So far this school year, I’ve given about 25 tours to prospective families; that is slightly higher than a typical year. In each of these tours, I ask why they are interested in SJB. Interestingly, very few families are talking about test scores or teaching methods this year. Instead, families share that the most important thing they are looking for in a school is traditional Catholic values, where their kids can grow up to be kind.
Our school aims to do just this. We are in year two of implementing Friendzy, our bible-based friendship curriculum. We are blessed to have Mrs. Kelly working as a counselor on staff. And this year, we have a teacher committee reviewing our behavior expectations and the way we handle discipline in our school. I’m very proud of how our teachers handle student issues and work together to share Jesus as the reason for kindness and love.
This endeavor is something that we can only succeed in with your help. Raising kind, well-disciplined children is a lifelong effort and done most successfully through a home-school partnership.
I’ve often referred to the Catechism of the Catholic Church’s reference to parents being the child’s primary educator. That quote reads: Parents have the first responsibility for the education of their children. They bear witness to this responsibility first by creating a home where tenderness, forgiveness, respect, fidelity, and disinterested service are the rule. The home is well suited for education in the virtues. (Paragraph 2223)
The Second Vatican Council document, the Pastoral Constitution on the Church in the Modern World (Gaudium et Spes n. 48) elaborates on this: With parents leading the way by example and family prayer, their children… will find it easier to make progress in natural virtues, in salvation, and in holiness. Husband and wife, raised to the dignity and the responsibility of parenthood, will be zealous in fulfilling their task as educators, especially in the sphere of religious education, a task that is primarily their own.
As we celebrate our Catholic school next week, I thank you for choosing SJB as a place to raise your children, and I humbly ask for your continued partnership as we raise kind children together.