Newsletter from the President & Principal

Upcoming events and information for parents and students

Dear Parents & Students,

The new school year is always filled with excitement as a new group of students begins their 4-year journey at Mount Carmel. This week we will gather to ask for God’s outpouring of the Holy Spirit on our school community this year. In the next few weeks the freshmen will participate in an overnight retreat where they will have the opportunity to get to know themselves and others in their class a little better. As we begin anew, we commit to pushing ourselves both in and out of the classroom. In a unique way we commit to building a community grounded in mutual respect, and even more so, striving toward a brotherhood that will forever tie our students to their classmates and to Mount Carmel. As Christians we believe that the Triune God, who exists in perfect unity, calls us to live in unity, peace, and love in our human relationships. As we begin the school year, may Our Lady of Mount Carmel continue to inspire us by her example to live more like Christ.

In Carmel,

Ned Hughes '70
Mr. John Stimler


Upcoming Dates
Late Start (9:05 am): 9/7, 9/14, 9/28, 10/12, 10/26
We will observe the Labor Day holiday on Monday, September 5 and Columbus Day holiday on Monday, October 17. The school will be closed on these days. 

Reporting Absences
Students are expected to be in school every day. Students who miss more than six days of school in a trimester are subject to grades being lowered. Parents are required to leave a message on the Attendance line before 9:00 am (ext. 210) to report an absence.

Metra/South Shore Train
Starting September 1 there will be a flag stop at the 63rd street station for the South Shore line, which will leave promptly at 6:15pm.

Just a reminder: If you ride the Mount Carmel provided transportation, monthly fees are due at the beginning of each month. Round Trip service is $130.00 and One Way is $75.00.

After School 
A student should be picked up by 6:00pm unless he is involved in a supervised activity. Students are to wait in the Student Commons for their rides.

Eye Exams, Physicals and Birth Certificates
Students who enroll in Illinois schools for the first time are required to have an eye exam. This mainly impacts families from Indiana who are entering a school in Illinois for the first time and any out-of-state transfer. Please provide proof of the exam if your son is in this category. All freshmen physicals and fall sports physicals are due and copies of birth certificates are to be on file in the Records Office by October 15th. Records can be submitted digitally by visiting

Vaccination Requirement for Seniors
Seniors must show proof of having received two doses of meningococcal conjugate vaccine prior to entering the 12th grade. Please submit verification of the vaccination to the school by Friday, September 30. Vaccination records can be submitted online at

Assignments and Class Information
Parents can access grades via the Parent Portal. Parents who have not activated their accounts have received an activation email. Be sure to set up your account and check grades on a regular basis. Grades of “NTI” (not turned in) are serious matters, and parents should address missed assignments with their son. Some teachers are using the Portal system to post class assignments and others are using Schoology (need a separate account), but grades will only be accessible via the Portals.

Communicating with Teachers
If you need to talk to a teacher outside of Conferences or if your son needs extra assistance or encouragement, contact his teacher. Often, the boys have problems identifying or admitting their academic problems and shortcomings. While talking with teachers, you can (and should) devise a plan to help your son together. Don’t forget to tell your son to go see his teacher as soon as he is starting to have problems. Email is the fastest way to reach most teachers because they don’t have a phone in their classroom. Give the teacher one school day to reply. If you don’t get a response from the teacher, contact the Principal and let him know. Visit the faculty/staff listing for contact information:

Bring Your Own Device
This year students are expected to have a laptop/tablet/device to use in class. The device must have at least a 7-inch screen, a physical keyboard, the ability to cut and paste, and a 3-hour battery life. Students must complete a technology training session before being eligible to register their one device on the school’s network. Students can sign up for a training sessions on our MC website. Mount Carmel expects students to be responsible for their personal property and will not investigate or replace personal devices. For more information about BYOD, visit

One Chance Illinois
One Chance Illinois is the statewide organization committed to supporting legislation that will provide all students with access to the best education available. It is important that we contact state legislators now to be sure they support the Illinois Kids Campaign legislation and see that it is included in the final budget. To find out more about One Chance Illinois and to contact your legislators, visit

Asbestos Compliance
Mount Carmel High School is in compliance with all regulations concerning the knowledge, care, and removal of asbestos containing material in our buildings. You can find a complete copy of our compliance letter by clicking here.

Carmel Cruises
Students remember to turn in your Carmel Cruises to the school office by Monday, September 12 for your 1st trimester extra credit.

Senior Pictures 
Beginning on Monday, September 12th, each senior will be assigned a sitting time for senior pictures. He should be aware of his date and time and come to school dressed accordingly.

Parent-Teacher Conferences
Conferences will be held on Thursday, September 29 in the Convocation Center from 2-6pm. All teachers will be available and this conference setting is designed to accommodate brief (3-5 min) meetings with teachers. If a longer conference is needed, please arrange a separate time with the teacher via email.

College Readiness Skills Testing
On Thursday, September 29 all students will take the first of three assessments that are used to measure proficiency in each area of college readiness skills in English, Math, Science, Reading, and Writing. These assessments are key ways for students to test and demonstrate their academic skills. Many colleges begin offering academic scholarships with an ACT composite score of 25. Students should be striving to meet or exceed this score in an effort to make college more affordable. Any student who is absent on September 29 will be required to make up the test on Saturday, October 8 and pay a $15 testing fee. Students who verify with the counseling office that they have earned a composite score of 30 or more on an ACT test are exempt from taking further CRS assessments. They do not need to report to school on those testing days.

Shadow Day
Seventh or eighth graders are encouraged to shadow at Mount Carmel on Monday, October 10th. Many grammar schools are closed that day for Columbus Day. We will be in school and welcoming our visitors. Prospective students are always welcome to visit Mount Carmel. Please email Mr. Bill Nolan or Phil Segroves to register for a Shadow Day.

Class Ring Orders for Juniors
On Monday, October 10 & Tuesday, October 11, our Herff Jones representative will be at school during the lunch periods to take orders for class rings. More information will be given to all juniors on Monday, September 26 during Studium. Class rings will be distributed at the Junior Retreat and Leadership Ceremony on Friday, March 10.


Freshman Overnight
Please mark your calendars for the Freshman Overnight beginning at 6:00 pm Saturday, September 10 and concluding at 9:30am Sunday, September 11. All freshmen are expected to participate. See or contact Mr. Sean Sweany ( for more details.

Student Activities Fair
There will be a Student Activities Fair for freshmen on Wednesday, September 14. Students can learn more about and sign up for the extracurricular clubs and organizations offered at Mount Carmel.

Homecoming Week (October 3-7)
Mount Carmel will celebrate Homecoming Week with the Taste of Mount Carmel on Wednesday, October 5 and the Homecoming Football game against DeLa Salle at 4pm on Friday, October 7.
The Homecoming Dance will be Saturday, October 8 from 7 - 10:30pm in the Commons. Tickets are $30 / couple and will go on sale September 26. Tickets may be purchased at the door on the night of the dance for $40 / couple. Please contact Mr. Patrick McGarry ( for more details.

Diversity Dinner (October 12, 6pm)
The Student Mentor group ROOTS and Multicultural Club are sponsoring the Diversity Dinner- a dinner and discussion for both students and staff that will center on fostering a better respect and understanding of others in our ever increasing diverse society. Watch for more details.

Extracurricular Spotlight: Multicultural Club
Students in Multicultural Club celebrate unity, tolerance and appreciation of the variety of cultures present in the Mount Carmel community. The club recognizes heritage months, plans cultural assemblies and take field trips to heritage sites. Interested students can attend meetings every Thursday after school in room G103.

Light the Night
On Saturday, October 22, 4:30PM at Soldier Field the Leukemia & Lymphoma Society's "Light the Night Walk" funds treatments that are saving the lives of patients today. Mount Carmel's group "Caravan for Kevin" aims to raise funds to help advance leukemia research so that in the future, no one will have to suffer the loss of a loved one, like our friend and colleague, Kevin Hansen.

Day of the Dead Celebration (Halloween)
On Monday, October 31 the Mount Carmel student body will be celebrating Dia de los Muertos by contributing to a memorial altar, painting faces, enjoying traditional foods, and remembering those we have lost. This will replace the custom in recent years of wearing Halloween costumes that day.

European Trips during Easter Break
There will be two European trips over Easter Break. Mr. Antonio Mota ( will be traveling to Spain. Mr. Sean Sweany ( will be traveling to Italy and Greece. Contact these teachers for more information.


Freshmen IMPACT Week
Freshman IMPACT Week focuses on the gift of God’s creation and our responsibility to care for and maintain the integrity of that gift. Students will learn about the earth and the need to take responsibility for the resources we have been given, while engaged in a variety of environmental-related service projects and learning experiences. The IMPACT Week will begin on Tuesday, September 20 and will conclude on Friday, September 23 with a day of reflection and a class liturgy.


Mass for St. Therese of Lisieux
On Monday, October 3, an all school liturgy will be celebrated in honor of St. Therese. Mass Dress code is required

October Kairos Retreat for Seniors
The first of three senior Kairos Retreats will be October 25-28. Students have been scheduled for a retreat date and the lists are posted outside of the Campus Ministry Office (002) and in senior theology classes.

All Saints’ Day
On Tuesday, Nov 1, an all school liturgy will be celebrated in honor of All Saints’ Day. Mass Dress code is required.


MC College Financial Aid Night
On Wednesday, September 21, the Mount Carmel Counseling Department will be hosting a College Financial Aid Night for Senior parents and students. It will be held at 6:00pm and will feature a presentation followed by a question-answer session with the counseling staff. With the cost of college tuition rising throughout the country, having a working knowledge of the financial aid process is more important than ever. This presentation will cover: how to complete the FAFSA, types of financial assistance available, and the major changes being made to the FAFSA for this year's Senior Class.

National Testing Day/PSAT Exam, Senior Career Day, and Freshmen Re-orientation
All sophomores and juniors will be taking the PSAT standardized test on Wednesday, October 19 from 8:05am until noon. Seniors will participate in the annual Alumni Career Day. Freshmen will participate in a re-orientation program. All students will be dismissed at 12:15pm.

Tips for Test Day Preparation
A growing body of research suggests the following tips for studying. 1) Review the hardest material before going to bed. 2) Turn off music, text messaging, TV and email while studying. 3) Test yourself repeatedly. 4) Eat oatmeal (or other slow-digesting food) for breakfast.

Eight Tips for Standardized Testing
First, take the test seriously so that you can practice how to manage anxiety, pacing, and testing format for future tests like the ACT or SAT. 2) Students should come prepared with two sharpened #2 pencils and a calculator. 3) Find a quick way to relax and refocus. (Take 30 seconds to take 5 deep breaths.) 4) If you finish with time remaining, go back and check your answers. 5) Answer the easiest questions first and come back to ones that were skipped - be sure to mark skipped questions. 6) Be mindful of the time and pace yourself. For example, if you have 30 minutes to answer 30 questions in a given section, you should not spend more than a minute or two on any one question. 7) If struggling with a question, try to eliminate any answers you are certain are incorrect. 8) Read all answers before marking one down.

College Fair
The Mount Carmel Counseling Center has organized a College Fair for Thursday, October 27 from 6:00-8:00pm in the Convocation Center. All students and parents are encouraged to take advantage of the 50 colleges and university representatives that will be present at Mount Carmel for this event. Visit the website for information.

For Seniors
During the fall of senior year, students should focus on applying to colleges of their choice. All students should check the different colleges’ admissions websites to be aware of their various deadlines (both for admission and scholarships). Using Naviance or Big Future by College Board can also assist in acquiring this information. We suggest keeping a list of all those dates somewhere prominent in the home (on the fridge, mirror, door, or desk) to be a consistent reminder. Don’t wait to apply to 5 different colleges the night before the deadline! 10 Frequently Asked Questions by Parents about College Applications



Arts Council
Parents who are interested in supporting, promoting, and strengthening the arts program at Mount Carmel are encouraged to be a part of the Arts Council. Contact Mary Judy at for more information about how to get involved. 

Mothers’ Club
Please look at the MC website ‘Parents’ link for information concerning the meeting times for the Mothers’ Club. Mark your calendar:
General Meeting- Welcome Freshman Mothers: Thursday, September 15 at 7:00pm
Mothers’ Club 1st Bake Sale of the school year Thursday, September 22
Wine Tasting: Thursday, October 27 at 7:00pm. Order your special wines and receive them in time for holiday gifts or entertaining.
Mothers’ Club 2nd Bake Sale: Monday, October 31

Fathers’ Club
Fathers’ Club General Meeting: Thursday, September 22 at 7:00
The annual Father-Son Night will be on Thursday, October 13 at 6:00pm in the Cacciatore Center. This is a great opportunity for fathers and sons to spend time together. Tickets are $30.00 for 2 Tickets in Advance. Tickets purchased after Friday, October 7 will be $25.00 per person. Please return your reservation to the School Office.



Upcoming Calendar Dates

Transportation Fees Due
September 1 

Labor Day (No School)
September 5 

Late Start
September 7

Freshman Overnight
September 10-11

Carmel Cruises Due
September 12

Late Start
September 14

Student Activities Fair
September 14 

Mothers' Club Meeting
September 15

September 20-23

College Financial Aid Night
September 21

Mothers' Club Bake Sale
September 22

Fathers' Club Meeting
September 22

Late Start
September 28

College Readiness Skills Testing
September 29

Parent Teacher Conferences
September 29

Vaccination Records Due
September 30

Homecoming Week
October 3-7

CRS Testing
October 8

Homecoming Dance
October 8

Junior Class Ring Orders Due
October 10-11

Shadow Day
October 10 

Diversity Dinner
October 12

Late Start
October 12

Father-Son Night
October 13

Eye Exams, Physicals, Birth Certificates Due
October 15

Columbus Day (Observed, No School)
October 17

National Testing Day/PSAT
October 19

Senior Career Day
October 19

Freshman Re-orientation
September 19

Light the Night
October 22

Late Start
October 26

College Fair
October 27

Mothers' Club Wine Tasting
October 27

Day of the Dead Celebration
October 31

Mothers' Club Bake Sale
October 31

All Saint's Day 
November 1

Click here to view the Full School Calendar.



Find the information you need on our website under these popular links:

Academic Calendar

Athletic Calendar

Caravan in the News

Caravan Student Newspaper

Daily Bulletin

Caravan Broadcast Network

Social Media Hub 

Arts Council

Bring Your Own Device


Join the conversation on Facebook, Instagram and Twitter by using #WeAreMC

Mount Carmel


Mount Carmel Alumni

Mount Carmel Latin Club

Visit the Social Media Hub to see more! 


Winter/Spring Dates 

Christmas Break begins
December 23, 12:15 dismissal

Classes Resume
January 9, 2017, 8:05 AM

Parent-Teacher Conferences
January 12, 2017, 2-6 PM

Trimester 2 Exams
February 22, 23, 24, 2017

Parent-Teacher Conferences
April 4, 2017, 2-6 PM

Easter Break
April 13, 2017

Classes Resume
April 24, 2017, 8:05 AM

May 28, 2017, 3 PM

Trimester 3 Exams
May 31, June 1, 2, 2017

View all dates by visiting the calendar on the website. You can now download the calendar to your personal Google Calendar. Visit for instructions.

Our academic year runs on a trimester system consisting of three, 12-week grading periods. Therefore, exams are given three times during the school year. Please do not schedule events that will conflict with these important tests that will count as 20% of your son’s trimester grades.



View Mount Carmel's new blog at Our latest post comes from 2016 grad, Jake Polewaczyk. His second post is a follow up from his first about living with Zeal. In his latest blog, Jake explains how to live with Zeal.