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JDA E-News

Thursday, April 27, 2017


Juan Diego Academy is a Christ-centered, Catholic learning community forming young men and women to answer the call to lead and be active participants in their Church and community.


As a Catholic regional high school, Juan Diego Academy: 

  • Offers a quality, comprehensive academic curriculum
  • Utilizes the latest in technology and innovation
  • Educates the whole person: mind, body, and spirit
  • Instills a sense of Christian responsibility and service to others
  • Trains leaders to meet the current and future challenges of society 


In the Spotlight: Academic Honors for the Class of 2017


As announced through diocesan media on Tuesday, Juan Diego Academy has its first Co-Valedictorians.  Nathaniel Dyer and Daniela Salinas share the honor of highest achieving students academically for this year’s graduating class.  We have chosen to honor the third highest achieving student, Mary Graham with the title of Salutatorian of the class of 2017. 


Nathaniel, Daniela, and Mary are the first students in the short history of our school to achieve a 4.00 or higher through their four-year high school career.  Congratulations to them and their families.


A full story honoring our top graduates will be released next week on our website, and both local and social media.


We also want to congratulate Ryleigh Erickson for winning the TAPPS South Region Golf Tournament earlier this week.  Ryleigh will be joined by Marie Del Castillo and Andrew Crowe as the first JDA students to participate at the TAPPS State Golf Tournament this coming Monday & Tuesday.  Congratulations!




AP Pre-Administration Session Today (Thursday)


This afternoon at 2:00 PM, test proctors will assist students in bubbling in personal data and preparing them to take the exams beginning this coming Monday, May 1 (see attached schedule for exact dates and times of exams).


Due to AP Exams, there will be no Mass on campus the next two weeks.  Our next Mass will be Wednesday, May 17 at 9:45 AM with Bishop Emeritus Peña presiding.




Christian Ministry Hours Deadline (9th—11th Grades):  Tomorrow (Fri.)


Only Christian Ministry hours documented and signed by the ministry sponsor on an approved Christian Ministry form are accepted by Juan Diego Academy.  Please contact the office if you have any questions.  Thank you for your cooperation.


Early Dismissal Friday, April 28: 2:00 PM

Students will be dismissed at 2:00 PM tomorrow so that faculty and administration may make preparations for the administration of AP Exams beginning Monday.  The bus will depart campus at 2:15 PM.

Third and fourth period classes will be shortened Friday with third period ending at 1:00 & fourth period from 1:05 to 2:00.



Balfour Rep/Graduation Invitations Delivered


Mr. Chris Wildman, our Balfour representative, will be on campus Friday to deliver graduation invitations and other items that have been ordered by our students. 



Thirteen Reasons Why


Many young people (some of our JDA students included) have read the best-selling Jay Asher novel and are now watching the Netflix original series Thirteen Reasons Why which deals with the suicide of a teenager and the audio tapes she leaves with confidants pertaining to her death.  Both the novel and the Netflix series contain deeply disturbing accounts and images of sexual violence, promiscuity (both heterosexual and homosexual), drug abuse, and self-mutilation/suicide among teenagers.  It can also be argued that both the novel and the video series distort the reasoning (if that word is appropriate) behind why young people commit suicide.


It is generally agreed by doctors, counselors, and therapists that the reasons for suicide are varied and multilayered.  It has been argued that the book/series may take too simplistic an approach as to why teens resort to suicide.


If your son/daughter has read/is watching Thirteen Reasons Why, We urge you to become familiar with the storyline and the disturbing images and accounts contained within the works.  Make time to discuss the book/series with your child and exercise your judgment as a parent concerning the appropriateness (or not) of having them watch the series after becoming informed.  We suggest the following web sites/information for starters:






We will be addressing the book/series during Morning Prayer today, in light of the comments above.  If you’d like more information, or would like guidance on how to speak to your son/daughter about Thirteen Reasons Why, please do not hesitate to contact Mrs. Rodriguez in the office: 956-583-2752.



CYRP (from St. Paul Parish Bulletin)


Texas Catholic Conference Teleconference

The staff of the Texas Catholic Conference of Bishops is offering an update on the activities of the 85th Texas Legislature this Friday, April 28, at 9:30 am CT via teleconferencing. This will be a weekly service provided by the TCCB while the Legislature is in session. Please consider joining us by calling:


Access code 102432

Learn about the latest news and information concerning legislative issues in Austin and our Catholic faith at:





Reminder: Made for Love Conference


Please see the attached flyer for information about a special conference taking place Saturday, May 6 to deal with the important issues surrounding abuse of the internet for cyberbullying, pornography, sexting, etc.  Guidance Counselor Veronica Rodriguez will be taking a group of our student leaders to this conference, but anyone (students, parents, etc.) is welcome to attend.



Reminder: Wanted: Robotics Mentors/Support Team

From Ms. Arielle Gannon


The JDA robotics team needs help from the JDA community for next year's competition season. We require Mechanical, Electrical and Coding mentors during build season January - February 2018 and competition season the first week in April 2018.


Mechanical mentors will help with the construction of the robot. Mechanical mentors could be engineers or anyone who is good with their hands. 


Electrical mentors will help with the wiring and circuit board for the robot . Electrical mentors could be electricians or electrical engineers.


Coding mentors will help with coding the robot to accomplish the 2018 challenge. The programming language used by the team is LabView.  LabView is the main language used by National Instruments, Analog Devices, Tesla Motors, and Delphi Automotive and Space Exploration Technologies Corporation. Coding mentors should be familiar with LabView.


If you, or someone you know, has a passion to help young people work in ways described above, we want you!  Please contact me by calling the school office, or through e-mail: agannon@cdobcs.org  Thank you!



Reminder: Summer Plans?  Let us Know!

We love to hear about the exciting educational and cultural opportunities our students are participating in this summer.  Please send me an e-mail and share your plans and ideas with us.  We’d like to let everyone know about what’s out there to take advantage of, so as many of our students as possible can benefit from these wonderful summer opportunities.


Reminder: Grotto Candles Available


We’re thankful to the Casso family for inaugurating yet another wonderful tradition at our school during this year’s spring festival.  The Grotto at Juan Diego Academy candles are available at the school office for a $5 donation.  Included with each candle is a prayer intention card you can fill out & leave at the office.  These intentions will be remembered every time The Rosary is prayed at our grotto.



Reminder: Summer Math Test Prep Course Offered at JDA


Sign up form for a special summer program targeted at improving students’ SAT and ACT math scores.  The program will be run by JDA math teacher Mr. Joseph O’Brien.  Contact Mr. O’ Brien or Dr. Carroll if you have any questions.


Upcoming Events


Thursday, April 27: SPIRIT DAY (note special day—sponsored by freshmen)


Friday, April 28: Early Dismissal (2:00 PM); TAPPS Regional Track Meet


AP EXAMS: May 1-12 (see attached schedule)


Monday-Tuesday, May 1&2: TAPPS State Golf Meet (good luck Ryleigh, Marie & Andrew!)


Please see the upcoming events calendar on our web site for additional event dates & times




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Bob Schmidt

President & Principal


The JDA E-News is our weekly (periodically during the summer) school newsletter updating you on what’s happening within our JDA school community.  We try as much as possible to contact you by this medium (as well as by text or phone) to save on paper, postage, and printing costs, as well as promote good stewardship of our environment and resources.  We welcome your comments and suggestions.  Enjoy keeping up to date on JDA through the E-News, as well as on our web site and social media, which are updated continuously with dates, events, and school information.




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