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3 of 4 – Q&A with Principal of St. Pius X Catholic School – Mrs. Eileen Michalczyk

1. What are you most excited about for the 2019-2020 school year?

I’m excited to have a committed faculty and staff at St. Pius X for the 2019-2020 school year. We were blessed to have nearly all faculty and staff returning for this new year which ensures continuity among the student body. We’re also fortunate to have a few new qualified additions to our team! Our new theme for the upcoming year – “Come to me… Learn from me… Meek and humble of heart” (Matthew 11:28-29) – encompasses our goals for our students at St. Pius X Catholic School.

2. What challenges do you face at your school?

Keeping tuition affordable remains one of our top challenges and priorities. We strive to keep tuition affordable, while also ensuring a quality Catholic education. Unfortunately, a growing number of families requires financial assistance to help achieve their dreams of a Catholic education for their children. Since financial assistance is limited, we are presented with the additional challenge of equitably distributing the aid among our families, while not neglecting our budgetary needs.

3. What barriers do you face regarding enrollment?

Our school is blessed to serve military families from Buckley Air Force Base. However, with this blessing comes the reality that military families are typically stationed at a base for only 2-3 years. While we are humbled and honored to serve military families, the fact remains that we lose several military families every academic year due to transfers. At the same time, we are grateful that our departing military families refer newly transferred military families to our school.

4. How do you help new students integrate?

Like many schools, every year St. Pius X is fortunate to receive a significant number of new students. We partner each new student with a returning student for the first few days to help new students integrate. We utilize the services of St. Raphael Counseling through Catholic Charities and welcome a counselor on-site two days per week. Our counselor helps new students familiarize themselves with their new environment, while helping any student experiencing social or emotional struggles throughout the year. We remain committed to mental health support in our school.

5.What do you want most for your students? What is success for you?

Catholic schools measure success differently than other schools. At St. Pius X Catholic School our goal is to graduate our students with three core values: a deep and personal faith formation, a strong moral foundation to see the world through a Catholic lens, and an excellent academic education. We want our graduates to have a solid Catholic foundation to enter one of our Catholic high schools and follow God’s path for their lives.

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