CLICK HERE FOR Little Flower Catholic School Re-Entry Plan for Fall 2020.
Note that this plan is subject to change based upon Mobile County Board of Health recommendations.
Department of Catholic Education
Archdiocese of Mobile
352 Government Street Mobile, Alabama 36602 251.438.4611 FAX 251.438.4612
A LETTER FROM SUPERINTENDENT BYRD
July 16, 2020
Dear School Communities,
Hello again from the Department of Catholic Education. It seems like just yesterday that I was congratulating the principals, teachers, parents and students for ending the school year triumphantly. It was a challenge to all but it was completed with grace and ingenuity. Since then, you all have been in my thoughts and prayers during this very unusual summertime. Hopefully, you and your families have found some ways, though I’m sure creatively, to enjoy the summer break. Maybe you’ve taken a virtual trip right in your own living room, you may have been able to have a socially distanced time at the beach, or had family movie nights. However you have spent this time, I hope that you have been able to stay safe and well.
In late June, I attended all three of our Catholic High Schools’ graduations. I am amazed, considering the past few months, that we were able to gather to celebrate this very special milestone. As I sat and watched our graduates walk across the stage, I couldn’t help but feel gratitude. Gratitude to God, our principals, teachers, parents/guardians and students for all that went into the formation of these young people. I pray that they will continue their lives in love, caring for others and service to God.
Our priests have also been challenged by the coronavirus. Many became experts in live streaming liturgies to their parishes, hearing confessions while in their cars, ministering to families who have suffered loss and working with disappointed brides and grooms. Every aspect of our lives certainly has been touched by this unprecedented pandemic. We are all in this together!
I want you to know that our wonderful principals have not skipped a beat this summer. Because the safety and well-being of their students and employees is their top priority, they along with their COVID-19 task force, have been working diligently to make the return to school as safe as possible. We have educated ourselves in the virus’ symptoms with information from the CDC, the local health department, other health professionals, and city directives. All have been used to develop comprehensive return to school plans. Each school plan has requirements that all Catholic Schools will follow, while your child’s individual school plan will have many safety protocols that will fit your school community. Schools will be releasing their plans this week. Our teachers have also been working tirelessly, participating in training programs to become more proficient in the use of communication platforms, redesigning their classroom layouts and adjusting lesson plans for possible distance learning.
It’s difficult to predict how coronavirus will impact us this fall, but know that we are vigilant in our efforts to stay current with health agencies’ recommendations. It is our first priority to keep our students, faculty and staff safe from contracting the virus. In my last letter, I said that we were preparing for the world’s new normal. I am happy to say that we have been doing just that, while preparing for our students to return to our schools. And yes, it will be a new normal for them and us, but know that we are committed to making this school year one of continued faith formation and academic excellence.
I want to take this time to thank Archbishop Thomas J. Rodi for his support and concern for his flock. He has been with us every step of the way. He too has closely monitored the COVID-19 pandemic, and with his guidance, the Department of Catholic Education is confident that our schools have put together the best possible plans for the 2020-2021 school year. His dedication to and involvement in the ministry of Catholic Education in the Archdiocese of Mobile is unparalleled.
We are living in a time unlike anything we’ve ever experienced. The anxiety and fear of the unknown in this pandemic has impacted us all. I understand that our school communities will experience some of this anxiety and fear as we prepare to return to our campuses. Please know that the health and safety of our faculties, staff and students is of the utmost importance, and I hope you see this reflected in each individual school’s plan. Thank you for your continued partnership and entrusting your child’s education and formation to us. Please know that you all are always in my prayers. I will keep you in my prayers as we begin the 2020-2021 school year.
Sincerely in the Lord,
Gwendolyn P. Byrd
Executive Director for Catholic Education/Superintendent
The Light of the Loop
Little Flower Families,
I am so proud and excited that you have selected Little Flower Catholic School for your student. Although Catholic schools have grown and changed over the years, they continue to be a beacon of what is good and right. My mission as a Catholic school leader is to continue to listen, learn, love, teach and grow in the tradition of the faith. I believe I can inspire and nurture the teachers under my care so they can inspire and nurture faithfully our children, our future. I believe in listening to my heart, learning from my mistakes, loving unconditionally, teaching with abandonment and growing closer to God daily. With a glad heart and hope filled spirit I believe in Catholic schools.
Your choice of Little Flower Catholic School has shown that you too believe in Catholic schools to provide a foundation of faith, discipline, diversity and academics for all students. Little Flower’s dedicated teachers, staff and administration along with the pastoral leadership of Fr. John Lynes promises to partner with parents, who are the primary educators of children. Parents support us with your time, your talents and treasures every day. We are truly grateful.
As the school year begins, I promise my door is always open for you and your family. Together we are
Preparing your children for college, career and heaven.
Sincerely in Christ,
Alesa A. Weiskopf
“The Catholic school finds its true justification in the mission of the Church; it is based on an educational philosophy in which faith, culture and life are brought into harmony.”
(The Religious Dimension of Education in a Catholic School, Congregation for Catholic Education, 1988, para. 34)