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405 E. National Rd

Vandalia, Ohio 45377

937 898 5104

937 454 4790 fax

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405 E. National Road
Vandalia, Ohio 45377

937 898 5104

937 454 4790 fax

The child has one intuitive aim: self development

Mr. O’s Weekly News

September 19, 2021

Hello Falcon Family,

Please accept my gratitude to all of you for processing our masking announcement and sharing your feelings, both positive and negative, with me. I am truly grateful we can have healthy dialogue about this topic and many others. We are a family and, if families do not communicate during both good times and bad, they will break apart. This was not an easy decision and I am sad our family is divided on the matter. That is not a judgement of either side; it is simply a lack of unity that benefits no one.

In the end, our leadership team discerned masking to be the most Christian response at this point in the pandemic.  I know many of you do not agree with that decision and, in that sense, you are making a greater sacrifice. I recognize that and I thank you.

Our decision was, and our stance is, one of love.  This can be and should be the message to all of our students moving forward.  We are masking because we want to protect one another, even in the smallest of ways, because that is how much we love each other.  We would do anything for one another.  That is our message.  Please help us share it with your children.  No one should be afraid and no one should be said.  Not all of us will contract the virus, but some of us will, so let’s do whatever we can to make that the smallest number possible.  Your children and our students are beautiful and loving people.  I am confident they will support this amazing message of love and family.  But will you let them?  

Our decision to mask is not based in fear and neither should our message.   Do I love God and trust Him?  Absolutely.  Can He prevent our students from contracting the virus?  Absolutely.  Will He do that?  I do not know.  Is God asking us to ignore the medical opinions of the best doctors in the country?  I don’t think so.  When my daughter had ovarian cancer, Amy and I prayed for a miracle and we believed a miracle was possible, but we still allowed the doctors to remove her cancerous ovary.

We can have faith, hope and love, and still have masks.  In our opinion, one requires the others.  I pray the Holy Spirit continues to move within our school, and fills us with His love and understanding.   

Since Friday’s announcement, I have received some good questions, comments and homilies.  I thought this information might be helpful sooner than later, so here it is.

  • Fr. John’s Homily: if you did not have a chance to hear Fr. John’s homily today about “What are we arguing about?”, please give it a listen here at the 19:40 mark.  He shares how we came to the decision of universal masking.  I will not try to summarize it.  Please listen to it for yourself regardless of your masking opinion.  It’s only fifteen minutes long and it is time well spent for a bit of extra peace in your Sunday. 
  • Children’s Hospital Video: Fr. John’s homily references a Children’s Hospital video; this was also part of Friday’s letter.  It is a powerful video with interesting perspectives from multiple Children’s Hospitals throughout Ohio including Dayton.  If you do not have time to watch the video, please at least read the Open Letter to All Ohioans; this letter was also part of Friday’s letter.
  • Mask Types: disposable medical/surgical masks are acceptable.  Regarding reusable masks, we prefer two-ply cotton and want to avoid single-ply and/or polyester.
  • When/Where:
    • Masks should be worn at all times inside the building unless eating/drinking or in gym class.
    • Masks do not need to be worn inside the gym because it is a large space, kids are generally spread out, and we have a high powered air handler that pulls air up and out of the gym.
    • Masks do not need to be worn outside during recess or gym.
    • Teachers may take brief mask breaks in the building, at their discretion, when all students are seated.
    • Teachers may take classes outside, at their discretion, at any time during the day.  This is common, especially in the lower grades. 
  • Improving Air Quality: we signed a contract for air purifiers that will reduce airborne bacteria and viruses.  We do not yet have an installation date.
  • Town Hall Meeting: I am not yet sure if we will host a Town Hall Meeting.  I will close the survey after the end of the weekend and review the remaining responses. 

As always, please do not hesitate to reach out to me with your questions and comments. 

Reminder: The school will be closed this Friday, September 24, for Teacher Professional Development.

Have a blessed Sunday!

St. Christopher…pray for us!
Mr. O’

St. Christopher School Principal

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