School News

Principal’s Corner: August 1, 2019


Message from the Principal


Hello St. Al Families,

I hope you have all had a wonderful summer thus far.  While we still have a month to go before school, your school staff have been busy cleaning, planning, and preparing for a great year ahead.  This year we will have some new staff, new events, and a new schedule (kind of).

We have added another new staff member, Kelsey Sweet, to our St Al’s community.  She comes to us from another area preschool and brings a wealth of knowledge and certification in early childhood learning.  She is an energetic and motivated addition to our teaching staff. She has a huge heart for children and what we do here at St. Alphonsus, having been a student here herself.

This year we will be looking to add a few new events that will assist parents with school items and receiving information.  Our first new event will be August 20th.  This event is designed to help all families get a head start on the school year.  It does not replace our event on the first day of school, but rather allows the planning and business end to happen sooner and the social piece that first day to be purely that.  August 20 we will have tables for FACTS, school fees, Parent Club, spirit wear, and more.  This is a float in/float out kind of event so stop by when you can.

I wanted to announce a slight change to our school schedule this upcoming year.  After meeting with several schools in the area, speaking with other principals, working with our teachers, listening to parents, and looking at several years of students’ scores, we have worked out a schedule for middle school that will provide a 7 period day allowing math five days a week.  This increased the amount of math instruction but maintained the gender separation we previously had with core classes. With this full week of math we are also able to expand our math program, providing additional classes for students outside of our typical offerings.

This change in the schedule required us to add five minutes at the beginning of the school day.  The school day will now begin at 8:25am instead of 8:30am.  A full example of the schedule will be available soon.

Finally, I want to say thank you to Lizzy Scholz who has been helping with our newsletter and website this summer.  She has been a huge help as we have been working toward the upcoming school year.

Have a wonderful few weeks and I hope to see you all August 20.

Thank you,

Kathleen Daspit
St. Alphonsus Parish School

Principal’s Corner: August 9, 2019–School Startup Event

Message from the Principal


Hello St. Al Family and Friends,

The end of summer is fast approaching and we are working hard to make sure everything is ready in time for our first day on September 3. As we prepare for the upcoming year, we are offering a new event that will allow your family to get ahead with paperwork and planning.  Please join us August 20, 2019 from 2-6pm in the school cafeteria to fill out paperwork, sign-up for volunteer opportunities, register for clubs/activities, go through the uniform exchange, and learn about some of the groups who assist our community. We will even have spirit wear for purchase! Can’t attend? No worries, you are welcome to stop by the office starting Aug 19 from 9am-3pm to fill out forms and receive information.  We hope to see you on Aug 20 but if not, we look forward to seeing all of you on September 3.

Next, I wanted to let everyone know that the new school calendar is currently available on the school’s website.  Some items have specific times and descriptions.  More information will be provided for later events when it is available.  Remember, if you have any questions about school events feel free to consult the latest edition of the Angel’s Angel, my emails to families, room parent communication, school staff, and the main office.

Finally, it is time once again for everyone to check their information in RenWeb.  This information is what we use when we need to contact you about school closures due to weather or emergencies, illnesses or other school day incidents, and most commonly, school events/information.  If are not sure how to verify this information or need help accessing the parent portal of RenWeb, please contact the main office or stop by the FACTS/RenWeb table on August 20.

The countdown has started.  I am looking forward to seeing all of you very soon.


Thank you,

Kathleen Daspit
Principal, St. Alphonsus Parish School

SeafoodFest Volunteers Needed!

Get an early start on your Volunteer Hours for the 2019-2020 School Year.  It’s Time St. Al’s to Shine at Ballard SeafoodFest

When:  Sunday July 14th 4pm to about 7:30pm

Where:  Ballard Seafood Fest Salmon BBQ and Crab Shack

This is tons of fun and is the last shift at the Salmon BBQ which means that, if there is leftover salmon, you get to take some home!

Sign up now!

Principal’s Corner: June 14 2019 – Last Day of School Edition!

Congratulations to all of our students!


While today we recognized some for their achievements here at St. Alphonsus, I would like to take a moment to recognize all of our students.  We have a stellar group of kids here in our community.  We stand out in public as a beacon of God’s love and light, receiving compliments from other groups and event/location coordinators alike.  I am so proud to serve this group of young students and I can’t wait to see what they will accomplish.

Thank you,

Kathleen Cifu
Principal, St Alphonsus Parish School

Principal’s Corner: June 13, 2019

Hello St. Al family and friends,

We have reached the end of our school year. It feels like just yesterday we were welcoming everyone back and introducing ourselves. This year was full of opportunities for learning as we welcomed new staff and took on new content with new classes. This year we saw the establishment of our endowment, the start of new traditions like Saints month, and the celebration of established customs that always bring us together as a community.

Thank you for welcoming me as your new principal this year. I have truly enjoyed getting to know our students, staff, and parents. I am excited to continue learning more about everyone as we head into the 2019/2020 school year.

Moving ahead, the work does not end Friday. I will continue prepping for next year by filling our open positions, continuing our work on accreditation by finishing up our self-study, and researching new Science curriculum. I will also be working with several others to continue enrollment efforts, growing our community for the fall.

This summer, the office will officially close June 28. While I will be working at the school for the rest of the summer, I will be unavailable from June 21-July 5. As many of you know, I am getting married and will then head off to my honeymoon a few days later. If you find you need anyone at the school, Charleen Sweet will be able to help until June 28. I will be back in the office July 9.

It is hard to believe my first year with you is ending but I am ready to begin the work God has in store for our second year together.

Thank you,

Kathleen Cifu
Principal, St Alphonsus Parish School

Principal’s Corner: June 6, 2019

Hello St. Al Family and Friends,

The year is almost over but we still have so much to look forward to.  With so much going on, I will keep this week’s message brief.  I sent an email this week that helped lay out all of the exciting activities coming up in the last days of school.  Make sure you watch your email closely, as last minute reminders are coming your way from a number of sources.  Also, please note that we needed to cancel Coffee & Conversation tomorrow due to set up for the Spring Concert and Junior Olympics.

I hope everyone has a fantastic end of the week.
Thank you,

Kathleen Cifu
Principal, St Alphonsus Parish School


Principal’s Corner: May 30, 2019

Hello St. Al Family and Friends,

This week we said goodbye to May and welcome the final two weeks of our 2018-19 school year.  It seems as though the year has flown by, but we certainly packed in a lot of learning and excitement.  Soon we will be saying goodbye to some and getting ready to welcome others.  Let us remember though, it is not over yet.

This time of year can be a stressful time with events, testing, commitments, etc…It can also be a joyous time too—a time to celebrate together and a time to reflect.  This reminds me of the Rosary.  In my most joyous and most stressful moments I find delight and comfort in reciting the Rosary.  Either with others or simply alone, it helps ground me; reminds me of what is really important in my life when my day seems too full, and allows me to truly rejoice during times of celebration.  Pope Leo XIII said “The Rosary is the most excellent form of prayer and the most efficacious means of attaining eternal life. It is the remedy for all our evils, the root of all our blessings. There is no more excellent way of praying.”

If you are looking for peace, if you are looking for joy, if you are looking to rejoice, I encourage everyone to pray the Rosary.  We have some free Rosaries available on the table outside the office, as well as Rosary cards.  Feel free to check them out and help yourself.

Thank you,

Kathleen Cifu
Principal, St Alphonsus Parish School

Principal’s Corner: May 23, 2019

Hello St. Al Family and Friends,

This week we celebrate our grandparents and special friends with events and activities on Friday, May 24.

My grandmother was an incredibly important part of my life.  We spoke nightly on the phone (she lived in Montana) and wrote letters back and forth for years.  She was a huge source of support and a sound voice of reason.  I will remember her for many things but most importantly how she shared love.  My grandmother was born and raised Catholic.  She had a constant desire to fully live the values of service and sacrifice that she learned through the Church.  Any given day my grandmother could be found delivering meals, running a mobile library, and spending time with residents at a local hospice.  While I was not raised Catholic, I always watched the example my grandmother set for me.  I watched the expressions of her heart and her love for Christ lead her to do powerful things for others.  I thought to myself, if that is what it means to be Catholic, then that is what I must be.

Grandparents and family friends are important people who shape our lives in ways we could never imagine.  They are a blessing and we are so happy here at St. Alphonsus to celebrate them.  If you are a grandparent or special friend, thank you for the difference you are making in the lives of those in our community.  We love you.  We thank you.  We are so happy you are a part of our lives.

Thank you,

Kathleen Cifu
Principal, St Alphonsus Parish School


Please join us for our Confirmation Mass on Thursday, May 30 at 7pm.  Bishop Mueggenborg will confirm 12 teens from our St. Alphonsus community, including St. Alphonsus Parish School alum and siblings.

Student Referral Program

Hot off the press… we have a new student referral program where you can earn tuition credits!  Check it out here!

Yearbooks For Sale!

Many of you purchased a yearbook back in September.  However, it’s not too late to purchase one today.

Cost: $18.00 (Checks payable to St. Alphonsus School, drop at front office)
Email:  Mrs. Wisen at with your order

Yearbooks will be delivered the 2nd week of June.

Come to the Book Fair!

St. Al’s Book Fair is OPEN May 16 – May 24, at the following times:

  • Before school each day: 8:15 – 8:45am
  • After school each day: 2:45 – 3:45pm and 1:45 – 2:45pm (Wednesday only)
  • Special event: Friday, May 24 from 11:30am to final purchase.
  • Orientation evenings: Tuesday, May 21 and Wednesday, May 22 from 6:30 – 8:15pm

An exciting new feature this year is the eWallet for your student. Instead of sending a check or cash with your student to purchase books, you can easily set up an eWallet for them online and we can use that for any book purchases over the course of the Fair.

Look for the eWallet information on our Scholastic Book Fair info page, link below. You may also purchase books online through 5/23 using the link.

eWallet Link

Thank you for supporting our school library!

Scrip: May Madness Contest

The third week of May Madness had some serious buying!! 3rd grade has now pulled ahead of the 7/8 Boys. This is the last week to help your students earn an end of the year party. Which class will it be?

Lunch Recess Volunteers Needed

Did you know…?  We need at least 1-2 parents to lunch recess volunteers every day to ensure the safety of our kids. Signing up is easy!  Just click the “Lunch Recess Volunteer” button below!

Please contact Lisa Macomber at if you have questions or need additional information.

Lunch Recess Volunteer!

Annual Fund Contest

Have you made your Annual Fund donation?  In an effort to achieve 100% participation, we are hosting one final contest.

Until May 30, make a donation to the Annual Fund in ANY AMOUNT and your student’s class could WIN a FREE DRESS DAY in June!

All proceeds from the Annual Fund directly benefit the students and teachers at St. Alphonsus. Make your donation today! You can learn more about the Annual Fund on our school website.

Questions?  Please contact Kristin at

Parents’ Club Executive Board Elections


It’s election season for our Parents’ Club Board. Our Parents’ Club is an important component of our St. Al’s community that both facilitates community building and fundraising events. The events knit our community together, and our fundraising commitments fill the budget gaps.

Please read below and familiarize yourself with our list of candidates. These candidates will be joining three current board members, for a total of six members. We are grateful to the following parents for their willingness to serve.

Voting opens Thursday, May 16 and will close Thursday, May 30. Click on the link below to vote online. Please take the time to vote and show your support for the Parents’ Club.


2019-2020 Parents’ Club Executive Board Candidates


Christiana Cairns

My name is Christiana (Chris) Cairns.  My son, Alister, has been a student at St. Al’s for 3 years now (K-2nd) and is soon to be a 3rd Grader.  My husband and I have been together for nearly 20 years, dividing our time between Seattle and places around the globe.  I love volunteering, organizing events and getting my hands dirty.  Literally.  I love to garden and will find any excuse to dig in, even if that means pulling weeds out of a sidewalk garden while I am on a walk.  The reason my husband and I chose St. Al’s is the close sense of community and the incredible feeling as you walk through the doors of family.

Liz Powell

Hello! I would like to be considered for the St. Al’s Parents Club Board for a few reasons:

St. Al’s has been a blessing to our family. Our son Ronan started at our school as a 6th grader last fall. It was a big step taking Ronan out of public school, but we had a hunch St. Al’s would be good for him. After nearly a year of watching Ronan thrive, we can say St. Al’s has been a huge blessing in cultivating his love of learning/academics, robotics, spirituality and friendships.

I enjoy and have experience serving on boards, creating campaigns and events. I have found boards to be a rewarding way to give back. During the past 10 years, I have held multi-year positions with the FIRST Robotics Advisory Board in Seattle (school age STEM program), Antioch University Seattle and currently Seattle Rotary Club, where I serve as Membership Chair.

I am ready to serve the St. Al’s parents community. We felt welcomed from the first day and I would like to pay forward the generosity by serving more deliberately next year. I will be Room Parent for 7th grade boys next year, which will hopefully enhance my contribution and insights I bring to the Parent’s Club Board.

A little background on me: I am owner of RE/MAX On Market in Ballard (with my husband, John Manning) and am also a successful realtor who works with clients to buy and/or sell homes. Prior to my real estate career, I spent 25 years as a public relations, marketing and branding executive in Seattle, Portland, SF/Bay Area and France. Most recently, I led the Pac NW consumer brand team for Edelman, the largest public relations firm in the world, working with some of our region’s top brands, including Alaska Seafood Marketing Institute, Charles Smith Wine, Microsoft, T-Mobile, Theo Chocolate, Value Village and Starbucks. I grew up on Bainbridge Island and graduated from the University of Oregon (yes, I am a Duck!)

Thank you for your consideration!

Amanda Daylong

Amanda is the mother of 6th grader, Kelan Stewart.  Since coming to St. Alphonsus in 2017, Amanda has enjoyed the school’s close-knit community and goals of providing  high-quality education to its students.  Having “settled in” to St. Alphonsus, Prior to becoming an attorney, Amanda served as administrative staff at a local non-profit, private school in the University District, and assisted in the first steps of that school moving toward accreditation and navigating through tremendous growth.  As a St. Als parent, Amanda now would like to use her background in education and the law to serve on the Parent’s Club Board as the the school moves forward through accreditation and help our community to continue to grow and flourish.

Vote! PC Board Elections

Hi St. Al’s families,

We are opening our doors for the remaining Thursdays in May between 9-11am for 2019-2020 prospective families! Please invite all of your friends and family to observe what great things our school has to offer.

We have space available in most classrooms and would really love to see more 1st graders next year!  Please let me know if you have any questions. Flyers will be coming home with each student today, please post or pass them along to someone who may be interested.

Thanks for all your help!

Jenny Horstmann
Admissions Director


There’s still time left,
but May Madness is nearing its end.
Hurry in and purchase Scrip
like it’s the latest trend.May Madness is almost over, so stock up on all those grocery, gas, gift, and/or travel Scrip. Remember for the month of May, the amount of Scrip you purchase will be added to the other families in your child’s class and the class that has the highest averaged dollar amount will win an end of the year class prize.Please note that some items are special order and may take up to 2 weeks to arrive.Scrip cards may be purchased:

  • Online at
  • Tuesday, Thursday, and Friday mornings at 8:15-8:45 am in The Commons (small cafeteria) at school
  • Wednesday mornings at 8:30 am in the Preschool classroom
  • Friday afternoon at 2:45-3:15 pm in The Commons (small cafeteria) at school
  • After all weekend Masses in the back vestibule
  • At the Parish office during the week

Contact Mija Hamilton at for more info.


At Saint Alphonsus we are a community of students, parents, teachers, staff, and parishioners working together for our shared success. There are countless ways you can volunteer and we would like to help you find the right opportunities!

Please complete this short Volunteer Interests & Skills survey, which will be used to create a database of expertise and talent accessible to organizers as volunteer opportunities become available.

Volunteer Interests & Skills Survey

Angels’ Angle: May 23, 2019