A Testimonial from the Senchuks
The Reynolds children attend both St. Ann Montessori and Vineyard Academy.
Thoughts from Suzanne Reynolds on St. Ann Montessori…
We have been involved with St. Ann preschool since its inception in 2012. The Montessori method combined with the Catechesis of the Good Shepard curriculum is unique, rare, and WONDERFUL!!! The teacher and Dean of Montessori Studies, Tracy Mannes, is AMAZING and the BEST!!!! Her aides, support staff, and leadership operate in partnership like a well-oiled machine which lends to the ultimate learning and loving environment for our children. Each morning my children are greeted with a kind and loving welcoming, they are busy all day learning, loving, and growing emotionally, socially, academically, and spiritually. Each afternoon my kids are SO EXCITED to share what they are learning in school. Their growth shines through their character, their prayer, and their love for the Lord. They LOVE their school, their teacher, and their support staff. St. Ann School extends far beyond a sound academic experience and supports our family in building a solid foundation of faith together.
Thoughts from Fred Reynolds on St. Ann Montessori…
We have the utmost respect and confidence in Ms. Tracy Mannes of St. Ann Catholic Preschool. We have three of our sons in her classroom this year. What have we seen? Renewed confidence in the education system. We know that when we drop off our boys in the morning they are treated with love, dignity, and respect. Additionally, we know that they are learning about the Church, faith, and Jesus. It is a pleasure to hear the boys singing songs they learned at school, and sharing tidbits about something they worked on at school.
They Reynolds Decision…
On August 23rd, 2017, Fred and I attended a Parent Night for St. Ann’s Catholic Montessori School, where Nolan (4) would be returning, Henry (2) would be starting, and Ellen (7) and Charlie (6) had attended in the past. It was at this meeting that I had the opportunity to hear Carrie Jewett, Principal and Curriculum Director at Vineyard Academy, speak. I had arrived at the meeting and was present, but not fully there. As Carrie Jewett started to speak, I hung on to her words as she described their mission, “We are working to strengthen the character of each child by building a foundation of virtue as the foundation. We place Christ as the cornerstone.” I could not stop thinking about that and how PERFECT that would be for Ellen, who would be making her First Communion this year, to be immersed back into an education of faith. The next day, when Henry and Nolan went for their orientation at St. Ann’s, I took Charlie and Ellen with me for an informal meeting of Mrs. Jewett, the teachers, and to see the classrooms. I was observing how my children interacted with the staff and environment, and how the Mrs. Jewett and the staff interacted with my children. They were great!! Those next few days, we prayed about and decided on the best plan for Ellen and for Charlie and we took a leap of faith, returning Charlie to St. Ann’s and starting Ellen in Vineyard. Fred and I truly believe that it was the power of the Holy Spirit that led us to this decision because we were not even looking for a change when we found it. All of my kids started at St. Ann’s and Vineyard the following week.
On September 9, 2017, I attended a family “Back to School BBQ” hosted by one of the Vineyard families. It was well into the evening before I realized we were the only new family that had joined. The strong community of families was very welcoming and I felt an immediate sense of part of the community. This definitely translates to how Ellen feels. The school is Pre-K through 8 and the children all get along so well, working together in school, and playing together at recess and outside of school. When I got into the car, Ellen said, “That was the best party, ever!” and she asked if it was OK if she made a list of her friends.
On September 28th, 2017, I attended the parent meeting for Vineyard Academy. By this time, we were over 4 weeks into the school year. I had the opportunity to hear Carrie Jewett speak again. The same words that I heard before, I heard again and understood the latter part based on what I see in Ellen’s homework and personal growth “We are working to strengthen the character of each child by building a foundation of virtue as the foundation. We place Christ as the cornerstone.We look for the stumbling blocks and choose to build up the virtue that opposes it. We give them concrete ways to grow that virtue.” We are only in our 7thweek of school and I see this happening on a daily basis. Ellen is painfully shy and she has been challenged in some of the best ways to get outside of herself. Academically, she is challenged and she is learning skills necessary to push herself. The small class size does not allow her to be a wall-flower and she is an active member of her community. She is blossoming in her faith, in her confidence, in personal responsibility, and acting in accordance with virtues. As a family, we are supported in the way we want to raise our children, learning and re-learning together. Ellen is SO HAPPY and so are we!!!!