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Catholic Schools Week – January 28, 2018

Our annual observance of Catholic Schools Week begins on Sunday January 28, 2018 and concludes on Friday, February 2nd, 2018.  This week includes enjoyable events and special treats.  But it’s also a time for us to celebrate the enduring value of Catholic education and to focus on the gift that it provides to America’s young people.  During Catholic Schools Week, we reach out to the community to build awareness of what our school offers.  We also like to thank all of those who work very hard to make our school excellent:  students, families, faculty, staff, volunteers, community supporters and local and national leaders.

The theme for Catholic Schools Week is “Communities of Faith, Knowledge and Service.”  The theme supports the national standards and benchmarks for effective Catholic elementary and secondary schools.  As a school-wide community service project, we are preparing gift baskets and cards for various first responders in Charles County.  Grade levels have been working to prepare these baskets since the beginning of January.  These baskets will be distributed during a special assembly.

Every year I like to use this time to reflect on what we have accomplished in the past 12 months, a “State of the School” statement if you will.

I am extremely proud and most humble to say that this year St. Peter’s became a National Blue Ribbon school.  This is a goal I set for myself, our teachers and students from my first day as principal.  To achieve this took a great deal of team work, hard work, and continual improvement.  Looking back, sometimes I can hardly believe, that we accomplished that which looked like a huge mountain to climb when we set out on this trek!  Indeed, we got to the top and I am so proud of our school community.  Now that we are a Blue Ribbon School, however, in a lot of ways our work is just beginning.  We want the world to know about this accomplishment and we are working hard on getting the word out.  For the remainder of the year we have many Blue Ribbon events scheduled that allow us to continue our celebration!

It is important to note that only 50 private schools are selected nationally each year.  We are currently the only Blue Ribbon private school in Charles County and one of only a few in Southern Maryland.

While the Blue Ribbon has certainly been the headliner of the school year thus far, there are a few other changes that I am proud of.  This year Chromebooks were added to the middle school classrooms as a way of having students do their work more online, than by carrying bundles of books from room to room.  Not only does this make the load a little lighter for our middle school students, it also allows them to have access to Google classroom which is an online program designed to help them remain organized, communicate with teachers, and have access to many educational online programs.  So far the addition of Chromebooks has been a tremendous success.

In addition, we have a fully functional science lab this year with the addition of a designated middle school science teacher.  This is a great opportunity for our students who are now learning in depth about the world of science through projects and other hands on labs.  Our science teacher is Mrs. Decker.  We also welcomed Ms. Kimm, first grade, Mrs. Beagley, middle school social studies and religion, Mrs. Holm, middle school math and Mr. Strain, fifth grade to our teaching team.

Always and most importantly our enrollment is sound and our school is in great financial condition.  I feel blessed to be at the helm at St. Peter’s School.  As always we thank you for your support and invite you to check out our reviews on our webpage.

In His service,
J.R. West