Next Wednesday, February 17th, is Ash Wednesday, marking the beginning of Lent 2021.  Of course, with our personal and communal experience of managing through a pandemic, the past year has felt like an extended Lent!  For many, Lent is associated with choices to “give up” or sacrifice human comforts.  At the same time, our Catholic tradition also envisions the forty day journey of Lent as a unique and timely opportunity to engage in reflection on the meaning of what is most important in life; to assess how we are living and growing in our faith; to reorient our lives toward God’s dream; and to establish new habits that help us grow closer to God.  In the end,  a good Lent allows us to create more substantial room for God in our life. 


On the Ledge this Lent, students will have increased opportunities to pray and worship together as a class.  In addition, a special Archdiocesan Lenten Mission will be an experience for all of our high school students on Friday, February 19th and 26th. Throughout the forty days of Lent, Ledgers will be involved with drives for the underserved, and will have the opportunity for the Sacrament of Reconciliation.  These are some examples of how the Catholic school experience offers students key opportunities for spiritual enrichment.  I am grateful for all the steps our Springs community is taking to make Lent 2021 a meaningful season.  



I am pleased to share that to recognize Black History Month, daily PA announcements from the Student Council will offer historical insight into the significant societal contributions made by Black Americans.  Our social and ethnic diversity is a great gift and strength of our humanity and our American experience. Our differences also challenge us to continually inform, reimagine and sometimes reshape our social consciousness to align with the needs of each new generation.  Our faith asks us to always work for justice.  As Christians, we believe that people of all races are equal in dignity and equally loved by God.  I am grateful to our faculty and student leaders who will help educate, illuminate and honor aspects of the Black experience this month. For religious context, I endorse the following resources: 


US Catholic Bishops Statement Against Racism (USCCB) Ad Hoc Committee Against Racism

Catholic Social Thought and Racial Solidarity REFLECTION: CST


Our Lady of the Ledge, pray for us!


Be well, God bless. 

Eamonn O’Keeffe, Principal Grades 9-12

Upcoming Dates

Mark Your Calendars - No Classes on February 12th and 15th

As President Stacey Akey communicated last week, there has been a change to the school calendar for the month of February.  Parents should please note that both Friday, February 12th and Monday February 15th are no longer school days.  No classes will be held on either day.

FINAL CALL -Singing Telegrams - Ordering Closes at 5:00 p.m. tonight

Tired of flowers and chocolate?! This Valentine’s Day (February 14th), St. Mary’s Springs Academy’s Music Department, will offer a fun way to virtually show your loved ones how much you appreciate them. 


Music students will prepare a personalized message for your loved ones, as well as serenade them in song. This personalized video will include students dressed in formal attire, singing three love songs, in a lovely three-part harmony that you can enjoy for years to come.


Your payment of $35 must be received by February 11th, 2021.  


Click here to order your Virtual Singing Telegram today!

Click here to view the flyer.

Mid-Quarter Progress Reports - February 16th

Mid-Quarter Progress Reports can be viewed on Skyward beginning Tuesday, February 16th.

Ash Wednesday - February 17th

Lent begins on Wednesday, February 17th.

Lenton Mission - February 19th

The Gift of Sunday Lenten Missions:  These Archdiocesan Missions are scheduled to take place on Wednesday, March 3, 2021 from 7-8:30 pm, hosted at 18 parishes throughout the archdiocese and conducted in English, Spanish, and American Sign Language. The list of parishes hosting the Lenten Mission can be found at the link above.   SMSA, along with all 16 Catholic high schools in the archdiocese will also be participating in these Missions throughout Lent for our students.  Each high school Lenten Mission is presented by priests of the archdiocese, and based on The Gift of Sunday Theological Reflection.  For more information about any aspect of The Gift of Sunday, please contact Randy Nohl, or 414-758-2216.

Ledgerfest Auction Item Sponsored by High School Parents - due February 26th

We’ve all been through this before, so this year we are making it easier than ever for you to support the Ledgerfest Auction! 


The high school Ledgerfest parent committee is collecting funds to put together an amazing auction package for Ledgerfest 2021. Click here to make a monetary donation and the committee will do the rest!


With your contribution, we are hoping to collect enough to create not one but TWO great items for this year’s online auction.


If you prefer, you may send cash or check (payable to Andrea Nuss) in an envelope marked: HS Ledgerfest Auction


Any questions? Contact Chris ~ ~ 920-322-8059


This is a simple way to make your impact at SMSA

News and Information

High Honors and Honor Roll

Please click here for the Quarter 1 High Honors and Honor Roll

Please click here for the Quarter 2 High Honors and Honor Roll

Please click here for the Semester 1 High Honors and Honor Roll

High School Yearbook

Reserve your copy via QR Code click here.

Registration: Schedule Request Worksheets for 2021-22

Beginning this week with juniors, students will receive Counseling Office presentations around requesting classes for the 2021-22 school year. Schedule Request Worksheets will be distributed and students will be sharing these forms with parents to be signed. In February the process will continue to sophomores and freshmen.  We encourage parents to engage with their teens in discussions around course offerings, academic goals, and graduation requirements.  For your reference and convenience, the 2021-22 Curriculum Guide has been posted on the SMSA Website, found under Family Resources 

Please review the 2021-22 Curriculum Guide course offerings and academic policies.  Of course, parents are encouraged to reach out directly to our high school counselor Mr. Tallen Mahaffey with any questions about the forms or curse selection process.  Finally, please make sure students are following deadlines for submitting their Schedule Request Worksheets.  This is a first step and essential aspect of preparing for next school year.

Safe Social Network Update

Please visit,  SAFE SOCIAL NETWORK – Tik Tok & Young People, to view the episode on Tik Tok.

SMSA Virtual Learning Guides and Information

With more students electing to learn virtually at this time of the year, I suggest parents of virtual learners review the links provided here. These are resources for better understanding virtual learning at SMSA. 

  1. SMSA Ledger Learning Guides Home Page
  2. HS Expectations for Virtual Learners DOC 2020-21
  3. Expectations for Virtual Learners Slide Deck

High School Counseling

From the Office of Tallen Mahaffey, 9th - 12th Grade Counselor

Seniors:  Complete any college applications as soon as possible. Now is a great time to update your acceptance status for all of your college applications in Naviance. 


The next phase for moving on to higher education at colleges/universities/technical/Trade schools is to look for scholarships on the financial aid/scholarship sites of your potential colleges and in Naviance under Scholarships.  If your parents work at a large corporation, they may want to check with their Human Resources Department to see if there are scholarships available to children of employees.


Seniors, if you have received Award Letters from colleges you have been admitted to, please send a copy of your award letters to Mr. Mahaffey in the School Counseling Department. 


Juniors: Information about taking the ACT this spring will be shared with you as soon as ACT is able to confirm our April host date-This is in process and we are eagerly awaiting their decision.  You may want to begin looking at the ACT website if you have not done so already. 


Attention all Parents 


Scheduling for the next school year 2021-2022.

Parents, please ask your daughter/son to show you the Schedule Request Worksheets and 4-Year Plans they completed in school this week.  Please pay special attention to the notes page and the graduation requirements page included with those handouts. Please look for further information to come that will explain how students can sign-up for an individual meeting with their school counselor to enter their course requests for the coming school year.  See the “Notes for To Be…” page in the handouts your daughter/son received this week.  


In the event a form has been lost or misplaced, all students can get the forms and information they need by going to the Google Classroom for Freshmen, Sophomores, or Juniors.  A video is also posted in these Google Classrooms that explains in detail, how to request classes for the upcoming school year.  Parents, please ask your daughter/son to login to their Google Classroom and show you what is there for students regarding the scheduling process (and study skills, time management, using Naviance for college and career matching, and how to schedule a meeting with their school counselor).


School counselors have worked with all current freshmen, sophomores, and juniors on how to request their classes for next year.  Our classroom discussions helped every student learn how to make requests for the required and elective courses each student should ask to have on their schedule for the upcoming school year.  


Each student was asked to complete a draft copy of their 4-year plan for high school to see how they planned to complete all of the classes required for graduation from SMSA and how to request the courses they would like to take to prepare them for success after high school in college, technical college, trade school, or joining the workforce.  As a college preparatory high school, an emphasis was placed on preparing students for admission to competitive colleges and taking courses that would help them succeed once in college so that they will graduate with a hard earned and valuable degree.


All High School Students


Fresh Start to a new semester:  The beginning of the new year and the second semester gives us all an opportunity to set goals and make positive changes in our lives. Let’s all work with a renewed focus on learning and earning the grades you have set as part of your goals.  The opportunities you will have after high school depend on how hard and how smart you work to prepare yourself now.


Please contact your school counselor to discuss ways to improve your learning and reach those goals you have set in each class.  You will also find a full list of study tips posted in the Google Classroom for Freshmen, Sophomores, Juniors, and Seniors.  


The counseling department will begin a Stress Management group for high school freshmen students during the spring semester. This group will meet once a week during lunch for 8 weeks. Topics include: coping tools, relaxation techniques, self-care, and more! Space is limited. Please contact Ms. Rusch ( for more information. 


A new Study Skills group for high school students will begin soon.  Space is limited-but spots remain available.  The group will meet in the evenings from 6:00 pm to 7:30pm.  Please contact Mr. Mahaffey for more information.

News and Information

UW Placement Testing Update

The University of Wisconsin Center for Placement Testing recently announced that Placement Testing will only be offered online this Spring. We will be sure to provide more information regarding Placement Tests as it becomes available.


Spring 2021 students can register by clicking here.


A few things to keep in mind:

Registration for the online tests for Summer and Fall 2021 students is targeted to begin on Monday, March 15th.

Students will not need a UW-issued email address to register however, they will need their UW campus credentials. To inquire about campus credentials, students may contact their UW campus.

Multifactor authentication will not be required

Local Scholarships

Please click here to view local scholarships. 

Marian University – Q&A Sessions

For a complete list of information sessions, please click here.


Fox Valley Technical College

Please click here for a full list of programs of study.

National School Counseling Week

For those of you I have not yet gotten the chance to meet, my name is Michaela Rusch and I am the school counseling intern working with Tallen Mahaffey this year. This week, we are celebrating National School Counseling Week! We want to extend our gratitude for your support of our students and your support of our counseling program here at SMSA.


Below is a short infographic on some of the roles and responsibilities of school counselors. Please know you can always reach out to our school counseling department with any questions or concerns you have, whether you are needing some extra support for a student or for yourself. Please also see the images below for some self-care ideas for teachers, faculty, and parents as self-care is a priority and a necessity in the work that we do! Take a few minutes for yourself today as a reminder of the great work you have been doing this year.


Thank you again for your support!



Michaela Rusch and Tallen Mahaffey


Click here to view a flyer on what Student Counselors do.

Click here for end of day care.

Click here for 50 ways to take a break.

Northern Michigan University Music Program

The counseling office has received information about Northern Michigan University’s Music Program. You must first apply and be accepted to NMU, register for an audition. Audition on Saturday, February 13th or Saturday, March 21st. 


You could win a scholarship. Click here to register.

We the Students Scholarship Essay Contest

As we celebrate Black History Month next month, what better time to reflect on the meaning of equality and justice in our world today? To truly explore the question in an essay that is between 500–800 words, students will need to go beyond “dictionary definitions,” and express their understanding and reasoning about the connection between these two ideas. This reasoning involves a combination of observation, experience, and some pretty “big ideas.” What does it take to understand them? To build toward and maintain them? To see them with regard to each other? Why is this relationship important?


The sixteen student winners will receive a total of $20,000 in scholarship prizes. The deadline for submissions is Thursday, April 15, 2021. 


More details including rules and regulations can be found by clicking here

Upcoming Dates

Wisconsin Education Fair – February 10th

Wisconsin Education Fairs is offering access to nearly 160 Colleges, Specialty Schools, and Military Branches. Get registered today and explore options!


Explore the Marian University booth and receive a special gift!


Visit 10+ schools and be entered to win a set of AirPod Pro’s. Three sets will be awarded on Monday, April 12, 2021.


Click here to register or log back in! Chat live with reps on Wednesday, February 10, 2021 from 3:00 to 5:00 p.m. CST, but please explore the booths at any time.

Career Exploration

Bellin College Summer Nursing and Imaging Camps – Multiple Dates

Applications are now being accepted for Bellin College summer nursing and imaging camps. Applying to summer camps

How much does it cost?

  • Nursing Day Camp:

Monday, July 26, 2021: $50

Tuesday, July 27, 2021: $50

Wednesday, July 28, 2021: $50

Includes camp t-shirt, lunch and clinical supplies


  • Medical Imaging Day Camp

Thursday, July 29, 2021: $90

Includes camp t-shirt, lunch and clinical supplies


Payment is not required until after the participants have been selected to attend the camp.


How are the participants selected?

Students are selected after a holistic review of their application including the date the applied, GPA, essay question, and dates available.


Who can apply?

High school students who are sophomores and juniors at time of application.



Please contact Claire Drevs at

Apply online at

Job Opportunities

Boys and Girls Club

The Boys and Girls Club are currently hiring for these open positions:

Teen Program Aide

Fine Arts Coordinator

Front Desk


Applications at


Scholarship Opportunities

American Legion Americanism And Government Scholarship Program – Test Available Monday, March 8 through Friday March 19, 2021

The American Legion Americanism and Government Scholarship Program Department of Wisconsin



To promote “Americanism”, love of country, knowledge of government and allegiance to the U.S. flag to our youth. Eligible students are tested on their knowledge of U.S., Wisconsin and County Governments, the U.S. Constitution and flag etiquette.


What Is It?

The test consists of 50 questions; true/false, multiple choice, matching, and an essay question that must be answered in order to qualify for the scholarships. Students are not allowed to use outside resources for answers while taking this test.


Who Is Eligible?

Any student in the 10th, 11th, or 12th grade in any public, private, parochial or home-schooled within the State of Wisconsin may participate. Students may only take the test 1 time per year; however, students may participate all 3 years and be eligible for the scholarships for multiple years.


The test is available on-line on Monday, March 8 through Friday March 19, 2021.

Students Register on-line when taking the test. The test link is found by clicking here.  The link is only active during the test window.


Annually, 33 students throughout the State of Wisconsin are awarded scholarships selected by the Americanism Committee of The American Legion, Department of Wisconsin. The following scholarships are awarded:


11 students in Grade 10 receive a $250 scholarship

11 students in Grade 11 receive a $300 scholarship

11 students in Grade 12 receive a $750 scholarship


For more information contact The American Legion, Department of Wisconsin (608) 745-1090 or check out our website at

College/University SMSA visits

Wednesday, February 10th at 1:10 p.m. – Northern Michigan University

Monday, February 22nd at 1:10 p.m. – Grand Canyon University

Wednesday, February 24th at 1:10 p.m. –  Lynn University from Florida


Please contact Mrs. Hackl with any questions.

College/University Virtual Visits

None at this time.