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Principal's News

“Be kind to one another”
Ephesians 4:32

Back to school at SJA
Back to school at SJA

Happy Wednesday of week 1 :) We have had a lovely start to our new year. It was great to see so many of you at Monday’s morning assembly and at the Parent Coffee. Thank you Pat Gale for coordinating for us! I hope you will all be able to join us at Friday’s liturgy too. And please don’t forget Back to School night (parents only) a week from tomorrow. As is our tradition, we will offer a light dinner and give you time to connect with new and old friends. It is good to be together! I may have shared this prayer from The Concord Pastor before, but it’s so appropriate for this week-and I love it!

A Parent's Prayer for Students

Dear Lord, As my children leave for school, I pray that you will keep them in your care. Send your Spirit to open their minds to all that is true and beautiful and good. Help them to see the gifts and talents you have given them and to use them well. Help them to grow in knowledge and wisdom. Help them to be kind to others and lead others to be kind to them. Give their teachers patience and understanding and help them teach what is just and true. Send your angels to guide and guard my children and to keep them from all harm. Open their young hearts to your presence and enfold them in your peace and protection. Hold them in the palm of your hand and bring them home safely at day's end. Amen.

“Be kind to one another”
Ephesians 4:32

KD and friends at SJA Beach Party
Mrs. Dunn and friends at SJA Beach Party

It was wonderful to see so many of you at our Bonfire/Beach Party Saturday evening! Thank you to the Mortens and assistant Zelanne Mullins for organizing, and a special thank you to James for hitting the beach at 4am to reserve our fire pit!! What a perfect end to summer and start to our new year. I am very much looking forward to seeing everyone on Monday. The teachers and staff have been working overtime preparing for you!

We had some surprising staff news this month. It is difficult to say good-bye to the Crowley family. They have been an integral part of our community for five years! We wish them well as they move to their new home in Hawaii. We are fortunate that Stephanie Pena has accepted my request that she step in to fill the Business Manager position. She has two sweet girls already attending SJA, Alex and Kyleigh. She will continue to implement the changes that Candy has begun and will generally be on campus Tuesday, Wednesday and Thursday. Welcome to this new position Stephanie!


KD at St. Peter and Paul Church SF
Mrs. Dunn and son at St. Peter and Paul Church SF

Wow, middle of August! I hope your summer has been filled with joyous time together and lots of relaxation. We are about to pick up the pace:)

We are still tweaking our school theme for the year but Kindness and Love will be the major components. A quote that will be key to our theme reminds that acting a little kinder than necessary will allow others to recognize in us, the face of God. School Family activities will mirror this through a focus on Community Service.

Calling ALL St. James Families! End of Summer Bonfire

Saturday, August 22, 2015, 4:30-8pm (bonfire at 7)
Moonlight Beach (End of Encinitas Blvd. West of Interstate 5, Encinitas, CA 92024) We hope that you all can make it. It promises to be a delightful get-together to celebrate the end of summer and the beginning of a new year. We will provide the wood, smores and the sunset.  You guys bring some chairs and blankets. Grab dinner before you head down or bring your own picnic for the beach. I've heard that Manhattan Giant Pizza may deliver to the fire pit!  The concession stand at Moonlight has some good sandwich options as well. Look for the SJA banner, we are hoping to reserve the northernmost fire pit. There's no RSVP necessary.  But sure hope you can make it! Come reconnect with friends and make some new ones! I look forward to seeing you there.


St. James Academy is hosting a Bonfire at Moonlight Beach the evening of August 22nd from 4pm to 8:30, with the bonfire at 7pm.. We hope that you all can make it. It promises to be a delightful get-together to celebrate the end of summer and the beginning of a new year.

Our event coordinators:) will go down Saturday morning and claim a fire pit. We will provide the wood, smores and the sunset. You guys bring some chairs and blankets.

Grab dinner before you head down or bring your own picnic for the beach. I've heard that Manhattan Giant Pizza may deliver to the fire pit! The concession stand at Moonlight has some good sandwich options as well.

Look for the SJA banner, we are hoping to reserve the northernmost fire pit. There's no RSVP necessary. But sure hope you can make it! I look forward to seeing you there. KD


"Be still and know that I am God"

8th Grade at Disneyland
8th Grade at Disneyland

This is a big week for us (and not because this is our last newsletter of the year :) This is graduation week! It is the beautiful culmination of effort by our graduates, their parents, and this community. As I mentioned at the Memory Mass last week, fifteen of our graduates have attended SJA since Kindergarten-what a testament to this community. We are proud of all of our graduates and can't wait to see what comes next for them. They are ready!

SJA Class of 2011 goes to college! Another of our annual traditions is sharing the excitement of our alum graduating high school. We were able to discover where 26 of our 28 SJA Class of 2011 graduates will be attending college (posted below and in today's envelope). May God bless them in all their future endeavors. We are proud!

A graduate's prayer:

My Lord God, I have no idea where I am going.

I do not see the road ahead of me. I cannot know for certain where it will end.

Nor do I really know my self. And the fact that I think am following your will does not mean that I am actually doing so.

But I believe that the desire to please you does in fact please you. And I hope I have that desire in all that I am doing. I hope that I will never do anything apart from that desire.

And I know that, if I do this, you will lead me by the right road, though I may know nothing about it.

I will not fear, for you are ever with me, and you will not leave me to face my perils alone.

-Thomas Merton


"Be still and know that I am God"

We are busy here and I know that you are busy at home. There is much to be celebrated! As we prepare for graduation and all of its festivities, I can't help but know the feeling of wanting to hang on as our 8th graders prepare to move to the next exciting stage in their lives. As much as I know we (our partnership with you is strong) have prepared them well, we also understand that things will change. It's not easy to say goodbye… but we look forward to celebrating our Memory Mass on Friday. Our Kindergartners will assist with the liturgy for the first time as we begin our farewells to the 8th grade. We also keep in our thoughts and prayers the FIVE SJA staff members graduating sons from high school this year: Mrs. Smith, Mrs. Armao, Mrs. Gallo, Mrs. Philips and Mrs. Ramsey!

Enjoy this prayer from Austim Fleming:

When I can't stop the merry-go-round on my own, then please, Lord: slow me down!

When my ears and my mind, when all of me's filled up with noise and commotion, then slow me down, Lord, and show me a path to a quiet place...

When I'm standing still, going 60 inside, put the brakes on till I come to a stop by your side, where at last I might hear my own breathing and the breath of your Spirit within me...

Help me make the time to find the calm, the quiet I need to hear the birds sing, the tide come in, the sun rise up and the moon wax full in the night...

Bring me to a quiet place, Lord, wherever in my day I can find one, to spend some time just sitting with you, at rest in the peace of your arms...

Help me be still, Lord, that I might hear your voice, your word, in a whisper and know in my heart that you are my God, always near, always here by my side...



"Be still and know that I am God"

Principal for a Day
Principal for a Day

Lord, tap me on the shoulder and remind me that you're here...

Tug on my sleeve till I stop, turn and look you in the eye...

Get my attention, Lord - and hold it - till I've spent some time with you today in prayer...

Behind and before you encircle me and rest your hand upon me...

- Psalm 139

Thank you again for spoiling us last week! Our breakfast and staff appreciation week luncheon finished the week in grand style. We loved it. I hope you will let us return the favor and join us for a Parent Appreciation breakfast Monday, June 1st. Invitations coming soon.

Our annual Variety Show is approaching quickly! The Saint James Variety Show "Triple Threat" will be performed by students from Kindergarten through 8th Grade on Friday, May 22nd. Please note that the dress rehearsal is at 10am and the show is at 1pm in the Parish Hall. This annual production is a unique part of our curriculum and one of the highlights of the year for the students and our community.


"Be still and know that I am God"

May Crowning
May Crowning

I'm not sure I've shared this prayer with you previously, but it sure seems to make sense today. I hope that you have all heard my good news and understand my deep appreciation for the support you show me. Last week I had an MRI that showed no tumor! I had a little anxiety:) when the MRI also showed a spot on my liver. This week a scan of my liver showed that the spots are nothing to worry about-probably with me since birth. The best news is the plan going forward-no more chemo! I will meet with the surgeon on Thursday to see what/when the surgery will look like and I will follow it with radiation over the summer. My prognosis is excellent. I am so grateful for the many prayers for healing and the strength to beat this crazy disease. You have fed my body and my soul and kept my faith strong-in all the chaos.


To all that is chaotic in you,let there come silence.

Let there be a calming of the clamoring, a stilling of the voices that have laid their claim on you, that have made their home in you, that go with you even to the holy places but will not let you rest, will not let you hear your life with wholeness or feel the grace that fashioned you.

Let what distracts you cease. Let what divides you cease. Let there come an end to what diminishes and demeans, and let depart all that keeps you in its cage.

Let there be an opening into the quiet that lies beneath the chaos, where you find the peace you did not think possible and see what shimmers within the storm.

- Jan L. Richardson

"Be still and know that I am God"

Sky Coaster at Astro Camp
Sky Coaster at Astro Camp

Dear God,

When I can't see you,
remind me that you never lose sight of me...

When I can't hear you,
remind me that you never miss a word I pray...

When I can't reach you,
remind me that you hold me in your arms...

When I can't find you,
remind me that you walk right by my side...

When I can't trust you,
remind me that you're my surest hope...

And when I can't, well, whatever...
Remind me that you can, you do and you will - in love and without fail. Amen.
Austin Fleming


"Be still and know that I am God"

8th grade class gift to SJA
Mary's Garden Makeover

From today's Jesus Calling by Sarah Young:

So Many Blessings
Therefore, since we are receiving a kingdom that cannot be shaken, let us be thankful.
-Hebrews 12:28

Let Me teach you how to be thankful. First, think about all the things you have to be thankful for-home, family, friends, food, clothes, stuff. Then, think about how each of these things is a gift from Me.

As the sun rises, remember that today is a gift from Me. As you get out of bed, think about the gift of a healthy body. As you gather up your work and prepare for the day, be grateful for your abilities and talents. Try to count the many good things I have filled your life with. Is it twenty-five? Fifty? One hundred? I dare you to try to count all My blessings.

The secret to being thankful is thinking about all the good things in your life-and then remembering that these are all gifts from Me.

And it's true-so many blessings! One of our most precious is the 2nd graders making their First Communion this weekend. Please keep them in your prayers as they celebrate this special sacrament. Thank you Ms. Williams and parents for the beautiful preparation of our students.


Kathy Dunn & Christine Lang
Principals, St. James Academy

Kind Words About Us...

"One of the greatest benefits of a St. James Academy education is the commitment of faculty to continued personal growth."

"St. James Academy promotes a spirit of enthusiasm that fosters a sense of community thereby maintaining a strong Catholic mission."

"St. James Academy did an excellent job at incorporating a variety of supplemental texts, materials and methods to meet the needs of the students and their various learning styles!"

"They integrate Christian values into the curriculum, with an emphasis on spiritual development, positive approach to discipline and community building activities."

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St. James Academy is a private Catholic school in North County, San Diego. If you are searching for the premier preschool, elementary school or junior high school in proximity to Encinitas, Del Mar, and Solana Beach, contact us today!