A Heritage of Faith & Excellence for a Future of Innovation & Service

A Heritage of Faith & Excellence for a Future of Innovation & Service

A Heritage of Faith & Excellence for a Future of Innovation & Service

A Heritage of Faith & Excellence for a Future of Innovation & Service

A Heritage of Faith & Excellence for a Future of Innovation & Service

Coronavirus/School Reopening Updates & Information

December 15, 2020

Dear Saint Francis Solano School Community,

On reflection and discussion regarding the upcoming Christmas vacation, Saint Francis Solano School’s schedule/calendar will be modified.The school will provide Distance Learning for every student during the week of January 4th-8th. There will be no Hybrid, Cohort instruction. 

 Please follow the hybrid cohort schedule for distance learning Monday through Friday, including Wednesday. 

 We will welcome cohorts back on campus during the week of January 11th. This allows more than a 14-day waiting period for those who have traveled or had contact outside of their immediate household on Christmas.

 We continue to prioritize the health and safety of our school community. Thank you for your support and understanding.

 Debbie Picard and Robin Perkins

November 30, 2020

Waiver Cohort Hybrid Schedule

October 27, 2020

On Monday of this week, the County Health Office contacted us for more clarification on our plans for COVID-19 surveillance and rapid testing. We responded today and we are awaiting further communication from them regarding the waiver. We will continue to provide updates as we get them.

September 15, 2020

Dear Saint Francis Solano School Families:

We wish to inform you that later this week, the Sonoma County Department of Public Health will begin accepting applications for waiver requests. If approved, a waiver would allow Kindergarten through sixth grade students to return to campus for in-person instruction. 

We will be in communication with our reopening task force as the county has added layers of new guidelines, including ongoing surveillance testing and contact tracing, which are now the responsibility of each individual school seeking a waiver.

You will be receiving a survey today or tomorrow. Please fill out the survey as soon as possible so we can move forward with the application process with accurate feedback from our parent community. While there is no guarantee that the waiver will be granted, we continue to prepare for the day we can welcome students safely back on campus.

Mrs. Picard & Mrs. Perkins


August 24, 2020

Dear Catholic School Parents of Sonoma County,

 We pray this message finds you healthy and well as we navigate these extraordinary times.

On August 19, Sonoma County Schools Superintendent Steve Herrington and County Public Health Officer Dr. Sundari Mase released a letter to schools entitled, “Health-Based Recommendations for School Planning/Distance Learning.” In this letter, public and private school leaders were urged “to begin thinking about how to provide a distance-learning only model through December, if it is needed.” This letter was also made available in this morning’s Press Democrat.

 This letter presents Sonoma County statistics that “validates the need to remain on distance learning to protect student, staff, and community health for the time being.” And it highlights that “Sonoma County is currently experiencing high case rates and test positivity rates that show significant uncontrolled community spread of the virus. Under this type of community spread, it is predicted that school opening would likely result in positive cases on campus, which would in turn create more disruption for students, families, and staff due to the need for isolation, quarantine, and possible school closure.”

 Worth noting is that the letter also states that a waiver may be granted by the County Health Officer for elementary schools to open for in-person instruction. California waivers are granted only for grades K-6. The California Department of Public Health recommends that the local health officer not grant a waiver in counties with a case rate of 200 per 100,000 residents or higher. The case rate for Sonoma County on August 24 is 299.4 per 100,000 residents. For this reason, it is important to understand that waivers are not an option at this moment in time, nor are they available in Sonoma County. Once Sonoma County makes the application process available, schools will gather parent feedback on how to best proceed and if it is deemed safe and appropriate to do so, individual schools may apply for this waiver option to resume in-person instruction.

 While we cannot predict what the COVID-19 pandemic will look like in the months ahead, know that our Catholic schools are committed to continuing and elevating the quality of online education that has been established in the spring. We are committed to daily, real time instruction with a classroom experience through technology. And no matter how instruction is delivered, our schools will remain constant to the Mission of our Catholic schools – to lift students to their full potential academically, to form them in faith and to prepare them for active leadership in their communities.

 Let us continue to pray for one another in this challenging time.

Dr. Linda Norman                       Mrs. Debbie Picard

Linda Norman, Ed.D.                  Principal

August 13, 2020

Dear Saint Francis Solano School Community,

Presented here is a tentative schedule for Distance Learning. We have included both regular and minimum day schedules. Please note our first day of school, August 19th, is a minimum day. We understand that many of you are making child care, tutoring, learning pod arrangements; we hope this will assist you with your planning. 

Color denotes direct instruction followed by independent work time. For example, Mrs. Perkins will stream live Language Arts instruction from 8:40-9:00 and students will complete the Language Arts assignment from 9:00-9:30. We will provide daily opportunities for live core instruction while allowing screen-time breaks during independent work.

Each teacher will be sending home a letter with more detailed information about daily structure and expectations. Continue to check for school emails regarding updates. Thank you for your continued support and flexibility during these challenging times.

Debbie Picard and Robin Perkins

August 11, 2020

Dear Saint Francis Solano School Families:

Drive thru supply and iPad pick up will take place on Tuesday, August 18th.  Families with student(s) in grades K-4 will pick up between 9am-11am, families with students in grades K-8 will pick up between 11am-1pm, families with student(s) in grades 5-8 will pick up between 1pm-3pm. 

Books, supplies, work packets and iPads will be distributed. Families must present the iPad contract (one for each student) to receive iPads, books and supplies on the 18th. Please also drop off blue emergency forms, raffle tickets, immunization forms (K, 7th and new students) or any other school forms in the drive thru.

Teachers will be meeting Wednesday, Thursday and Friday of this week. One of several things they will determine is student cohorts. Last week we stated that we would be asking for your intentions to either return to school, or select the hybrid model of live streaming lessons from home once school is allowed to open. Teachers have determined that they will be able to assign students to consistent and interactive cohorts without having to force families into a decision at this time. 

Please keep checking school emails for important updates and information.

Thank you.

Debbie Picard and Robin Perkins

August 6, 2020

Dear Saint Francis Solano School Community,

As of today, August 6th, Sonoma County continues to remain on the state of California monitoring/watch list. As you know, students are not allowed to return to campus until Sonoma County is off of the monitoring/watch list list for 14 days.  Therefore, students will begin the year on August 19th with Distance Learning.  It is our sincere hope that in the upcoming weeks we will be taken off of watch for 14 days and able to reopen campus.

Guidelines for the waiver application for K-5 students were released on Wednesday.  We are currently considering and weighing the prudence of applying for the waiver. Recent inconsistencies in testing data have further delayed the waiver process. Please note that the waiver does not include middle school or high school age students.  

Faculty is on campus preparing classroom cohorts, Hybrid Learning and Distance Learning. As we build cohorts we must know which students will be returning to campus for daily instruction and which will be choosing daily Hybrid learning from home.   Please look for an email on Monday that will request your intentions for your students’ learning option.  We eagerly anticipate our first day with students whether it be virtual or in person.  

Faculty will finalize a distance learning schedule next week; details will be emailed to school families.  Please anticipate students attending virtual live streaming/Zoom lessons between the hours of 8:20-2:20.  Kinder and First grade will attend shortened, age appropriate days with limited screen time. A finalized schedule for both classes and supply pickup is forthcoming.  Please also note that there will be a grace period for purchasing of uniforms and supplies when school is able to safely reopen on campus.

Debbie Picard and Robin Perkins

July 27, 2020

Dear Saint Francis Solano School Community,

On Thursday, Dr. Steve Harrington, Superintendent of Sonoma County Public Schools, conducted his weekly briefing with school superintendents and principals.  In this briefing he noted that Sonoma County is on the state monitoring/watch list through at least August 2nd.  If we continue to remain on the monitoring list after August 2nd we will start the school year in Distance Learning.  If, and this is a very optimistic if, the county were taken off of the list on August 3-5 we will excitedly welcome students on-site on August 19th.  

Here you will find Saint Francis Solano School’s Return to Campus Plan. This task force plan includes protocol and safety features put in place to assist with the safe reopening of campus for students and staff. This plan will be used once we are given the green light to have On-Site instruction. The plan has been sent to the superintendent of the Diocese of Santa Rosa and to the Public Health Department. The plan is dated July, 2020 and will be updated as public health policies change.

If we are required to begin the school year Distance Learning you should expect: daily attendance, daily classes for core curriculum (including language arts, math, science, social studies and religion), daily scheduled direct instruction(via Zoom, recorded lessons, and/or live streaming), daily interaction with peers and teachers, upper division office hours, and Spanish for grades 5-8.  We will continue to use Gradelink and Google Classroom in addition to weekly learning packets for younger learners.  Instruction will be age appropriate and respectively scheduled for the attention spans of students ages 5-13.

The third scenario includes the Hybrid Model.  Survey results showed that 29% of our school population would choose to participate in a Hybrid Model of distance learning rather than attend on-site instruction.  It is very challenging, if not impossible, for our teachers to teach both in person and virtually at the same time.  Faculty has met to create a Hybrid Model that will provide rigorous learning for all students while also allowing teachers the opportunity to develop plans for specific grades.  With the school reopened, teachers will follow the daily schedule with student learning on-site.  Curricula will be offered through Google Classroom and through learning packets.  At teacher discretion, there will be opportunities for direct instruction and student:student interaction throughout the day.  We must make it clear that families committing to hybrid learning will be a partner in the primary education and role of “teacher at home.”  As teachers are on-campus teaching, families who take on the Hybrid Model will take on a large commitment to the time management, instruction, accountability, and daily progress of education of their hybrid student.  Hybrid models per grade will be finalized in the coming weeks.  It is imperative for planning cohort learning to know the exact headcount of students per grade.  Therefore, at the beginning of August we will be reaching out to families to find out whether families will commit to hybrid learning or on-site learning when school reopens.

Per Dr. Harrington, the state of California is currently developing a waiver to reopen schools while a county is on the monitoring/watch list.  At this time, Saint Francis Solano School has requested to receive information about this waiver and its application process, once available.  We are currently not committed to applying for a waiver, we are simply gathering information. We will continue to update you on this process.

Thank you for your partnership,

Debbie Picard and Robin Perkins

July 21, 2020

Dear Saint Francis Solano School Community,

We appreciate your patience as the learning directives are constantly in flux.  To that end here are the three models that Saint Francis Solano School staff is working to prepare and finalize for August.

  1. Safe Return to Campus-students will learn in cohorts with direct instruction and a 8:20-2:20 school day.
  2. Distance Learning- students will receive daily direct instruction in five core classes including: math, language arts, science, social studies and religion.
  3. Hybrid Learning- parents will choose for their student(s) to either attend campus learning in cohorts, or participate in distance learning.

Per Governor Newsom’s statewide directives Saint Francis Solano School will follow the five principles of learning:

  1. Safe in-person school based on local health data (this state mandate requires Sonoma County to be off of the statewide monitoring list for a minimum of 14 days for all public and private schools to reopen safely)
  2. Masks required for grades 3-8, grades K-2 will be required to arrive at school wearing masks and will wear them throughout the day at the teacher’s discretion
  3. Physical distancing and other adaptations
  4. Regular screening/testing + dedicated contact tracing for staff
  5. Rigorous distance learning that includes live interaction with teachers and other students, and challenging assignments equivalent to in person classes (the faculty is meeting this week to evaluate and develop a revised distance learning model)

We as a school faculty want nothing more than to celebrate the first day of returning safely to campus.  That said, as of today, Sonoma County is on the statewide monitoring list.  Therefore if school were to start within the next 13 days, we would be required to provide distance learning.  There is no way for us to know what the situation will be in August, therefore we will be prepared to provide all three learning models.

We will continue to keep you informed as we are made aware of changes to the state and county directives.  Please continue to reference the school website and read communications for the most current information.

July 18, 2020

California Department of Public Health Reopening In-Person Learning Recommendations

Presented by Governor Newsom on July 17, 2020

July 14, 2020

Dear Parents,

I hope you are all safe and well and enjoying some summer relaxation.
As of last week’s Zoom meeting with the Superintendent of Sonoma County Office of Education, Sonoma County schools are scheduled to open in the fall. All students, including kindergartners, and staff are required to wear face masks.

Yesterday, two of California’s largest school districts, Los Angeles Unified and San Diego Unified, issued a joint statement announcing that they will begin the fall school year online. This causes many parents to wonder what will happen in our county. As of today, unless there is a mandated closure, we will be able to be on campus. We continue to work on our safe reopening plan. Having said that, I do understand that some parents have concerns about returning to campus and are asking about Distance Learning. Please take a moment to complete the very brief survey that was included with the email update earlier today. Thank you.

Happy Feast Day of Saint Francis Solano,
Debbie Picard


July 2, 2020

The June packets have been mailed containing 2 blue emergency forms, raffle tickets or raffle ticket receipts, school sweatshirt order forms and new student health information (if applicable).
Additional school information such as student school supplies, uniforms and calendar information can be found: https: //saintfrancissolano.org/june-packet/
We will be adding to this information over the summer as we finalize details and protocols for reopening school on August 19th. Please continue to check your email and our school website for the most current updates. The school 2020-2021 handbook online will be posted in early August.
While we will have a very specific reopening protocol tailored to Saint Francis Solano School, you may wish to view the Sonoma County Office of Education’s Parent’s Guide to Reopening for a sample of what schools in the county may implement.

June 25, 2020

I would like to thank the members of the school’s Reopening Task Force, Dr. Nick Lopez, Erin Rogina, Beth Fenton, Lauren Cotner, Kim Subaie, Robin Perkins, and Perrin Cutting, for meeting this week. It was a positive collaboration and a school reopening document will be shared with you in July.

As you know, mandates from the state continue to be in flux. Most recently, Governor Newsom announced that all Californians over age two must wear a mask in most public settings, including schools. Yesterday, Sonoma County Superintendent Dr. Steve Herrington met with Sonoma County Health Officer Dr. Sundari Mase to further discuss school reopening guidelines based on ever-changing conditions and state guidance. Their understanding is that the mask issue is still being discussed at the state level and additional guidance for schools will be coming soon. I will continue to keep you posted.

Using the county’s evidence-based approach, Sonoma County schools are still required to maintain a six-foot distancing standard. Saint Francis Solano school is able to follow that guideline by using the school’s East Wing, West Wing, main building and Father Roberts Hall.

I will continue to share updated information with you. I hope you are enjoying some fun and relaxation during these beautiful summer days!

-Debbie Picard

The school office is open by appointment. The playground is closed.

Please email inquiries to: stf.schooloffice@saintfrancissolano.org

Thoughtful. Responsible. Motivated.

These are the hallmarks of a St. Francis Solano student. Inspiring our students to become lifelong learners will serve them as they move along life’s journey – inspiring thoughtful questions and educational discovery.

St. Francis students are nurtured to become self evaluators who are able to make informed, intelligent choices and take responsibility for their work and actions. An emphasis on faith and kindness inspires students to care for and respect each other’s physical and emotional well-being.  Our focus is to create enthusiastic learners who think, develop and articulate independent ideas, adapt to change and solve problems using critical thinking skills.


MLK Holiday-No School
Jan 18 all-day
A COHORT Campus/B COHORT Distance
Jan 19 @ 8:15 AM – 12:30 PM
A COHORT Campus/B COHORT Distance
Jan 20 @ 8:15 AM – 12:30 PM
B COHORT Campus/A COHORT Distance
Jan 21 @ 8:15 AM – 12:30 PM
B COHORT Campus/A COHORT Distance
Jan 22 @ 8:15 AM – 12:30 PM
A COHORT Campus/B COHORT Distance
Jan 25 @ 8:15 AM – 12:30 PM
A COHORT Campus/B COHORT Distance
Jan 26 @ 8:15 AM – 12:30 PM

St. Francis Solano School serves the families of St. Francis Solano Parish and the Sonoma Valley by cultivating an atmosphere embracing Roman Catholic values in which all students strive for academic achievement.

At Saint Francis Solano School, students embark on a spiritual, educational and social journey. Parents, as primary educators, partner with teachers in this ministry. Teachers facilitate the spiritual, academic, and social growth of all students, as they become self-evaluators, life-long learners, and faithful Catholics who serve as Jesus served.

Schoolwide Learning Expectations

St. Francis Solano School students are:

Faithful Catholics who are able to:

  • Actively participate in the Catholic Church in order to continue their development of faith
  • Recognize that we are made in the image and likeness of God, therefore, all life is worthy of dignity and respect
  • Make moral decisions based on Gospel values
  • Exhibit and model a Christian attitude of compassion through forgiveness of one’s neighbor and respond to those in need
  • Express a commitment to Church, country, community, social justice and individual relationships

Self-evaluators who are able to:

  • Make informed, intelligent choices understanding the consequences of those choices
  • Take responsibility for their actions
  • Demonstrate self-motivation and self-discipline
  • Care for and respect one’s physical and emotional well-being
  • Reflect on strengths and areas of growth while striving to achieve personal best

Life-long learners who are able to:

  • Cooperate using effective oral, written and listening skills
  • Solve problems using creative critical thinking skills
  • Gain, integrate and apply knowledge
  • Think, develop and articulate independent ideas
  • Share their talents with others
  • Adapt to change and diversity
  • Utilize educational tools and resources

What Our Alumni Are Saying

“This school has left an impact on me in the best way possible. St. Francis’ religious message has taught me morals, a sense of right and wrong, and how to be accepting of all people. In addition, I am Jewish and I never felt that the teachers were trying to force me to change or convert to Catholicism. I am a student who loves to learn and the school has offered me opportunities to challenge myself…”

What Our Alumni Are Saying

“The students at St. Francis are fortunate to receive outstanding instruction from teachers who are dedicated to help each student succeed…the latest digital tools and lessons have been added to each class starting at Kindergarten through 8th grade…”

What Our Alumni Are Saying

“I have met people at other schools and heard stories of children my age being bullied and struggling with their grades because they are too afraid to ask for help. Never in my nine years have I witnessed or even heard of anything like that (here)…I can walk through the halls knowing everyone’s name and something about them…”

TreeRing Green Yearbook School
St. Francis Solano School

342 West Napa Street • Sonoma, CA 95476 • (707) 996-4994   Fax (707) 996-2662

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