Submitted on Thu, 12/06/2018 - 1:08pm
Dear Mercy Families,
Welcome to the Advent Season! I hope you find opportunity for peace and reflection during this extraordinarily busy time of the year. As we prepare for closure to the first semester, much has been accomplished at Mercy High School.
I am pleased to share that through an exceptional effort by the Mercy community, a five year operational plan outlining strategic direction and school improvement was recently approved by our Board of Trustees. This plan details support for six identified priorities and was developed in partnership with stakeholder input (students, parents, teachers, support staff, department chairs, administrators, board members and alumnae). Thank you for your participation in survey requests!
We are proud of the many strengths that were identified through this analysis process as being uniquely part of a Mercy education and experience. We are energized to continue our school improvement journey that promotes support for all students with a holistic approach in developing the whole young woman.
I would like to share a few of the recent enhancements that we are working on at Mercy, specifically featuring our Counseling Department. You should now be receiving a monthly digital copy of the Counseling newsletter with important tips for high school success and well being. Also new this year, counselors schedule 1:1 "meet and greets" with their sophomore students to better understand individual student needs and begin building rapport for the next three years.
Students preparing for the the college application process were offered creative drop-in sessions during College Month where personal and customized support was given. 9th grade personality assessments are being put into place to help students begin exploring career paths. Counselors are working on "virtual connections", where students interested in a given career path can participate in online mentoring sessions with successful Mercy alumnae. On deck is a corporate lawyer, a stock market representative, a research scientist, a pharmacist, a lavender farmer and an entrepreneur!
Finally, in response to parent requests, the Counseling Department partnered with Admissions to host a High School Placement Test Workshop. We had 81 students attend! This exceeded expectations and required offering an additional workshop. Kudos to Trish Brown for developing the workshop curriculum and facilitating this effort to attract prospective students to Mercy!
Our entire freshman class attended the first MiCareerQuest of Southeast Michigan. The event's intent was to provide an interactive introduction for in-demand career opportunities. Industries featured were Health Sciences, Construction, Information Technology and Advanced Manufacturing. The field trip was a huge success and received very positive feedback from our students who indicated it opened new doors of thinking about future opportunities.
Now that we are a HeartSafe certified school, we are required to perform at least 2 cardiac/AED drills per year. During the recent Cardiac/AED Drill Week in November, we ran drills involving students in 7 different classrooms. Students in each of these classes participated in important life saving practices. The drill goal is to have an AED attached to the victim in under 3 minutes. We exceeded this goal each time, with an average retrieval time of 1.55 minutes!
Do you have a new driver? The Michigan Department of State requests that Michigan schools assist in distributing the Michigan Graduated Driver Licensing Parent Checklist as a free resource intended to assist parents or legal guardians of teens with understanding and following the steps of Graduated Driver Licensing (GDL). You can access the Michigan Graduated Driver Licensing Parent Checklist here.
Inclement Weather Reminder: As we round the corner to winter weather, please know that Mercy follows the direction of Farmington Public Schools in determining school closure. Our student body is drawn from over 70 different communities, making it difficult to define a closure policy that always supports each region. We respect that you best know the limitations and comfort level of your student driver in the event of winter road conditions, specifically in your area.
Ms. Colleen McMaster, our Associate Principal of Academic Affairs, works diligently to promote STEM opportunities for our students. Ms. McMaster facilitated the MiCareerQuest freshmen experience and is responsible for many of our STEM initiatives. Ms. McMaster is a recipient of the 2018 ASM Detroit Chapter Teacher Scholar Award and a $250 grant to support Mercy STEM programming!
Our very own Mr. Gary Morris is a recipient of the Top 100 Sportsmanship Award for his coaching leadership with the 2017-2018 Mercy Varsity Basketball team! At the end of each season, MHSAA officials rate the sportsmanship of the school's players, coaches, administrators and fans. We congratulate Coach Morris for being such a great Mercy role model to our athletes, and thank our parents for always being wonderful fans!
Did you participate in the 6-Day Unleash the Gospel Challenge? Over 70,000 people across the Archdiocese of Detroit have already participated in this activity. This challenge provides the opportunity to hear the message of the Gospel in short 2-minute videos followed by a 3 minute reflection. To sign up simply text GOSPEL to 484848 or visit UTGChallenge.com!
The Archdiocese of Detroit just announced the release of a new podcast series: Open Door Policy with hosts Danielle Center and Fr Steve Pullis. The focus of these podcasts is for guests to share personal testimonies on how they are actively unleashing the Gospel. Tune in every Tuesday! Listen by heading to opendoorpolicy.aod.org
The Michigan Catholic is no longer in distribution, and you can now keep up with news on our local Catholic community through the online Detroit Catholic. You can subscribe either daily, weekly or monthly to the Detroit Catholic here.
Our Campus Ministry team launched a Baggott Street Lunch and Learn speaker series! Each speaker will center around one of the Mercy Critical Concerns. This month featured Mr. Ben Falik from Summer in the City, an organization that challenges volunteers to "be the change they wish to see in Detroit". We are excited to continue this speaker series to help our students see responses to Critical Concerns in action.
Thank you for allowing me to share with you the many reasons we have to be proud of our school. We are grateful that you are in partnership with us us to support your daughter as she becomes a woman who makes a difference!
May God's Grace and Blessings be in your path,