Tuesday, August 10, 2010

St. Bernard begins new school year

St. Bernard Preparatory School started its 119th year on Monday, August 9, with Fr. Joel Martin, Headmaster, welcoming students, faculty, and staff to the new academic year. In his opening remarks, he recognized the many changes that have taken place since last school year.

Mr. John Tekulve, will be assisting at the high school this year as Assistant to the Headmaster, while Mr. William Calvert will be holding that position in the middle school. New faculty members include Mrs. Delila Fox, returning to teach mathematics at St. Bernard after a few years sabbatical, and Mr. Stephen Calvert at the Middle School. Dr. Donna Bryant’s new position as Admissions Director was also announced.
In addition to staff and faculty changes, several renovations have taken place around the campus, including upgrades to both the boys’ and girls’ dormitories and the administration building. New text books are already being used and an upgrade in technology is being planned for the first semester.

“St. Bernard is blessed with a number of students from all over the United States, including territories such as Puerto Rico as well as a number of international students hailing from Korea, Mexico, and China,’ said Fr. Joel. “This diversity of background, nationality, religion and culture is part of what makes St. Bernard so special, preparing our students for the global society in which we live.” St. Bernard boasts a student/faculty ratio of 8:1, which enables teachers to give one-on-one attention to students, thus ensuring each student’s success.

During the assembly, the leaders of the Student Council were introduced. Justin Michael Varquez, the Student Council President, welcomed his fellow students to the new year and encouraged them to be involved in all the activities that are planned.
Ms. Katie Hawkins, SBPS Spanish Teacher, spoke of the Mentor Program for St. Bernard this year. She recognized those students who were mentoring new students, and encouraged all to help each other. The work of the mentors was already present as one walked up and down the hallways, spotting notes of encouragement left on the lockers of new students.

Abbot Cletus Meagher, O.S.B., the Abbot of St. Bernard, reminded the students of their wonderful opportunities at St. Bernard, emphasizing that St. Bernard has a long tradition of educational excellence in a Christian environment. He recognized the valuable contributions of alumni which enable St. Bernard to develop and continue in its mission of providing a Christian education.

As Chaplain, Fr. Bede Marcy led first the faculty and staff, and then the students in their “Renewal of Commitment to Education and Formation.” Abbot Cletus brought the assembly to a close with prayer and words of encouragement to excel in every way during the coming year.

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