The Road To Education


How private schools can help shape a child’s academic career

The decision to attend private school is not one that is taken lightly. For some families, their academic history is rooted deep within the walls of some of the finest private schools and Catholic institutions from preschool through high school and well into college. So how does one choose where to begin their child’s education?

On the fence about public versus private school? Several local private schools share their mission statements and the importance of starting out young to achieve higher education and why Catholic school may be the right choice for some.

“Attending a Catholic school, particularly St. Joseph School, promotes empathy while practicing problem-solving skills with peers,” said Brian Colomban, the principal at St. Joseph School in Garden City. “In our 21st century world, where working in teams (digitally or otherwise) is essential for success, we constantly provide students opportunities to learn from each other and grow with one another. By recognizing that we are all brothers and sisters in Christ, it gives students a perspective that they would not have elsewhere.”

Colomban also spoke on one of the school’s most unique elements, the Pathways program for middle school students. Sixth, seventh and eighth graders are given the opportunity to choose from a group of electives and participate in activities with a professional in that field for nine Friday afternoons. Colomban noted that choices have included medicine, law, creative writing, cooking, chess and more. Pathways is offered in the fall and spring, so students can experience two different programs each year.

“At St. Joseph School, we provide a rigorous academic program built on the foundation of the Catholic faith: love, compassion and the moral teachings of our Church permeate all that we do, and in fact this is what drives our mission,” said Colomban. “Parents can be confident that their children will be provided with a safe environment in which they can learn and have fun. Add this to our focus on technology upgrades for September 2018, and one can see the we are forward-thinking and driven to prepare our students for their futures as well-rounded adults.”

Sarah de Venoge is the elementary school principal for the Schools of Saint Mary in Manhasset. She is also a product of a Saint Mary’s education.

“From the very start, strong values, respect for self and others, and responsibility for one’s actions are instilled in the students,” said de Venoge on how attending a private school can prepare children for the future. “It’s not enough to learn academically. If students do not acquire how to use academic skills alongside such values, they will not be successful when they reach high school, college and the professional world.”

A graduate of both the elementary and high school, de Venoge knows what is unique about St. Mary’s Elementary School: the level of dedication demonstrated by the clergy, faculty, and staff.

“Not only are they experienced, highly qualified and credentialed for their positions, they go far beyond their job descriptions to ensure the safety, spiritual development, and academic success of our students,” she said. “When parents select St. Mary’s Elementary School for their child, they choose to enter a faith-based community filled with caring and compassion alongside academic rigor and innovative technology. It’s the best investment parents can make for their child’s future.”

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