Tag Archives: Bellarmine Jefferson

Bellarmine-Jefferson High School Celebrates Its 70th Anniversary

Seventy years ago, in the fall of 1944, Msgr. Martin Cody Keating founded Bellarmine-Jefferson High School and the school opened its doors to its first 9th graders, who would then become its first graduating class of 1948. To commemorate its 70th year of dedication to meeting the spiritual, moral, ethical and educational needs of young men and women from across the San Fernando Valley and beyond, Bellarmine-Jefferson High School will celebrate in three distinct ways: with a rededication of the school, an all-year reunion and a special Mass presided by the Archbishop of Los Angeles.

The rededication will take place on Thursday, October 16, with a reception beginning at 4:30 p.m. in the school’s Library. At 5 p.m., community members from the Burbank Chamber of Commerce, along with Burbank Mayor Dr. David Gordon, will conduct a rededication on the front steps of the school, located at 465 E. Olive Avenue.

On Saturday, October 18, Bellarmine-Jefferson High School will host more than 200 alumni and special guests at an All-Year Reunion, beginning at 6:30 p.m. with a cocktail hour and hors d’oeuvres, at the school in St. Eleanor Hall. There will be dinner, dancing, and live entertainment. The proceeds from the ticket sales will benefit the Bellarmine-Jefferson High School Adopt-A-Student Tuition Assistance Program. There will also be an auction to support the school’s new Ultimate Classroom Project for the development and renovation of the school’s current classrooms to state-of-the-art rooms designed to inspire creativity, imagination and innovation in its students.

Also at the reunion, Bellarmine-Jefferson High School will be surprising one of its alumni from the class of 1949 with an honorary diploma. Leo Lopez left school to join the service and did not get the opportunity to graduate with his class.

On Wednesday, October 22, at 9:30 a.m., Bellarmine-Jefferson High School will further commemorate its 70th Anniversary with the celebration of the Holy Eucharist at St. Robert Bellarmine Church, located at 133 N. 5th Street in Burbank. The Mass will be presided by his Most Reverend José H. Gomez, the Archbishop of Los Angeles, as well as many area priests from Catholic parishes across Los Angeles.

For more information about any of these celebrations, please visit the school’s website at www.bell-jeff.net and click on the 70th Anniversary link.

Woodbury Summer Classes Draw Motivated High School Students

Nearly 200 high school students from Burbank and nearby areas are finishing up classes next week through Woodbury University’s Initial Credit summer program.

Students from Burroughs and Burbank High, Bellarmine-Jefferson, Immaculate Heart, Village Christian and other area schools are waking up early in the morning to get to class on time, completing a year’s worth of work in six, four-day weeks of study at Woodbury.

Burroughs teacher Carolina Almanzar and her class learn Spanish 3. (Photo By Lisa Paredes)

Burroughs teacher Carolina Almanzar and her class learn Spanish 3. (Photo By Lisa Paredes)

The program was developed in 2009 and has grown in number of students each year. Woodbury University’s then Vice President  Dr. David Rosen worked with Woodbury’s Mauro Diaz and BUSD’s Visual and Performing Arts Coordinator Peggy Flynn to develop multiple programs with Burbank Unified, including the Woodbury Initial Credit Summer Program.

“The state budget crisis impacted districts throughout California, including the elimination of many summer programs,” explained Flynn. “Burbank Unified was still able to offer summer school to students who failed a course and had to recover credit but students who had a D or wanted to earn initial credit had extremely few and very expensive options locally.”

“BUSD administration approached Woodbury in 2009 to see if they might be interested in creating a program that offered options to students who wanted to bring up a low grade to improve their GPA and/or take a course for the first time,” added Flynn.

Burbank High School teacher Robert Hammell helps a student in Algebra 2. (Photo By Lisa Paredes)

Burbank High School teacher Robert Hammell helps a student in Algebra 2. (Photo By Lisa Paredes)

“Completing an initial credit course in the summer allows students to make room in their regular school year for electives, athletics, and the arts,” she also said. “It also allows students to complete course prerequisites with greater ease – for example, by taking Pre-Calculus in the summer, the student can enroll in Calculus or AP Calculus during the next school year.”

“A wonderful bonus is that our high school students are able to experience taking courses on a real college campus – an experience we hope will inspire them to dream big and work hard,” Flynn concluded.

“We wanted to engage with not only BUSD but with the community as well,” said Diaz, Interim Vice President of Enrollment Management at Woodbury. “We provide not only a camp environment but a learning experience through programs like Initial Credit, Burbank Youth Summer Theatre institute, and architecture and fashion camps. Our programs are affordable and engage elementary, middle and high school students in the community.”

Burroughs High School Health teacher Oakley Gillett discusses student projects in Health class. (Photo By Lisa Paredes)

Burroughs High School Health teacher Oakley Gillett discusses student projects in Health class. (Photo By Lisa Paredes)

Eight summer classes for initial credit are being taught by BUSD teachers on the Woodbury campus this summer: Spanish 2 and 3, Health, U.S. and World History, Algebra 2, Geometry and PreCalculus. Woodbury also offers a Fashion Camp (for grades 4-8), Art of Architecture (for grades 5-9) and other programs aimed at high school students during the summer.

“I wanted to take Pre-Calc in the summer so I can take AP Calculus in my junior year and BC Calculus in my senior year,” said Michael Huynh,  a junior at Burbank High School.

Since Woodbury uses BUSD curriculum and teachers and rents the same textbooks used in BUSD-approved courses, students easily transfer credit for the class to their transcripts. Students from other schools work with their district or administration and registrar to verify acceptance of course credit before enrolling in the courses.

Burroughs math teacher Jessica Barcellano goes over concepts in PreCalculus. (Photo By Lisa Paredes)

Burroughs math teacher Jessica Barcellano goes over concepts in PreCalculus. (Photo By Lisa Paredes)

“We are especially grateful to Cartoon Network for providing 20 student scholarships this year!” commented Flynn. “Because of CN, we have students completing courses in Algebra 2, Spanish, Health, Pre-Calculus, US History and World History.”

“Peggy told me about the summer scholarship program, and it fit perfectly into the gifting program that Cartoon Network has established in Burbank,” said  Zita Lefebvre, Director of Operations and Community Relations for the studio. “We have supported it for several years.”

“We are pleased to be able to send 20 students to summer programs to enhance their education in the arts. Perhaps one day we will have one of these kids working at Cartoon Network,” Lefebvre added. “As a business in Burbank we are happy to be included in these programs that support the youth of the community.”

Students at work in Jordan teacher Wayne Tipton's World History class. (Photo By Lisa Paredes)

Students at work in Jordan teacher Wayne Tipton’s World History class. (Photo By Lisa Paredes)

“BUSD admin continues to work closely with Mauro Diaz, Kelly Nittoli, Don St. Clair from Woodbury to ensure the courses are aligned, the teachers are top notch and that the cost was the lowest in the region,” added Flynn.

“I think that many of the more motivated students realize that it is a really good thing to be able to get a class out of the way,” commented World History teacher Wayne Tipton, who also teaches Social Studies at Jordan Middle School during the regular school year.

“Many of the kids are in the vocal or instrumental departments in high school. Some are athletes or dancers, so we have a fairly eclectic group. When they take a class in the summer, they are able to take an extra elective class during the year,” he added.

“I think that my former students who take my class in the summer remember that I tried to make it fun for them. They may have a more nostalgic take on it, but I try to keep it similar to what they remember,” Tipton also said.

Woodbury's grounds are a well-maintained oasis in the busy city. (Photo By Lisa Paredes)

Woodbury’s grounds are a well-maintained oasis in the busy city. (Photo By Lisa Paredes)

“History is not exactly the favorite subject for many, so I try to make it as interesting and painless as possible. Since I get to teach them at kind of an awkward age in middle school, it is nice to see them at an older age.”

“I try to make the class as interesting as possible. We all realize that we are in the same boat, five and one-half hours a day, so we try to make the best of it,” Tipton continued.

“The students are bright and interested and know quite a bit about a lot of topics. I learn things every day from them. The summer classes here at Woodbury are so much less stressful. I have always liked teaching in the summer and the classes I have taught at Woodbury are really a great gig.”

Students pay attention in PreCalculus. (Photo By Lisa Paredes)

Students pay attention in PreCalculus. (Photo By Lisa Paredes)

“I wanted to get ahead so that I can take the more of the classes I love during the regular school year.” said Maddie Seiffert, a junior at Burroughs High School who is taking World History. “Now I will be able to fit Musical Theatre and Play Production into my schedule in addition to my English, science and math classes next school year. Plus I get to spend the summer at Woodbury – I love this place!”

“I wanted to take Health this summer because I want to play golf and be in the Burbank High School marching band next year. This is a great option for me to be able to fit both into my schedule as a freshman,”said Adam Barnfather. “I’m glad I did it. The homework isn’t that bad – I can finish it in class most days or bring it home. It’s only four days a week and we get out at 1:00 p.m. so it still feels like summer.”


Bellarmine-Jefferson High School Names New Athletic Director and Head Football Coach

Bellarmine-Jefferson High School announced the appointment of a new Athletic Director and Head Football Coach, Fred Martinez.

bell-jeffMartinez is a graduate of Bellarmine-Jefferson, Class of 1981. As a graduating senior he played football, basketball, baseball, ran track, and was the 1981 Tom Brown Award winner—the highest honor given to an athlete who played three or more sports at Bell-Jeff. As the schools new Athletic Director and Head Football Coach, Martinez is passionate about building a foundation for athletic success.

“I’m home to stay at Bell-Jeff,” Martinez said. “I am excited about restarting the foundation to sustain the athletic program here, pointing it in a new direction and setting the stage for longevity. It’s all about fundamentals; taking care of our athletes and helping them to develop their skills so that they will have lifelong success.”

Martinez’s most recent position was as the Athletic Director at St. James the Less School/ Holy Redeemer Middle School in La Crescenta. He has previously coached at the high school level at Temple City High School, Hoover High School in Glendale, South Pasadena High School and Burbank High School.

“Coach Martinez has come home to his alma mater,” said Principal Mr. Michael Stumpf. “He has great enthusiasm for the position as Athletic Director and Head Football Coach. Fred has started making connections with our coaches, faculty and staff; he already had a football parent meeting and scheduled our football summer workouts.  We are very excited to have him here at Bell-Jeff.”

Bell-Jeff Boys Basketball to Play at Staples Center

— It’s every high schools basketball player’s dream to one day play on a real NBA court. The varsity boys basketball team from Bellarmine-Jefferson High School will have their wishes come true as they take on San Gabriel Academy live at the Staples Center on Wednesday, February 12, at 3 p.m.

bell-jeffNot only do the Guards get the chance to play on a real NBA court, but they also get to stick around to see the pros play as the Los Angeles Clippers take on the Portland Trail Blazers later that evening at 7:30 p.m. The team, their fans and their families and friends get two for the price of one as part of the Clippers’ Play Where the Pros Play: Pregame Court Time program for youth and high school basketball teams.

“I’m not sure that the players will really understand the thrill and excitement of this Staples Center game until they step out onto the court,” said Coach Julian Andrade. “It definitely is a special and memorable moment that the players can share for the rest of their lives. We are so glad that the student body will be able to come out and support this special event.”

Ticket prices range from $15 to $55 for both games. Students, parents and friends also have the option of taking a bus to and from school to the Staples Center.

Bellarmine-Jefferson High School Celebrates Catholic Schools Week

Every year, beginning on the last Sunday in January, Catholic schools around the country celebrate Catholic education during Catholic Schools Week. This year, January 26 through February 1, Bellarmine-Jefferson High School, located at 465 E. Olive Avenue in Burbank, will join in the festivities with a number of activities to help the school focus on the value Catholic education provides to young people and its contributions to the church, community and nation.

The theme for this year’s Catholic Schools Week is “Communities of Faith, Knowledge and Service.” For their school-wide project, Bell-Jeff students will be illustrating their prayer intentions using collages, drawing or photographs. Then the school’s Campus Ministry will put all of the pieces from each class together to create one large banner that will span the first floor hallway and will say “Lord Hear Our Prayers.” Students also will begin the week with a special prayer service to express their faith on Monday, January 27, at 2 p.m. in St. Eleanor Hall.

As part of its service to the community during the week, Bell-Jeff High School will begin its annual clothing drive on Monday, January 27. Students, faculty and staff will be asked to bring in gently-used clothing for people of all ages to be donated to MEND (Meet Each Need with Dignity), an organization that was co-founded by Bell-Jeff alumni Ed Rose. MEND’s mission is to break the bonds of poverty by providing basic human needs and a pathway to self-reliance. The clothing drive, organized by the school’s National Honor Society, will run through February 13. The school’s Key Club is also organizing a clothing drive to support Aéropostale’s Teens for Jeans program, which donates gently-used jeans to homeless teens. This drive will end on February 3.

On Thursday, January 30, the school’s choir will perform at Blessed Sacrament School, located at 6641 West Sunset Boulevard in Hollywood, beginning at 8:45 a.m. As part of Blessed Sacrament’s Catholic Schools Week celebration, the Bell-Jeff Choir will sing four songs, including “Seasons of Love” from Rent and “All that Jazz” from Chicago. Then from 1:30 to 2:30 p.m. in the cafeteria, Bell-Jeff ASB and Campus Ministry students as well as 8th graders from St. Robert Bellarmine School will be making bagged lunches for the Burbank Temporary Aid Center (BTAC). BTAC, in addition to providing daily sack lunches for the homeless, is dedicated to providing the poor, working poor, and homeless of the local community with basic services they need to live with dignity. Bags will be decorated, sandwiches will be made and sack lunches will be assembled for the following day’s lunch delivery.

Bellarmine-Jefferson High School Welcomes All Families To An Open House

Bellarmine-Jefferson High School invites all local families to its Open House on Sunday, January 12, 2014, from 2 to 4 p.m., at 465 E. Olive Avenue in Burbank.

At the Open House, interested families and their junior high students will get the opportunity to take a tour of the campus, meet and talk with faculty and students, and learn more about the school’s curriculum and extra-curricular activities, including sports teams and clubs. Attendees will also learn more about the school’s plans for a one-to-one technology program to be launched in the fall and an exciting new partnership with Amgen, which will bring The Biotech Experience to its Biology classrooms beginning this February.

Nestled in the heart of downtown Burbank, Bellarmine-Jefferson High School is a co-educational, four-year, archdiocesan, Catholic secondary school serving a diverse student population from the San Fernando Valley and surrounding area. The school provides a balanced college preparatory program which focuses on the needs of the individual student, while addressing the development of the total person.

“Students and alumni of Bellarmine-Jefferson High school consider it home and consider each other family,” said Principal Mr. Michael Stumpf.  “A Catholic education is an advantage for life. Bell-Jeff can give your student the opportunity of a lifetime.”

Applications to Bellarmine-Jefferson High School are due on Friday, January 31. High School Placement Test dates are Saturday, January 25, and Saturday, February 1, with a prep workshop on Thursday, January 23.  Visit Bell-Jeff’s website at www.bell-jeff.net for more information and to download all application forms or call (818) 972-1400.

Bellarmine-Jefferson High School To Offer Biotech Experience In Science Classes

Bellarmine-Jefferson High School is pleased to announce a new partnership with the Amgen Foundation, which will enhance the curriculum in its science classes.  In February 2014, The Amgen Biotech Experience—an educational outreach program providing equipment, curriculum assistance and supplies to high schools and colleges—will be integrated into the school’s science curriculum.

The Amgen Biotech Experience integrates a hands-on, inquiry-based molecular biology curriculum designed to introduce, with extensive teacher support, the excitement of scientific discovery to students. Each year, more than 50,000 students and hundreds of science teachers participate in this laboratory experience and have the opportunity to explore the steps involved in creating biotechnology therapeutics. Bellarmine-Jefferson High School will be one of 80 schools in California participating in this exciting program.

The program includes free professional development workshops, where science teachers learn contemporary theory and lab techniques in order to conduct advanced labs in their own classrooms. All curriculum and supplies, as well as a three-week loan of research-grade lab equipment, are provided at no charge to participating schools. The program is renewable annually.

“We are happy to announce this new partnership with The Amgen Biotech Experience,” said Michael Stumpf, Principal of Bellarmine-Jefferson High School. “This program will give our students the opportunity to experience scientific work that is being performed by university researchers and professionals in biotech labs.  Bell-Jeff students will be learning with cutting edge technology in our Biology classes. I am excited for what this program will mean for our students.  This is a beginning of a new era for Bellarmine-Jefferson High School.”

St. Robert Bellarmine School Raises Money For Japan

Photo By Ross A. Benson

The St. Robert’s Band played, and the students assembled in the courtyard for the results from this weeks St. Robert Bellarmine  ‘Walk for Japan’, a fundraiser to help following the recent earthquakes in Japan. Classes collected change all week and  the results were given out at an assembly Friday morning. The total amount raised was over $1,800 dollars and following the announcement a dozen homing pigeons were released by Vito Paoletta of Shadow Hills, to mark the event.