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Last updateTue, 20 Nov 2018 12am

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    Sunday, November 18, 2018-10:47:11P.M.

     

     

     

     

     

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Mount Carmel School all set to resume classes on Tuesday, Nov. 13

(MCS) — “We are ready.” This is what Mount Carmel School president, Galvin Deleon Guerrero, said as the school prepares to resume classes next week Tuesday, November 13.

“All our classrooms and buildings are fully powered with generators, our water tanks are providing running water, we have restored internet connectivity, and we’ve repaired most of our air conditioners,” said school president, Galvin Deleon Guerrero. With all of these developments, Deleon Guerrero added, “We look forward to helping our students return to a sense of normalcy.”

The efforts were made possible by commitments from Bishop Ryan P. Jimenez, the school’s Board of Directors led by Chairman Vicente “Ben” Babauta, and the school’s Leadership Team to mobilize all necessary resources to prepare the school. Two major clean-up efforts were also held by the school involving Knights, AlumKnights, parents, faculty, staff and parents. The school also got help from students and teachers from Grace Christian Academy, Saipan International School, Saipan Southern High School, Marianas High School, Kagman High School and Green Meadows School, as well as members of Marianas Young Professionals. DFS’s WE ARE DFS cleanup team also spent three hours this past week cleaning classrooms.

DFS’s WE ARE DFS Cleanup Crew gather for a group photo after their recent campus cleanup of Mount Carmel School. They gathered in front of the iconic grotto for Mother Mary, which was built 50 years ago by members of the AlumKnight Class of 1968 in the aftermath of Typhoon Jean.  MCS photosDFS’s WE ARE DFS Cleanup Crew gather for a group photo after their recent campus cleanup of Mount Carmel School. They gathered in front of the iconic grotto for Mother Mary, which was built 50 years ago by members of the AlumKnight Class of 1968 in the aftermath of Typhoon Jean. MCS photos

In addition to the cleanups, the school recognized other individuals and organizations that have helped prepare for the reopening of the school. The school thanked the dozens of individuals who have made financial contributions and in-kind donations. The school also acknowledged several contractors who mobilized quickly for repairs, including HBR International Inc., Kautz Glass, Sagittarius Manpower, SeaFix, and Scot Thompson. The school also expressed appreciation for the CNMI Public School System, whose Childhood Nutrition Program is working with LSG Sky Chefs to continue the school meals program.

Accommodations for students and families

As the school readies for reopening, it also expressed understanding and support for many families that still lack access to power, water, and reliable laundry services. With that understanding, the school will allow students to dress down for the time-being. However, students must still follow the school’s dress down policy. In particular, students should wear shoes (no slippers) for safety purposes and no aspect of a student’s clothing may call undue attention or contradict the mission and philosophical values of the school.

Understanding also that many families have been devastated by the typhoon, the school will waive all late fees for tuition through January and will be flexible with parents with a demonstrated need and who are struggling to meet tuition payments.

The school also announced its revised school calendar that will allow the school to end on schedule at the end of May 2019. To make up for days lost to Typhoon Manghut and Super Typhoon Yutu, half-day classes will be held on Commonwealth Constitution Day and Holy Thursday, and Spring Break will be cancelled. The school also announced that it would utilize Achieve3000 to make up for lost learning time by monitoring student use of the interactive and interdisciplinary online literacy program.

Much more work remains ahead

Despite all this progress, Deleon Guerrero noted that much work remains to be done on campus. He said, “We’ve ensured that the campus is safe and that classrooms are functional, but we still need to rebuild our historic gym and our library, which were completely destroyed by Yutu.”

Still, Deleon Guerrero is hopeful. He said, “50 years ago, Father Arnold Bendowski and the MMB Sisters pulled our school family together to recover from Typhoon Jean. We can do the same. With faith in God and faith in each other, we will rebuild, brick by brick, book by book. We are Knight Strong. We will rise!”