Under the guidance of the Sisters, Servants of the Immaculate Heart of Mary (IHM), Saint Matthew School has faithfully served the parish members and communities surrounding Forestville, Connecticut for the past fifty-five years. The fundamental purpose of Saint Matthew School has been, and continues to be, to provide a Catholic Education to its childrenBefore the sisters’ arrival, the children of the parish were taught religion by three Sisters of Christian Charity. When the sisters were recalled by their community, the people of the parish undertook the religious instruction. In 1958, seeing the need for a parish school, which would provide a Catholic Education for the children of the parish, Reverend Raymond J. Mulcahy requested IHM sisters. In August, 1961, the Sisters, Servants of the Immaculate Heart of Mary arrived to staff the newly constructed school. Until the building was completed, the sisters taught grades one and two in the basement of the church, and grades three and four were taught in an unoccupied two room school in Bristol. In October 1961, the school was dedicated by Archbishop O’Brien. Each year a grade was added to the school. The first class graduated in June 1965, establishing a long line of traditions and the fulfillment of the hopes and dreams of the founders of Saint Matthew School.
Since its dedication, Saint Matthew School has seen some changes. Originally opened only to children of the parish, enrollment is now open to all. In order to continue to provide a quality education, grades six to eight have become departmental and the core curriculum has been enhanced with an Honors Math Program for grades five to eight, Spanish in grades six – eight, and computer class for kindergarten to eight.
At the end of 2015-16 school year, the Sisters, Servants of the Immaculate Heart of Mary completed their loving service to to the school community. Beginning with the 2016-17 school year, the school will know for the first time a lay principal
PARENT’S ROLE IN EDUCATION
Because the mission of Saint Matthew School is to develop students’ minds, hearts, and souls to live as Jesus did it is essential that community be a part of this work in order for it to reach its completion.
Parents/Guardians of students in Catholic Schools serve as the primary educators and faith formation leaders for their children, and are expected to participate actively in the life of their parish by attending Mass, contributing financially to support the parish (appropriate to their resources), and conscientiously developing a sense of Catholic community among the students, parents/guardians, faculty, and parish.
It is the parents’/guardians’ responsibility to cooperate with the school staff for the welfare of students. Among the students, parents/guardians If it is the opinion of the school administration, parental/guardian behavior seriously interferes with teaching, learning, and the orderly operation of the school, the school may require parents/guardians to withdraw their children and sever their relationship with the school. (Archdiocese of Hartford (ADH)-Handbook of Policies and Procedures, #1.214).
Saint Matthew School is an accredited school with the New England Association of Schools and Colleges (NEASC) since 1986. The first re-accreditation was issued in 1991, then again in 2005. The most recent re-accreditation was issued in 2015. Saint Matthew School continues to be in good standing with NEASC. Saint Matthew School is also a member in good standing with the National Catholic Education Association (NCEA).
Volunteers are greatly welcomed to assist at Saint Matthew School.
All new personnel, both employees and volunteers, shall attend the adult education program mandated by the Archdiocese of Hartford for “Safe Environments” , also known as VIRTUS, within six months of the commencement of their service. (ADH-Handbook of Policies and Procedures, #3.212)
All volunteer personnel who have regular contact with students in Catholic schools shall submit to a criminal background check through a background investigation agency contracted by the Archdiocese of Hartford. Initial and/or continued service is contingent upon successful completion of the criminal background check.
Being with minors (under the age of 18) on a regular basis (daily, weekly, monthly or several times a year). (ADH-Handbook of Policies and Procedures #3.211)
No individual shall be permitted to volunteer in any position where there may be regular contact with children or young people without undergoing this background check.
Volunteers cooperate with the Principal in providing a positive educational climate for the students. Volunteers are directly accountable to the Principal. Volunteers agree to abide by established policies and procedures of the Archdiocese.
Volunteers shall complete the approved Office of Catholic Schools application. The administration reserves the right to accept or decline any offer of volunteer service. (ADH-Handbook of Policies and Procedures, #1.215).
ARCHDIOCESAN VISION STATEMENT
“The fundamental purpose of catholic Schools is to advance the educational mission of the church!”
Catholic Schools educate diverse student bodies to form catholic, person-centered learning communities; provide quality teaching through traditional and innovative educational programs infused with Catholic Social Teachings; involve students to serve and support parish life and the local civic communities; graduate students who are critical thinkers, productive moral citizens, and spiritual leaders; and recognize and appreciate parents as the primary educators of their children. [READ MORE]