Looking ahead in South Jersey Catholic Schools

Looking ahead in South Jersey Catholic Schools

A student works on a digital art project during a summer camp held at Camden Catholic High School, Cherry Hill. Technology has revolutionized how classrooms operate.

Planning for the next year is underway long before a school year ends, and when students leave for summer, the heavy lifting begins for the fall — from brick and mortar updates, to plans for curriculum and enrichment, to technology enhancements. The Star Herald checked in with many schools to see what students will find when they return in September.

Elementary Schools

At Assumption (Galloway), students will have additional opportunities to connect through clubs and sports. New clubs include: kindness, technology, forensics, Spanish and game making. New teams will be formed for softball, baseball, and boys and girls soccer. In the classroom, third and sixth grades will pilot a new Social Studies program, and the ELA curriculum will be enhanced. Fifth grade students will become Earth Ambassadors and all students will be eligible for a new monthly award based on the Beatitudes.

In Cape May Court House, Bishop McHugh Pre-K is growing to four classrooms, where Creative Curriculum meets the diverse needs of students and families. Many families are looking forward to the school’s before care program as well. The school is expanding the STAR assessment program to pinpoint individual needs in reading in select grades. Bishop McHugh is also working with law enforcement on programs related to drug abuse, violence and building safety. Stay tuned for “Bishop’s Got Talent,” a second-grader’s fun and creative idea for a way to raise money for Cape Regional Medical Center.

Technology and campus upgrades were summer priorities at Saint Margaret’s in Woodbury Heights. Students will benefit from new software for interactive Smart boards, upgraded wireless connections, a streamlined network server, iPad refreshment and an additional laptop cart with 22 new Lenovo units for middle schoolers. New gym windows were installed with plans underway for a new, athlete-friendly floor.

At Saint Cecilia, a Catholic Partnership School (Pennsauken), students in second through eighth grades will transition from desktop to Chromebooks. In all grades, students will experience a new Language Arts series that has online, Spanish and differentiated components to meet a variety of learning styles and needs.

Students at Saint Mary (Williamstown) will return to new flooring in the science lab, a remodeled chapel, new carpeting and fresh paint in some classrooms. A new English Language Arts series awaits grades K-3, and additional counseling hours will be available for the benefit of all students.

Students wearing their handmade bracelets put their hands together at Saint Michael the Archangel Regional School, Clayton, summer camp.

Saint Michael the Archangel in Clayton will offer additional electives in subjects ranging from Math, to Language Arts, to jewelry making. The school’s commitment to safety and well-being are reflected with updated security cameras and monitors throughout campus, a designated drop-off area for forgotten items to minimize school entry, and continued counseling services through Pascale Sykes. Technology remains a priority with the school’s one-to-one Chromebook initiative and use of Google Classroom.

The gym at Saint Rose of Lima (Haddon Heights) was a priority this summer, with the addition of new padding on the stage and new solar shades. New clubs will be offered in 2018-19, and, thanks to the school’s Laps for Learning event in the spring, fifth grade students will enjoy new Chromebooks.

LEGO® club members at Saint Teresa (Runnemede) will have an entire wall in the school library to showcase their creations. Principal Sr. Nancy Kindelan, IHM and librarian Linda Price designed and installed the wall, transforming a large blank space to a colorful spot for students to build. The popular LEGO® club supports the school’s commitment to STEM (Science, Technology, Engineering and Math).

Diocesan High Schools

Camden Catholic in Cherry Hill continues to expand programs designed to help students become lifelong learners and leaders in a global society in the Catholic tradition. Numerous retreat and service programs will offer students increasing alternatives for faith formation and personal growth. A group of students and faculty moderators are working jointly to help shape the vision and goals of diversity, equity and inclusion at the school through a new Council called Together Honoring Everyone (T.H.E.). Students will have an opportunity to explore many topics through the school’s Intensive Learning program, with faculty members sharing a passion through intensive one-week courses that touch subjects such as race relations, archery, architecture and sign language.

The Gloucester Catholic (Gloucester) community looks forward to getting to know the incoming class of 2022 on August 23, before the official start of the school year. With a focus on the future, the school is hosting career events in the fall and spring, connecting students and alums to learn more about career paths and networking.

Several new courses will be available at Paul VI High School (Haddonfield). Computer Science Pathway, a four-year elective computer science program will be offered through Project Lead the Way, a partner of the College Board that specializes in STEM curricula. A new state-of-the art computer lab will house the series of courses. Students planning to take AP courses in the humanities will want to consider the school’s new interdisciplinary Classical Studies course. Principles of TV Production will be available as a full year course, and the school will become a member of the Student TV Network, enabling participation in national competitions and networking opportunities. The Paul VI community will be thrilled and chilled with the building-wide air conditioning system that was installed over the summer.

Saint Joseph High School in Hammonton continues to strengthen partnerships with area universities and colleges. In 2018-19, dual credit programs will be offered through Seton Hall and Saint Peter’s Universities and Camden County College, enabling students to graduate with at least 15 college credits. Scholarships for qualified students will be available at Delaware Valley, Georgian Court and Neumann Universities. Interactive TV is now in all classrooms, and incoming freshmen will be engaged in the Google Chromebook Initiative.

Private High Schools

Bishop Eustace Prep (Pennsauken) students will find enhanced computer technology, media equipment upgrades and interactive touch boards with new HD connections and Blu-ray technology. New clubs will engage students in drama, cyber security, French, service, and Pre-Med. Honors Scripture 1 and 2 for freshmen and a new Theology Honor Society will offer students new spiritual and academic opportunities.

The Saint Augustine Prep (Richland) community will explore a range of topics through quarterly Academic Summits about Global Issues. The goal of the series is to help students and faculty/staff to be socially aware, emotionally intelligent and mindful of how to make a difference on global issues. Outside, the school’s turf field has been resurfaced upgraded, and named after former headmaster, Father Stephen J. LaRosa.

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