At Our Lady of Lourdes in Tujunga, the campus was awash in new uniforms, the sounds of squeaky tennis shoes and the sight of full backpacks as students and parents filled the halls on the first day of school on Wednesday.
OLL welcomed several new changes this year including a new principal, Jennifer Ratner.
A product of Catholic education, Ratner felt the calling of teaching within the L.A. Archdiocese. After many years of teaching fifth grade, she continued her education to earn a masters degree in administration from Loyola Marymount University that allowed her to advance to position of principal.
OLL also welcomed new eighth grade teacher Timothy Barker, and sixth grade teacher Alexandra DeFrancia. Assisting in kindergarten will be long time OLL parent Margarita Ibarra. The preschool also has a new director, Arlene Casis.
Though the school year has just begun, the students are already preparing for many upcoming events in addition to their studies. Each year OLL participates in Lee National Denim Day – the largest single-day fundraiser in the fight against breast cancer. Students create a quilt with certificates purchased for a donation in honor of or in memory of a family member or friend. Anyone wishing to purchase a certificate and join Our Lady of Lourdes in the fight against this disease is encouraged to send a donation to the school at 7324 Apperson St., Tujunga, 91042. A Mass is prepared by the eighth grade class to honor all those loved ones affected.
The kids will be selling World’s Finest Chocolates in September for a school fundraiser, supporting a parish garage sale on Sept. 21, hosting a high school night for area Catholic schools, preparing for the Halloween carnival and gathering food for a Thanksgiving food drive.
While a strong Catholic education is priority, OLL strives to teach students the importance of giving, sharing, and becoming overall good community-driven citizens. Throughout the year, activities such as these are held to encourage these characteristics.