Amid renovations, Holy Trinity Catholic School prepares to celebrate its 100th year.
Principal Jill Fallon has just completed her first year at the campus after garnering experience at Christ the King Catholic School and St. Thomas Aquinas Catholic School.
“I can make the analogy between my coming here and a brand-new mayor on the cusp of the Olympics,” Fallon joked. A number of events are planned to celebrate the anniversary, starting with a back-to-school picnic on Aug. 23. After that, it’s high tea at the Adolphus Hotel on Oct. 10, the “platinum party” on Oct. 11 (also at the Adolphus), and the 100th anniversary mass and brunch on Oct. 12 — the school’s original, founding date.
“What I’m mainly looking forward to is the gathering of folks,” said Father Don Ours, who has overseen the parish for three years. “People are coming back for the celebrations to honor what was, as much as what is.”
In the Vincentian tradition, there’s a major emphasis on charity. As an example of this, the school will implement “100 random acts of kindness.”
Its small size is another unique asset to the school’s environment.
“I love that the size creates a true ‘family’ feeling, where every teacher knows every child, and every child knows every teacher,” Fallon said. “It’s a very nurturing environment.”
And creating a nurturing environment has been a goal from the start.
Sisters Clare Hoch and Mary Michael Ryan were the first two Daughters of Charity to staff the school in 1914. Originally, it was no more than a two-room, wooden building. It served just 32 children at first.
In 1925, the “Little Red School House” was built just behind the sisters’ residence, where the rectory now stands.
During the late 1940s, Father Michael Dillon knew the campus needed more room, so he started planning renovations. Unfortunately, he did not live to see them completed, and Father Thomas Stanton carried out the plans in 1947.
Again in the 1950s, more renovations were planned. Father Charles Cannon helped the school add new classrooms, locker rooms, assembly rooms, and more in 1956.
Today, the renovations continue to enable the growth of the school and make sure the facilities are tech-friendly as well as eco-friendly.
However, the school will keep its traditional aesthetic, as evident from the old, wooden cabinets in some of the original classrooms.
“We have to honor the architecture that we have and celebrate it,” Ours said. “At the same time, we can retrofit for the smart boards and computers and iPads and anything else that the kids need to use to be prepared for the modern education environment.”
Nuns from the Daughters of Charity vacated the classrooms of Holy Trinity in 1987, but that doesn’t mean the campus is lacking in any way.
“There is a spirit here that unites us as a community,” Fallon said. “It is truly the people that make the difference.”
This story appears in the August issue of Park Cities People, on stands now.