In the early months of 2022, Principal Jeannine Stewart received a large gift from a familiar face. It was a simple moment at Holy Angels Regional School, a quiet moment in an otherwise bustling elementary school. But this single gesture acknowledged a century of Catholic education in Patchogue, and will fund technology that will reshape how students learn.
Holy Angels Regional School was founded by the Holy Union Sisters in 1923 as St. Francis DeSales Catholic School. Some fifty years later, the school was established as a regional school in January of 1977 as an opportunity for parents in eight neighboring parishes to provide an elementary education in an atmosphere of Christian concern and faith values.
The Holy Union Sisters may no longer teach from within the classrooms, but their support for the school is unwavering. For the past several years, the school has applied for and received grants offered by the Holy Union Sisters, but 2022 proved to be more than anyone could imagine.
The 2022 year grant of $9500 was the most generous to date! Principal Stewart believes that Sister Pat Griffith, a Holy Union sister and former school teacher, advocated for the school and shared recent stories of student success.
The $9500 grant will go to two key areas at the school: STEM projects and iReady assessments for students.
Science Technology Engineering and Mathematics (STEM) Program
The STEM program at Holy Angels Regional School has grown with after-school clubs, for both elementary and middle school students. Students now have hands-on science experiments, building robots with Cubelets, construction and problem-solving with a variety of building materials.
Students can also solve puzzle challenges to “break out” with Breakout EDU. The school recently purchased some additional building materials and an education pack of the highly acclaimed Keva Planks.
All of these resources make STEM fun for children. Students work together to solve difficult problems. The excitement of learning is palpable.
Student Benchmarking with i-Ready
The Diocese of Rockville Centre launched the i-Ready program as a part of the Morning Star Initiative. i-Ready uses cutting-edge technology to access the individual learning needs of students and develop a comprehensive plan for student success.
Practically speaking, students take i-Ready’s online assessments–think of them as tests or quizzes throughout the year. From those results, i-Ready finds where students are struggling, then creates unique learning modules to help the student catch up. On average, students spend two hours every week in these modules. As a result, fewer students fall behind.
The extra data on student progress helps the school’s team of AIS teachers better help students. In some cases, that data helps students to qualify for additional special education services.
Principal Steward couldn’t be more happy: “The Mother Helena Grant is so important to our students. The STEM program allows our students to explore new and creative ways of problem-solving and increased critical thinking. i-Ready is making a difference. From September 2021 to March 2022 our scores in Math and ELA have increased by 70%.”
About Holy Angels Regional School
Holy Angels school serves seven parishes in the area around Patchogue, NY:
- Mary Immaculate in Bellport, NY
- St. Frances Cabrini in Coram, NY
- St. Joseph the Worker in East Patchogue, NY
- St. Sylvester in Medford, NY
- Our Lady of Mount Carmel in North Patchogue, NY
- St. Francis de Sales in Patchogue, NY
- St. Margaret of Scotland in Selden, NY
One unique feature of Holy Angels Regional School is that children receive the sacraments in their home parishes after adequate class preparation. Special family Masses are celebrated at the school, but the full experience of the sacraments is with their parish community.
If you are interested in visiting Holy Angels Regional School, visit their website to schedule a private tour.
About the Morning Star Initiative
The Diocese of Rockville Centre’s Morning Star Initiative is a bold plan of Catholic evangelization (living and sharing the Gospel) for the revitalization of Catholic elementary education.