Catholic Schools of Brevard County

July 22, 2018

Red Cross Trains 66 Students at St. Joseph Catholic School


Red Cross Trains 66 Middle-School Students in Citizen’s CPR

Children learn compression-only CPR to help others in an emergency 

For the first time St. Joseph Catholic School in Palm Bay hosted the first ever the American Red Cross Mid-Florida Citizen’s CPR (i.e., compression-only CPR) to 66 students in sixth through eighth grades. The Instructor was Jim Poulos, a Fire Safety Advocate from the Palm Bay Fire Rescue Service and a Red Cross volunteer.  

 Jim Poulos says, “ The class should give these young people the self confidence to know how to react in an emergency situation”

Read article in Florida Today    

Brevard Catholic Schools Host Open House Nov. 11

bcs-oh-logo-13Nine Brevard County Catholic Schools are hosting an Open House on November 11 with campus tours and the opportunity to meet administrators, teachers, and staff.  Admissions and financial assistance information will be provided.

Monday, November 11th, 9 AM – 2 PM:

Our Savior Catholic School

5301 N. Atlantic Ave., Cocoa Beach


Divine Mercy Catholic Academy

1940 N. Courtenay Pkwy., Merritt Island


Holy Name of Jesus Catholic School

3060 N. Hwy A1A, Indialantic


 St. Joseph Catholic School

5320 Babcock St. NE, Palm Bay


Melbourne Central Catholic High School

Melbourne Central Catholic High School

100 E. Florida Ave., Melbourne


 St. Mary’s Catholic School

1152 S. Seminole Dr., Rockledge


Holy Name of Jesus Catholic School

3060 N. Hwy A1A, Indialantic


 St. Joseph Catholic School

5320 Babcock St. NE, Palm Bay


 Ascension Catholic School

2950 N. Harbor City Blvd., Melbourne


Monday, November 11, 9 AM – 2 PM & 5 – 7 PM:

Our Lady of Lourdes Catholic School

420 E. Fee Ave, Melbourne


 St. Teresa Catholic School

207 Ojibway Ave, Titusville, FL


Brevard County Catholic Schools Open House provides the opportunity to learn about the many benefits of a Catholic education including curriculum, enrichment programs, extracurricular activities, and athletics. Brevard County Catholic Schools include eight elementary/middle schools which serve Pre-K3 and VPK-4 through 8th grade, and Melbourne Central Catholic High School, a college preparatory, which serves grades 9-12.  Come to any of the Catholic schools Open Houses on November 11.  No RSVP required.

Holy Name art camp inspires students’ creativity

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At Holy Name of Jesus’ art camp, finger painting is high art. Inspired by Manet, students created impressionist paintings using only their fingertips.

Manet finger painting was just one of the many projects Holy Name had at its summer art camp.

Run by Barbara Finneran, the art camp introduced students to famous artists, various mediums and different artistic methods.

The students explored more traditional mediums, like pastels, watercolor and tempera paint, as well as more unconventional methods, including working with wet chalk and marbleizing with shaving cream.

Students were often surprised by the results of these unconventional methods. In one instance, students were shocked at the beautiful seascapes they made by “black washing” a work in a style similar to Batik on silk.

Finneran noted that while children left the camp with new knowledge of art, parents also ended the camp with something special of their own.

She said, “Parents of the young artists were thrilled to have frame-able masterpieces to bring home and cherish for years to come.”

Students explore new activities at St. Mary’s themed summer camp


At St. Mary’s, summer camp is more than just a way to pass the time.

It’s more than a few activities to keep kids occupied.

At St. Mary’s, summer camp is an adventure.

Each week the camp introduces a new theme for students to explore. Throughout the week, the theme is used to inspire art projects, activities and educational ideas.

On Beach Day, you can find students making seashell frames and painting oceans, while on Pirate Day, you might see students running around in pirate hats looking for buried treasure. Other themes the camp has done include reptiles, cars, bugs and camping.

The camp, which started in June and will end in August, takes place from 9 a.m. to 3 p.m. The camp is for children who are three years old up to those entering second grade.

Julia Ekhlassi, the director of the camp and a teacher at St. Mary’s, said the younger children and new students especially enjoy the camp because it allows them to make new friends.

“The children meet and get to know other children they will be seeing in their classroom and around the school,” Ekhlassi said.

Along with meeting and playing with their peers, new students and their families have the opportunity to familiarize themselves with the campus and meet teachers during the camp.

The camp concludes every week with Water Day on Friday, a favorite activity for students. Students can play with chalk, bubbles, a few small pools, and on a large inflatable slide.

Ekhlassi said, “All the kids want to be there for that day!”

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Pope Francis shares his views on education with students

Pope Francis addressed the importance of Catholic education on June 7 when he received several students from Jesuit-run schools in Italy and Albania in the Paul VI Audience Hall.

In his address, Pope Francis wrote about how education should be more than just a place to expand intellect – that it should also be a place to learn compassion and magnanimity. He stressed that school should be a place to develop the whole child – mind, body, and spirit – and that teachers should try unique ways to reach students.

Excerpts from his address are below:

“School is one of the educational environments where one grows by learning how to live, how to become grown-up, mature men and women. … Following what St. Ignatius teaches us, the main element in school is learning to be magnanimous … This means having a big heart, having a greatness of soul. It means having grand ideals, the desire to achieve great things in response to what God asks of us and, precisely because of this, doing everyday things, all our daily actions, commitments, and meetings with people well. [It means] doing the little everyday things with a big heart that is open to God and to others.”

“School broadens not only your intellectual dimension, but also the human one. I think that Jesuit schools in particular are careful to develop the human virtues: loyalty, respect, and commitment. I would like to focus on two fundamental values: freedom and service. Before all else be free persons! … Freedom means knowing how to reflect on what we do, knowing how to evaluate … which are the behaviours that make us grow. It means always choosing the good. … Being free to always choose the good is challenging, but it will make you persons with a backbone, who know how to face life, courageous and patient persons.”

“The second word is service. In your schools you participate in various activities that prepare you not to be wrapped up in yourselves or in your own little world, but to open yourselves to others, especially to the poorest and most in need, to work to improve the world we live in.” Spiritual formation is the requirement for all this, and in the text he urges the students to “always love Jesus Christ more and more! Our lives are a response to his call and you will be happy and will build your lives well if you know how to answer that call. Feel the Lord’s presence in your lives. … In prayer, in dialogue with him, in reading the Bible you will discover that He is truly close to you. And you should also learn to read God’s signs in your lives. He is always speaking to us, even through the events of our times and our everyday existence. It’s up to us to listen to him.”

In his address, he also directed his thoughts to all the educators: Jesuits, teachers, workers in the schools, and parents. “Don’t be discouraged by the difficulties that the educational challenge presents! Educating isn’t a profession but an attitude, a way of being. In order to educate you must go out of yourselves and be amidst the young, accompanying them in the stages of their growth, standing beside them.”

In the text Francis asked them to give their students hope and optimism by teaching them “to see the beauty and goodness of creation and of humanity, which always retains the Creator’s imprint. But above all, witness with your lives what you are communicating.” He also reminded them that educators “impart knowledge and values with their words but it will be more influential on the kids if your words are accompanied by your witness, by being consistent in your lives. It isn’t possible to educate without being consistent! … School can and should function as a catalyst, being a place of encounter and convergence of the entire educational community with the single objective of shaping and helping [the students] to grow as mature, simple, honest, and competent persons who know how to love faithfully, who know how to live their lives as a response to God’s call and their future professions as a service to society.”

In a section that he also spoke at the audience, he encourages the educators “to seek new forms of non-conventional education according to ‘the needs of the places, times, and persons’.” The text closed with the reminder that “the Lord is always nearby, lifting you up after you fall and pushing you to grow and to make ever-better choices ‘with great courage and generosity’, with magnanimity. Ad Maiorem Dei Gloriam.” [For the greater glory of God, the Jesuit motto].

Holy Name principal featured in Brevard Business News

Holy Name of Jesus’ principal, Mary Ann Irwin, was the subject of a Brevard Business News article. The article talks about Irwin’s trip out of retirement to become principal and the initiatives she is taking at the school, including incorporating technology and broadening the electives for students. Part of the story is below.

Principalship at Holy Name of Jesus Catholic School brings educator Irwin out of retirement; 30 new families for coming year; students to get Samsung tablet

By Ken Datzman

INDIALANTIC — Longtime Indiana educator Mary Ann Irwin was set to retire on June 30, 2012. She was looking forward to moving to Florida with her husband.

“Our grandson was coming down to attend Stetson University and was going to play basketball there. So we decided we wanted to be here to watch him play. I thought perhaps I could do some substitute teaching in the region,” said Irwin, who relocated here from Warsaw, Ind.

During a career that spanned decades in the Hoosier State, Irwin, who grew up in Indianapolis, had risen from first–grade teacher to school superintendent and built a resume that clearly stood out in the profession.

Erwin, known for her enthusiasm in the classroom and love of teaching, and her ability to achieve results as an administrator, worked in about every capacity in the field of education, for both private and public institutions.

The Indiana University and Ball State University graduate was a teacher, assistant principal, principal, K–12 curriculum director, and district–level administrator. She also worked with special–needs students, and led the development of a cutting–edge adult–education program at the General Motors Corp. plant in Marion, Ind.

While in Indiana, she sent her career information to the Diocese of Orlando, which oversees the Catholic schools in Central Florida including Brevard County. The Diocese called Irwin within one day and told her they might have a better deal than substitute teaching, if she was interested.

Soon, her retirement plans were shelved and Irwin was named the new principal at Holy Name of Jesus Catholic School.

“It’s God’s plan that I am here. I’ve tried to retire twice,” said Irwin, who just finished her first year as principal of the elementary school and is pushing hard on the team concept to reach new heights of performance.

“It was an awesome first year. Everybody has been so welcoming — the staff, the parents, the students, the parish, the community. We’re all pulling together. We want our education to continue to be even at a higher level than it already is, and we’re doing that through teamwork. We continue to strive for excellence in education.”

She added, “We want to provide an atmosphere where young people are academically, emotionally, and spiritually prepared to be good decision–makers in society.”

Holy Name of Jesus Catholic School has an enrollment of 250 students and is experiencing growth. Irwin said 30 new families have enrolled for the coming school year.

“We are very excited about that. They are coming from the local market and from other areas of Florida. We have so many plans for next school year. The big one is our technology initiative.”

Holy Name of Jesus will be providing each sixth–, seventh– and eighth–grade student with a new Samsung Galaxy Note 10.1 tablet. They will be issued their tablet at the start of the 2013–2014 school year.

“We have been watching the evolution of tablets very closely and did a lot of research before choosing the Samsung Galaxy Note 10.1 tablet,” said Anne Farrington, technology specialist at Holy Name of Jesus. “It is loaded with features and is the latest design. What we’re seeing is that the students love to read books, read content on these tablets.”

* * *

Read the entire story on the Brevard Business News online version: The story is on page 11.

St. Teresa students graduate with top honors

St. Teresa graduated its eighth grade class on May 31. The students celebrated thPeter Rawlins 2eir time at St.Teresa’s with a Candle and Rose Ceremony.

Special congratulations go out to Nicole Scarlipno, Karen Bruchs and Peter Rawlins, who graduated as the top three students in the graduating class of 2013. They all ended their St. Teresa cumulative as Summa Cum Laude.

Rawlins (right), Bruchs (below, left) and Scarlipno (below, right) are featured in the pictures shown.



Nikki Scarpino 2            Karen Bruchs 2


MCC students perform at Barnes & Noble night

There was som2013-05-30 17.23.30ething unusual in the bookstore Thursday night.

Instead of magazines, books and coffee, there stood a microphone, keyboard and amps.

Instead of silence, there was music.

Several MCC students performed musical acts at Melbourne Central Catholic’s Barnes & Noble book fair.

The students performed solos, duets, and ensembles. Along with singing, students played guitars and the keyboard.

MCC parents, students, teachers, as well as curious onlookers, watched the performances, which took place in the corner of the store near the book fair.

The book fair at Barnes & Noble is an annual event for MCC, where students buy their summer reading books, and a percentage of the sale of books is returned to the high school.



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Eighth graders graduate from Divine Mercy

Divine Mercy Catholic School has graduated its eighth grade class. IMG_3698smallcrop

The valedictorian for the class was Danielle Mendoza (below, left). Leah Biamonte (below, right) and Courteney Ziegler were the salutatorians for the class.

Mendoza and Biamonte spoke at the graduation.

We congratulate the valedictorian, salutatorians, and all of Divine Mercy’s graduates for another successful class.

We know they will be up to great things in their high school careers!


Leah DM Grad 031              Leah DM Grad 115

OLL graduates class with several honors

Clad in white robes and cords, the eighth grade students of Our Lady of Lourdes walked down the aisles of the church.

They left as graduates.

group 2013Our Lady of Lourdes celebrated the graduation of its eighth grade class last Thursday. The class consisted of 27 students, including many who had been students at OLL since they were in preschool.

Several students received awards and scholarships at the ceremony.

Colin Jones recieved the Doane Scholarship, which is for $1,000 to attend Melbourne Central Catholic High School. The scholarship was donated by the Doane family to support Catholic education.

Kristine Sanchez was awarded the James W. and Mary Alice Libby Scholarship which entitles her to full tuition for four years at Melbourne Central Catholic High School.  The Libby Scholarship is funded by the Community Foundation for Brevard and was established in 1999 in honor of Mr. and Mrs. Libby.

Our Lady of Lourdes is proud of another successful graduating class. We are excited to see what they will do in their high school and college careers.


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