Click to view:  February 2021 Newsletter 

SSCD Newsletter

February 2021


Events held during the first week of February for Catholic Schools Week always help us celebrate our love of the Lord, our school and each other.  This year was made special by gathering together to pray for our school and our nation, SSCD Zoom Bingo, a Faith & Fitness challenge, Phil & Faith Art contests, treats and surprises! January provided us an opportunity to measure academic growth through the data obtained from our second round of Aspire and Acadience testing. A review of that data is helping us individualize instruction and move students forward toward our end of year goals. The month was filled with fun and fundraising through dress down days, hoagie and soup sales.  Second Grading Period ended, and parents were provided with a mid-year survey. Working together with our school families and the information gathered with the survey responses, our school will become all that God and our families want it to be! We remain committed to keeping everyone safe, healthy and in school for face-to-face instruction. March 1st is Preschool Registration and Kindergarten Registration is March 3rd, please share these dates with family and friends! Our first scholarship applications for next fall are due April 15th!


February Dates:

 Feb. 12- Mass 9AM

Feb. 12-$1 Dress Down Day Valentine’s Day: Dress in Valentine’s Day Attire

Feb. 12-Valentine’s Day Parties

Feb. 15- $1 Dress Down Day Patriotic/ America Day: Dress in Red, White, and Blue

Feb. 17- Ash Wednesday: No Mass for Students

Feb. 19- Mass 9AM

Feb. 23- End of Grading Period for Kindergarten

Feb. 25-26- Passages Program (TBD In-person or Virtual)

Feb. 25- $1 Dress Down Day Tacky Day: Dress in Fun and Crazy Colors

Feb. 26- Mass 9AM

March 1st-Preschool Registration

March 3rd-Kindergarten Registration


Ss. Cosmas & Damian Elementary School is celebrating Catholic Education during Catholic Schools Week Jan. 31st-Feb. 6th

 Our theme this year is faith, excellence and service. Our school has continued to be a center of faith throughout the pandemic with daily religious instruction, prayers lifting those in need and living our best lives as the children of God.  We safely opened our doors using distancing and safety protocols to provide the students with in-person learning of rigorous education based on the standards and producing excellent academic outcomes. We successfully achieved continuation of Middle States Accreditation based on high standards and student achievement. Service was demonstrated in many ways, our students raised funds for Make-A-Wish, donated to our parish food pantry and sent cards to nursing home residents and members of the military. Our teachers gave of themselves to learn new technologies and techniques to elevate student learning during the pandemic.  Our benefactors came to our support by providing needed equipment and finances to ensure safety. Our staff worked tirelessly to provide a protocol for a safe environment and continued learning. Please join our celebration:

Sunday, Jan. 31:  CELEBRATION OF OUR FAITH! Join us in-person or via Twitch for 11 am Mass at our beautiful SSCD Church to start the celebration.  Students can draw a picture or write a paragraph about how their family celebrates faith and turn it in to their teacher for a chance to win a prize!

Monday, Feb. 1: NO SCHOOL! Celebration of families and communities by giving our student the day off to spend with their family. In anticipation of Groundhog Day, students can write a reason for their choice or draw a picture of their favorite Fantastic Phil Groundhog Statue. Turn in the writing or picture to your teacher for a chance to win a prize!

We invite families to join us for a special Mass on YouTube to celebrate Catholic Schools with Bishop Persico, link:

Tuesday, Feb. 2: DRESS DOWN DAY: Groundhog Day, Punxsy or Red and White. Celebration of Graoundhog Day! We will watch the Groundhog Day celebration in our classrooms, participate in Groundhog Day activities and have Groundhog Cookies. Families may choose to celebrate our unique holiday together and students may arrive as late as 9:30 am, without being considered tardy.

Wednesday, Feb. 3: DRESS DOWN DAY: Patriotic or red, white and blue. Celebration of our nation.  Our parents, parish and community are invited to join us in the school courtyard, socially distanced and wearing masks, to pray for our nation by saying the Pledge of Allegiance and the Our Father together (weather permitting) at 8 am.

Thursday, Feb. 4: DRESS DOWN DAY: Future selves and chosen professions. Celebration of teachers, staff and vocations in faith. Students will enjoy ice cream while participating in Zoom Bingo for prizes! Last day of the SSCD 30-day Faith and Fitness Challenge for a chance to win a boy and a girl bike.

Friday, Feb. 5: WE WILL WEAR OUR UNIFORMS TO CELBRATE CHILDREN’S MASS. Please join us for our Children’s Mass at 9 am in-person or via Twitch. Celebration of our school’s donors, volunteers and sponsors. We will set special prayer intentions for those who give of themselves to make our school successful. We thank you for your prayers, time and financial contributions. Entire school Pizza Party from Punxsy Pizza will be our treat to our students! Winners of the SSCD January Faith & Fitness Challenge will be presented with a boy and a girl bike.

Saturday, Feb.6: Celebration of 126 years of SSCD Alumni! Alumni are asked to share stories, pictures or videos to SSCD School Facebook messenger or email at [email protected] to be shared on our school Facebook page.


Daily Health Screening Tool <----click to access-parents and staff MUST complete this health screening daily before coming to school.


PA DOH update:

DOH is providing options to shorten quarantine for contacts of persons with SARS-CoV-2 infection.  Quarantine can end after Day 10 without testing if no symptoms have been reported during daily monitoring. The most protective recommendad quarentine period remains at 14 days post exposure. If a member of a household tests positive, all members of that household must participate in the 10 day isolation period, non-positive members of that household must then quarentine the recommended additional 14 days to assess for symptoms.

When testing resources are sufficient quarantine can end after day 7 if a diagnostic specimen tests negative and is collected on day 5 or therafter and the person remains asymptonatic.

Quarantine may not be further shortended beyond the end of day 7.


Covid 19  Update:

As of Jan. 29, SSCD school has 0 positive cases, 0 in isolation and 1 in quarantine per the CDC and DOH requirements.  We do have families following our school daily health screening guidelines, by choosing to stay home if they are not well, suspect an exposure of themselves or a household memeber.

Please follow the daily health and safety guidelines provided to each parent.  STAY HOME IF YOU ARE SICK, HAVE HAD AN EXPOSURE OR HAVE A HOUSEHOLD MEMEBER IN QUARANTINE OR ISOLATION. This situation will remain fluid as we keep our school safety the top priority. School communications via Remind, Gradelink and Facebook will alert to changes. Classroom teachers will direct mode of instruction based on your at home learning survey responses.

This message is a follow up to a meeting with the  Department of Education (PDE) to discuss county level community transmission of COVID-19 and how it relates to instructional model recommendations for PreK – 12 schools. As a reminder, all information on the state recommended instructional models and level of community transmission is available on PDE’s website here

Below is an overview of your county data.  The public health metrics below are accessible on the interactive COVID-19 Early Warning Monitoring System Dashboard, which is updated every Friday. 

Jefferson County is in the substantial level of community transmission. 

More information and public health data to inform local decision making, including zip code level case data, is available on the Pennsylvania COVID-19 Dashboard

Based on this continued level of transmission, PDE and DOH recommendations are for full remote learning until the community transmission rates return to moderate. As these are recommendations, not a mandate, each LEA should continue to review their data and make the best decisions for their students, staff and community. SSCD will continue in face to face instruction until further notice. 

Thank you for your continued support to help mitigate the spread of COVID-19 in our school and county. Please call the school 814-938-4224 or email [email protected] with any concerns.

Prayers for continued health and safety.


SSCD Return to School Summary:

Posted August 14, 2020:

Recommendations for Pre-K to 12 Schools Following Identification of a Case(s) of COVID-19

It is important to note that a significant and/or widespread outbreak may require moving to a more remote-based instructional model more quickly. DOH will provide proactive consultative assistance to school entities should such an outbreak occur. 

Level of Community Transmission in the County
Number of Cases of COVID-19 Within a 14-day period:
1 student or 1 staff
Number of Cases of COVID-19 Within a 14-day period:
2-4 students/staff
in same school building
<5% of total number of students/staff in a school building are cases
Multiple school buildings with individual cases who are not household contacts
Number of Cases of COVID-19 Within a 14-day period:

5+ students/staff
in same school building
≥5% of total number of students/ staff in a school building are cases
Multiple school buildings with 2-4 cases who are not household contacts
  • School does not need to close
  • Clean area(s) where case spent time
  • Public health staff will direct close contacts to quarantine
  • Close school(s) for 3-5 days*
  • Clean area(s) where cases spent time
  • Public health staff will direct close contacts to quarantine
  • Close school(s) for 14 days*
  • Clean entire school(s)
  • Public health staff will direct close contacts to quarantine
  • School does not need to close
  • Clean area(s) where case spent time
  • Public health staff will direct close contacts to quarantine
  • Close school(s) for 5-7 days*
  • Clean area(s) where cases spent time
  • Public health staff will direct close contacts to quarantine
  • Close school(s) for 14 days*
  • Clean entire school(s)
  • Public health staff will direct close contacts to quarantine

DOH and PDE recommend a Full Remote Learning Model for all schools in counties with substantial level of community transmission

DOH and PDE recommend a Full Remote Learning Model for all schools in counties with substantial level of community transmission

DOH and PDE recommend a Full Remote Learning Model for all schools in counties with substantial level of community transmission

*When an entire school is recommended to close, lengths of closure time will vary by level of community transmission and number of cases. This allows public health staff the necessary time to complete case investigations and contact tracing, and to provide schools with other appropriate public health advice like cleaning and disinfecting.

What is case investigation, contact tracing, isolation, and quarantine?

Public health staff is responsible for case investigation and contact tracing for every case of COVID-19, regardless of level of community transmission or number of cases identified in school setting. Refer to DOH's Contact Tracing Frequently Asked Questions for a complete overview of the case investigation and contact tracing process. 

Cases are people who have been infected with the virus that causes COVID-19. The Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC) case definitionOpens In A New Window for COVID-19 includes confirmed and probable cases.

Isolation is when the public health staff direct cases to stay home, in a hospital, or in a care facility to ensure they do not expose others with COVID-19.  Individuals who are experiencing symptoms of COVID-19 should be immediately isolated while waiting for test results. Public health staff handles case investigation steps including determining close contacts during the infectious period.

Close contacts are individuals who have been exposed (within 6 feet distance for at least 15 consecutive minutes) to someone who is a case during the infectious period, and it is unknown if the contact will go on to develop COVID-19. Public health staff determine close contacts after a case interview.   In some school situations, it might be difficult to determine whether individuals are contacts or whether an entire cohort, classroom, or other group (extracurricular activity members) might need to be considered exposed, particularly if people have spent time together indoors.

Public health staff will work with school administrators to determine whether entire classrooms or other cohort groups need to be quarantined. Based on these discussions, public health staff will direct close contacts to quarantine for 14 days from the last exposure to the case; this includes household contacts (like siblings and parents/guardians/caregivers) who attend or work in other schools.

What are the recommendations for cleaning and disinfecting in a school setting?

Schools should close off all areas used by a case and not use those areas again until after cleaning and disinfectingOpens In A New Window. This may include a classroom, common areas used by the case(s) such as lunchrooms and restrooms, school transportation options like a bus or van, and in some cases, the entire school building. Students should not be present when disinfectants are being used and should not participate in disinfecting activities.

To protect the health of janitorial and cleaning staff, schools should wait at least 24 hours before cleaning and disinfecting. If 24 hours is not feasible, wait as long as possible. Ensure safe and correct useOpens In A New Window and storage of cleaning and disinfection productsOpens In A New Window, including storing products securely away from children. More information on cleaning and disinfecting is available in the DOH and PDE Public Health Guidance for School Communities.

What should schools do when a student or staff present symptoms of COVID-19 but are not a confirmed case?

It is not necessary to notify DOH or CMHD staff of every symptomatic student or staff member, since many non-COVID-19 illnesses may present with similar symptoms. School administrators should contact DOH or CMHD for further guidance if a parent/guardian/caregiver notifies the school of potential exposure by a student, staff member, or school visitor. Refer to the DOH and PDE COVID-19 Symptomatic K-12 Student or Staff Process Flow (PDF) for steps schools should take when a student or staff present with symptoms of COVID-19 but are not a confirmed case.

Mental Health Resources provided by the Catholic Schools Office:

COVID-19 Symptomatic K-12 Student or Staff Process Flow

Public Health Guidance for School Communities 

Posted July 24, 2020:  Welcome Back to SSCD School Update!

We pray that summer has been good to you and your families. As we look forward to the start of school, our focus is to address the health and safety of our students, but also to meet their academic, spiritual, social, and emotional needs. Our intent is to offer in-person instruction, 5 days/week starting August 24, if at all possible. We have been working closely with The Erie Diocese Catholic Schools Office in developing our reopening plans according to the guidelines set by the CDC, PDE, EPA, OSHA, DOH and local health agencies. Additionally, we appreciate your counsel about how best to proceed into the 2020-2021 school year. We welcome suggestions, ideas and considerations for how we can best move forward. Your passion for the success of our school and your deep concern for the well-being of your children is inspiring and motivating. More plan details, handbook of school procedures and classroom orientations to follow.

What’s new for 2020-21 at SSCD?

Health screenings

Touchless temperature and symptom checks on arrival

Symptom checks at least twice daily


Cloth face covering required when distancing not possible

Frequent handwashing; posters and videos provided                         

Staff training on hygiene standards

Classroom space/physical distancing

Students must wear cloth face coverings when distance is not possible, when in common school areas

Physical distancing (6 feet) within classrooms; use of outdoor space

Art, gym, music, computer, library and maker space will happen in the classrooms, when not able to be held outside.

All shared materials and facilities will be sanitized before and after use.

All students are asked to bring a pair of headphones, in a zip lock bag labeled with name, for personal use with technology,


Arrival/dismissal procedures

Families pre-screen wellness prior to arrival, Stay at Home as directed by CDC recommendations

Temperature, wellness screening and hand sanitizing prior to entering

Designated routes to classes; multiple entrances/exits

No family members past entry; families report travel/exposure


Fountains will not be used for drinking, only to re-fill water bottle bases after top has been removed.

All students are asked to bring a screw top water bottle filled every morning.

Grab n Go breakfast for purchase, eaten at desk until 7:50

Lunch will be ½ hour in the classroom.  Hot lunch option will be available every day.

Eat at desks or outside when possible

Desks cleaned before and after eating

Hands washed/ sanitized before and after eating

Sit well apart while eating; no shared food


Students play outside as much as possible; play limited to classroom groups at scheduled times

Gym class outside as much as possible, with classroom group only

Physical movement breaks at desks frequently

Consider wearing shorts under skirts


Wellness screen prior to transport

Bus transportation provided by public school with safety measures in place

Quarantine and school policy

Parents and staff self-screen and Stay at Home as needed per CDC guidelines

Temperature, wellness check and hand sanitizing before entering

Students and/or staff who arrive ill and do not pass screening will be sent home before entering school, or held in isolation area established in Meeting Room until able to leave school.

Staff and families are to self-report to the school @814-938-4224 or email at [email protected] if they or their student have symptoms of COVID-19, a positive test for COVID-19, or had a close exposure to someone with COVID-19 within the last 14 days

Gradelink/Remind systems for notifying if a person with COVID-19 was on the school premises while infectious. In coordination with local health officials while maintaining confidentiality in accordance with FERPA and all other state and federal laws.

Remote learning to maintain engagement and offer distance learning activities for students who cannot be physically present in the classroom due to illness or exposure.

Practice makes better!

Your child can practice:

  • positive attitude towards staying healthy and helping keep friends safe
  • wearing a mask
  • hand washing for 20 seconds with soap and water
  • using hand sanitizer
  • covering coughs/sneezes with a tissue
  • proper use of a tissue
  • 6 feet social distancing practice

If you have a fun way of practicing distancing share it with our school!

Helicopter Helper-put your arms out to your side and turn once in a circle to make sure they are not able to touch anyone with their arms out to their side if they were turning also.

Hula Hoop Helper-pretending everyone is in an imaginary hula hoop and the hoops do not touch.


Thank you for choosing SSCD School for your Child!


CDC Guidelines for Schools: