Catholic Education

Catholic Education

Archdiocese Shows Strong Support for Catholic Education, Respect Life During 2018 Creative Writing Contest

1,058 Catholic Eighth Graders Write About Chastity, Respect Life, 146 Finalists Honored at April 18 Assembly

With approximately 500 people in attendance, the April 18 awards assembly culminated nearly five months of work that went into the 2018 Respect Life Creative Writing Contest. This partnership between the Catholic Education Office, Respect Life Apostolate, and schools and parishes throughout the archdiocese, helped 1,058 eighth graders reflect on the virtue of chastity and respecting each person's fundamental right to life.

These entries represented 61 schools, Parish School of Religion programs, and Catholic home schools. Of these students, 146 were rated as finalists by our judges and invited to the award assembly at the Cardinal Rigali Center.

At the assembly, Archbishop Robert Carlson, Fr. Brian Fallon, Bob Cochran (nephew of Bishop Edward O'Donnell), Zip Rzeppa, Missouri Knights of Columbus leaders and RLA Executive Director Karen Nolkemper helped present the awards and inspire the students. The presence of parents, teachers, principals, priests, and religious further inspired and supported the achievement of these eighth graders.

Each finalist received a certificate of achievement, respect life T-shirt, a teen book on chastity, and the opportunity to be individually recognized, presented, and photographed with Archbishop Carlson.

In addition, 14 of these 146 finalists were selected for either a scholarship or an honorable mention. This year, six one-time, partial scholarships and eight honorable mention prizes were awarded to help 14 students more easily pursue Catholic high school education in 2018-2019.

The recipients of the six $2,000 scholarships are:

  • Bishop Edward J. O'Donnell Scholarship: Emmeline Roseberry (St. Margaret of Scotland Grade School and Parish) will be attending Nerinx Hall
  • Mary Forrestal Hennessey Scholarship: Meghan Meehan (home school, St. Dominic Savio Parish) will be attending Bishop DuBourg High School
  • Mr. & Mrs George Kletzker Scholarships: Leah Anderson (St. Joseph of Imperial Grade School and Parish) will be attending Ursuline Academy, and Olivia Knobbe (St. Joseph-Josephville Grade School and Parish) will be attending St. Dominic High School
  • Knights of Columbus Missouri State Council Scholarship: John Paul Vlahutin (Annunziata Grade School and Holy Trinity Parish) will be attending Chaminade College Preparatory School
  • St. Joseph Evangelization Network Scholarship: Carlotta Croak (Holy Infant Grade School and Parish) will be attending Villa Duchesne 

The recipients of the eight honorable mention awards are:

  • Alexander Rodriguez (Holy Trinity Grade School, Our Lady of the Presentation Parish), will be attending DeSmet Jesuit High School
  • Amy Lien Stukenholtz (Sacred Heart-Valley Park Grade School and Parish), will be attending Cor Jesu Academy
  • Eric Piening (St. Monica Grade School and Parish), will be attending St. Louis University High School
  • Matilda Killeen (St. Margaret of Scotland Grade School and Parish), will be attending Visitation Academy
  • Gabriel Chase Lancia (Holy Cross Academy, Our Lady of Providence Parish), will be attending St. Pius X High School
  • Hannah Lifka (St. Peter Grade School, St. Joseph-Imperial Parish), will be attending Lindbergh High School
  • Hannah King (St. John Paul II Preparatory School, Queen of All Saints Parish) will be continuing her high school education at St. John Paul II
  • Hope Dery (homeschool, St. Joseph-Cottleville Parish), will be attending St. John Paul II Preparatory School 

Click here to read the St. Louis Review article.

Click here to read the winning scholarship entries

Catholic School Graduates Earn High ACT Scores

August 24, 2016
For more information contact: 
Gabe Jones
Media Relations Specialist
Phone: 314.792.7557

ST. LOUIS – The Class of 2016 at Catholic high schools in the Archdiocese of St. Louis continues to demonstrate high academic achievement with this year's ACT test results. Data released today from the ACT showed Catholic school test scores remained stable even while the Missouri state average decreased significantly.

The 2016 average composite score for Catholic school graduates in the archdiocese is 24.7, nearly equal to the 2015 score of 24.8. The statewide average declined from 21.7 in 2015 to 20.2 this year.

Individual subject area tests demonstrated strong academic performance across all disciplines. The Catholic high school average score for individual tests are:

 Composite   24.7   20.2
 English   25.7   19.7
 Mathematics   23.1   19.8
 Reading   25.5   20.6
 Science   24.2   20.4 

"We are incredibly proud of our graduates. We measure student success in many ways and the ACT test scores again confirm the outstanding work of our students and teachers," said Superintendent of Catholic Education Dr. Kurt Nelson. "Achieving this level of success at graduation is the result of hard work during the high school years, building on the strong foundation students receive in our Catholic elementary schools."

The Catholic high school scores include 2,917 seniors (98.2% of the Class of 2016) from all 27 Catholic high schools in the archdiocese. The archdiocese is the oldest and largest system of schools in the state of Missouri, with over 39,000 students.

The results for the Class of 2016 continue a long history of academic success in Catholic high schools. In 2015, the Archdiocese of St. Louis had the fourth highest score of any school system in Missouri. The Catholic Education Office releases archdiocesan average scores, but not individual school scores.

For more information, please contact Dr. Robert Oliveri, Associate Superintendent for Secondary School Administration at or 314.792.7390.




















Archdiocese of St. Louis Hosts Counter Bullying Workshop

June 13, 2016
For more information contact: 
Sue Brown
Director of Marketing & Community Relations, Catholic Education Office
Phone: 314.792.7304

Catholic Approach to Discipline Inspires Schools Nationwide

What: 2016 Virtue-Based Restorative Discipline (VBRD) Summer Institute
Where: Cardinal Rigali Center, 20 Archbishop May Dr., 63119
When: June 14-17, 2016, 8:30 a.m. - 3:30 p.m.

ST. LOUIS – The Catholic Education Office will host the 2016 Virtue-Based Restorative Discipline (VBRD) Summer Institute from Tuesday – Friday, June 14-17, 2016, 8:30 a.m. - 3:30 p.m. at the Cardinal Rigali Center (20 Archbishop May Dr., 63119).

Over 200 educators from 50 Catholic schools in the Archdiocese of St. Louis and seven other states will attend this comprehensive training in VBRD, a Catholic response to bullying. School teams will be trained to prevent and reduce antisocial behaviors through virtue education and restorative practices, resulting in a consistent message that upholds the dignity of the human person.

“This is our fourth year for this unique training,” said Mrs. Lynne Lang, Director of School Climate at the Catholic Education Office. “Our returning schools are a testimony to the success of this work and reflective of the archdiocesan beONE initiative goals.”

Parents and school personnel will learn to maintain a positive environment in which adults and students are accountable and responsible for holy habits of human excellence, and discipline is viewed as formative, rather than punitive. Sessions will include: Foundations of VBRD, Restorative Practices, Guiding Principles, Engaging Parents, and Successful Class Meetings. Each day, students will showcase restorative leadership among their peers.

An intercultural prayer service, will be held on Wednesday, June 15, at 8:30 a.m., in the St. Vincent de Paul Chapel, led by Gregory Heille, O.P., Academic Dean and Vice President of Aquinas Institute of Theology.

On Thursday, June 16, at 8:30 a.m., Keynote Speaker, Lee Rush, M.Ed., from International Institute for Restorative Practices (IIRP) will present a talk entitled “Change the Conversation, Change the Culture” and 40 administrators will be trained in a program called “Authority with Grace: Restorative Leadership.”

The closing ceremony will recognize schools that have implemented VBRD with fidelity in the 2015-16 school year.

For more information, contact Lynne Lang:, or 314.280.3723.


Annual Health and Safety Summit for Catholic Schools

June 7, 2016
For more information contact: 
Sue Brown
Director of Marketing & Community Relations, Catholic Education Office
Phone: 314.792.7304

What: Archdiocese of St. Louis Health and Safety Summit
Where: John F. Kennedy Catholic High School, 500 Woods Mill Rd., Manchester, MO
When: Thursday, June 9, 2016 – 8:00 a.m. - 4:00 p.m. (Program begins at 8:15 a.m. with welcome and prayer.)

ST. LOUIS - The Catholic Education Office of the Archdiocese of St. Louis will host the annual Health and Safety Summit on Thursday, June 9, 2016, 8:00 a.m. - 4:30 p.m. at John F. Kennedy Catholic High School (500 Woods Mill Rd., Manchester, MO).

Keynote speaker, Saundra Barker, MSW, LCSW, of Catholic Family Services, from 8:30-9:45 a.m. will present on the topic “Responding to Traumatic Events,” with the purpose of understanding the pressures of life on children, especially the extent of social media and its influences.

Ms. Barker will guide the school staff members in identifying and planning for the most appropriate response in times of any crisis, whether it be in the school, the community, home, or the nation.  The response is solution-focused, restores equilibrium, reduces the level of stress and trauma, and supports the overall well-being of students and staff. 

The numerous break-out sessions during the conference are intended for a wide-range of attendees including pastors, principals, teachers, Parish School of Religion (PSR) coordinators and catechists, school nurses, maintenance personnel and athletic directors. Morning break-out sessions begin at 9:55 a.m. Afternoon sessions begin at 1:05 p.m.

“We are proud of the commitment to safety in our Catholic schools,” said Dr. David Shelton, Director of Administrative Services at the Catholic Education Office. “Interest in this summit grows every year due to the timeliness and value of the program’s topics. We are excited for another successful event this year.”

More than 350 participants are registered for the summit, representing Catholic school and parish personnel across the Archdiocese of St. Louis.


Two St. Louis Leaders Named Outstanding Catholic Educators by National Catholic Educational Association

March 28, 2016
For more information contact: 
Gabe Jones
Media Relations Specialist
Phone: 314.792.7557

ST. LOUIS – Reverend Monsignor Jack Costello, pastor of St. Peter Catholic Church in Kirkwood, and David Laughlin, president of Saint Louis University High School, along with 30 other individuals from around the country, will be honored as outstanding Catholic educators on Tuesday, March 29 by the National Catholic Education Association (NCEA).

The awards will be presented at a dinner during the NCEA’s annual Convention and Expo, held this year in San Diego, March 29-31. In announcing the 32 recipients of the 2016 Lead. Learn. Proclaim. Awards, the NCEA said the purpose of the award is to “highlight the outstanding work of Catholic school educators in communities across the country.”

Among the awardees are Catholic school leaders, teachers, principals and presidents, pastors, diocesan superintendents, school boards and home school associations.

NCEA’s 2016 Convention and Expo is the largest private-education association gathering in the nation. The annual convention draws more than 4,500 members and participants from Catholic school communities including elementary and secondary school teachers and principals, religious education programs as well as diocesan offices, church pastors, superintendents, school boards.  The convention is a forum to exchange ideas, hear about current research and data related to Catholic education and learn about new technology and resources.

Representatives from the Catholic Education Office of the Archdiocese of St. Louis are in San Diego this week to welcome attendees to the 2017 NCEA Convention and Expo to be held in St. Louis.


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