Mr. Lootens' Blog

  • Principal’s Bulletin Message – March 17/18, 2019

    Posted by Mike Lootens on 3/13/2019

    As we continue with our planning for the upcoming school year I thought I would share some thoughts on a project that we were able to complete through the generosity of the parish in Father’s Annual Appeal.  In the last year and a half we have experiences far too many problems with our HVAC system in the original (1964) section of our school; we had many assorted bills to fix this or that. Therefore a decision was made to replace the entire system. 

    With the money from the appeal we were able to do the following:

    • Install, after removing the old units, seven energy-efficient furnaces supplying heat to the eight rooms east of the office, the Small Gym and adjacent hallway.
    • Like the furnaces above, seven new air conditioning units (picture attached) were added in the rear of the building.
    • Rezone the eight classrooms to the east allowing for each room to control the temperature in the room.
    • Remove the two large air conditioning units from the ceiling of the Small Gym.
    • Remove the hood in the old kitchen along with the mechanicals located on the roof above it.
    • Remove the blower situated outside the north wall of the Small Gym.
    • Runs were added to supply heat and cool air to the corridor leading from the office to the west.
    • And finally, I realize it may seem trivial, we were able to cover the vents located on the floor of the Small Gym.

    Reminder for those who shop at Kroeger’s:  Please make sure that you have signed up for the Kroeger Community Rewards Program.  A portion of what you spend is rebated back to Epiphany Catholic School; please check out the program and how to select as our school as a beneficiary at

    Have a great weekend and may God bless you and your family!!!






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  • Principal’s Bulletin Message – March 9/10, 2019

    Posted by Mike Lootens on 3/6/2019

    Summer learning loss is real.  All children lose some skills or knowledge over the summer months.  This phenomenon, commonly referred to as the “summer slide” occurs when student do not engage in educational activities during the summer months.  A great deal of research has centered on the summer slide and concludes:

    • Elementary school students’ performance regresses by about a month during the summer. This loss is cumulative over time creating producing a great learning loss over the years (Rand Corporation, 2011).
    • The Campaign for Grade-Level Reading lists summer learning loss as one of the three major obstacles to reading proficiency by the end of the 3rd grade (Gewetz, 2011).
    • The costs to schools to reteach after the summer slide have been estimated at $1,500 per student per year (Fairchild, 2002).

    Summer Solutions provides the necessary review and practice that helps students retain important Math and Language Arts skills learned during the academic term.  Each Summer Solutions practice book contains 30 lessons, along with Help Pages and an answer key for self-checking.  If students simply complete a lesson from each of their Summer Solutions workbooks just three times per week over the summer they are systematically re-visiting and practicing learned skills.  This type of academic engagement supports long-term retention and helps to prevent the summer slide! 

    Students are also encouraged to continue reading throughout the summer.  Our teachers will provide or have already, lists of books for student reading over the summer.  Also, local public libraries have excellent summer reading programs for children to participate in.

    Various rewards programs are being considered and will be shared with students before the end of the academic term.   Information on how to obtain Summer Solutions will be distributed later this spring.

    Please contact me at the office with any questions or concerns.

    Congratulations to members of the Epiphany Chess Team who recently competed in the IESA State Chess Championship held at the Peoria Civic Center in late February.  The 6th Grade team placed ninth in the over 50 team field.  Brothers Matthew and Simon Hunter each placed 2nd and earned silver medals.  Other team members included Lincoln Adelsbeger, Patrick Henehan and A.J. Holden.  Also, ECS’ lone 7th Grade entrants each medaled; Benedict Henrickson received a silver medal and Elijah Rariden received bronze.

    Congratulations to 7th grade student Jose Joseph who was notified this week that he will advance to the state competition in the National Geographic Geography Bee.  Jose won the school competition in January and then took a test to attempt to qualify for state which will be held at Heartland Community College later this month.

    Have a great week filled with the blessings of our Lord,



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