New bishop of Archdiocese of Baltimore visits St. Mary's school
The Most Rev. Mitchell T. Rozanski blessed a roomful of preschoolers, new science lab
Ava Linkenhoker, right, whispers into Chloe Dellaposta's ear as they listen to the Most Rev. Mitchell T. Rozanski during his visit Friday to the pre-kindergarten class at St Mary's Catholic School. (By Ric Dugan, Staff Photographer)
The pre-kindergarten program is new this year, and St. Mary's met its goal of enrolling 15 students, Principal Patricia McDermott said.
Rozanski, bishop of the Saint Ann Seton Vicariate of the Roman Catholic Archdiocese of Baltimore, visited the school to bless that program, celebrate Mass with the student body and later bless the school's new science lab, McDermott said.
"May Almighty God continue to help you learn in this marvelous and lovely world," Rozanski said in blessing the new pre-K class and its students.
There are 205 students from preschool to eighth grade at St. Mary's and even in difficult economic times, parents look to the school for a quality education, McDermott said.
"It's tough, but there are many families that see the value of a Catholic education and want a Catholic education for their children," said McDermott, who is in her 10th year at St. Mary's, the past five as principal.
"We appreciate it most when our former students come back and say, 'Thank you,'" McDermott said.
Deborah Bockrath, director of marketing and development, said about half the cost of expanding the lab was paid for with a $60,000 grant from the Baltimore-based Marion I. and Henry J. Knott Foundation.
"We are able to provide our students with an environment that allows them to be more engaged in science exploration," middle-school science teacher Mary K. Barger said.
The lab, which includes some new equipment, was created by breaking through a wall and expanding the old lab into a classroom next door, McDermott said.
"The state of education here is good. Solid," Rozanski said. "I know we're moving into STEM — science, technology, engineering and math — and this science lab will be an important part of the education of our children here at St. Mary's."