The following Vision Statement and Guiding Principles were developed in February 2007 by the founding committee of parents.
The school will:
• be thoroughly Catholic, infused and in harmony with all Church teachings;
• educate the whole child by offering the highest caliber of academic and catechetical instruction, and spiritual formation;
• offer an environment whereby Catholic virtues are honored and exemplified by all involved (faculty, parents, students, and volunteers);
• offer the highest caliber of academic instruction;
• have a curriculum permeated with Catholic history to properly equip its students for evangelization and apologetics;
• adopt practices that are focused on creating the optimal learning environment, such as co-instructional classrooms;
• require students to be involved in their local parishes;
• offer athletics and extra curricular activities, yet always mindful that academics and spiritual formation are the school’s priorities;
• establish a means for worthy students of limited financial resources to be able to attend;
• be developed in phases that are driven by market demands; and
• be governed by the authority of the Archbishop of San Antonio and the Archdiocesan School Council.
1. The regional high school will be thoroughly Catholic in every aspect of its mission, dedicated to the education of the whole person and recognizing the central role of spiritual development. Thus a "Catholic-across-the curriculum" approach would be taken. History, philosophy, ethics, literature, science, and government courses would highlight contributions of the Catholic Church to the advance of civilization. Religion or theology courses would be required each year (The Didache Series being one attractive model). A thorough understanding of Catholic doctrine, moral teachings, sacramental theology and prayer would be attained through study of the Catechism, writings of saints and doctors of the Church, and major church documents and teachings in union with the magisterium of the Church. The Catholic nature of the education would be emphasized with weekly Mass and daily recitation of the Morning Office. We hope to have priests, religious and/or deacons on staff, with one serving as a chaplain, to lead liturgies and to be available for spiritual direction and formation. The latter would include frequent opportunities for sacramental confession, the development of a retreat program, and encouragement of good spiritual reading. Students would be required to undertake service activities within their own parishes, to emphasize the Church’s teaching on the importance of living out the faith through the regular practice of the corporal and spiritual works of mercy. Our goal is to ensure that students who leave for college or who directly enter the work force will have a solid foundation in the Catholic faith and the spiritual armor to encounter a culture with values that are often hostile to the Christian spirit.
2. We envision a co-instructional educational approach. Research shows that both boys and girls of high school age are better served in single sex educational environments than in coeducational settings where the differences in learning among boys and girls are not carefully addressed. Neuro-scientific research increasingly supports what educators have long observed, namely that boys and girls learn differently, and that this rooted in fundamental differences in brain function. The co-instructional approach would have boys and girls taught in different wings of the same school, while sharing the cafeteria, library, and sports facilities to save on physical plant costs. Uniforms would be required. Some coeducational instruction would be considered in advanced courses for juniors and seniors. Social activities for both boys and girls would be available, to foster the mature and appropriate development of social relations among the two sexes. Co-instructional education was once widely available in Catholic High Schools, and we believe that parents should be given this option within the Archdiocese. Those parents opting for single sex or coeducational approaches for their children would still have many options available to them within the Archdiocese.
3. Access to all meritorious candidates would be emphasized, and an endowment built to ensure access for promising candidates from economically disadvantaged backgrounds.
4. Size of the school will depend on actual demand. But the thinking would be that it could start with a freshman class, or possibly a freshman and sophomore class of 30-50 boys and 30-50 girls, adding classes in each of the successive years until there is a full complement of freshmen through seniors, at a total enrollment of 300-400 students. This approach would permit the school to get started even in temporary facilities, before acquisition of land and building of facilities is complete, commensurate with fund-raising.
5. A capital campaign would be needed, and an appropriate governance board established to conduct a search for a principal and to establish policies consistent with those of the Archdiocese, while fostering the development and oversight of the school’s mission.
6. Location of the school will be along the IH-35 corridor to ensure maximum accessibility to the prospective market, ideally in close proximity to the freeway, and centrally located to take advantage of the large populations between Selma and San Marcos (north to south) and Seguin and Canyon Lake/Highway 46 (east to west). New Braunfels sits in the middle of this hub, which is one reason why we looked at properties in this area, including St. Joseph's Chapel property between New Braunfels and Selma. Land availability, suitability, and price will ultimately determine location.The school has been planned in accord with the Planning Guidelines for Establishing a New Catholic School in the Archdiocese of San Antonio, as published by the Office of the Superintendent, February 2006.