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Displaying items by tag: Saratoga Central Catholic

SARATOGA SPRINGS — The 2020 school year was marked as unforgettable as students, teachers and parents all moved to distance learning.

COVID-19 changed the world of teaching and soon after the virus struck the Saratoga community, Saratoga Central Catholic School started to implement innovative distance learning. They began online classes on March 18, connecting students daily with set schedules, Zoom classes and encouraging messages for their students. 

“This has been an experiment. We learned by doing and I think that many of the schools have proven they can continue education under very difficult circumstances, which this pandemic certainly is,” Michael Kondratowicz, interim principal said. “The distance learning with contact to the faculty, has allowed the students to be guided by their teachers. It’s helped parents by educating their children and allowing them to meet on a regular basis with their teachers under these unusual circumstances.”

The initial challenge Biology and Earth Science Teacher Kate Sedlak faced with remote learning was discovering methods to relay the education material to the students in a clear, concise manner. 

“In the beginning, I think we never thought that we would be out for the whole year. We thought at the end of spring break we would be back. Once we realized that we wouldn’t be going back, we had to kick it up a notch,” Sedlak said. “Having the video classrooms has been a great thing…the school already has a digital platform we were using that really helped with the transition. It made it easier to communicate because students and faculty already knew the program.”

As a Biology teacher, living through a pandemic brought an ample amount of education material to Sedlak that students could directly relate to. The SpaceX Dragon launch also provided a learning opportunity for Sedlak’s students. 

“I really took what was happening in the world that we live in and related it to the science they are learning. That’s what you have to do when you are teaching…you have to make up fun and relevant material with today’s world,” Sedlak said. 

By relating the material to current events not only engages the students more, but also keeps them motivated as they can directly use the information they are discovering. Maria Izzo, dean of students and teacher for eighth-grade American history and twelfth-grade government, said seeing students online rather than in person has been difficult. 

“It’s difficult for students to not have their teacher in front of them to explain assignments and material. They are all just different levels of learners. Keeping them engaged and motivated as they’re not in front of you has been a challenge,” Izzo said. 

Thinking creatively has allowed both Izzo and Sedlak to keep the students engaged and motivated while learning through a new medium. 

“There are a lot of resources out there, you just had to go through them and figure out what ones you could use,” Sedlak said. “When I started teaching we didn’t even have computers in the classroom. I had to do all my grades in a grade book with a calculator. Dealing with the technology was an issue and who knows what will happen next year. I’m trying to learn from this experience to see what I have to do next year.”

Izzo said she has run into technology problems as student cameras or microphones won’t work or the Internet crashes, which happened to Izzo just this week. Despite the disturbances with technology, Izzo can use multiple online platforms that allow the students to work in different ways, including group assignments. 

“I have to give a round of applause to our faculty, parents and students who, under these circumstances, have worked really hard to work with programs and try to help educate our students,” Kondratowicz said. “We will continue [distance learning] until June 12 for our seniors and June 19 for other grade levels. Then we will be stopping it and we don’t know what the future will bring. All sorts of government planning and discussions are going on in New York State about what the school year will look like next year.”

Izzo said: “it’s kind of hard to start off a school year with new students. I can only imagine starting in a new school and you’re on a computer…but I can’t even imagine what it would be like for the younger kids. [Distance learning] would be some students first kindergarten experience. I know it’s technology but that in-person connection is needed.”

Sedlak said from what she knows thus far, there are three main options for schools next year. She said the transition would be fluid through the options.

“But nobody knows. No one knows what is going to happen but we have to be ready. Whether it’s partial distance learning, we just have to be ready and prepared,” Sedlak said. “I’m just really proud of my students.”

Izzo added: “What do I think the future holds for remote learning? I hope it’s short-lived and maybe not just the only way we are going to do it. I’m hoping our NYS education system can find a way that we can be with them some of the time. It’s going to be difficult, but we know what we are up against now and we know what precautions we need to take. I think anything is possible to get the kids back into the classroom if you put your mind to it. I think we owe it to [the students], for their education, to try to make it happen to get back into the classrooms.”

Published in Education

Photos by Mary Guarnieri.

SARATOGA SPRINGS — Last Saturday, Jan. 25, Saratoga Central Catholic held its Annual Winter Gala at the Holiday Inn. 200 attendees enjoyed an evening of dinner, dancing, fun raffles and an exciting live auction. SCC raised over $130,000 at this event. The proceeds will be used to enhance the prosperity of Saratoga Central Catholic School. 

Published in Education
Thursday, 13 June 2019 15:08

Saratoga Central Catholic Graduation

Photos by SuperSource Media, LLC. 

SARATOGA SPRINGS — On Friday, June 7 a parade of gold and purple could be seen entering the St. Clement’s church. It was that day the graduating class of 2019 held their commencement ceremony. Valedictorian Anne McKenne was also one of the scholarship recipients at the 19th annual community service awards brunch. She plans to attend Benedictine College, majoring in English Literature. 

Published in Education
Thursday, 28 February 2019 13:10

Lauren Maher: Athlete of the Week

Photos Provided.

SARATOGA SPRINGS — Saratoga Catholic’s varsity athlete Lauren Maher is a year-round athlete who reminds us that the adrenaline rush of a sport is nothing without the sense of community that athletics generate.

Kristen, Maher’s older sister, and biggest inspiration, was on her way to soccer tryouts when she encouraged then nine-year-old Maher to take up soccer herself. That small dose of sibling bonding jumpstarted Lauren’s athletic career.
Shortly after, Maher joined some of her friends in trying their hand at hoops. Leading into middle and high school, Maher bloomed into an all-year jock as she joined not only the soccer and basketball teams, but her track and field and cross-country team as well.
The Spa Catholic soccer team captain says without hesitation that soccer is her favorite sport. In addition to playing for her school, Maher is also a player for Nirvana 360’s travel soccer team. Nirvana 360 has traveled to Washington D.C and Disney, where they played on the ESPN field.
Even with all the glam that comes with the sport, the engagement with her teammates is a part of what makes her love the game.
“I find it (soccer) the most fun and I connect with my team more. My favorite part about soccer is probably just being able to win with my team.” 
Playing and competing all year can be draining for any young athlete. Maher practices on the field, track, court and off, every single day. During basketball season, she only has one day of the week to rest. Luckily Maher has avoided serious injuries due to training herself to recover physically, mentally and by utilizing her strong familial support system.
“They (her family) always come to my games and push me to do better,” said Maher.
Maher is constantly motivated to do better at every meet and game. To get herself in the zone, she feeds off the energy of her teammates to keep her in a good mood and remind her of who she is competing for.
“I don’t know if I have a least favorite part,” said Maher. “I guess if I do something bad and let my team down.”
Maher hopes to continue playing soccer into college and to create more meaningful team connections.
Published in Sports

Photos by Cathy Duffy.

SARATOGA SPRINGS — On Saturday, January 26 Saratoga Central Catholic School held it’s 6th Annual Winter Gala. Over 150 community members, alumni and parents attended this event at the Excelsior Springs Event Center. The 2019 Winter Gala featured cocktails, hors d’oeuvres, dinner, dancing, DJ and a photobooth from Cool Cat Entertainment, several raffles, and a live auction.  Dan Frankowski was the lucky winner of the Featured Painting, “Floating Leaves”, by David Hill. The Gala raised over $80,000 for Saratoga Central Catholic School.

Published in Education
Thursday, 04 January 2018 13:46

All-Star Moments

Saratoga Central Catholic Bowling [Saints v. Hoosic Valley]
SARATOGA SPRINGS — On Thursday, Dec. 21, 2017, the Saints played Hoosic Valley. For Varsity, Hoosic Valley took the win with 3360-3179. Tim Barrett had the highest average for the Saints with 212, followed closely by Hayden Day with an average of 189. For Hoosic Valley, Leigha Henkel had the highest average with 221, followed closely by Blake Weibert who had an average of 219. For JV, the Saints took the win with 2371-2357. Jack Naughton had the highest average for the Saints with 158, followed by Tom Frankowski with 142. For Hoosic Valley, Jen Acker had the highest average of 169 and Zack Milette had the second highest average with 150.

Saratoga Central Catholic Bowling [Saints v. Granville]
SARATOGA SPRINGS – On Tuesday, Jan. 3, the Saints played Granville and won, 3565-2644. Tim Barrett had the highest average for the Saints with 233, followed by LJ LaFiura with an average of 216. For Granville, Mikey Martin had the
highest average of 186 with DJ Ludwikowski with 179. The Saints currently have a record of 38-6.

Saratoga Central Catholic Boys Basketball
SARATOGA SPRINGS — Over the Christmas break, on Wednesday, Dec. 27, the Spa Catholic Boys Basketball team improved to 3-0 league, 7-1 overall, by winning the 42nd Annual Saratoga Central Catholic Holiday Tournament. In the opening round, the Saints faced off against Bishop Maginn, posting a 75-62 win. Tyler Haraden led the Saints with 31 points, followed by Ryan McFadden with 13 points, and Sean Englert with 11 points. Dominique Threatt led Bishop Maginn with 22 points. The second night, the Saints faced Cambridge in the championship game. This was a hard-fought game with multiple lead changes and the Saints would ultimately pull it out for the win 57-49. Tyler Haraden again led the Saints with 19 points and was named the Tournament MVP. Terel Tillman had a strong game for the Saints on the boards and defensively, while clipping in 12 points. Tillman was also name to the All-Star Tournament Team. Cambridge was led by Tristan Williams with 20 points.

Published in Sports

SARATOGA SPRINGS – On the morning of June 9, in the St. Clements Roman Catholic Church in Saratoga Springs, Saratoga Central Catholic High School held its graduation ceremony for the class of 2017, awarding diplomas to its 31 graduating seniors. This year’s valedictorian was Emma VanDeCar, while salutatorian was Paul Ruger. According to Mary Guarnieri, the school’s director of advancement, their graduating class for 2017 has already been offered over $6,425,000 in academic scholarships.

All photos by www.photoandgraphic.com.


Published in Education

READING, PA – Cameron Coons, a former Saratoga Catholic Central standout baseball star, has been named as Player of the Year in the MAC (Middle Athletic Conference) Commonwealth Conference. Coons, a junior at Alvernia University in Reading, PA was also named to the All-MAC Commonwealth’s First Team at First Base.


Alvernia University is gearing up for the 2016 MAC Commonwealth Championship, Alvernia is the #1 seed, and is defending their title from the previous year.  


Coons was recently named MAC Player of the Week and ECAC (Eastern College Athletic Conference) Division III South Player of the Week when he batted .588 (10-for-17) in a 4-1 week for Alvernia, including a 2-1 series win over Lebanon Valley College to clinch a berth in the MAC Commonwealth Tournament. Coons finished the week with nine RBIs, seven runs scored and three home runs. The junior opened the week hitting 4-for-4 with a home run in a win over Rutgers-Newark. Coons ended the week batting 4-for-6 with a home run, four RBIs and four runs scored over the final doubleheader against Lebanon Valley College. His regular season batting average is .426, with 55 hits, 15 doubles and 4 home runs.  


Published in Sports
Thursday, 12 May 2016 10:37

Klingenberg Will Kick for Mercyhurst

SARATOGA SPRINGS—Saratoga Central Catholic School’s senior Tyler Klingenberg has signed a letter of intent to play soccer next season at Mercyhurst University in Erie, Pennsylvania. 


On hand to celebrate Tyler’s signing were Tyler’s coaches Tim Barnes and Jeff Geller, as well as proud parents Holly and Juergen Klingenberg. Congratulations Tyler! 


Published in Sports
Thursday, 08 August 2013 14:38

An Afternoon with Funny Cide

GREENFIELD CENTER — Several lucky visitors got to spend an afternoon with the first New York Bred horse to win the Kentucky Derby, Funny Cide, at Old Friends at Cabin Creek on August 6.

Published in News