My name is Kaci Monaghan and I am the principal of St. Patrick School. This week we celebrate the first day of a new year! We know that St. Patrick School would not be possible without the generous support of our parish community, and we do not take that lightly. Each year, we reevaluate what we are doing and look for opportunities to grow and improve in an effort to ensure that our school is worthy of our parishioners' support.
This year, with the support of our parishioners and the FIRE Foundation, we were able to add 2 teachers to our staff whose sole purpose is allowing us to specialize instruction for more students than we have ever been able to serve. This means that all students at St. Patrick School will receive an education that is developed to meet their specific learning level and style, so that no student is left waiting around or falling behind.
Along with individualized instruction, this year we have designed new STEM classes that will allow students in kindergarten through 8th grade to create, design, engineer, and explore while developing critical thinking and problem solving skills.
St. Patrick School was one of the first schools in the diocese to begin a Robotics program for students in grades 4-8. This program, which currently serves students from kindergarten - 8th grade, has received recognition every year since it began with our students winning countless awards for their teamwork, leadership, public speaking, and project design.
This year, we are welcoming 19 new students and their families into our school community who found us while looking for something different for their children. One father told me he was looking for a place where his son would be safe and nurtured and he knew from the minute he walked through our doors that St. Patrick was the place for them.
I could go on and on and on about all the wonderful academic programs we have put in place this year, because I am incredibly proud of what we are able to offer our students. St. Patrick is quickly becoming the school that other Catholic schools in the area wish they could be and are modeling themselves after. It’s an exciting time to be a part of our school.
But beyond academics, St. Patrick offers students something they simply can’t receive anywhere else. We have assembled a faculty and staff who are a passionate, hard working group of men and women with a heart for the mission and vision of St. Patrick School. These are teachers and staff who willingly sacrifice to work for our school, because they believe in what we are doing for kids. Our teachers truly believe they are not just teachers. They are Catholic school teachers. They are men and women of faith who put God first in their classrooms and who model God’s compassion, God’s love, and most of all, God’s grace.
As of Friday, August 9, the 221st day of the year, there have been 257 mass shootings in the United States, and 127 homicides in the Kansas City area alone. It seems like every time I turn on the TV there is news of another act of violence in our country. I’m not here to be political or pretend I have the answers of how to end violence in our country. But, I do know that 1 person can do 1 thing to create change and that’s what we are doing at St. Patrick School.
At our school, students are not numbers, they aren’t test scores, they aren’t data. Each day, our students are greeted by name from the minute they step out of the car. Throughout the day, they are welcomed, they are spoken to, they are hugged and loved by every single adult in our building. Not one day goes by where every single child receives individual attention. At St. Patrick, we speak words of encouragement, support, compassion, and love over our students each and every day. We begin our day with prayer, we pray in our classrooms, we pray on the playground, and we end our day with prayer too. St. Patrick is not just a school. It is a Catholic school, where God is the center of every decision we make and everything that we do.
Again, I thank the parishioners from the deepest part of my heart for your support of St. Patrick School. I walk into this building each day with a smile on my face, because I know that for the first time in my educational career, I am serving a school that is doing something profound for our students. I am consistently humbled by the generosity of the parishioners of St. Patrick, and I promise to do the best I can to be the kind of leader St. Patrick needs me to be.
St. Patrick School