public (including parents and siblings, contractors, vendors, and others).


Employees who engage in harassment will be disciplined from verbal or written reprimand to suspension and termination as is appropriate.  Third-party persons who violate this policy shall be subject to sanctions up to and including termination of the individual’s relationship to the Catholic school system.


More information on bullying prevention can be found at our school website at www.smcsnewton.org or contact the school office for more information.



Cell Phones / Personal Property from Home

Toys, cards, games, etc. should not be brought to school.  Only with a teacher’s permission is it allowable. Confiscated items may or may not be returned, depending upon the school’s discretion.  St. Mary Catholic School is not responsible for lost or damaged personal property brought from home. 

Cell phones brought for the sole purpose of calling parents after school or practice must be turned off and stored in backpack or locker during school hours.  Taking pictures with camera phones or with other cameras on school grounds without permission from the office is prohibited.  Permission to publish waivers must be signed in order to allow pictures to be taken of students.



Cell Phone Use  (Diocesan):

Catholic school employees and volunteers are expected to use good judgment when operating a motor vehicle.  Research has demonstrated that using a cell phone while driving creates a greater chance of being involved in a motor vehicle accident than other drivers.  Therefore, cell phone use by employees and volunteers while operating a motor vehicle is prohibited when transporting students or other diocesan employees.



Chain of Command

1.         All parental concerns/issues regarding a child or a child’s teacher MUST first be discussed with the child’s teacher.  Parents must make arrangements with the teacher to discuss the concern.


2.         If a parent feels that a problem hasn’t been resolved with the teacher, then the parent should come and see the principal.  The principal will then try and solve the differences.


3.         If the parent has not satisfied the problem or concern after meeting with the principal, a meeting with Pastor and the Principal may be requested.  The result of this meeting will be the final decision.


4.         If a parent has a concern or complaint about the principal, he or she should contact the principal first.  If the concern is not satisfied, follow step three.


*Please refrain from phoning the teacher/principal at home when the matter could be resolved the following school day.



Communication / School Closings

The Alert Now system will be the first and primary communication means from the office.  Please keep your contact information up-to-date.  The school website at www.smcsnewton.org will have the most up-to-date calendar and school information.


Official announcements for school closings resulting from inclement weather will be forwarded to KWCH 12 and other media avenues.

Please check more than one source for closing information.  Sometimes posting is delayed at the station.


St. Mary Catholic School will follow USD 373 schedule for school closings, starting school at a later time, or dismissing early due to inclement weather.  This is for Preschool-8th grades.  If the Newton Public Schools close, so will St. Mary Catholic School.  SMCS will follow the Catholic Diocese of Wichita for other closings.




Counseling may be provided throughout the school year.  This could be individual or group.  In order to have individual counseling for a child a permission form must be signed.  Parents and/or school personnel may recommend counseling through the student assistance team.



Dress Code for Students

Dress is an important factor in the educational environment.  At St. Mary, it is believed that personal appearance affects feeling, attitudes, and actions of the students.  Parents are expected to use good judgment in sending their children to school dressed appropriately.  Clothing should be neat, clean and of proper length and size.  Modest and proper grooming affects the attitude and self-image of the students.  The dress code below cannot address every situation and as such St. Mary reserves the right to make decisions on dress attire.  Dress for Success!


All students shall wear a school uniform.  Both boys and girls must have their shirts tucked in at all times.  Belts must always be worn when there are belt loops. 


St. Mary recommends parents buy school uniforms from SchoolBelles Uniforms.  Parents may purchase items from stores such as Sears, JCPenney, or Wal-Mart.  Items purchased at stores other than SchoolBelles Uniforms for polo shirts, pants and shorts must resemble SchoolBelles polo/pant/short in style, color and length.  Items purchased from stores other than SchoolBelles and not matching the school uniform will not be allowed.



Navy blue uniform pant (all year)

Navy blue uniform shorts - Must be longer than the fingertips when standing straight (August - October and March - May only)

Only white, black or navy blue tights, knee, bobby or ankle socks

Uniform solid red or white knit shirt with long/short sleeves

No turtlenecks are allowed

Leggings may be worn under the jumper during cold weather (at recess only)

Grades K-4: SchoolBelles Uniform green plaid jumper - Jumpers shall be knee length or longer (all year)

Grades 5-8: SchoolBelles Uniform green plaid skirt - Skirts shall be knee length or longer (all year)



Navy blue uniform pant (all year)

Navy blue uniform shorts - Must be longer than the fingertips when standing straight (August - October and March - May only)

Solid red or white knit shirt with long/short sleeves

Only white, navy or black socks - calf or ankle

No turtlenecks are allowed


Spirit Wear Days: 

The first Thursday of every month is Spirit Wear day.  Students may wear school appropriate jeans (no holes) with a school uniform shirt or school T-shirt or sweatshirt.  Jean shorts and jeggings cannot be worn on these days.


Sweaters: Sweaters must be a SchoolBelles uniform navy blue cardigan, V-neck or sweater vest.


Sweatshirts: The SchoolBelles Uniform monogrammed sweatshirts may be worn over the school uniform shirt.  St. Mary Eagles sweatshirts or T-shirts may be worn on Spirit Wear days, which will be the first Thursday of each month.  School appropriate jeans may also be worn on Spirit Wear days.


Jewelry: A moderate amount of Christian jewelry may be worn by boys and girls, such as one small necklace, bracelet, and watch.  Girls only may wear small post earrings, one in each ear.  No body piercing or tattoos of any kind will be allowed.  Administration has the right to ask students to remove any jewelry felt as inappropriate or excessive.


Make-Up: Clear fingernail polish and chapstick are allowed in all grades. No make-up is allowed.  


Hair: We appreciate and celebrate the diversity of our students.  Braids and beads worn must match the natural hair color.  Faddish hairstyles, designs shaved in and hair colors will not be allowed.  Hair must be a natural color, no streaks or highlights.  Boy’s hair must be shorter than the collar in the back and shorter than the eyebrows in front.


Scouts and Sports: Scouts of all grades and athletes in Newton sports may wear approved uniforms shirts on game/meeting days only.  If Mass day, students should put jerseys on after Mass.


Shoes: A leather dress (navy, brown, or black) with a maximum heel height of 1.5" or a tennis/athletic shoe is to be worn with the uniform.  Tennis/athletic shoes are required on P.E. days.  Please keep from purchasing black soled shoes for Phys. Ed. as they leave scuffmarks on the gym floor.  Sandals, clogs, crocs, etc. are not allowed.  Student shoes must have enclosed toes and backs.  Boots are allowed on days of snow only.



Eighth Grade Recognition

Recognition will be based on students entire middle school career (6th - 8th grades).  In selection of the class Valedictorian and Salutatorian, G.P.A. is the determination.  Selection of the Outstanding Student will be based on numbers 1-8, not G.P.A.


Student who most embodies the example of:

1.  Christ-like in his/her attitudes

2.  Practices his/her Catholic Faith

3.  Kind and considerate to others

4.  Respectful and polite

5.  Shows leadership

6.  Volunteers to help others

7.  Good example to younger students

8.  Consistently tries hard in class work



Eighth Grade Trip

St. Mary Catholic School and the Diocese of Wichita do not endorse, approve, or sanction 8th grade trips. 




A student wishing to attend St. Mary Catholic School, transferring from another school may be given a grade level test to assure correct placement.  An enrollment packet can be picked up from the school office.  All Catholic students begin with a Parish Family Agreement before enrolling.


Special consideration shall be discussed when consideration is given to a student skipping a grade level.  These include achievement test scores, cognitive ability test results, age, size, maturity level and peer interaction.  The final decision is made by the school.

Passed by Advisory Council of Education, March 17, 1993


Children entering school for the first time are required to present a birth certificate or a copy to establish legal age of the child for school enrollment.  State law requires that a child be the age of five on or before August 31st in order to begin kindergarten, or the age of six on or before August 31 in order to begin first grade.


All students are required to have the necessary immunizations prior to enrollment as deemed by the Kansas Health Department. 


Kansas law requires that all students enrolling in a Kansas school for the first time present health assessment information signed by a physician.  The assessment needs to have been conducted within the last 12 months before school entry. 


Health forms may be picked up in the school office.  Immunizations and health assessments are available at the Harvey County Health Department, 215 S. Pine, by appointment throughout the year.  Appointments can be made by calling 283-1637.  Services are offered on a sliding fee schedule based on income and number of persons in the family.  Students who fail to meet these requirements within 90 days after school begins will be excluded from school until compliance with the state law is met.


1.  Immunization records must be kept current from kindergarten through grade 8.


2.  Catholic parents only need to bring a copy of the child’s Baptismal Certificate or the original            

and a copy will be made in the school office.


3.  The school must also have a copy of each child’s Birth Certificate.


4.  Parents must consult with the priest from St. Mary, Sacred Heart or OLG and have a signed Parish Family Agreement before enrolling for school as the parishes sponsor the students who attend.  If a family is not registered with one of the above parishes or is not Catholic, your child/ren will be charged tuition.


Health Concerns and Diocese of Wichita Medication Administration Guidelines:

The following guidelines are for ALL prescription and non-prescription medications.  Absolutely no medications are to be administered by schools unless a Medication Release Form has been completed by the prescribing physician.  These forms may be obtained in the school office or from the physician.  All medications must come with: Physician released form, original container and label with student name and dosage information.


If any children are under physician’s care for more extreme conditions, or if your child has been diagnosed with a medical condition that is contagious you MUST notify the school office so that other students/families can be notified of the exposure.  It is important that teachers be aware of conditions that can affect student performance.  Students with ailments that prevent them from participating in Physical Education class must have a note, signed by their family physician, indicating the ailment in order to be excused from participation.



Events and Programs

The focus for programs is on the performers and the work that they have put in to make it a success.  Please make sure that children attending the program with you are supervised at all times.  Students and other children are not allowed on the playground without adult supervision and the school is not liable for injuries.  For the safety of the children, know where your children are at all times.  




Students/parents that owe money for Guardian Angels, lunches, milk, registration, picture money, home and school fundraiser monies, library books or book fines, or other unpaid fines will not be able to attend school until monies and or items have been reconciled.

All families shall be expected to pay 100% of the established registration fees for each child attending St. Mary Catholic School.  The full amount of registration fees for each child shall be paid at Final Registration.  We shall not permit the student(s) to attend classes until payment is made or until the pastor has given approval for continued attendance at St. Mary.  Registration fees are non-refundable unless the fee is asked for prior to the first day of school.




Field Trip Drivers

When private vehicles (cars, vans, etc.) are used to transport St. Mary students to and from approved field trips, it is necessary to assure that all such vehicles are properly insured according to Kansas Law.  All drivers must contact the school office and have copies of valid Driver’s License and Insurance on file.  All volunteers/drivers must have completed the VIRTUS program and have record of that completion on file in the school office.



Field Trip Policy

At various times throughout the year, teachers may take their students on class field trips.  Field trips are educational activities planned carefully to enhance the curriculum.  Each child will need to have a permission form signed by the parent and on file at school before he/she will be permitted to participate in activities away from the school.


Food Program

State regulation requires that milk be taken with each tray served to the children.  If an exception must be made (for health reasons only), there must be a doctor’s statement on file in the office for the current year indicating the change.  No child is permitted in the kitchen area for other drinks, including water.  Drinks of water from the fountain are allowed in the cafeteria.


The government program for free or reduced price meals is available for those who qualify.  Information on this program and the application forms are available on registration day or at the school office.


Please note that students may not leave school for lunch unless the parent has notified the principal before hand.  Canned pop is not allowed with any lunch.  Students are not to trade, share or ask for food from other children.  Students not adhering to lunchroom policies may be asked to leave the lunchroom and eat in an alternative setting.


Student Accounts:

Students will have account cards (the same account covers breakfast, lunch and milk).  Any amount of money may be applied to the account.  Breakfast/lunch/milk fees are deducted from the student accounts if the child eats.  A replacement fee of $2.00 may be charged to each lost, damaged, or replaced account card.  Lunch account notices will be sent home on a regular basis.  We encourage parents to pay by the month if possible.  If an account becomes $20.00 or more to the negative, a parent contact may be made, and the child will need to bring their own lunch until the balance can be paid. 


Breakfast Prices:

SMCS Students           $1.70

Reduced                       $0.30

Adults and guests          $2.50


Lunch Prices:

SMCS Students           $2.90

Reduced                       $0.40

Extra Milk                    $0.50 (extra milks are not part of free/reduced program)

Adults and guests        $3.65

Lunchroom Procedures:

To maintain a peaceful level of noise and respectable atmosphere:

Students are allowed to sit anywhere amongst their class

Students are allowed to visit with those at their immediate table

Each class selects 2 students as table wipers and sweepers.  Once their tables are clean, students line up.

If the noise level gets too loud, the lights are turned off and students are asked to eat quietly.

If certain students fail to communicate with a soft voice or create other disturbances, they will be dealt with individually or be moved to another table to complete their meal.

Passed by School Council, April 2004



Gymnasium Policy - Athletic / Program Use

1.  Supervision: St. Mary Parish / Catholic School parents must be present when using the gym.  Children and adults should be in the gym and not elsewhere in the building.

2.  Security: Be sure all doors are closed and LOCKED before you leave the building.  All persons involved will use the (NORTH) glass door entrance only (to double-check, try the door from the outside).  It will be the duty of the responsible adult to enforce these rules and to remain present until all others have left the building.

3.  Clean-Up: Floors should be swept after each use.

4.  Lights: Use lights as needed.  Be sure all lights, including hallway and gym lights are OFF before leaving.  (Restroom lights are on timers.  They will shut off automatically.)

5.  Scheduling: Arrangements should be made at the parish office with the secretary (Monday-Friday, 8:30-12:00 and 1:00-4:00).

6.  Damages: If you use the building, you are responsible for it. Any damage or problems should be reported and explained.  If the user is found at fault, the cost of repair will be the user’s expense.

7.  Liability: The school or church will not be liable for personal injuries or property damage and loss incurred on school/church premises.




Keys will be checked out by the church office only.  All key check-outs will require a signature and must be checked back in at the place they were checked out at a designated time/day.




Students (grades 6-8) are allowed to bring a combination lock for their locker.  A lock with a key is not allowed.  Faculty members may remove objectionable material without notification.  This notice is to inform students that school lockers are the property of St. Mary Catholic School.  Therefore, school officials may search the general contents of any locker at any time without prior notice.  Generally, school officials will conduct locker searches for the following reasons:

Reasonable concerns of health and safety

Reasonable suspicion that such a search will produce:

Evidence of violations of law or of school rules

Items that school officials believe may be intended for use in a manner disruptive to the orderly operation of the school

School officials may take immediate possession of items found in lockers if such property could be:


A threat to the health and/or safety of anyone in the school

Used to disrupt the orderly operation of the school



Parking Lot


For drop off, please enter from 9th street go up the ramp.  Pull forward to the end of the drop off zone.  Students should exit the car to the right so they are not in the line of traffic.  The main door for the school will be in the parking lot by the flag pole.  If you are visiting the office please park and come in the doors.  If you wish to come to Mass or walk your students into the building, please park in the parking lot and cautiously make your way to the church or classroom. 

Drop off is 7:30-7:50am for K-8 students and 7:45-8:00 for Preschool. 

Breakfast students may be dropped off 7:15-7:30am at the 9th street double glass doors.



Students in grades 4-8 without siblings must be picked up on 9th Street.  All other students will be picked up in the parking lot or on 8th Street.



Parent Teacher Organization

All families are members of the St. Mary Catholic School Parent Teacher Organization (PTO).  The PTO is a parent group that supports St. Mary Catholic School in many ways.  All parents of SMCS students are encouraged to take an active role in the many positive and worthwhile activities of the Parent Teacher Organization.  This group meets regularly throughout the school year.  All meetings are open to all parents.



PTO is exempt from paying sales tax for purchases of goods and services or collecting sales tax for fundraising or sales.  Schools are exempt from paying sales tax but must collect tax for sales, fundraising, and gate admissions.  (Kansas State KSA 79-3606)


Fundraising is an important part of the successes to St. Mary.  SMCS holds one fundraiser (trash bags) and one auction yearly.  Every SMCS student is expected to participate in sales for all events.  Expectations for students will be established prior to each fundraiser and notices will be sent home.


Without participation, the school would not be able to function for our students.  Families are asked to contribute 30 or more hours of service to the school each year.  Sign-up sheets for volunteer opportunities will be provided at registration.  All families are required to help 6 hours with the school auction.  A service hour log is submitted upon successful completion of hours.




Honor Roll:

Students in grades 3-8 portraying outstanding achievement in all academic areas, will be recognized through the quarterly SMCS Honor Roll.  The Honor Roll is categorized as follows:

* Principal’s Honor Roll - Students receiving all A’s

* Honor Roll - Students receiving all A’s and no more than 2 B’s

* Honorable Mention - Students receiving all A’s and B’s


Principal’s W.W.J.D.

Students in grades K-8th will be recognized by the teachers and principal throughout the year when caught showing acts of kindness which reflects Catholic values and beliefs.  Students recognized will have their name in the monthly school newsletter.  Those receiving this high honor will be awarded a certificate to share with their family.


Registered Sexual Offender

A parent or guardian must contact the principal and parish pastor of an elementary school or the principal and president of a high school if he/she or any adult or youth living in his/her home is listed on the National Sex Offender Public Registry. An offender must meet with the principal and parish pastor or high school president to discuss applicable restrictions prior to the offender being on school property, participating in school events, or the first day of school.

Any individual who is listed on the National Sex Offender Public Registry is prohibited from volunteering with or being employed by the school.

An offender must be accompanied to school events by an adult approved or appointed by the school, which may include a family member. This adult must be VIRTUS certified, meet the offender at his/her car, supervise the offender during the event, and walk back to the car with him/her. This adult must ensure that the offender does not interact alone with any children.

An offender may be allowed to attend school events when children are not present.  This must be scheduled in advance by contacting the principal.

If an offender is the only person available to transport his/her child to and from school, the offender will have a restricted time and place, must remain in his/her car, and must avoid communicating with any youth who is not his/her child.

Principals, pastors, and high school presidents may inform school staff and parents of an offender’s status as necessary, keeping in mind the guideline that another’s name should not be harmed unnecessarily.  Refusal to abide by this policy could lead to appropriate action being taken, including the request not to be allowed on school property.

 “If you, your spouse or any adult or youth living in your home is listed on the National Sex Offender Public Registry, you and/or the offender are required to contact the principal, pastor, or high school president prior to the offender being on school property, participating in school events, or the first day of school. “



Respect for Property

Care is to be taken of the grounds, buildings, furnishings, books and supplies.  If any damage occurs, it will be reported to the principal.  Arrangements will then be made for repairs, and the charge for damage may be assessed to the student. 

Textbooks are the property of St. Mary Catholic School.  All textbooks are to be handled with care.  They are to be kept free from all writing.  If a textbook or library book is lost or damaged, the student is responsible for re-supplying the book at full replacement cost.



School Council

School parents are invited through the Stewardship process to offer their time and talent to the School Council.  Nine members serve three year terms.  Council members attend monthly meetings and serve an advisory role to assist the Principal with school policies and procedures.  All new members are required to attend Diocesan School Council Training.



Service Hours:

All St. Mary Catholic School students will have the opportunity to keep track of their sharing of time and talents.  The following minimum guidelines will be recognized at the end of the year:


K-1      3  hours

2-3       5  hours

4-5       8  hours

6-7       10 hours

8          15 hours 


School enrollment fees are $200 per child for the 2018-19  school year.   For those who keep a family service hours log at home, the school will credit $2 for every hour of time donated to the school for each student in your family (up to 30).  Simply donate 30 hours of service to the school (recess, library, coaching, committees, etc.) during the school year, fill out the service hour log (on next page) and when you enroll next year we will credit you $60 per student in your family.  This is a small way to say thank you to all of those who give so generously of your time.  The service hour logs are also a critical piece in applying for grant monies for the school.


We expect students graduating from St. Mary Catholic School to be active stewards within the community.  A log will be provided for each student to keep track of his/her time.  Parents are asked to sign for each task completed and record the number of hours served.  Teachers and Administration will periodically check student log sheets and have the right to determine appropriate/inappropriate service.  A requirement for each eighth grade student is to complete 15 hours of service outside of the classroom setting.  Note: Students are not to be compensated materially for service hours.  All hours must be completed by May 1.


Some possible volunteer services are:

Raking leaves, yard work, trimming trees and bushes


Helping at a retirement home

Helping an elderly person with chores / reading to them

Assisting the school outside of school time










Student Pregnancy Policy (Diocesan)

Acts of premarital sex or abortion are serious sins and therefore occasions of grave scandal.  When sexual misconduct results in pregnancy, the school’s response must first of all reaffirm our respect for the sanctity of all human life.  While the charity of Christ moves us to forgive and help a young man and a young woman when a pregnancy results, in no way should our commitment to respond to the priority of life be interpreted as ignoring, treating lightly, or condoning sexual misconduct.


Any student pregnancy requires a careful analysis of a student’s status and presents the possibility of unique circumstances, which require specific interpretation and application.  The administration of the local schools have the responsibility for making such interpretation and decisions.



Substance Abuse Policy (Diocesan)

The use and abuse of alcohol, tobacco, illegal drugs, other controlled substances, look alike drugs, and act alike drugs by students, employees, and parents has long been a serious concern in our Catholic high schools.  Principals are recognizing that substance abuse is increasing among Catholic middle school students as well.


The primary responsibility for addressing substance abuse lies with the parent.  Each school containing any of the grades 7-12 must have a plan for addressing substance abuse which includes annual mandatory parent training: i.e. communication, information, and formation.


1.  Being in possession of, using, being high or intoxicated, pushing, selling, or threatening students regarding the use of any of the substances listed above is a violation of policy whether such behavior occurs: a) on school grounds, b) at school functions, or c) at school-sponsored activities, whether at home or away.

2.  Students who assist in possession, use, or sale of substances listed above are also subject to disciplinary action.

3.  When violation of policy occurs away from the school or school functions and can be independently verified students may also be subject to disciplinary action.

4.  The building principal must notify the city police department of any substance abuse violation that occurs on school grounds or at a school function.

5.  A written record of the violation and disciplinary action taken must be kept in the student’s file.

6.  In the case of a medical emergency related to substance abuse, the procedures already set up by the school be followed.

7.  When a student appears to be disoriented or not in reasonable control of self, the principal (or designate) shall:

a) Confront the student immediately, except in the case of a medical emergency or disorientation.

            b) Inform the student of the consequences of his/her behavior.

            c) Notify the parent or legal guardian.

            d) Suspend the student until consequences have been met.

8.  Students who are concerned about their substance abuse and notify faculty or staff will not be subject to disciplinary action (once).  Confidentiality will be honored when seeking and finding support for such a student.

9.  Upon reasonable grounds, school officials, with a third party present, may search any property of the Diocese of Wichita (including lockers, desks, work areas, or other assigned areas) and confiscate any substance considered to be illegal, illicit, dangerous, or disruptive.  Parents shall be notified within twenty-four hours.

10.  Upon reasonable grounds, school officials may also search and confiscate the personal possessions of students following the same guidelines as above.  The reason for such a search must meet a higher standard of proof.

11.  Alcohol, tobacco, illegal drugs, and other substances listed above shall be banned from school grounds, any school activity, or at school functions.

12.  Employees who violate these guidelines will be subject to disciplinary action up to and including termination of employment.  Each Catholic school shall comply with the requirements of the Drug-Free School Act.



Suspected Abused or Neglected Students Policy (Diocesan)

Kansas Statutes require any staff member having reasonable cause to suspect that a student has been physically or emotionally abused or neglected to immediately report this to Social Rehabilitation Services.  Staff members who believe a student has been threatened with an injury and that abuse will occur must report this situation.

All teachers, aides, staff, volunteers, coaches, drivers, etc. are required to sign the Diocesan Suspected Abuse of Children Policy prior to engaging in any school/class activity.



Threats of Violence Policy (Diocesan)

All threats of violence are to be taken very seriously.  This includes homicidal threats, terrorist threats, threats of hate crimes, verbal assault, and/or possession of any weapon on or off school property.


Any student who makes a threat of violence may be suspended from the school or activity and required to receive psychological assessment and counseling at a center selected by the parents and approved by the school.  The student may return only if 1)he/she presents a written recommendation from the psychologist/psychiatrist and 2)if the administration is willing to have the student back on campus.  If the student returns, his/her parents must be notified in writing that a second offense will result in automatic expulsion.


Any adult who makes a threat of violence shall be banned from the premises until 1)such time as the adult complies with any and all conditions set by the administration and 2)the administration reasonably believes that the adult is no longer a threat to the school, its employees, its families, and its students.  A report will be made to the proper authorities, if appropriate.  A second occurrence will result in a permanent ban, removal of child/ren from the school, and a formal complaint to the local authorities.




For the purpose of this policy, a criminal gang is defined as “three or more persons who have jointed together for the purpose of a criminal activity”.


Students are not allowed to write/draw gang insignia on any personal or school property at any time.  Students may be suspended from school and the Newton Police Department will be contacted.



Threat or Harassment of a School Employee and/or Damage to and/or Theft of Private Property Belonging to or Under the Control of a School Employee (Diocesan)

A student shall not intentionally cause or attempt to cause physical injury to a school employee or intentionally behave verbally in such a way as could reasonably be interpreted as a threat of physical violence to a school employee.


A student shall not intentionally cause or attempt to cause damage to any property and/or theft of any property belonging to or under the control of any school employee.


A student shall not use language or exhibit actions or gestures that could reasonably be considered profane, indecent, or obscene at or toward any school employee

1.      on the school grounds during, before, or after school hours;

2.      on the school grounds at any other time when the school is being used by a school group;

3.      off the school grounds at a school activity, function, or event;

4.      off the school grounds during, before, or after school hours, provided the act is a direct result of school employee performing his/her duties.

Violation of any provision of this behavior code may result in suspension and/or expulsion from school.     (KSA 38-120)


When threats, harassment, bullying, suspected abuse, substance abuse or other circumstances arise within the school, the school resource officer from Newton, counselor or other outside agencies may be involved.  St. Mary follows the state guidelines and faculty members are mandatory reporters.  Issues should be communicated promptly and following the chain of command so the issue can be resolved.



Uniform Assistance Program

The Knights of Columbus and PTO have helped provide uniform vouchers.  Families eligible for Free/Reduced lunches will receive uniform assistance providing funds are available. 



Visiting Classrooms

Parents are encouraged to visit our school.  This is your school and we want you to become involved.  However, for the safety and welfare of the children, visitors must sign-in at the office first.  When visiting your child’s classroom, you must arrange with the office first to minimize distractions to student learning.





Virtus (Diocesan)

As of August 18, 2004, ALL VOLUNTEERS MUST HAVE COMPLETED THE VIRTUS TRAINING CLASS AND HAVE THE REQUIRED PAPERWORK ON FILE IN THE SCHOOL OFFICE.      This includes anyone wishing to help in a classroom, drive on a field trip, room parents, grandparents, coaches, tutors, assisting in the lunchroom.  In general, anyone having any contact with children must complete the class.  Please be aware that you will be asked to leave if you are assisting with children and have not taken the VIRTUS class.  Classes are offered at all parishes at various times throughout the year.  If you attend the class at a different parish, it is your responsibility to make sure that paperwork is forwarded to us.  Verbal notification alone is not acceptable.




Our school is always seeking people with talents to share.  If you would like to volunteer, please contact the principal in the school office.  All volunteers must have completed the Diocesan Suspected Abuse of Children Policy form and must have taken the VIRTUS class.  All volunteers must sign in at the school office when they arrive.  We appreciate your help!


St. Mary strives to keep our policies up-to-date and in line with diocesan policy.  When a conflict between the school handbook and a diocesan policy arises, the diocesan policy will be followed.  For a current list of diocesan policies, check out the diocesan website at www.cdowk.org


































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