• Fedyna Family

    "We're fortunate to have five children enrolled at SVMS. This year we have kids in all three areas of the school: the preschool, elementary, and middle schools. We began our journey here back in 2013. We had diligently toured seven local preschools for our oldest. I was a mother to three kids under the age of 4 and I had recently retired as an elementary Spanish teacher. I approached my children's education not only as a parent but as an educator. I was determined to find the best preschool. After my tour of SVMS, I stopped looking. On my tour, I saw preschool classes in session. Art projects hung from the ceiling and children were playing happily and respectfully, sitting in circle time, building with blocks, working on puzzles, and playing house. They prayed together before snack time and sat eating so calmly! I thought to myself "Wow, they truly are working miracles at this preschool!" Flash forward 10 years and we are in our last year of preschool here. We have had nothing but loving teachers who encourage the kids as they learn everything they need for kindergarten. We are so happy we made the decision to start our childrens' education at SVMS.
    The elementary and middle school years have been just as impressive. Each of my kids have very different personalities and learning styles. The SVMS teachers get to know each child so well and they have tapped into their strengths as individuals. When my children have struggled at times, the teachers have worked with us as parents to get that child to master a concept or skill. With their teachers' guidance and the progression of learning from one year to the next, my children have become learners who think critically, take pride in their work and are being challenged by the curriculum. Along the way, the teachers at every grade level have been there to make sure each of my kids has felt special and help them succeed academically. I'm confident that my kids will be well prepared for wherever they end up in high school.
    While our kids have been busy students, my husband and I have enjoyed a variety of volunteer roles in the school community. From coaching basketball, to helping out at the annual breakfast with Santa and end-of-year middle school pool parties, to co-hosting various social gatherings for the parent community, all these activities have brought us so much closer to the SVMS family. Some of my strongest friendships were born right here outside the school doors during drop off and pick up. I have laughed heartily and cried deeply with many of these fellow parents whom I call my friends. These are the kind of friends who will deliver a meal during a tough week or help out with a carpool in a pinch. This "flow of love" is what Father George teaches to our faith community. For me, this feeling that we are constantly giving and receiving love is at the core of the SVMS community.
    The faith-based education my kids have received at SVMS is remarkable. Their religious education started in PreK and the values of love, kindness, gratitude, and charity have been integral to their learning thanks to the guidance of Father George and Sister Noreen. Father George's homilies at school mass are relatable to the students but also meaningful for the adults. In a church full of people, he has a way of making you feel like he's talking directly to you. And when he plays his acoustic version of "This Little Light of Mine" at a school mass or assembly, every child joyfully sings along and is reminded to spread the light of God to the rest of the world. As for Sister Noreen, her morning prayers help students start the day on the right foot and make good choices all day long. They are constantly reminded to be the best version of themselves and to see themselves as Jesus sees them. She is kind, gentle, and completely devoted to the children and her staff. At morning prayer one day, Sister Noreen told the children to look at themselves in the mirror and know that Jesus is right there with them, always wrapping His arms around them with a big loving hug. Sister Noreen is as good as it gets when it comes to a school principal.
    The religious and spiritual messaging from SVMS has had a profound impact on my family. Raising children has so many challenges. We are overscheduled and bombarded by so much information in this digital age. Being part of this faith community reminds us to pause and make time for God, through mass and prayer and service. An attitude of gratitude is instilled in the students at our school as they learn that God makes all things possible. At school and at home, my children are learning about their faith and how God will always be there for them and all the ways they can serve God even at their young age. SVMS has given our family the gift of faith and service and I am confident that this strong foundation will help them in high school and beyond. God brought my family here for a reason and I am confident our next nine years will continue to bring us all of the spiritual nourishment and academic excellence it has so far.
    - The Fedyna Family