A Message from Principal Mari Zarcone Patterson
Mrs. Mari Zarcone Patterson E-mail
I believe that a faith based education is the foundation of a person’s life-long value system. Education begins at birth with parents and follows through to the end of life with influences from family, peers, educators, neighbors, and the community. In Catholic education, parents form a partnership with teachers that focuses on faith formation. Nurturing children’s faith along with role modeling Christian values are the primary tenets that set the tone for learning across the curriculum.
I have witnessed many positive changes in the eleven years that I have been principal. These changes have focused on faculty dedication, children’s pride, parent loyalty, and community interest. Two teachers are alumni with over 20 years of teaching experience at St. Mary’s School.
The majority of the additional faculty average 3-9 years of working very hard to carry out our school’s mission. The children wear uniforms, play sports, attend weekly liturgies, share prayer services, earn the honor roll, and participate in fund raisers with smiles on their faces. Our parents help organize the Home and School Assn., chair fund raisers, volunteer in classrooms, sit on committees, and believe in their children’s faith-based education. The community gets involved by donating money, attending our activities, and encouraging us through their encouraging thoughts. Catholic education is a long standing tradition that works as well now as it did one hundred years ago. Believing in God and emulating Christian values really haven’t changed that much. Why would they? Times have changed but the principles of acting like Jesus are still very simple to imitate. As a result, positive energy flows at Home and School meetings, Student Council activities, Christmas and Spring Programs, fund raisers, and parent/teacher conferences.
I attended Catholic schools from First – Twelfth grades and model my ministry on the examples set by the nuns and priests who nurtured me. Loving God, others, and ourselves; respecting differences; listening to other’s opinions; and serving each other are the traditions that have been the everlasting foundation of Catholic education. These traditions are evident at St. Mary’s School through the efforts of the children, faculty, and parents with help from the parish and community.
During the 12/13 school year, I look forward to some academic changes that will enrich the lives of our children. The children and their teachers will share a plan that involves innovative ideas in Math, Social Studies, and Reading. These changes will depend upon traditional teaching methods in conjunction with Technology available in the Tech Lab. The departmentalization concept will enter its second year for Grades 4-8. The departmentalization goals are listed on the website and involve learning at various age and grade levels. Our special classes will include Physical Education/Health, Music, and Art taught by trained and experienced teachers. I’m very proud of the energy, effort, time, and talent that will help support our school’s mission.
I enjoy sharing my ministry in a safe, protective, and loving environment. I am very fortunate to be a member of the St. Mary’s School community. You are very welcome to join us in our faith based education.
New Richmond, WI