Saint Mary’s High School Hosts Successful Open House

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“A Day in the Life” of a St. Mary’s student demonstrated by a student ambassador while leading a tour through the campus.
“A Day in the Life” of a St. Mary’s student demonstrated by a student ambassador while leading a tour through the campus.

By Eileen Symmons

Saint Mary’s High School hosted another successful Open House on Sunday, Oct. 18. Teachers, administrators and many student volunteers turned out on the beautiful, crisp fall afternoon to welcome prospective freshmen and their parents and share what the St. Mary’s experience is all about. The afternoon included student-led tours of Immaculata Hall and Marist Hall with the opportunity to visit Saint Mary’s Elementary School as well. There were also presentations by Principal Jonathan D. Kramer, President of The Schools of St. Mary, Grace M. Cavallo and Father Robert A. Romeo, pastor of The Church of Saint Mary. Visitors got first-hand knowledge of the curriculum by visiting various classrooms along the tours that hosted faculty demonstrations of curriculum offerings such as Auto-CAD, Google Classroom and the many features of the MAC lab.

Members of the St. Mary’s High School Literary Club—“Phoenix” proudly share their work with Fr. Robert Romeo, pastor of the Church of Saint Mary.
Members of the St. Mary’s High School Literary Club—“Phoenix” proudly share their work with Fr. Robert Romeo, pastor of the Church of Saint Mary.

“One of the things that excites me beyond belief is not only do I have a wonderful elementary school, but I’m proud of my high school,” Father Romeo told those in attendance. “I’m proud of what I see that goes on there, I’m proud because of our faculty and administration, I’m proud because of our young people who share so much of what they have.”

Part of the beauty of St. Mary’s is that we are so diverse,” he noted. “We are diverse both ethnically and religiously. We are a diverse group economically. We are a community that is open to the diversity of world that we all find ourselves in. We are completely diverse because we believe we’re not here to form your kids in our image. We’re here to form them in the way God wants them, with the gifts and talents they have been given and granted by God. I believe in our young people.”

Chess Club is just one of the many extracurricular activities at St. Mary’s.
Chess Club is just one of the many extracurricular activities at St. Mary’s.

Father Romeo pointed out the benefit of having an elementary school on campus, which provides a place “where our young people can learn to mentor younger kids” and that having the Church of St. Mary on the property provides a place “where we gather for our spiritual part because it’s such an integral part of who we are. What we do here, I believe in.”

Cavallo told the prospective students and their parents about the mission of St. Mary’s, “I wanted you to know that we take very seriously to love, honor and serve God in all that we do, but we also equally so take very seriously to love, honor and serve our students here. This is an atmosphere where they will get to know themselves and to discover their talents and the skills they may not even know they have yet. That’s our promise.”

Student/faculty interaction is one of the most repeated highlights noted by students year after year when it comes to describing  St. Mary’s as a family.
Student/faculty interaction is one of the most repeated highlights noted by students year after year when it comes to describing St. Mary’s as a family.

“Choosing the right high school is going to be one of the most important decisions you can make in your entire life so I urge each of you to please look at all aspects of the school,” noted Kramer. “High school is going to be instrumental in transforming who you become as an adult.” He highlighted St. Mary’s academic program. “Our iPad program is five years old. It’s been very successful. Our AP scores doubled in the past five years. Our Regents scores have 100 percent competency and are 30 percent higher than the state average, something we’re very proud of.”

“So what makes a great high school?” he asked. “A great high school has a committed, dedicated faculty that is going to partner with your children to instill in them a passion for learning that will last a lifetime. That’s what we have at St. Mary’s. What makes a great high school is a community rooted in the teachings of Jesus Christ, a community of love. That’s what you have here at St. Mary’s.”

What is a St. Mary’s education? Just ask one of these senior student ambassadors who have been given the tools by St. Mary’s to succeed in the next level of their education.
What is a St. Mary’s education? Just ask one of these senior student ambassadors who have been given the tools by St. Mary’s to succeed in the next level of their education.

Senior Megan Cain talked about St. Mary’s from a student’s perspective. “Picking St. Mary’s was probably the best decision I ever made,” she stated. “From day one at freshman camp, St. Mary’s has made me feel at home. I encourage each one of you to stay open to all the possibilities and opportunities that St. Mary’s has to offer.” In addition to a rigorous academic curriculum, “community is a major part of St. Mary’s. To me, the St. Mary’s community is more a family than anything else. St. Mary’s is a place where I’m comfortable and able to be myself. With the faculty always there to help you with any problem and your fellow students never hesitate to give you advice, St. Mary’s is a place where you’ll never feel alone. There is something for everyone to do at St. Mary’s whether it’s sports, Science Olympiad, dance, mock trial, drama or campus ministry. St. Mary’s was the right choice for me and I hope it’s the right choice for you.”

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