|Holy Family High School|
|Local News Headlines|
|Written by Administrator|
|Thursday, 09 August 2012 09:08|
Change is good and change is coming. Holy Family Elementary School is making a change for the future and will become Holy Family Catholic Academy when classes start on August 16th.
For 74 years Holy Family Elementary School has been educating and ministering to children and families in the Birmingham and Ensley community. This fall Holy Family Elementary School will become Holy Family Catholic Academy, the first parochial middle school in the Birmingham area with an advanced curriculum focusing on science, mathematics and technology and preparing students for the future.
“What students have received in classrooms over the last 50 years will be insufficient to equip them to succeed and make a difference in a changing world. At Holy Family Catholic Academy, we want more for our students. We must think broader and more globally and move out of the classroom box,” Principal Chandra Farrier said of the school’s new direction.
The reason for the change is two-fold – financial and educationally. Enrollment was low in pre-school through 4th grades and there was not much tuition coming in from those grades. Many families, even with support from Beacons of Hope, were not able to meet their financial obligations. Facing a critical crossroad in the school’s future, a committee was formed that included members of the Passionist Community, the Diocese of Birmingham, Holy Family Church, the community and parents, to determine the direction the school would take. The committee felt instead of closing the school, it would be best to direct its focus on the middle school student whose needs were not being directly met in a catholic school setting. The needs of student’s grades fifth through eighth are developmentally different than the needs of younger students. Holy Family Catholic Academy will provide a challenging academic program where students will benefit significantly from a commitment to integrated learning. With flexible teachers, schedules, extended school day and cooperative planning students will approach their work in all subjects with integrity, intelligence, and imagination and work together to make connections among the different content areas therefore maximizing the learning potential.
The new preparatory school will have an advanced curriculum focusing on science, mathematics and technology. To support the new curriculum, they will have an extended school day: 7:30a.m. - 5:30 p.m.; mandatory homework sessions; technology based interactive learning, advanced academic programs and extracurricular activities. “Students who enter our school will be challenged to achieve their fullest abilities in keeping with the God-given talents they possess. We’re going to nurture students to be prepared for high school and set them on the road to college,” Farrier said.
The new Holy Family Catholic Academy will begin with a rich history. It evolves from Holy Family Catholic School, a Roman Catholic elementary school that housed students from grades preschool to eighth grade. Holy Family started out as a missionary school in September 1938, with four grades that year. The Felician Sisters of Chicago Province accepted the opportunity to take on the task of teaching the African American children in the Ensley area of Birmingham. This was the first missionary work for African American children for this area. By 1943, enrollment stood at 240, eight grades and eight sisters were now working at the school. From 1943 to the present, the school grew as the community grew. This rich tradition of educating the children of this community still continues today.
Getting ready for the new academy has made for a busy summer. Classrooms have been re-purposed, rooms have been painted and some areas have had the carpeting replaced. Donations of paint, carpet, playground material and volunteers are helping to prepare for the new school year. Volunteers from Holy Family Church, Knights of Columbus and Saint Elias Marionite Church have done most of the labor. With help from the community, Holy Family Catholic Academy will strive to educate the whole child by providing a quality Catholic education in a safe and caring learning environment. Focusing on Gospel values, children will be encouraged to strive for excellence in spiritual, academic, social, and physical activities.
This year tuition will be $250 a month. An admissions packet may be obtained by calling (205)780-5858 or stopping by the school. There is a $100 non-refundable application fee. Please plan to stop by our open house on Thursday, August 9, from 6-8p.m. If you have any questions, interested in volunteering, making a donation or need any additional information, please contact Chandra Farrier at the school at (205) 780-5858 or Sonia Marable at (205)780-5858 or (205) 249-3373.
The goal of Holy Family Catholic Academy is to lay the foundation for our students to become productive and successful individuals in society in a safe and nurturing environment. Classes will begin on Thursday, August 16th at 7:30 a.m. Through prayer, a collaborative and collegial spirit, an atmosphere of excellence will emerge at Holy Family Catholic Academy.