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St. Gabriel Classical Academy to open for 2022-23 school year

By VERONICA AMBUUL
06/03/2022 | Comments

COLORADO SPRINGS. A new diocesan Catholic school will open at St. Gabriel the Archangel Parish in the fall of 2022. The St. Gabriel Classical Academy will include preschool through fifth grade, with full-day and half-day options for kindergarten.

Although construction on a permanent school building is expected to begin later this year, the school will be initially located in existing classrooms at St. Gabriel Church, said principal Robin Schneider.

“Since we are opening up in the church with limited space, we will keep the class sizes to 20 — with a maximum of 25 — now and in the future,” Schneider said.

The Meitler Group, a consulting firm based in Milwaukee, Wisconsin, surveyed St. Gabriel parishioners and others in the diocese over several months beginning in late 2021 to gauge demand for a Catholic school in the Briargate area. Results showed there was enough interest to warrant establishing a new school, she said.

“I believe the Meitler study told us what we already knew, which was that a Catholic school is very much welcomed and needed in the growing Briargate and northeast area of Colorado Springs,” Schneider said. “Working with Father Kirk Slattery, Bishop James Golka and our team has been fortifying, as they truly understand that Catholic schools mirror the mission of the Church, which is the salvation of souls.”

Tuition for grades 1-5 is $5,995 per student, with discounts for multiple children from the same family. Financial aid is available through the Bishop’s Scholarship Fund, the diocesan tuition-assistance fund for Catholic schools.

The preschool will be a full-day Montessori program for children ages 3-6 with a yearly tuition rate of $6,750 that includes all meals and snacks.

Most of St. Gabriel Classical Academy’s curriculum will be adapted from St. Jerome Academy, a classical school in Hyattsville, Maryland, Schneider said.

“As opposed to secular education, which is rooted in utilitarian philosophy, classical liberal education stems from Christian anthropology, which is ordered to the truth that sets us free,” she said. “Additionally, it cultivates wisdom and virtue and focuses on the development of the whole person. In essence, we are not teaching students what to think, rather ‘how’ to think, which will help them think critically about all the choices in their lives, especially about their very own personal relationship with Jesus.”

“Our school’s motto is “Fides Quarens Intellectum” —  faith seeking understanding. This was the theological method used by St. Augustine and St. Anselm of Canterbury,” Schneider said. “Our hope for the children is that they learn about their faith and understand the ‘why’ behind it, taking it from their head to their heart so they can live out the Gospel in their everyday lives.”

“Teachers will be trained in the Singapore math curriculum and the Orton-Gillingham approach (for English and reading). Some teachers will receive an alternative licensure through the Institute for Catholic Liberal Education. Father Slattery will be giving the teachers ongoing spiritual formation,” Schneider said, and new teachers will be trained in the classical curriculum.

“We are thrilled to have the opportunity to partner with St. Gabriel Classical Academy in order to raise our children in a joyful and authentic Catholic environment,” said incoming parent Kristen Calvani. “We can’t wait to be a part of this community and see the many fruits that will come from this labor.”

For more information on St. Gabriel Classical Academy or to enroll, call 719-418-5670 or visit stgclassical.com.


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