July 19, 2017 | Volume 10, Issue 1

RCSS News & Events



Last week Mary Mansell, Laura Dumas, Angelica Seager and Sister Kathleen Callaway had the opportunity to journey to Montreal with 25 faculty members from other SNJM schools across the US and Canada to visit the sites sacred to the SNJM Congregation and to learn more about our heritage and charism.  As they traveled from the birthplace of Mother Marie Rose to her final resting place, from the first school house (Foundation House) occupied by Mother Rose and her companions to the current Congregation House and everything in between, Eulalie (Mother Marie Rose) truly came alive for them.  They look forward to sharing highlights of their trip during the year – but here are a few pictures.


The Foundation House (where it all began) on October 28, 1843.  The house was very small for the number of Sisters and students.  Some of the rooms were classrooms by day and dormitories at night. Straw mattresses were taken back and forth to the attic each day.  The school grew to 13 boarders and 50 day students; and the number of sisters increased to nine!

Ramona pilgrims gather at the entrance to the current Congregation House – the second school to which they moved in August 1844.  Today it houses the museum, the archives, the congregational headquarters of the Sisters of the Holy Names, and a residence for some Sisters. The original school has been added on to over the years.  The chapter room (meeting room) and the bedroom and office of Mother Marie-Rose have been preserved in their original form.  Truly her presence permeates the building.

Along the highway that borders the beautiful Richelieu River is this monument placed here by the Sisters of the Holy Names, marking the birthplace of Blessed Marie-Rose.  Across the highway is a house similar to the one she would have lived in – and in fact has a part of the original wall form the Durocher home.

Visiting all of these places was a wonderful experience; however, sharing the time with colleagues and friends from our other SNJM schools was an added bonus, making us feel even more connected to our sister schools.



As you come up the stairs to the pavilion, you have all noticed the banner honoring Blessed Marie-Rose.  Did you even wonder what all the small tiles represent?  What the story behind them is? Click here for an explanation of the icon.  Each tile is an important place in the life of our foundress.




Mrs. Mary Anne Barnheiser loves teaching AP English Language so much that she grades AP English Language exam essays—more than 2,000 of them—during one intense week each summer.

For the past seven years, Mrs. Barhneiser has been invited by the College Board to join a team of college professors and high school teachers who read and evaluate student exams from 8:00 a.m. to 5:00 p.m. for seven days. As she says, "It is definitely NOT a vacation, but it is nevertheless a priceless, valuable learning experience, the benefits of which I am happy to share with our Ramona students."

She adds, "The tips and information I learn to help my students (and not just my AP students) succeed are further enhanced by the camaraderie I experience talking and listening to the thousands of other experienced AP teachers and college writing instructors. Every year I learn something new to pass on to my students, inside information that is not available at any of the AP workshops."

Evaluating so many essays on the AP scale of 1-5 takes thoughtfulness, expertise, and practice. We believe Mrs. Barnheiser earns a 5 for her dedication and commitment to all of her English students.



Summer is a great time to travel and explore the world!


Penelope Bernal '19 is currently traveling with her mother through Europe. She was happy to send us an update while sitting in the Opera House Cafe in Prague, Czech Republic. She's been traveling with her mother for a month and will soon meet up with her brother in Portugal to celebrate his graduation from Portuguese school. She has already visited Naples, Rome, Split (Croatia), Hvar, Dubrovnik, Ljubljana (Slovenia), Bled, Vienna, Budapest, Hamburg, Berlin, Scotland, London, Paris, and Barcelona. She says "It's very stressful and I miss home but I'm having a great time exploring these new magical places!"  


Angela Reyes-Gomez '18 and Kayla Carrillo '18 are also traveling in Europe and have visited Germany, Austria, Switzerland, Italy, France, and England.


While some students are out and about, others are here at home participating in various service activities.


Natalya Alcerro '18 is working full time at the Rose Bowl Aquatics Center in Pasadena. She is co-leading their annual summer swim camp and also teaches swimming as a Red Cross certified water safety instructor (WSI). Although she has been extremely busy, she was able to fit in an admissions interview during her lunch break! 


Lydia Nunez '19 is volunteering at Oneonta Montessori school where she attended for Elementary School.  She is also putting in some time helping out at the Pasadena Humane Society and Plaza de la Raza.


Paula Zepeda '20 has been quite busy volunteering at the Downey City library and at the Columbia Memorial Space Center. Paula says that "I may be volunteering, but am still balancing my time with reading my summer books and having fun!"     


Francesca Terramani '21 recently received a Girl Scout Silver Award. The Silver Award is the highest award a Girl Scout Cadette can earn and gives young women the chance to do big things and make their community better in the process. She and her fellow scouts in the Cadette level earned this award by raising money to provide foster youth with some much needed school supplies for the next school year.

Hailey Barrientos-Gonzalez '19 is spending her summer working as a second year Camp Counselor for Camp Ramona. She shared that this summer has been "extra rewarding because the children already recognize me and I also obtained my lifeguard certificate which gives me the opportunity to teach swim lessons for to the kids here at the Camp. It is a great responsibility ensuring that the kids have fun and are safe, especially in the water."

Several other students and alumnae were caught in action at Camp Ramona but they always have time to stop for a photo.




The school office is open 8:00 a.m. - 4:30 p.m. during the summer; however, if you need to see a specific person, it would be wise to see if he/she is on campus.  Administrators and staff will be taking vacation at various times.



Please review these textbook changes for next year before purchasing any used books from either another Ramona student or from a 3rd party vendor.  As you purchase used books this summer please check that the ISBN number matches the book listed on our K12 Bookstore list, which will be available in early July.  Also remember that some books have online components that are used regularly in class, such as our Spanish and French texts.  When purchasing a used textbook, you are not getting the online version as well, you are only purchasing the book.  Please be sure that your daughter has access to and has purchased the online resources she needs.

The following books WILL NOT be used again next year:

Theology Department: 

All Theology 9, Theology 10 and Theology 11 books are being replaced.  Only 12th grade Theology books will be used again next year.  Do not purchase used Theology books for grades 9 – 11.

The Bibles currently being used by our 10th – 12th graders can not be sold back to an incoming 9th or 10th grader.  The versions are a little different, and new students will need the newer version of this Bible.

English Department:

The Great Grammar Book will no longer be used by 9th and 10th graders. 




As we prepare for the upcoming school year, I want to take this opportunity to remind you and your daughters of certain changes and programs leading up to the college application season.  As many of you may know, senior year can be an overwhelming and stressful time, especially during the college application season. Therefore, as their senior counselor, I would like to share some information that should be useful as parents and students prepare to finalize college plans.


There will be a two-day College Admissions Season Boot Camp. On August 14 from 12:00 p.m. - 3:00 p.m. We will take the time to input prospective colleges into Naviance, invite teachers for letters of recommendation, and sync the Common Application to Naviance. On Tuesday, August 15 from 2:00 p.m. - 4:00 p.m., the focus will be on the Personal Essay Statement with continued work on the Common Application and Naviance.


Click here for a letter from Mr. Chavarria







Come join us for a day filled with art, music, food and fun.

PUENTE Learning Center is hosting our second annual outdoor festival on Saturday, July 29th, 2017. Since 1985, PUENTE has been offering a bridge to opportunity by enabling children to develop a lifelong love of learning. We are a nonprofit that helps parents succeed in their role, supports youth as they move toward high school graduation and beyond, and assists adults in need of English language fluency and modern workforce skills.

There will be entertainment, food, a beer garden, an art exhibit featuring local artists, resource booths, a kids' zone, contests, & more.


Volunteers will receive a free t-shirt, snacks, a lunch after the event and an unforgettable day! Admission is FREE to the public and we expect an attendance of over 5,000!


For more information, contact Doris Nunfio at or (323) 780-8900 ext. 236 or sign-up at 2sX2cyZ.




Friday, July 21st

Summer School ends

Wednesday, August 9th

Link Leader Training 9:00 - 12:00

Student Council 1:00 - 3:00

International Student Orientation

Monday, August 14th

Business Day for ALL grade levels

Senior College Boot Camp 12:00 - 3:00

International Student Orientation II

Fall Sports Tryouts

Tuesday, August 15th

New Student Orientation 9:00 - 2:00

Senior College Boot Camp 2:00 - 4:00

Fall Sport Tryouts

Wednesday, August 16th

First Day of Class

All School Luncheon

Dress Uniform required

Fall Sports Tryouts

Friday, August 18th

Legacy Luncheon - 1:10



Sr. Kathleen Callaway, SNJM, President

Ms. Mary E. Mansell, Principal



Ramona Convent, a welcoming and inclusive Catholic college-preparatory high school sponsored by the Sisters of the Holy Names of Jesus and Mary, graduates young women characterized by academic excellence and spiritual depth, open to the wisdom of other cultures and prepared to lead and serve in an evolving, interdependent world.



1701 West Ramona Road • Alhambra, CA  91803 • (626) 282-4151

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