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Frequently Asked Questions

This set of FAQs has been written to provide a brief answer to many of the commonly asked questions. For the most comprehensive and official information, please read the school handbook, which provides detailed answers to these questions. The handbook is distributed to all parents at the beginning of the school year and can also be accessed via the Parent Portal section of the school website. Email info@saintphilipschool.org or ask your room parent for the password to the Parent Portal. Be sure to click the magnifying glass on the right to search for specific topics.

  • Is there a school handbook?
    Yes, the school handbook contains very important information about the school and its policies. It is updated every year and distributed at the start of the school year. You can also find it in the Parent Portal portion of the website. You will need a password to access this portion of the website which you can get from your room parent or by emailing info@saintphilipschool.org for the password.
  • Is there an online school grades program (i.e. PowerSchool, Schoology, SchoolSpeak)? How will I get my log on?
    Yes, for 3rd through 8th grades the school uses PowerSchool to track and share student grades. Logins will be sent to the parents of new students within a few weeks of school starting. If you haven’t received login details and need them you can email anne.branch@saintphilipschool.org for help. If you have more than one child attending St. Philip’s you only need one login to view grades and scores for all of your children grades 3 and above. Students in middle school are also able to access PowerSchool directly to review their grades. We are in the process of transitioning from PowerSchool to FACTS for this functionality and hope to have it live for the 2023-24 school year.
  • Who do I call / write with my questions (i.e., who deals with what)?
    Contact information can be found on the St Philip’s website home page and in the school handbook (accessed via the Parent Portal). If your child will be absent from or late to school please email your teacher and copy janice.dias@saintphilipschool.org and lily.shouldice@saintphilipschool.org. For all administrative issues and general questions email BOTH janice.dias@saintphilipschool.org and lily.shouldice@saintphilipschool.org who can direct your email as necessary. For questions related to tuition/fees email FACTSaccount@saintphilipsschool.org. Email your teacher directly (emails can be found on the staff page of the website) for questions/concerns related to school work. For questions about extended care email elena.griego@santphilipschool.org.
  • What is the school policy on cell phones and smart watches?
    The school’s policy is detailed in the packet of forms parents receive before the start of the school year. The policy is also referenced in the Parent Handbook, which can be found in the Parent Portal section of the website. Essentially, students must turn off their phones when they arrive at school and turn them into their teacher/staff at the start of the day and retrieve them at the end of the day. Students may not use phones while on campus, including in Extended care. The school suggests that students not bring smart watches to school. All phone rules apply to smart watches that are worn to school.
  • How do report cards go home and when?
    St. Philip runs on a trimester system. In most cases, physical copies of both progress reports and report cards are sent home each trimester. Grades can also be viewed on PowerSchool (soon migrated to FACTS) for Grades 3rd through 8th.
  • How big will my class be? Will I be given other family’s contact information?
    Class sizes range from mid 20s to mid 30s and may change until very close to the start of the school year. Early in the year, or even before school starts, class parents will communicate details of how contact information is shared. This can vary from class to class.
  • Can the school provide lunch for my child? Is this service always available?
    Lunch can be ordered for delivery to the school through Choice Lunch or Diamond Cafe. For Choice Lunch details and registration view this flyer. Choice Lunch usually starts a few weeks after the start of school. Orders should be placed 48-72 hours ahead of time using the app. Diamond Cafe, which is located on the corner of Diamond and 24th, also supplies school lunches. You can stop by or call (415) 655 3674 to place lunch order(s) for your students, which will then be delivered to the school.
  • What does the school day look like? (lunch time, recess…etc)
    The Daily School Schedule can be found in the School Handbook (accessed through the Parent Portal), including drop-off and pick-up details; school start and end times; and lunch and recess periods. The school handbook is updated every year and is usually available by back-to-school night. The regular school day is from 8:00am until 3:00pm (K-5) and 3:10pm (6-8) on Monday through Thursday. Fridays are early dismissal days; all students leave at 1:30pm. Minimum days (indicated in the school calendar) are 12:30pm dismissal for all students. Preschool hours are 8:00am to 5:00pm. Students can arrive at school between 7:30am and 7:50am. Students are considered tardy if they arrive after 7:55am when assembly begins. The recess schedule is: 9:50am –10:10am for grades K – 4 10:10am – 10:30am for grades 5 – 8 The lunch schedule is: 11:45am – 12:25pm for grades K – 4 12:30pm – 1:10pm for grades 5 – 8 Preschool uses its own entrance on Diamond Street. Students in Grades K, 1st and 2nd use the red door to exit school. All other students exit through the gate. Students in Grades K-5 who have siblings in Grades 6-8 should wait in the shelter area until their siblings are dismissed at 3:10pm (unless they are going to Extended Care). If a child is not picked up within 10 minutes of his/her dismissal time, he/she will be sent to Extended Care, and families will be billed accordingly.
  • How do families communicate with each other?
    This is largely up to individual families and classes. Room parents will generally share a class roster, including parent contact details, at the beginning of the school year to help facilitate communication. (It is possible to opt out of being included in the roster.) If you haven’t received a roster please contact your room parent. Common communication options include: Email WhatsApp groups In all communication please remember to be respectful - everyone has a right to their ideas and opinions.
  • Does the school / classrooms celebrate common holidays with parties / dress up/ activities ? (St Patrick’s Day, Halloween…etc)
    Yes, we are a festive bunch at St. Philip’s and celebrate many holidays. Activities may be within the classroom or school wide depending on the holiday. Details are generally provided by room parents or in the school bulletin.
  • When will I find out who my teacher is?
    The current teacher list is maintained on the staff page of the school website. St. Philip has only one class for each grade so it’s easy to see who your teacher will be.
  • Do kids ever get to wear non-uniform clothes?
    Yes, at various times throughout the year, children will have an opportunity to wear non-uniform clothes. Information about free dress days is communicated in the school bulletin and/or by email from teachers, room parents, or Ms. McKeever. Some examples of free dress days are Bruins Days (students can wear St Philip Bruins gear), Spirit Week (different themes throughout the week), Jeans for a Dollar Day, Valentine’s Day, St. Patrick’s Day, and others. Students may also earn free dress passes, which can be used any time except days they attend mass and field trips.
  • Where do I purchase school uniforms?
    Dennis Uniform is the official uniform supplier. You can order online at https://www.dennisuniform.com or visit their store on 10th Street. Recently there have been delays in online orders and sometimes limited stock so order early. There is a uniform exchange on the first day of school where parents bring used, cleaned, uniforms for others to take. This is free and first come, first served. The school also usually has gently used uniforms available throughout the school year. You can contact the office for more information.
  • Will my child be on a computer all day? Will a device be provided by the school?
    The school provides devices for students in grades K-8: iPads for K to 2nd and Chromebooks for 3rd to 8th. The amount of time students use chromebooks/iPads varies depending on the grade and class. The school works hard to leverage the benefits of technology while recognizing the importance of more traditional learning methods and human interactions.
  • When do children go to mass during the week?
    The school calendar includes all school-wide masses. Additionally, students attend a weekly 8 am mass on a specific day of the week.
  • When is the first/last day, Thanksgiving, Christmas & Easter breaks?
    You can find details of all school holidays in the school calendar, which is available on the school website. Be sure to subscribe to the calendar so that you get all updates directly into your own calendar. Ms. McKeever also emails a handy pdf version of the school calendar to all parents as well as including it in the school bulletin.
  • Do all families attend St Philip’s Parish? Are there non-Catholic Families at the school?
    St. Philip school is rooted in Catholic faith and values with an inclusive and nurturing environment where all are welcome. There are many non-Catholic families in the school.
  • My child is interested in sports–how do I sign up? Which teams does St. Philip have and for which grades?
    St Philip’s students can participate in a large number of sports. These are listed on the Athletics Page of the website. Registration details and deadlines are included in the school bulletin and emails from the Sports Council. Questions can be directed to bruins@saintphilipschool.org.
  • How do I sign up for Extended care? How late does it go? Is there sufficient space?
    The Extended Care page of the school website has lots of information about Extended Care at St Philip’s. Here is is some general information: Usually begins the first full week after school starts Open to students in Grades K -8 Available from 3:00pm to 5:30pm (Monday - Thursday) and from 1:30pm to 4:00pm on Fridays Rate is $13 per hour and $25 for registration ($15 per hour for emergency drop-ins) There is a $5 per minute late fee Extended Care is not be available on the days vacations begin (Thanksgiving, Christmas, Easter, summer) Space is limited to 30 children who attend on a regular basis plus an additional 10 spots for drop-in emergencies so please register early. If you have questions please email elena.griego@saintphilipschool.org.
  • Where can I buy Saint Philip School gear to support my kiddo?
    At several points during the school year the “Bruins store” opens for orders. Dates will be communicated via the school bulletin and emails from the Sports Council and room parents. The “store” is open for online orders at the beginning of the school year, around St. Philip’s Festival, and around Thanksgiving. Orders are placed online and delivered to the school for pick-up once available.
  • How much does the school raise in fundraisers each year?
    This varies year by year and during the pandemic there was reduced focus on fundraising and more focus on community support. There are a few fundraisers where the proceeds support the school’s budget directly, namely the Parish Festival, the School Auction and the Fun Run. These funds are crucial as they offset the cost of tuition for all students. We also have fundraisers that focus on specific areas of our parent volunteer organizations. For example, the Sport Council puts on a Crab Feed in January and the PTG throws Oktoberfest every October. The two groups jointly throw the Bruin Open in April to support both groups.
  • How can I participate in my child's school life (e.g., Friday outdoor assemblies, yard duty, etc,)?
    Throughout the year there are opportunities for parents to engage in school activities and these may be communicated by room parents, Ms. McKeever or in the school bulletin. Parents are welcome to attend morning assemblies and may also be able to periodically assist in the classroom or in Extended Care. Contact your teacher or Extended Care for more information. Please note that to participate in many volunteering opportunities, especially where volunteers are engaging directly with children, it is necessary to complete Virtus training and fingerprinting. A copy of the LiveScan form for fingerprinting and a link to Virtus Training can be found in the Parent Portal.
  • Is there a Parent Teacher Group? Where/when do they meet? How do I get involved?
    Yes, we have a very active Parent Teacher Group (PTG) and there are many opportunities to get involved, from helping with a single event or activity to leading a committee. Email ptg@saintphilipschool.org to learn about the different committees and how to get involved.
  • How can I volunteer - and for what types of things?
    There are many volunteer opportunities, with a few listed below. Reading the school bulletin, PTG emails, and room parent emails is a great way to learn about opportunities. St Philip’s Festival - email communication will be sent or you can email festival@saintphilipschool.org to find out how you can help. Spring Auction - email communication will be sent or you can email auction@saintphilipschool.org to find out how you can help. Parent Teacher Group (PTG) Committees & Sponsored Events Committees Include - Parent Education, Faculty Liaisons, Oktoberfest, Bruin Open and the Welcoming Committee Email ptg@saintphilipschool.org to learn about specific opportunities. Choice Lunch & Sports Council Hot Dog Lunch - Links to sign up to serve lunch at school can be found on the home page. Coaching St Philip’s Sports Teams - email bruins@saintphilipschool.org to learn more. St Philip’s athletics sponsored events/activities (Hot Dog Lunch, Crab Feed, Sports Day) - email bruins@saintphilipschool.org to learn more. Room Parent - email ptg@saintphilipschool.org to be connected with the Room Parent lead and find out what is involved. Lead activities or help with homework at extended care - Read more on the extended care page of the website including who to contact for more information. Class Field Trips Car Drop Off Line Note that it may be necessary to complete Virtus training and LiveScan fingerprinting for some volunteer activities. See the question on “participating at activities in your child’s school”.
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